Seven-year-old Emily Holland had a new “friend.” Excitedly she told the other kids in Birley Street, Blackburn, where she lived, about the nice man. She had met him in the street and now she was going off to run an errand for him.

Emily was never seen again after that. At the end of a two-day search police found her legs and her torso, minus the head and arms, in a field. The torso revealed she had been violently raped, her throat had been cut and she had been dismembered.

The body parts were wrapped in old copies of the Preston Herald. Two weeks later Robert Taylor, a tramp, was arrested after local children said he had been talking to them.

But local suspicion centred on a shopkeeper named William Fish, who traded in Moss Street, near Birley Street. Police investigated and found copies of the Preston Herald in a corner of his shop which had issues missing corresponding exactly with those found wrapped round Emily’s body parts.

A local man offered the use of his bloodhound to help find the child’s head and arms and some of her clothing. The dog was taken to Fish’s shop, where it began barking determinedly at the fireplace. Police looked up the chimney and found bloody copies of the Manchester Courier wrapped around the rest of Emily’s body parts.

A lynch party had gathered outside the shop, and Fish had to be smuggled out the back way to the police station. The tramp was released, and Fish was hanged on Monday, August 14th, 1876, at Kirkdale Prison, Liverpool, alongside Richard Thompson, 27, another killer, from Liverpool.