Body Snatching in Crediton


On the 14th December 1826, the following item was published in Exeter’s Flying Post. 

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This almost certainly relates to the body of Edwin Cross Madge who was buried in Crediton churchyard on 3rd December 1826. He had been born on 5 December 1825, the illegitimate son of Ann Cross Madge.  Ann Madge was the daughter of John Madge and Susanna (née Cross).

Ann died  in August 1826 aged 27 when her second son William Cross Madge was born. Two days after Ann had been buried her two sons were baptised in Crediton Church.


The commentary in the newspaper article refers to the grave robbing in St David’s Exeter in November 1826, involving surgeon William Cooke, and Giles Yarde, a Crediton-born grave digger.