Offence: Deception > forgery
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Charley. Here it is.
Q. What appears to be due to him for wages?
Charley. There appears to be due to him, from the 13th of April, 1746, to the time he died, which was the 1st of August, 1747, 14 l. 10 s. 10 d.
William Whitney . I live in Oxford Road, I have seen the prisoner several times: he came in order to sell me this ticket, on the 12th of July, 1751, about ten o'clock in the morning, to the Queen's head in Oxford Road, (holding a ticket in his hand) he said a woman had it out of the Navy-office, and said he would go and fetch her, if I would tell him where to meet me; so I appointed the Bull-head. I had bought several tickets before upon his recommendation. He brought the woman to the Bull-head in about a quarter of an hour; she went by the name of Grace Turberwell : I never saw her before: the will was made to her as aunt to the deceas'd. The prisoner said he had lent the woman some money upon it, and he had it, in order to secure his debt. He brought the will also. The woman said, she did not understand selling tickets, not being used to it; so said she would leave it to Mr. Andrews. I agreed with him by the woman's consent, and paid the money upon the table; Andrews took it up, saying to the woman, you'll give me leave to take up the money
Q. Had you an assignment to this ticket?
Whitney. No, I had not; we sent into Windmill street for one, but they had never a one.
Q. What did you pay for it?
Whitney. I think I paid 11 l. 1 s. I had a receipt for the money; as I insisted upon having a receipt from the woman, the prisoner ordered her to give me one.
Q. Who wrote it?
Whitney. The man of the house, named Peak, the woman made the mark to the name of Grace Turberwell ; I had likewise another receipt of the prisoner; Mr. Peak wrote that. The probat of the will read in court, made to Grace Turberwell , Widow; then the receipt read, signed by the woman, to this purport :
Stephen Whittey , '' for his service done on board the Rye, by '' me
Grace Turberwell E her mark.
The other receipt read to this purport.
'' London, July 12, 1751, I promise to make '' good a bill of sale for the Rye, for a ticket '' belonging to Stephen Whittey , for the sum of '' 14 l. 10 s. 6 d to William Whitney , by me '' John Andrews .''
The ticket read to this purport:
'' Stephen Whittey , ordered the 6th of May, '' then an able seaman, on board his majesty's '' ship the Rye, 30th of April, 1746, served till '' the 1st of August, 1747, at which he was discharged '' by reason of death, &c. &c. &c. '' signed and sealed August 1, 1747, Cha. Ray. '' Cap. &c. full Wages 16 l. 18 s. 8 d.'' After a proper deduction it stood 14 l. 10 s. 10 d.
William Peak . I keep the Bull's head in Oxford road ; I remember the prisoner and Mr. Whitney being together at my house, and a person that called herself Turberwell, on the 12th of July; they called for some liquor; after that they ordered me to send for a bill of sale: I sent my servant; he returned and said, he could not get one; upon which the prisoner said, Mr. Whitney, you have known me a good while, there is no occasion to dispute about this bill of sale, we'll go on with the matter; I'll give you a note that the ticket shall be made good to you. Then the prisoner ordered me to write a note, which I did by his directions, and he signed it, it has been read here. The woman was sitting in the window. Andrews ordered me to write that, she signed: then she came and made the letter E to it as her mark. I cannot say, as I was backwards and forwards, that I saw any money paid.
Q. Have you seen him often?
E. Nichols. No; I never saw him above ten times in my life.
Q. Are you a married woman?
Q. What name had the prisoner used to call you by ?
E. Nichols. He used to call me Betty Nichols.
Q. When did he call you so?
E. Nichols. He called me so in July was twelvemonth.
Q. Did he everknow you by any other name?
E. Nicholls. He came to me last July, and made me take upon me the name of Grace Turberwell : he came to me in March, the first time I saw him; he came again in June, when I was ill in bed, and said he'd got a thing for me to do; he call'd it a trifling job: I could not go then: he came again in July, about the 10th or 11th, I was then a washing, which is my business: he said he had got a will, that was left him by a man that belonged to the Rye, who was dead, and it was made to an aunt, and the aunt was dead; saying, her name was Grace Turberwell , and without I would go with him to administer, he should lose every farthing of the money; and that he had lent the man upwards of 30 l. He pulled a pocket-book out of his pocket, and took out the will, which he read over to me; when he came to the bottom, he read Stephen Whittey , his mark: said he, but the blockhead has not let his mark: he then asked me to lend him a pen and ink; I had never a one, but sent and borrowed one, and he made the mark betwixt the writing. I asked him if it would be of any signification to make the mark: he said, you fool, without it you could not take the money. He then gave it me, and we went to Doctors Commons: he bid me enquire for Mr. White. He only went into St. Paul's Church yard and staid at an alehouse while I went. I found Mr. White, and he carried me to another gentleman: there I proved the will by the name of Grace Turberwell : the prisoner gave me 56 s. to pay for it. After I had got the probat I gave it to the prisoner; and the next morning, being Friday, I saw him again: then we went to the Navy office; he gave me the probat of the will, and a certificate that he had got from some parish, which was to prove I lived in such a parish. He left me in Crutched-fryars, and bid me go and take out a Ticket. I got one and came and gave it to Andrews; he staid, according to his promise, at the Bull-head in Leaden-hall-street ; there were Mr. and Mrs. Mellisent together, and they cast it up: after that the prisoner went and had it cast up at the office.
Q. Did you see it again after that?
E. Nichols. Yes, I saw it again on the Saturday morning. Mrs. Mellisent came to our house betwixt six and seven, and said I must go along with her to Tyburn-road; that Mr. Andrews
Q. Was there a receipt given?
E. Nichols. There were two; I made the letter E to one of them: Mr. Peak wrote it by Andrew's Direction. She look'd at it and said it was her mark.
Q. Did you see any money paid?
E. Nichols. I did; to the best of my knowledge it was about eleven pounds. He said I might go and he'd come to me presently; he came to me to the Queen's-head and gave me half a guinea. I never saw a farthing more of it,
Q. What you do mean by proving the will?
E. Nichols. They swore me before a tall gentleman in black.
Q. Did you know what you swore then was false ?
E. Nichols. I did.
Q. What did you swear?
E. Nichols. I swore that to be the will of the widow, and that I was that widow.
Q. Did you know whose will it was?
E. Nichols. No I did not.
Q. What did you swear your name was?
Q. How came you to put the letter E for your mark?
E. Nichols. Because I always do, it being the first letter of my name.
E. Nichols. I did not say what my name was.
Q. How long have you known Mrs. Mellifant ?
E. Nichols. I have known her about 4 years.
Q. What is become of him and his wife?
E. Nichols. I don't know.
Q. How long have you been married to Mr. Nichols?
E. Nichols. Almost two years.
Q. Was you ever married before?
Q. What name did you go by before you married Clark.
E. Nichols. My name was Horton before.
E. Nichols. No, never but that time.
Q. Did not you once go by the name of Marks ?
E. Nichols. I did, but I never was married to that man.
Q. Where did you see the prisoner first?
E. Nichols. At Mellifant's house.
Q. Are you at large, or are you a prisoner now?
E. Nichols. I am a prisoner now upon this account, and have been this six months.
Sarah Kingson . I am wife to the last evidence. I can't say I know the prisoner. I have known Elizabeth Nichols above thirteen years; she has been two years married to this husband, and ever since went by the name of Nichols.
Ann Nichols . I live with my mother Mary Nichols . I know the prisoner; I never saw him above four times before: he came once to our house and asked for Elizabeth Nichols (her husband is my brother) she was in bed; he sat down till she got up and came down; they then went up stairs together, but he did not stay long there, and I never saw him after that till I saw him in the Compter.
Q. How many names has E. Nichols gone by?
Q. How came you to go to the Compter?
This evidence Nichols was taken up for an offence of this kind, and confin'd in the county goal of Surry, before she made this information against me; since that there is one Licet and Lingar have tutored her, and contrived all these
To his Character.
Ralph Middleton . The prisoner has often been at my house; he has left money in my hands, and I have lent him money several times, four, five, or ten guineas at a time, and never took a note of him in my life; he has left also watches, rings, and such things, as money-worth of twenty or thirty pounds value: I always thought him an honest man.
Middleton. I have at my house, people take her to be a sewd woman.
Q. Did he seem to be acquainted with her.
Middleton. He seemed to be as well acquainted with her as he could be.
Q. Where do you live?
Middleton. I keep the Bear at the Bridge-foot, Surry.
Q. Where did the prisoner live when you knew him first ?
Middleton. He lived at the Cross near Deptford, his wife keeps the house now.
Q. How came he to leave his money and things with you?
Middleton. He has when he has been in liquor, and going home late at night.
Q. What was the prisoner before he came to New-Cross ?
Middleton. He has been a sea-faring man, I never heard him say what ship he belonged to.
Jonathan Walker . My father is a gardiner at Greenwich ; I live with him; I have known the prisoner two years and half ; I never heard but that he had a very honest character; I always thought him honest
Q. What has been his employment?
Ross. He did business for any body to take money for Seamens tickets.
Catherine Rhodes . I have known the prisoner between five and six years; he lived near the first turnpike in Deptford road; he married a widow there, but he had not quitted our house at Greenwich; he has lodged with us about a year when he was taken up. I always thought him a very honest man ; he has been used to buy seamens tickets.
Capt. Cush. I am master of a ship in the East-india company's service; I have known the prisoner ever since the year 1746; I failed with him two years, he then behaved in an honourable way; he was an officer on board me.
Benjamin Allen . I am purser to Capt. Cush ; I have known the prisoner ever since the year 1746; I have sailed with him, and have seen him several times within these twelve months; I always thought he behaved as a very honest man.
George Cleyton. I have known him between three and four years, and have been in his company several times, and never heard any ill of him till this unhappy accident. I live within a quarter of a mile of his house; we don't know when he married the woman, some say he is, some say he is not.
For the Crown.
Q. What is his general character?
Neal. Very bad, I think him a very dishonest man.
Q. What is his general character?
Reynolds. A universal bad one.
Guilty , Death .