The Death of Auld Jock
In October 1857, the nights were cold and wet, and Auld Jock and Bobby were often cold and wet. Auld Jock had developed a nasty cough which worried his wife and son John, Bobby being often with Auld Jock, on duty, grew accustomed to it.
Later in the year Auld Jock’s cough got much worse so he reported to Doctor Henry Littlejohn, the Police surgeon who had succeeded Doctor Glover in August 1854 and already knew of John Gray’s good record as a constable.
Auld Jock had developed Phthises (tuberculosis). In November 1857, the doctor called at Hall’s court and examined Jock.
“I’ll report that you are unable for duty until further notice, but I’ll do my best to get you back on duty,” he remarked.
The Doctor, turned to Mrs Gray and said, “Give him plenty of good food and keep him warm”.
Auld Jock became weaker over the holiday season in December, and by 8th February he was not able to rise from his bed. Bobby lay at his feet. That evening Auld Jock died.
John Gray had served nearly five years as a Police Constable, making him one of the longest serving Constables of his time.
The winters in Edinburgh can be very harsh