Freeman's Journal

12 February 1853

  Death of a Miser.—A few days ago Mr. William JAMESON, of Newry, Westmoreland, departed this life in a state of the most abject wretchedness. Deceased, during the whole of his life, had been exceedingly penurious in his habits.— He was born in Newry, where he died. His father had two children, himself and a sister, and a small estate. On the decease of his father the estate, which was worth a few hundred pounds, was inherited by deceased; with this in connection with a small legacy left by an aunt, he commenced the world. For several years he worked as a ploughman, anxious to add a little to the little he had. In course of time, when still a young man, he purchased an old thatched cottage at Newry, where he took up his domicile. Too greedy to buy coals, he daily, in the winter season, sesorted to the smithy to warm hinself on the smithy's hearth. Time passed on, and the miser, ever awake to speculation, was continually making accessions to his treasures. His gold and bona fide securities accumulated with astonishing rapidity, and with this increasing wealth his acquisitiveness and misanthropy grew in proportion.His dress consisted of a greasy old fustian coat, with trouses and waistcoat of the same material, a pair of clogs, a wool hat, &c. His coat had been patched and sleeved by his own hand, for he would not afford to employ a tailor. His linen also was washed by himself. He lived principally upon hasty pudding, and in order to save fire he would boil as much at a time as would serve him for three or four days. He sat in his lonely cottage on the dark winter nights without fire or candle. His health for the last few years gradually declined, and he died a few days since. His property has been variously estimated at from 20,000l. to 30,000l.!—the principal part of which will go to a nephew in London—his sister's son.

© Nick Reddan 2004

Return to my home page