rare staffordshire figure the Murder of Thoma Smith

A Staffordshire figure of the Murder of Thomas Smith. Not sure of the year this was made.A story of poaching & murder in North Staffordshire. This 11.5" high painted figural group tells the story of Wm. Collier a poacher & tenant-farmer who murdered Thomas Smith who had caught him poaching. Collier was hanged for his crime at a public exicution on Aug 7th 1866 An interesting historical group figure with both men a dog, very well painted with much detail and nice colour Mr Collier has a riding hat on jodpurs and he clutches his riding crop. Thomas put his hand to him, and thomas's, dog looks like it has jumped in to protect Thomas. A rifel or shot gun lays at their feet. A kind ebayer sent me the following interesting information about the history surrounding this figurine "The reason this subject caught the public's attention was political. It was said by some that Smith was only protecting himself because landowners and their agents had the right to shoot poachers who resisted apprehension. Of course, lots of poachers were killed without such provocation by landowners frustrated with the perceived leniency of the courts. The result of this case was a change in the laws, forbidding the use of deadly force by private citizens, except in cases of self-defense. The core issue was the rights of property owners vs the poor and ... read more