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Revision as of 13:57, 28 October 2020
As the manner of their Deaths, renders it impossible to prove which of the two was the longest liven, by positive evidence, the best that can be had must govern, and that is presumption from circumstances. It seems to be a good Rule. That where certain Facts are given or are proved, and out of those Facts, such Circumstances arise; as afford a violent Presumption such should be taken as positive Evid. A Vive Vore Evid. may be mistaken, may be deceived or may wickedly inferred to deceive others, but Circumstances cannot lie. The Facts proved. All were drown'd together. Mrs. Banks was found the farthest from the Place they enter'd at. the child who was the smallest and weakest, nearest. And the Boy who was larger and stronger, still farther down the River than the child. From these Circumstances, proved, arises a violent Presumption, that the child being the weakest, could not resist the Violence of the Stream so long as the Boy. & therefore being sooner drown'd, was sooner fill'd with Water, & the lighter, of course sooner sunk, the Boy according to his Strength kept up longer. As to Mrs. Banks, tis not impossible but that she might swum some Distance down the Stream, or might be kept up by her Clothes sometime before she was drown'd, or if she could not swim, she had more Strength to struggle longer, and when drown'd & fill'd with Water, must necessarily, from the known Laws of Gravitation, sunk sooner than a lighter body. We expect that in their Defence they will attempt first to convince the Jury that Mrs. Banks was first drown'd, tho' the strongest. For that she might most susceptable of Fear, or being most sensible of Danger, was soonest frightened, and soonest drown'd; and supposing her Body to be more [illegible] than the others, was most boyant, and would therefore swim longest. How these Suppositions will weigh with the Presumptions arising as above, you will judge. Should the Daughter be judged to be the longest Liver, some of Banks's Family, will be heir to her. The other Part of their Defence, will be That J Robinson acted as Admr or Exor to Banks when the [illegible] were sold as his [illegible] and not then mentioning his expected claim he has given it up & can't now recover, & perhaps may [illegible], where an Heir apparent was privy to or was a witness to a consequence of the [illegible] he expected & not making claim, was judged to have for failed.