Raynors HCA 2019-05
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This lot is closed for bidding. Bidding ended on 5/30/2019
On Dec. 23, 1832 "factory girl" Sarah M. Cornell's body was found hanging from a pole of a haystack on the Tiverton, Rhode Island farm of Methodist minister Joh Durfee. She had come to the area to work in a factory in nearby Fall River, Massachusetts and had been a member of his church. The coroner's report ruled the death a suicide, but soon changed the verdict to homicide when new evidence came to light. It appears that she was pregnant at the time of her murder and letters found in her trunk suggested that Methodist minister Ephraim K. Avery of Bristol, Rhode Island was the father to the unborn child, a scandal itself since Avery was already married with several children of his own. He fled Rhode Island and was found hiding in New Hampshire. Arrested his trial began in early May 1833 which immediately gained national attention. Skilled attorneys argued in Avery's defense and they convinced the jury of his innocence; her death was again ruled a suicide. Although a free man, the trial ruined him and Avery was forced to give up his minister's post and he relocated to upset New York where he died in 1869. The poem, ca. 1833, 1p. folio, penny song sheet broadside is boldly entitled: "The Death of SARAH M. CORNELL." The twelve verse, in two columns, in rhyming poetry gives an account of the startling, deplorable and sinful events leading up to the death of the beautiful young lady and of her seduction by the "barbarous…vile deceiver." who was "ordained to preach God's gospel clearly. The poem reads, in very small part: "…their vile unlawful intercourse, unlawful fruit producing; for which he in a stack yard hung…the girl of his seducing…you oft beneath a righteous robe…may find a wolf concealed…". With much more like content of a this early nineteenth century scandal which not only rocked New England, but also the entire United States of America. Light soiling, with wrinkled margins, else VG
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New England Broadside: Murder of Rhode Island Factory Girl Sarah M. Cornell

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Current Bidding
Minimum Bid: $100.00
Final prices include buyers premium.: $437.50
Estimate: $200 - $300
Auction closed on Thursday, May 30, 2019.
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