Edward Williams, Mary Stace, Elizabeth Williams, Theft > burglary, Theft > burglary, Theft > grand larceny, Theft > theft from a specified place, 16th January 1765.

Reference Number: t17650116-36
Offences: Theft > burglary; Theft > burglary; Theft > grand larceny; Theft > theft from a specified place
Verdicts: Guilty > lesser offence; Guilty; Not Guilty; Not Guilty
Punishments: Death

136. (M.) Edward Williams was indicted, for that he, on the 8th of September , about the hour of two in the night, the dwelling-house of John Zephaniah Holwell did break and enter, and stealing one silver coffee-pot, value 3 l. a pair of silver tea tongs, value 5 s. two silver table spoons, value 30 s. fourteen silver tea spoons, value 7 s. a silver cup, value 20 s. a pair of callico sheets, value 40 s. and two Holland pillow cases , the property of the said John Zephaniah Holwell . *

At the request of the prisoner, the witnesses were examined apart.

Sarah Manley . Governor Holwell is my master.

Q. What is his christian name?

S. Manley. John Zephaniah ; he has a house in Harley-street, Cavendish-square : I fastened all the doors of the house, about nine o'clock on Saturday night, the 8th of September.

Q. How many outward doors are there?

S. Manley. There are two: the family was not in town; I was the only person that was in the house. I got up on the Sunday morning, about eight o'clock, and found the window in the servant's-hall, backwards, was broke open; the hinges were wrenched from the shutter, and the sash flung up: I am certain that window was fastened, when I went to bed: I observed a snuff of a candle thrown against the kitchen door: I miss'd the plate out of the plate-cupboard, that is in a room on the same floor, that I saw the night before I went to bed: the door had been undone, but the lock was not so much damaged, but that I could lock and unlock it: that I left locked when I went to bed.

Q. What did you miss?

S. Manley. I miss'd two silver waiters, with the governor's arms upon them, a pair of silver tea tongs, two silver table spoons, fourteen silver tea spoons, a silver cup, a pair of callico sheets, and a pair of Holland pillow cases; (a silver waiter produced,) this is my master's property, one of the two that were lost; it is plain to be seen where the arms were erazed out.

Abraham Levi . I live in Houndsditch; the prisoner first brought me two silver table spoons; I gave him seventeen shillings for them; after that he brought me this silver waiter, and another, fourteen tea-spoons, and a pair of tea tongs that was broke (this was on the 9th of September last); I made a memorandum of it in my almanack, between eight and nine in the morning.

Q. What did you give him an ounce for the plate?

Levi. I gave him 4 s. an ounce.

Q. How long have you been acquainted with him?

Levi. Ever since May last.

Q. from prisoner. Was it by night or day that I brought it?

Levi. It was in the day.

Prisoner. Very good.

Q. from Prisoner. In what manner, did you weigh it, or how do you deal in these things?

Levi. I was obliged to weigh it as narrowly as possible; he was so careful that I durst not put my fingers to it.

Q. from prisoner. How much did you weigh at a time?

Levi. Twelve ounces.

Q. What were the arms on the plate?

Levi. There were three nanny-goats upon it?

Q. from prisoner. What coin did you pay me in?

Levi. I paid him in half guineas and guineas, and four shillings.

Mary Simpson . I was servant to Abraham Levi : I remember the prisoner coming to him several

times; I used to go out, that I might not see any thing.

William Garnan . The prisoner lodged in a room of mine. Mr. Brebrook and others, came to search his room, after he was taken away; I think it was this day se'nnight: this dark lanthorn was found in a drawer in his room. (Produced).

Moses Levi . I have seen the prisoner with Abraham Levi together, twice in one day, about July; he and his wife brought a parcel of plate, silver candlesticks, two salvers, and other things.

Prisoner's Defence.

I never saw that Jew in my life (meaning Abraham Levi ): here are people come to swear my innocent life away, for the sake of the reward: Brebrook brought a man before Mr. Fielding, who swore he and I were breaking of houses together. I am as innocent as the child unborn.

Guilty of Felony only .

(M.) He was a second time indicted, for that he, on the 17th of December , about the hour of two in the night, the dwelling-house of Ralph Verney , Esq ; commonly called Earl Verney, of the kingdom of Ireland, did break and enter, and stealing one silver cup, value 20 s. one silver spoon, value 20 s. six silver plates, value 12 l. three silver chocolate stands, value 30 s. six silver tea spoons, value 12 s. three silver table spoons, three silver saucepans, one silver cream jug, and a silver boat , the property of the said Earl. *

Elizabeth Cook . I am house-keeper to Lord Verney, in Curzon-street, May-fair . My Lady always undresses in my room, in the lower part of the house: she undressed on the 17th of December, about ten at night: I always quit that room, and go to supper between ten and eleven: I shut the window-shutter to that room myself, but I firmly believe the window was not barr'd. (A silver cup produced in court). This I can swear is my Lord's plate; the arms are taken out. (A silver boat produced). This I believe to be my Lord's property; ours was like this, but the arms are out: there were six silver spoons taken away, that lay in this; three chocolate stands, six silver plates, three silver saucepans, one of two quarts, another about three pints, and a small milk saucepan; these were all taken away.

Q. from prisoner. Did you ever see me near your house?

Cook. No, never, to my knowledge.

Margaret Henderson . I am a servant to Lord Verney. On the 18th of December, about half an hour after five in the morning, I got up to wash.

Q. Was it light or dark then?

Henderson. It was dark. I went into the housekeeper's room, to fetch the key, and found the window-shutters open, and the sash up.

Q. from Prisoner. Did you ever see me about your house?

Henderson. No, I never saw the prisoner in my life.

Kemp Bailey. I attend my Lord's house-keeper. I take care that the doors and windows are fast; I know the shutters of the house-keeper's room were shut to, the evening before the robbery; (He takes the cup in his hand): this I know to be my Lord Verney's property; there were my Lord's arms on it, which reached half way round the cup. It appears to be erazed out.

Q. from Prisoner. Did you ever see me near your Lord's house?

Bailey. No, not to my knowledge.

Abraham Levi . (He takes the cup in his hand.) I bought this cup of the prisoner at the bar, on Tuesday, the 18th of December: he came in the morning, about six or seven o'clock, and brought a silver tumbler, this silver cup, six chocolate plates, three table spoons, six tea spoons, three rings to put upon chocolate plates, three saucepans, a large one, a middling one, and a little one, all silver. I gave him 4 s. an ounce for them. I gave him 8 l. directly, and sent the other by my little boy, in the afternoon.

Q. What was the other money?

Levi. That was eight guineas.

Q. from Prisoner. Can you bring any body that ever saw me in your company, dealing for such things?

Levi. I cannot this time; for then we were alone.

Lion Abraham. I am fourteen years of age, and am son to the last evidence. I have seen the prisoner frequently at my father's house: I carried him eight guineas one afternoon.

Q. In what pieces of money?

Abraham. There was a 27 s. piece, 4 s. 6 d. in silver, and the rest in guineas and half guineas, and the prisoner gave me a shilling. When he used to come to our house, my father sent me away.

William Garnan . I remember this boy coming to Williams, at my house, the Wednesday before Christmas-day.

Prisoner's Defence.

This boy was brought by thief-catchers, that came after me; he learns of his father: as his father swears, he swears; the thief-catchers all hang together, and when a man has been once under a cloud, they fix a thing upon him, and so swear his life away. They get their bread by helping people to stolen goods: I have been taken up three or four times, and they have brought people to look at my face, yet nothing was found upon me, to the value of a pin's point. The Jews will swear to clear a man, or cast him, for a trifle: the thief-takers might put the dark lanthorn there; it did not belong to me.

Guilty . Death .

(M.) He was a third time indicted for stealing seventeen yards of silk lutestring, value 3 l. the property of his Grace the Duke of Norfolk , November 17 . *

He was tried on this, with intent to come at his sister, as an accessary.

Abraham Levi deposed, she brought the silk, and sold it to him; but his evidence not being supported by a witness of credit, the jury did not think proper to give him credit.

Acquitted .

38, 39. (M.) He was a fourth time indicted, together with Elizabeth, his sister, and Mary Stace , for stealing a velvet coat, embroidered with gold, value 10 s. and one silver table spoon, value 8 s. the property of Thomas Brown , Esq ; one silver watch, value 40 s. one metal seal, value one penny, and a pair of silver shoe-buckles, value 10 s. the property of William Stainforth , in the dwelling-house of the said Thomas Brown , October 27 . ++

William Stainforth . Mr. Brown is my master; he lives in Bedford-row : he was in the country. When we got up in the morning, on the 27th of October, we found the door open that goes backwards, into the yard, and the window broke open in the servant's hall; the things mentioned in the indictment were missing. My master is King at Arms , and the coat was his Herald's robe. I had had that in my arms on the afternoon before.

Abraham Levi deposed, he bought the watch of Elizabeth Williams , on the 28th of October, in the morning: that all the three prisoners came together; and that State, which he called William's wife, brought the robe in a green bag, under her cloak, for which he gave five guineas.

There being no witness of credit, to confirm him, they were all three Acquitted .

There were two indictments against Williams.

See him tried three times for burglaries, No. 405. in Mr. Alderman Beckford's mayoralty. See him also an evidence against Robert Stevenson , for a burglary, No. 7. in Mr. Alderman Bridgen's mayoralty. He also since gave evidence against him at Maidstone, who was there cast and executed.


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