Quick Index Board Index Home FAQ Site Map
|Letter31: Prepare yourself for something very dreadful.....
Written by JulieW
(9/17/2007 7:33 a.m.)
In letter 31 JA asks Cassandra to carry out a commission for Martha when she goes to visit Henry and Eliza in London:
Martha left you her best love. She will write to you herself in a short time; but, trusting to my memory rather than her own, she has nevertheless desired me to ask you to purchase for her two bottles of Steele's lavender water when you are in town, provided you should go to the shop on your own account, otherwise you may be sure that she would not have you recollect the request.
Mr Steele gave his name to his brand of lavender water .. He distilled the lavender and sold it from premises in a busy part of town, No 15 Catherine Street in the Strand.
Here is a map of the area:
And here is a close up showing where Catherine Street was:
It is just oposite Somerset house, in the top right quadrant of the map.
Mr Steel also had a small house and a lavender nursery at Feltham near Houndslow Heath on the outskirts of London, approx 6 miles from the city. He was also in business with his brother in law, one Mr Alley who distilled the lavender into lavender water.
Here is a section from Cary's map of the environs of London, and you can see Houndslow Heath is to the bottom left of the map.
However, and now do prepare yourself for something dreadful….Poor Mr Steel was murdered in 1802. He went missing on the 5th November of that year.
His dead body was discovered by his brother in law who had raised the alarm on realising Mr Steele had gone missing.
This miscreant who murdered Mr Steel, , JOHN HOLLOWAY was eventually found guilty of the crime and was hung., OWEN HAGGERTY , alias "EGGERTY" who was also charged with the murder was found not guilty.
The grisly details are to be found in the records of the Old Bailey and I've linked it below.
No wonder then that Martha has a recipe for lavender water in her household book…..after Mr Steels demise she may have decided to maker her own ;-)
Martha Lloyds Household Book.
To one quart of the best rectified spirits of wine put ¾ oz of essence of lavender and ½ scruple of ambergris; shake it together and it is fit for use in a few days.
|Mr Steele's Murder|
Groupread is maintained by Myretta with WebBBS 3.21.