Elizabeth Wright, Mary Wright, John Knight, Royal Offences > coining offences, Royal Offences > coining offences, Royal Offences > coining offences, 5th December 1733.

Reference Number: t17331205-65
Offences: Royal Offences > coining offences; Royal Offences > coining offences; Royal Offences > coining offences
Verdicts: Guilty; Not Guilty; Guilty
Punishments: Death > burning

72, 73, 74. Elizabeth Wright , Mary Wright , her Daughter , and John Knight ,

her Son , were indicted for High-Treason, for having in their Custody, in the House of Richard Wright , a pair of Chalk-Moulds, in which was the Impression of a Six-pence, without an Lawful Cause, for so having , May 4 .

They were a second Time indicted, for concealing the said Moulds, in the House of Richard Wright , May 4.

Mr. John North . About a Year ago, Alice Dearing was indicted here, for uttering bad Money, and acquitted. On the 4th of this Month, she came, and told me, she knew two of the Prisoners, Mary Wright , and her Daughter, Elizabeth Wright , to be Coiners, and that she suspected the other Prisoner John Knight (Mary Wright's Son) but could not be positive that he was concern'd with them, and that as soon as she could find out their Lodgings, she would give me Notice. Accordingly last Tuesday, by her Directions, I took Mr. Burly and Mr. Froud with me, and went to an Alehouse in Little St. Martin's-Street, by Leicester-Fields; we sent the Girl at the Alehouse to the Prisoner's Lodgings, under pretence of enquiring for a Pot, to see if they were at home. The Girl brought us Word they were. I sent Burly and Froud up Stairs, placed another to watch at the Door, and went my self into the Yard, to see if any Moulds should be thrown out at Window. But believing they were taken by the Noise I heard above, I ran up. We ty'd them, and then begun to search; the first thing I took Notice of, was a bad Six-pence, some Chalk, and Brush lying in the Window, for we found no bad Money upon their Persons; Looking towards the Fire-side, I saw a little Trunk. I ask'd the Prisoner, Knight, What was in it? He said, he could not tell. I drew the Nails and open'd it, and found these pair of Chalk-Molds, which have the Impression of a Six-pence, the Head on one side, and the Reverse on the other: This Paper, in which were these Six-pences nfinish'd, not so much as the Tops being cut off : This little Box with these 18 bad Shilings in: it This Bag, with about 40 bad Shillings, and Six-pences, 3 bad half Crowns, and some Pieces of Metal; all these, and this Crucible, which is to melt Metal in, were found in this Trunk - Upon searching Knight farther, there was found in his Pocket this Key, which upon Trial open'd this Trunk.

Knight. That is the Key of the Trunk where my Linen is.

Mr. North. After they were sent to Newgate, Richard Wright (their Landlord) told me he had found more bad Money under the Bed. I went again, and found this other Trunk, which the same Key opens. There were several bad Shillings in it, and some Nutmegs, and other odd Things, which I suppose they had bought when they changed their bad Money. Among the Cinders lay some mix'd Metal and this Flask.

William Burly confirm'd Mr. North's Evidence, excepting, as he said, he did not see the Key produc'd, nor the Crucifix (Crucible.)

Elizabeth Wright , the Landlady. I let my my Room a Month ago, to Elizabeth and Mary Wright , as for John Knight , he came backwards and forwards, but did not lodge there, except one Night, when his Mother had fell down and hurt her Face, and he came home with her - On Tuesday hearing a Noise, I went up, and found Mr. North, and others there; he told me, they were Coiners - Christ forbid ! says I, and went out frightened. When they were gone, I found this Flask in the Cinders, and the Fellow to it, under the Bed, where was this Trunk too, with 4 l. bad Shillings and Six-pences in it.

Mr. North. Here is another Box of bad Money, that I likewise found in the same Room.

Elizabeth Wright . (The Prisoner) my Children are Innocent - I gave the Key of the Trunk to my Son.

Court. He says 'tis his own Key.

The Jury found Elizabeth Wright Guilty of both Indictments , and acquitted Mary Wright and John Knight .

Elizabeth Wright, and Mary Wright, were a third Time indicted for High-Treason,

in Coining 20 Pieces of counterfeit Money, in the likeness of Shillings .

Alice Dearing . I have known the Prisoners eight Years, but never was concern'd with them till July last was 12 Month, when one Sunday, Elizabeth came to my Lodging, and ask'd me to go out with her next Day, but said nothing upon what Account. I agreed, she came on Monday, between 2 and 3 in the Afternoon. We went out together. Crossing Lincoln's- inn -fields, she gave me 6 d. (I thought it was a good one) to buy some Gingerbread; the Man said it was not. I told her of it; she curs'd me for a Fool ; gave me another to fetch a Pennyworth of Silk; I pass'd it, and brought her the Change. You Fool you, says she, you may do this as well as my Daughter Molly, if you'll give your Mind to it, and you shall have half what you get. After this I put off several in the same Manner, and we always shar'd whatever Goods I bought, and the Change out of the bad Money. They then lodg'd at Mrs. Mason's, a Chandler, against the Chequer Alehouse in King's-street , and there I saw Elizabeth cast Money in these Frames; but how she fill'd them, or what Metal she us'd, I can't tell; but she put a Tobacco-pipe with some Metal in it in the Grate, and when it was melted, pour'd it in here, and opening the Frame, threw out a Shilling; she turn'd the Frame another Way, and made a Six-pence; she put the Six-pence in my Hand, and it burnt me, and so I saw her make about 20 Shillings, and as many Six-pences. Her Daughter, Mary, at the same Time cut off the Tails with a Pair of Scissars, scrap'd the Edges round with a Knife, and then fil'd them. After this, the Mother went to Ireland, and left me and her Daughter Mary, and Ann Knight (her Daughter by another Husband;) I was taken up for passing a bad Six-pence in Lombard-street, and this Day 12 Month I was brought to have a Detainer till next Sessions, Mr. North being ill, I was sent from hence to the Compter, and at next Sessions was try'd and acquitted; but I was ruin'd by being 7 Weeks in Confinement: I was big with Child, and forc'd to sell my Bed, and they all kept from me under this Misfortune, and would not so much as send me any Thing for my Relief. I said to my self, If ever I find 'em in the Kingdom, I'll give the King an Account; and 3 or 4 Months ago I was inform'd they were come to London. The Mother sent for me, in the Name of a Gentleman, to come to Mr. Garvey's, at the Bull-head in Prince's-street; when I came to her, she said she was sorry to hear of my Trouble. About 5 Weeks ago I inform'd Mr. Ashton of this, and about a Month ago I told Mr. North, and Mr. North assur'd me there was no Reward to be given in such Cases. I made it my Business to enquire out their Lodging, and having found it, I sent Word to Mr. North last Tuesday, and he came and took them.

Mr. North. On Alice Dearing's Information I took the Prisoners; and besides the Things I mentioned in the last Trial, I found this Pair of Scissors and these two Files in their Room.

Eliz. Wright. I don't know what to say for myself, but my Child is innocent; spare her, and do as you please with me.

The Jury found them both guilty . Death .


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