Figure depicting James Blomfield Rush
- Object Number: 1980.P.280
- Simple Name: figure
- Production Place: Stoke-on-Trent
- Production Place: Staffordshire
- Production Place: England
- Production Period:
- Summary: Figure depicting James Blomfield Rush. Earthenware with overglaze painted decoration. Inscribed on base, 'James B Rush'. Rush has one hand on a podium and a letter or note in his other hand.
- Terms:heroes & villains
- Terms:crime & punishment
- Terms:18th & 19th Century Staffordshire
- Credit: P D Gordon Pugh Collection. Purchased with grant in aid from the V&A Purchase Grant Fund, The Art Fund and The Friends of The Potteries Museum & Art Gallery.
- Additional Notes: The Victorians were obsessed by murder but also had a passion for litigation and the workings of the law. The case of James Blomfield Rush combined the two. In 1848, Isaac Jermy and his young, Isaac Jermy Jermy, were murdered by an gunman, disguised in a wig and false whiskers. Rush was suspected, having formed a strained and complicated relationship with the Jermys as a tenant at Stanfield Hall Farm.
- Additional Notes: Rush has bullied his mistress, Emily Sandford, into providing him with an alibi, but a search of the house found the disguise. At trail in Norwich, Rush insisted on conducting his own defence. He spent a long time questionning witnesses on subjects seemingly irrelivent to the case, apparently trying to prolong the trial. The case was legally complex, with elaborate dealings of ineritances and frauds between Isaac Jermy and James Blomfield Rush. Eventually, Rush was found guilty and hanged at Norwich Castle on the 21st April 1849 in front of almost 20,000 people.
- Contact: Potteries Museum and Art Gallery