Letter to Goodman from Latham House (Where William Went after Successful Appeal)

Latham House
Broughton in Furness
March 13th 1964

Dear Sir,

I am sorry I gave you the wrong date of the William Wallace release.
He was released on May 21st, 1931. Came here May 23 which was Whit [Whitsun] Saturday.

They arrived here at Latham House by taxi, where from or who brought them I dont know. A gentleman from Dalton (who is now deceased) told me he used to be very friendly with William Wallace. When he left Dalton he took up some insurance in Barrow-in-Furness. Some time later he left Barrow & went to Liverpool & followed the same occupation until his wife died.

I don’t know how close the relatives were who came to visit them – only one was a Sister-in law, who died two years ago. When the Wallaces stayed in Broughton they did a lot of walking. Somtimes they went fishing in the River Duddon. William was fond of sketching. During the day they didn’t stay very much in Broughton. When people got to know they were staying here they were curious – & wanted to know who I was going to put up next. William was very pleasant & talkative – one night he brought out his wife’s Photo to show us, & said what a lovely woman she was, & that she was a foreigner & had no relatives in this Country.

He & his brother were very pally. He told me when he heard about William’s Case he came over from Hong Kong (?) & if he did not get clear he would go back & never return again to England.

Where he went after leaving here I don’t know. He stayed two weeks with me, & William stayed three.

Any one born in this area would be natives of Lancashire.

Yours Faithfully,
Eleanor Douglas.

During this stay (three weeks from the 23rd of May) William made the following diary entry:

6 June 1931: My dear Julia is seldom out of my thoughts, and now I am on my own I realize the fight I am going to have in this battle against loneliness and desolation. Julia, Julia, how can I do without you! The anguish in my soul rises up and distils itself in tears which not all my resolution can hold back. Little did I ever think that grief and sorrow would so utterly unman me, and, yet, I must fight it down. Nothing can bring her back, nothing can undo the past. Even if he who did that foul deed is caught it cannot bring consolation to me. The only consolation I can find is in the thought of our happy Life, and the realization that she at any rate did find a large measure of happiness and content in her life.

He would have returned home to Liverpool around the 13th of June. Shortly after he made the following two entries, evidently not being received back home very well:

15 June 1931: I think I must definitely abandon the idea of returning to a Liverpool agency as the ill-feeling against me is evidently stronger than I expected.

16 June 1931: Find all the neighbours up against me. They are the rottenest crowd I ever struck. Mean and paltry brained. I feel it a wicked insult to Julia. How she would have scorned the whole thing!

This entry was posted in Case Files, Goodman Files. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *