James Lowther, 1st Earl of Lonsdale, born 1736, was known for his money and sometimes dangerous behavior. The nearby village of Arksham knew him as ‘Wicked Jimmy’ for his hostile and arrogant manner.
James Lowther was forced into an arranged marriage with a woman he did not love. She was the rich daughter of an industrialist, and she in turn hated him. They even made an agreement that they would act as if they had never married. At the same time, Lowther was in love with a local farm worker.
During the 1820’s the farm worker died, devastating Lowther. It was said he was driven mad, and demanded servants and visitors act as if his lover were still alive. He pretended to marry the corpse and ordered his servants to move it around so he could pretend she was still alive. This reportedly extended to eating with the corpse in the dining hall.
Eventualy, Lowther was confronted about this habit as the corpse had became too decomposed, the odor from decomposition becoming unbearable. Finally James agreed to allow the corpse be buried in a class coffin in a massive crypt in the prestigious Paddington Abbey in London. For a short time, James actually moved into the crypt to live with the corpse.
Upon Jimmy’s eventual return to Lowther Castle, he behaved even more oddly. He had became obsessed with death and trying to prevent it. It is said that Lowther was angry death had bested him and he became determined to control it. He became insanely tyrannical. It was during this period of his life he was nicknamed ‘Wicked Jimmy’. James became more and more introverted and spent the rest of his life attempting to discover a way to live forever.
Was Jimmy really wicked ? or was he just a grieving man who was forced to try and love someone he didnt want too and lost who he truely did? Seems to me he had no control over his life and took it out on others if you ask me! Not wicked just troubled.
When he did died it was reported that his corpse leaped from his coffin during his funeral. His ghost is said to wander Lowther Castle in its outplace Georgian dress, his ghost riding around the Penrith area in a carriage drawn by a black horse. This carriage terrorized the farm where his lover lived until a priest preformed a blessing on Lowther’s grave and then putting a large boulder on top of the grave to immobilize the spirit.
Hes also been seen sitting on the edge of his bed.