Offence: Deception > forgery
Verdict: Guilty > no_subcategory; Guilty > no_subcategory; Not Guilty > unknown; Guilty > no_subcategory; Guilty > no_subcategory
Punishment: Transportation; Imprisonment > no_subcategory
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1059. WILLIAM HENHY BARBER and JOSHUA FLETCHER were again indicted, with WILLIAM SAUNDERS , LYDIA SAUNDERS , and GEORGIANA DOREY , for feloniously inciting a certain evil-disposed person unknown, to forge a certain will, with intent to defraud Ann Slack—2nd COUNT, charging Lydia Saunders and William Henry Barber with uttering the said will, knowing it to be forged; and the other prisoners as accessories before the fact.—3rd and 4th COUNTS, stating their intent to be to defraud the Governor and Company of the Bank of England.—5th and 6th COUNTS, with intent to defraud the Rt. Hon. Charles Shaw Lefevre and others, Commissioners for the Reduction of the National Debt.—7th COUNT, charging Barber as the principal in forging, and the other prisoners as accessories before the fact.—Other COUNTS, varying the manner of stating the charge.
MESSRS. ERLE, CLARKSON, BODKIN, and SIR JOHN BAYLEY, conducted the Prosecution,
JOHN WILLIAM SEATON . I produce a document purporting to be the will of Ann Slack, deceased, formerly of Smith-street, Chelsea, and late of South-terrace, Pimlico—a copy of an affidavit on the subject was filed at the Prero-gative-office—we send the original to the Stamp-office.
Cross-examined by MR. WILKINS. Q. Were you present in the first instance at the Mansion-house, when Mr. Barber was taken? A. Yes—I believe Mr. Barber, on that occasion, expressed a desire to enter upon the case immediately, without the aid of counsel—I was present—I heard Mr. Clarkson caution him, that if he did so, he might do himself a mischief—I do not exactly recollect Mr. Barber saying that he would go on, for he had nothing to fear—he said something to that effect.
WILLIAM SMEE, ESQ . I am chief accountant of the Bank of England. (Referring to a book.) In the year 1829, there was standing in the books of the Bank, in the name of "Ann Slack, of Smith-street, Chelsea, spinster," 6,629l. 17s., in the reduced Three per Cent. Annuities, and 3,500l. in the Three per Cent. Consols—they were both purchased on the 23rd of Oct., 1829, and the dividends on them were paid under virtue of a power of attorney, granted to Arderne Hulme, gentleman, of Hampden-wick, Middlesex—the Reduced power is dated 13th March, 1830, and that for the Consols, on the 5th of Jan., 1830—the dividends on the Consols were received by Arderne Hulme, up to the 6th of Jan., 1832—I knew Mr. Hulme in his life-time—I do not know that he was a partner in the house of Jones, Lloyd, and Co.—I only recollect his person—in consequence of the non-receipt of any dividends from the 5th of July, 1832, the sum of 3,500l. consols was transferred to the Commissioners for the Reduction of the National Debt, on the 6th of July, 1842.
Cross-examined by MR. WILKINS. Q. Are you acquainted with the manner in which parties, generally speaking, are identified, who come to receive money from the Bank? A. I am—the ordinary course is, that a party comes with his attorney, and they send for a broker to identify him—all that is written on the document is "known to me," and the signature of the party.
Cross-examined by MR. GREAVES. Q. Are there not books published by authority, of the unclaimed dividends? A. There are, published by the Bank.
MR. ERLE. Q. That is, the name and description of the persons? A. Yes—it does not contain the amount of stock—it contains the period when the first dividend became due.
MR. GREAVES. Q. Does it not also contain the number of dividends unpaid? A. Yes, up to a certain date.
JOHN SLACK , Esq. I reside at Abbotts Langley, Hertfordshire. I knew the late Arderne Hulme. My father's name was George Slack—he did not leave considerable property—Mr. Hulme acted as the surviving executor of my father's estate, and guardian to myself and sisters—he died in July, 1832 he continued to act up to the time of his death, not for me, but for my sister—this paper is Mr. Hulme's handwriting—(this announced the purchase of the stock.)
Cross-examined by MR. WILKINS. Q. Has your sister any income besides that resulting from funded property? A. She has; she has money out on mortgage—I should say her income was handsome—it is more than 500l. a year, independent of the 3500l. consols—I do not know that I am bound to answer whether she is an intelligent lady.
COURT. Q. Probably not very much accustomed to business? A. Certainly not.
MR. CLARKSON. Q. Can you tell about her age in 1842? A. Yes, she was of mature age—my eldest child was fourteen years of age last February.
GEORGE BEAMAN . I am a surgeon, and live in King-street, Coventgarden—I am the executor of the late Arderne Hulme, Esq.—I produce from among his papers, his books of account with reference to the family of the Slacks—it commences in 1828, and the last entry made by Mr. Hulme is on the 7th of May, 1832—on the 15th of Oct. 1832, there is a settlement of account between Mr. Hulme and Miss Slack, balanced and signed by her—he charges himself with the receipt of the dividends on this 3500l. from Jan. 1830, down to Jan. 1832, on account of Miss Slack, and also of 6629l. Reduced.
MISS. ANN SLACK . I reside with my brother-in-law, Capt. Foskett, at Abbotts Langley—Mr. Hulme at one time acted as guardian for me, and received my dividends—after his death I received my dividends myself—I was not aware that I had a sum of 3500l. in the Three per cent. Consolidated Annuities—I did not receive any dividend upon that sum until after this inquiry had begun—in 1829 I was living in Smith-street, Chelsea, with Mrs. Leek—she was no relation of mine—I resided there, and paid for my board and lodging—I left Mrs. Leek's in 1830, and went to reside with Capt. Foskett, with whom I have resided from that time to this—the signature, "Ann Slack," to this will (looking at it) is not my handwriting—I never gave anybody authority to make that will, or to write that name—I have never made any will.
Cross-examined by MR. WILKINS. Q. What is your age? A. Thirtyseven—I never had an interview with Mr. Barber—I went in a carriage to the office' door when Capt. Foskett went in—he left me in the carriage—that only occurred once—this writing to the will does not resemble mine in the slightest degree—this is my name signed to one of these accounts.
WILLIAM CHRISTMAS . I am a clerk in the Bank of England—I filled the situation of librarian there—that situation did not immediately enable me to become acquainted with the particulars of unclaimed dividends and stock in the Bank books, but other parts of my duty enabled me to possess that information—I am now suspended—I know the prisoner Fletcher—I cannot say positively how long I have been acquainted with him—about four years, or it may be near five—I am not sure—I have been in communication with him on the subject of unclaimed dividends in the Bank books, on four occasions I think—I am only speaking now to the best of my recollection—I think somewhere about the autumn of 1842, 1 gave him information with
respect to some stock in the name of Slack—I cannot speak for a few weeks—I am not sure of the amount of the stock I told him of, but I think 3500l., or thereabouts, in the Consolidated Three per cents.—I told him it was standing in the name of Ann Slack—I did not at that time give him any other description of Ann Slack than the name; but some little time after, upon the second inquiry, I gave him the description of Smith-street, Chelsea, the description that was in the books of the Bank—some time after Fletcher showed me a letter—I cannot say at what time, but I think it might be some few months after—two months possibly, or more—I cannot say exactly—I think it was thereabouts, but I speak from a very imperfect recollection—he said he gave me that letter to satisfy me as to the identity of the party who he had found out to be the owner of the stock, solely for that purpose (looking at a letter)—I do not remember the contents of the letter particularly, but I think I remember to have seen this signature—I think this is the letter—I compared this signature with this power of attorney, and the books of the Bank—after having done so I saw Fletcher again—I do not know how soon—I am not quite sure whether it might not be in the course of a day or two—to the best of my recollection I told him I thought there was something in the style of the writing, but I thought it a lighter hand; a younger hand, or something to that effect—I forget now the term I used—the letter was the lighter—I think a very considerable time elapsed before I heard anything at all about it again—I believe the next observation I heard from him about it was, that Miss Ann Slack, of Abbotts Langley, was not the person he supposed to be the proprietor, for she had never lived at Chelsea—I understood she had stated so—I do not think anything more passed with respect to it till the probate was brought in and registered.
Q. How did you learn that the probate had been brought in? A. I saw Mr. Fletcher passing through the Bank at the time it was lying there, and from him I heard it was then lying in the Will-office—he then observed to me he was satisfied that the Ann Slack of Abbotts Langley was not the party; he had discovered the proprietor of the stock to be deceased, and the probate was then there—hearing from him that there were two of the name, I believe I said to the effect, "You must be very careful in the identity of the party"—he said he was quite satisfied that he was right—I heard nothing from him about the transfer of the stock till after it was done—some two or three days afterwards he called upon roe to make me a remuneration for the information I had given him—he then told me the stock had been transferred, in fact the stock had been transferred and sold—he left 100l. in gold with me on that occasion, which I have returned to him since his apprehension—I think it was in the last week in January, or thereabouts.
Cross-examined by MR. GREAVES. Q. Did you return that money before you made any communication to anybody about this transaction? A. Yes, before I told anybody concerned for this prosecution, or anybody else about what had passed—I have given Mr. Freshfield a detailed account of every-thing I have done while I have been in the Bank, which has been fifty years—I cannot enumerate the persons besides Fletcher to whom I have given information about unclaimed dividends—there were several which Mr. Fresh-field has a knowledge of—I supplied to him in writing as well as I could from my recollection every thing 1 had done—I think 1 supplied that information two months on Friday last—I have not received thousands of pounds from other persons besides Mr. Fletcher for information I have given, nor yet 500l.—it may be 500l.—I will swear it was not thousands—I have not seen or spoken to Fletcher since he has been in custody—he wrote to me requesting I would send him 100l.—the person I gave the money to was a stranger
to me, but he introduced himself to me by the name of Lawrence—I never saw him before that I know of—he brought me a message from Fletcher requesting I would send the 100l.—unfortunately for myself I did not come forward to give information, I have often wished since that I had been honest enough to the Bank to have told them—it was not in consequence of what anybody said of me that they came to me, but it was observed information was in possession of the Governor that I had been doing wrong in that respect, and requesting me honestly to acknowledge all I did, which I did—it was not in order to get free myself that I gave information—it will not place me in a better situation—I have offended so against the rules of the Bank that I am sure it will be unpardonable—I have never been examined before any Magistrate.
MR. ERLE. Q. Look at this paper, is that the account you gave? A. Yes—this is the truth, which I set down, in a very painful situation of course, and to the best of my recollection, I wrote it out for the satisfaction of the Governor of the Bank—there is only one person in this account besides Fletcher, to whom I gave any information—it mentions the amount which I have received for my information, several hundred pounds.
MR. GREAVES. Q. Will you swear you have not given information to more than one other person besides Fletcher? A. In that paper there is only one other name—I did not give information to many other persons besides Fletcher—I have done so to several individuals who I have a personal know ledge of, five, six, or seven—it has caused me many a painful, sleepless night to endeavour to recollect, because it has embraced a long period—I may have given information to five, six, or it might be seven, I cannot be sure; but those were individuals I personally knew, and I only reminded them of what some of them possessed a knowledge of already.
MR. ERLE. Q. Were those persons that you gave information to in the regular course of your business, bankers, and people you knew? A. Not under permission, it was an offence against the rules, even that—I had money for this, but I never asked for any in my life—the other persons to whom I gave information are none of the persons now under charge—I never knew or heard of them before their apprehension.
MR. GREAVES. Q. Were you asked about what you bad done, by the Governor of the Bank? A. Not naming this in particular—I was asked to acknowledge what I had done offending against the rules of the Bank—in the first instance I certainly did prevaricate to him—I did not deny what I have done, in the hope that it was not known.
JOHN APSLEY . In 1842, I was a clerk at the King's Langley station, on the Birmingham Railroad—I recollect two persons coming in the latter part of Sept. 1842, to make enquiry about a family of the name of Slack—the prisoner Fletcher is one of those persons—I do not know who the other was—I have no belief on the subject—they made inquiries of me—Fletcher inquired if there was any lady of the name of Slack, or a family residing in the neighbourhood of the name of Slack—I believe it was a lady—I named the family of the Slacks, of Manor-house—I then said there was a Miss Slack residing with Captain and Mrs. Foskett—Fletcher asked me if I knew the Christian name of the lady—I said Ann Slack, and that Mrs. Foskett was her sister—he asked me if the name of Ann was spelt Ann or Anne—I referred to a book of parcels delivery, and it was Ann—they, (I do not remember which, Fletcher, I believe,) asked me if I knew that she ever resided in Chelsea—I said I did not know—I believe that was all the conversation I had—Mr. John Slack lives in the neighbourhood—he lives at the Manor-house—I gave them the particulars of Mr. John Slack's family, and Fletcher said
he believed it was not the family, he believed it was not the same party—he said to his companion it was not the family they wanted—this took place in the office—Fletcher asked for some refreshment—they did not state any reason to me why they were making these inquiries—I did not ask them—I told them where Captain Foskett resided, and offered to go with them—they said it was of no consequence, they did not wish to go—they asked me if I knew whether Miss Slack ever resided in Chelsea, with a Mr. or Mrs. Leek—I am sure that was mentioned—I said I did not know—when they left they said they would walk to the Watford station—in going to Watford they would pass Captain Foskett's house—I told them so.
Cross-examined by MR. GREAVES. Q. Are there not a great many persons come to the station you are at? A. There are not a great number—I first mentioned to Captain Foskett, some time last Dec, that something was said about Miss Slack having resided with a person of the name of Leek—that was the first time I mentioned anything about the persons having been to the station—I was required to come to London in Dec.—I was at the Mansion-house, but was not examined—I cannot say that I came up on purpose to be examined; I came by Mr. Freshfield's direction—I saw Mr. Freshfield first—I believe I mentioned the name of Leek to Captain Foskett—I believe I mentioned it before it was mentioned to me, but I will not swear—I first saw Fletcher, since this inquiry begin, at the Mansion-house, in the dock—the examination was going on against him at the time—Barber was also in the dock, nobody else—I had before that informed Mr. Freshfield of what had passed at Abbots Lanley—I expected to see Fletcher in the dock when I went in.
JANE SARAH APSLEY . I am the wife of John Apsley. In the autumn of 1842 I was at the King's Langley station on the Birmingham Railway—I remember my husband bringing two persons into my house, and saying, in their presence, that they came to make inquiry about a family of the name of Slack—I prepared tea for them—I recognise one of the persons, the one with spectacles (Fletcher)—I cannot say as to the other—the one this way (Saunders) I think, is about the sized person—he held his hand up to his face, and concealed it, therefore I am not able to form any belief or opinion about him—I do not recollect that he said anything particular about the Slacks—Fletcher did; he inquired whether Mrs. Foskett's Christian name was Margaret or Mary before her marriage—I told him I did not know—I proposed to take in candles—Fletcher said they did not require them—I sent in candles contrary to their wish—they Were sitting round the table—when the candles came in they got up, put on their great coats to take leave, and went away—I went in after the candles were taken in—they were then putting on their great coats.
Cross-examined by MR. GREAVES. Q. You sent in candles by a servant? A. Yes, and they got up to put on their coats to go away—it was between tax and seven o'clock in the afternoon, and at the latter end of Sept.—the first time any inquiry was made as to what I knew about this was some time before Christmas—I came up with my husband to London—I went to the Mansion-house—Mr. Baxter, Captain Foskett's attorney, caused me to come up—I was not examined at the Mansion-house—I saw two persons in the dock there—I was a very short time in the presence of the two persons who were at our house—I was in and out of the room—it was longer than a minute or two.
MR. ERLE. Q. Had you an opportunity of seeing the countenance and knowing the features of Fletcher? A. I had—he talked more than the other person—he had not spectacles at that time—I am certain he ia the man.
Langley. I married the sister of Miss Ann Slask—Miss 8 lack lives with me—in Oct., 1842, I received a letter, singed, "Barber and Bircham."
CAPTAIN FOSKETT . I wrote an answer to that letter—this is a copy of it—it is impossible to say the words—I believe it to be an exact copy—about the 26th of Oct. I received this other letter, to which I sent this answer—(produced by Mr. Wilkins)—on the 29th of Oct. I received this letter.
MR. DONALD re-examined. I believe the signature to this letter of the 26th of Oct. to be Mr. Barber's, also this of the 29th, only the signature—the body is not his.
(Letters read)—"To Captain Foskett, Abbotts Langley, Herts. 28, New Bridge-street, Blackfriars, London, 4th Oct., 1842. Sir,—We have occasion to ascertain who is the legal personal representative of Ann Slack, formerly of Chelsea, spinster. As we are informed you intermarried with some member of that lady's family, we should feel obliged if you can inform us who are her executors, administrators, or other legal representatives. We are, Sir, your very obedient servants, BARBER and BIRCHAM. "
"From Captain Foskett, to Barber and Bircham. 75, King's-road, Brighton, Oct. 13, 1842. Gentlemen,—In reply to your letter of the 4th inst., addressed to me at Abbotts Langley, I beg to inform you Miss Ann Slack is my wife's sister, and resident with us; her elder brother is also here. Any further communications will reach her, addressed as above, for the present and next week. (Signed) JOSEPH FOSKETT. "
"From Barber and Bircham, to Captain Foskett. 28, New Bridge-street, Blackfriars, London, 25th Oct., 1842. Sir,—We are obliged by your letter of the 13th instant; but as we find an entry of the death of Anne Slack (formerly of Chelsea) at Somerset House, by which it appears she died at Bath, we feel some doubt as to the identity of the lady in question. If, therefore, it would not be giving you too much trouble, we should feel exceedingly obliged by your acquainting us whether Mrs. Foskett's sister formerly resided at Chelsea, and whether she spelt her Christian name with or without an e. We noticed in your letter you spelt her name Ann. (Signed) BARBER and BIRCHAM".
"From Captain Foskett to Barber and Bircham.—king's-road, Brighton, Oct. 27, 1842. Gentlemen,—Having extended our stay at Brighton, your letter of the 25th inst. has been forwarded to me. In reply to which. I beg to inform you Miss Anne Slack does spell her Christian name with an e, and resided in Smith-street, Chelsea, with a family of the name of Leek about twelve years since, and has constantly resided since that period with her sister and myself. As you have not communicated the object of your inquiry, it is not in my power to assist you further at present We shall feel obliged by information on that head; and should it relate to bequests of the late Mrs. Bevan, deceased, shall be glad to hear, or upon any other matter. (Signed) J. FOSKETT.—P.S. We shall leave Brighton on Wednesday next for Abbotts Langley, Herts."
"From Barber and Bircham to Captain Foskett. 28, New Bridge-street, Blackfriars, London, 29th Oct., 1842. Sir,—We are much obliged by your letter of the 27th inst., and beg to know if it is probable that you will be in town shortly, as we should be extremely glad if you could favour us with a call, when the object of our inquiries shall be explained. (Signed) BARBER and BIRCHAM. "
think at the latter end of it—I went in company with Mrs. Foskett and her sister and Mrs. Leek—I left them in the carriage in the street, and went in and had an interview with Mr. Barber—he first asked me what property Miss Slack possessed, whether she had landed property, whether she had funded property, and to a large amount, whether she managed her affairs herself, what was her age, and I think he then communicated to me what had taken place, the object of his inquiry, that is to say, that a lady had died and left a considerable sum of money, to which he thought Miss Slack entitled—he asked me if she had ever signed a power of attorney, and if I believed she had received all that was due to her—he asked many other questions—I think I then told him that I could not recommend Miss Slack to incur any expense, until he could show me there was some reason to think she was entitled to something—he said that some trouble and expense had been incurred, but at present that was his own, that there probably might be more expense, and perhaps some risk—he asked me if she had any wealthy relations likely to leave a considerable sum.
COURT. Q. Did you give any answer to the inquiry about her managing her affairs, her age, and whether she had landed or funded property? A. I said that she had still a trustee living, who managed part of her affairs, but that the rest was in her own hands, and I think it was then he asked if I believed she had received the whole that was due to her—I said yes, I believed so—I thought him reserved, and I offered to identify ourselves as parties to whom he might give any information he thought proper, to show who we were, and I named certain parties, Messrs. Sutton, Messrs. Baxter, of Lincoln's-inn-fields, and Messrs. Clark and Cooper, of this Sessions-house—he said, he knew Mr. Clark very well, but it was of no importance then—I told him I could introduce Miss Slack to him in a very short time if it was necessary—she was outside in the cab at that time—I did nut tell him so—he expressed no desire to see her.
MR. ERLE. Q. Do You remember anything more at that interview? A. By that time Mrs. Foskett, who had been waiting a long time in the street, in consequence of my having been detained a long time below before I saw Mr. Barber, came to the door and inquired how much longer I should be detained, I desired her to come in and hear what the gentleman had to say, upon. which Mr. Barber asked a question which I do not exactly remember, but to which Mrs. Foskett replied—"You know, my dear, Mr. Hulme always managed her affairs till his death;" I then rose to leave the room, Mr. Barber followed us to the top of the stairs, and asked, "Is Miss Slack a person of strong nerves, or likely to be much concerned, or affected, ox excited, (I cannot recollect the exact terms) by the communication that a very considerable sum I may say 10,000l., or even more, has been left to her;" he concluded by saying that he had every reason to think that he should put her in early possession, but there was a point of doubt—I told him I did not think Miss Slack would be very much concerned, as she was sufficiently indifferent about these matters—I do not mean to say those were the precise words, but to that effect—we then left—I think Mr. Barber said that the lady who had left the property had died at Bath, but he had previously written to me to that effect, and I cannot say exactly—that she had died about six weeks since—the time at which she had died was part of the conversation—I asked when she had died, and he said about six weeks since, she had died or was buried—he requested J would not pursue the inquiry through any other channels—I think that was at the conclusion of the conversation—I am not quite sure at what time it was—I remember the fact perfectly well, but cannot remember at what period it was—on the 28th of Nov. I received this letter.
MR. DONALD re-examined. I believe the signature to that to be in the hand writing of Mr. Barber—(Read)—"28,
New Bridge-street, Blackfriars. 28th Nov. 1842.—Re Ann Slack, deceased.—Sir,—It would probably facilitate our inquiries if you could oblige us with the names of the trustees holding funded property for the benefit of Miss Ann Slack. Requesting the favour of your early attention, we remain, &c. BARBER and BIRCHAM. "
MR. DONALD. The signature to this is also Mr. Barber's—(Read)—"28, New Bridge-street, Blackfriars, London. 12th Dec, 1842.—Re Slack.—Dear Sir,—In reference to oar last letter some explanation of the object of the inquiry which it contained may be necessary. It appears that the lady entitled to the property in question was possessed of a small portion of stock in the public funds, and it would materially assist us in ascertaining the identity if you would acquaint us with the names of her trustees. If you could at the same time favour us with her signature, we think it would enable us at once to determine whether it is really her property or that of another party. If you are likely to be in town in a few days, we should feel obliged by the favour of a call. We are desirous, for the sake of all parties, of clearing up the point with the least possible delay. We remain, &c. (Signed) BARBER and BIRCHAM. "
Captain Foskett to Barber and Bircham.—Abbots Langley. 13th Dec. 1842. Gentlemen,—I have deferred replying to your last inquiry, with the intention of calling shortly, and purpose being in town on Friday next, or Saturday, when I will do so about eleven or twelve o'clock. You will no doubt remember that I stated I could not recommend Miss Slack to make herself a party to inquiry that would incur any expense, until she should see some little ground for supposing it probable she may prove to be the person legally entitled to the property bequeathed, when she would be willing to enter into some arrangement. As you have not yet favoured her with any further explanation, we regret the reserve you think necessary as an obstacle to our throwing further light upon the subject, which a very little communication might enable us to do. (Signed) J. FOSMTT. "
CAPTAIN FOSKETT . After that letter, I called on Mr. Baxter, my attorney, and in company with him I called on Mr. Barber, at his office—it was soon after receiving that letter—I do not remember exactly how soon—Mr. Barber asked if he was a professional man—he said yes—he then proceeded to state in substance what he had stated to me before, and he said it would facilitate his object if we could give him the signature of Miss Slack—I asked him by whom he was employed, or the name of his informant—he said that he had enjoined him to give no particulars and no names, but as he (Mr. Barber) was resident in town, and a professional man, he left him to make the inquiries, or to pursue the business—I do not recollect the expression exactly—I am not quite sure whether the remark was not made at the first interview—I do not distinctly recollect—he said he had access to information at the Bank not generally attainable—that remark was at the second interview, when Mr. Baxter was by—I asked Mr. Barber if he would give me the name of any broker, in order that I might see that be really had some knowledge with respect to Miss Slack, whether he really knew anything about Miss Slack's affairs—that was my object—he did not mention any one—I do not, at this moment, remember whether he made any further inquiry about Miss Slack—at the conclusion of the interview, I left with Mr. Baxter—I heard nothing more of or from Mr. Barber personally till this question arose, in the Nov. of 1843—I did from Mr. Baxter, but had no communication, either by letter or verbally, from Mr. Barber about this matter afterwards.
Cross-examined by MR. WILKINS. Q. When did Mr. Baxter give you any information? A. It arose thus, I think—Mr. Baxter and myself discussed the propriety of sending Miss Slack's signature to Mr. Barber; I returned home, and told Miss Slack that Mr. Baxter did not think any harm would occur, but I thought it better she should not write to Mr. Barber, but address Mr. Baxter, which she did, and which was conveyed to Mr. Baxter—I did not hear some time after that the real owner had been discovered—I never heard that the real claimant had been discovered—Mr. Baxter informed me, that he had received a communication from Mr. Barber, stating that he was satisfied Miss Slack was not the party entitled to it—at our interview, he expressed the opinion that Miss Slack was the party entitled to it—I told Mr. Barber that I did not know exactly Miss Slack's age; I might have said she was about twenty-seven, I do not know—he said forty would do, therefore I took no great trouble to remember—I at the same time said I did not exactly know her age.
MR. ROBERT BAXTER . I am a solicitor, and live in Lincoln's-inn-fields. On the 17th of Dec, 1842, I accompanied Captain Foskett to the office of Barber and Bircham, in Bridge-street, Blackfriars, and had an interview with Mr. Barbar—Mr. Barber said he could give some information relative to some property—he stated, that he was enquiring relative to the representatives of Ann Slack—Captain Foskett gave him some information relative to Miss Slack—he said the description Captain Foskett gave coincided very much with the party for whom they were enquiring; but there was a discrepancy which could be cleared, if he could have Miss Slack's handwriting to compare with some document—I believe he mentioned documents—he did not mention what they were—I do not recollect anything particular that passed beyond that—Captain Foskett afterwards consulted me on the propriety of giving the hand. Writing, and a note was written by Miss Slack, purporting to be addressed to myself—this is the note, it was forwarded to me by Captain Foskett, to be given to Mr. Barber—I took it to Mr. Barber on the 22nd of Dec—I saw him—I merely left it with him—nothing passed—I received this letter two days after from Mr. Barber, enclosing Miss Slack's note.
MR. DONALD re-examined. This is Mr. Barber's handwriting—(Read)—"Rose Hill, Dec 21st. My dear Mr. Baxter,—As Captain Foskett informs me you have had an interview with Messrs. Barber and Bircham, and think there is no objection to their seeing my signature for the purpose of assisting their inquiries respecting the property to which they think I may be entitled, I have sent it to you, that you may submit it to their inspection as you think right. (Signed) ANNE SLACK." "28, Bridge-street, Blackfriars, 4th Jan. 1843. Dear Sirs,—We beg to return Miss Slack's letter, and to state that we find the signatures do not correspond; and, consequently, we have arrived at the conclusion, that the identity cannot be supported. We trust you will be good enough to consider this negotiation confidential, and should our exertions to discover the right party prove successful, we shall not fail to communicate to you the result, for the satisfaction of the young lady and her friends. (Signed) BARBER and BIRCHAM. "
MR. BAXTER re-examined. Q. Did you hear from Barber and Bircham, or either of them, from that time till the discovery of this? A. I am not quite certain—I once met Mr. Barber in the street, and I mentioned the circumstance to him, but whether it was before or after I received this letter, I cannot say—nothing of any importance passed—no communication was made to me of the discovery of the right owner—Mr. Barber was quite a stranger to me when I first went to him—Captain Foskett gave him my name—I
do not know whether he gave him my address—I think he gave him my name as his attorney—I think Mr. Barber said, "Are you in the profession?"
Cross-examined by MR. WILKINS. Q. You remember meeting Mr. Barber once, was that in Lincoln's-inn-fields? A. I think it was at the corner of the gate going into Lincoln's-inn—I spoke to him on the business—I have forgotten the conversation—I rather think it was asking if he had had an opportunity of comparing Miss Slack's letter with the writing.
MR. ERLE. Q.. Can you say whether he told you be had found out the party entitled to this property? A. He did not.
GEORGE OFFLEY . I am a solicitor, residing in Henrietta-street, Coven-garden. In 1843 I was acquainted with Misa Ann Slack, who formerly resided in Smith-street, Chelsea—I was not intimately acquainted with her, I knew she lived there—in March, 1843, I saw an advertisement relating to a Miss Ann Slack, in consequence of which I wrote a letter to Barber and Bircham, to whom the advertisement said communication was to be made—this is the letter I wrote—(read)—"March 8, 1843. Gentlemen,—I saw an advertisement in the Times of this morning inserted by your firm, for the discovery of the representatives of Miss Anne Slack, formerly of Chelsea, spinster; I know a lady of that name residing with her brother-in-law, Captain Foskett, at Rose-cottage, Abbotts Langley, Herts, who resided some years in Chelsea, and who had an uncle named John Slack, who lived in Sloane-street, Chelsea.
MR. DONALD re-examined. I am not certain whether this signature is Mr. Barber's writing—I will not swear it is his.
MR. WILKINS. Q. DO you know Mr. Bircham's writing? A. I believe I do—I certainly do not believe it to be his writing—I am not so well acquainted with the signature of Mr. Bircham as I am with that of Mr. Barber, therefore I cannot give an opinion.
MR. OFFLEY re-examined. I know nothing at all of Mr. Barber or Mr. Bircham—I did not go to their office about this matter, or see either of them about it.
THOMAS BAYNER CHAPELL . I am superintendent registrar of births, deaths, and marriages of the parish of St. George, Hanover-square—the Belgrave district is within that parish—I produce the original register of deaths of the Belgrave district, in which I find an entry of the death of a person named Ann Slack, of No. 8, South-terrace, on the 17th of Feb., 1843.—Mr. Jordan is the registrar of the Belgrave district—I received the original register from Mr. Jordan within three days after the 30th of Sept.—it was not full till the 17th of August, but it is returned to me when they come to make up their quarter's returns, ending on the 30th of Sept.—it baa never been out of my hands since it was handed to me.
WILLIAM PREW JORDAN . I am the registrar of births, deaths, and marriages for the Belgrave district. On the evening of the 25th of Feb., last year, the prisoner Fletcher called on me, and said he came to register a death—I asked him when it occurred—he said on the 17th of Feb.—I asked where—he said No. 8, South-terrace—I said I did not know such a. place as South-terrace in the district, there was a South-place, and asked whether he meant that, or whether he meant some houses further on, which went by the name of terrace, but there was no name written up—they were called Ranelagh terrace and Kemp's-terrace, a part of them—I asked whether he meant those houses near the wooden bridge—he said yes—I asked the number—he said No. 8—I said I did not think there were so many as eight—he said there was, and I entered it as such, as I find it here—he gave me the name of Ann Slack, and I wrote it down in his presence—I asked him how
the name Ann was spelt, with or without an e—he said with an e—I then entered the word "female" under the sex, and the age sixty-eight years—I got that from Fletcher, from what he told me—I inquired if she was a married woman or not—he said no—I asked her occupation—he said she was a gentlewoman and a spinster—I then asked the cause of death, which he stated to be gout—I asked whether it was gout of the stomach, heart, or head, because, I said, "People don't usually die of gout, except it attacks some internal organ"—he said she had been a long sufferer with the complaint—I then entered it as gout simply—I then asked him if he were present at the death, and he answered yes—I have so written it—I then asked him his address and he gave me "No. 4, James-street"—I asked him "Where, what James-street?"—he said, "Commercial-road"—I said there was no James-street, Commercial-road, Pimlico; there was a Robert-street—I asked him which Commercial-road he meant, whether he meant Commercial-road, Lambeth, or Commercial-road East, because there are two other Commercial-roads in London—he said Commercial-road East—he then signed his name, "Robert Hart," and I affixed the day of the month to the entry, "25th Feb., 1843," and signed it myself—I then gave him a certificate, which he was to hand to the undertaker, to be given to the clergyman—I do not recollect whether he asked for it; I gave it as a matter of course—on the 14th of March a woman came to me dressed in deep mourning, and, in consequence of what she said to me, I gave her a copy of the register—this is it—I cannot recollect the woman who came positively, I did not take much notice of her—I cannot gay either one way or the other, whether it was either of the female prisoners.
Cross-examined by MR. GREAVES. Q. Do you mean to say you can speak positively to Fletcher? A. I swear positively to him, to the best of my belief and knowledge; as far as the recollection of a man coming to my house once, I should say he is the man—I have never entertained any doubts about him at all, and the more I see him the more I am confirmed in that belief—he was dressed in a small brown top coat; not a great coat, but a great surtout—he had not spectacles on at that time—the man who came to me was not a taller and stouter man—I have never said so, nor that the man bad light hair—I do not know a Mr. Henry Fletcher, I never heard of him—I certainty never told any one that the person who entered the registry had light hair, it was dark brown, almost approaching to black—I first saw Fletcher, after this charge, at Giltspur-street Compter; he was in a cell alone when I first saw him—I was taken there with a view to see if I could identify the person who came to my house—I went round «to a great many cells with the Governor, and at last came to a cell where Fletcher was alone—it was in the evening when he came to my place, between seven and eight o'clock, I should say, as near as I can guess—I had candles—he might be there a quarter of an hour, I cannot say to a minute.
MR. CLARKSON. Q. YOU went to several cells in which you saw prisoners alone? A. There were several in some cells, and when I saw Fletcher I was sure he was the person—he was alone—he had not spectacles on at that time—I did not notice his hair particularly at that time—it was partly grizzled, not quite so grey as it is now.
JOHN ROYCE TOMKINS . I am a clerk to Messrs. Freshfield, solicitors to the Bank. About six weeks or two months ago I made a search in the index of the general register of deaths at Somerset-house from the 1st of July, 1837, to the 31st of Dec, 1842—I did not find any entry there of the death of a person named Ann Slack, of Smith-street, Chelsea, or of Bath—I am sure there is no such entry—I have also looked in the neighbourhood of the
wooden bridge, Pimlico, for a terrace called South-terrace—the wooden bridge is at the end of the Belgrave-road—I believe it crosses the Grosvenor-canal—it is this side of King's-road, to the left I should say, but it is before you come to King's-road—I could not find any South-terrace—I found a South-place and a No. 8—I could not find any trace of a person of the name of Ann Slack there—I found a Commercial-road in that neighbourhood—I could not find any James-street there—I also inquired in the neighbourhood of Commercial-road East—I did not find any James-street, Commercial-road East, properly so described, although there arc several James-streets in the vicinity—I made inquiries at No. 4 in every one of those streets—I could gain no tidings whatever at either of those houses, of a person of the name of Robert Hart.
Cross-examined by MR. GREAVES. Q. What book was it you searched at Somerset-house? A. The Index—I was told so by the officials in the office—I have been there before to search—there were persons in the office whom I paid for the search—I did not know any of them personally—I know nothing of the book except what they told me—I do not recollect that I saw its title.
MR. BODKIN. Q. What office was it at? A. The General Registry-office, Somerset-house—that was written up over the door—I have searched at the same office upon other occasions—I do not know that it was the same book.
MARTHA ANN NEVILLE . I am the daughter of Mr. Neville, a tailor, and live at No. 7, Francis-street, Tottenham-court-road. About the 9th of March last year I remember Mrs. Dorey coming to my father's house to take a lodging for a lady who she said was coming out of the country about law business (I think it was about Thursday, the 9th of March, and between twelve and one o'clock)—she said she could not give a reference, but offered to pay a week in advance instead—she said she would come again in about two hours—I waited till the end of the two hours, and then went out—when I returned in the evening I found another person bad come into the lodging, and next morning I saw Mrs. Saunders at the lodging—she called herself Miss Slack—she remained in the lodging three weeks and a day, or a month and a day—she left on Friday, the 7th of April—Mrs. Dorey came for her, and they went away together in a cab—at the time Mrs. Saunders was occupying the lodging, Mrs. Dorey addressed her as Miss Slack—she came to see her about two or three times a week, in the evening—Mrs. Saunders wore light flaxen ringlets—I attended, to her bed-room, and while she was there I noticed there was dark hair in the comb—I did not notice the brush—Mrs. Saunders always wore a bonnet in-doors—Mrs. Dorey asked for Miss Slack when she came to see her—I did not at that time know Mrs. Dorey's name—Mrs. Saunders said if any body came hut her lawyer I was to say she did not live there—there was a dark gentleman called who she said was her lawyer—she told me so—he called about once a week, and sometimes he has been twice—I do not know him.
Cross-examined by MR. STONE. Q. You are quite sure it was on the 9th of March in the last year that she called? A. Yes, I first saw Mrs. Saunders after the 7th of April at the Mansion-house in March this year—I had not seen her for twelve months—she was then in custody—I knew she was in custody before I saw her—I saw no other lady in custody at that time—I had before that seen Mrs. Dorey in Oxford-street—I did not then know that Mrs. Dorey was the sister of Mrs. Saunders—I did not know it till lately—I
knew it when I went to the Mansion-house—I went to Mrs. Dorey's house with Forrester—I never saw Mrs. Saunders without a bonnet—she had light ringlets—they were false—I know that because there was dark hair in the comb, and they looked like false ringlets—they hung like false ringlets—I first made that statement to Mr. Forrester—that was before I had seen Mrs. Dorey—I am sure of that—it was about Nov.—I am sure I told Forrester that she had light flaxen ringlets, or false hair—I explained to him at the time that she had dark hair in the comb—I stated that to him before I went to see Mrs. Dorey—I do not know that Forrester searched for any light flaxen ringlets at Mrs. Dorey's—I did not hear him ask Mrs. Dorey for some white ringlets—I first discovered the black hair in the comb when I went up stairs into her bed-room—I cannot name the day—It was when she lived at our house—she had a hair brush—I did not wash it for her—I waited on her—it was on the dressing table—I did not notice any black hair about it—she only had one brush—Mrs. Dorey has dark hair—I never saw her in Mrs. Saunders's bed-room—she never went there to my knowledge—her bed-room was above the sitting-room—she was not a good deal there—she called two or three times a week—she never spent an evening with her—she stopped a very little time—I was mostly at home during the whole month—I was very seldom out—I was sometimes—I did not sometimes spend the evening out—I did the first night, but I was home at ten o'clock then—it was not my proposal that Mrs. Dorey should pay a week in advance—she told my mother who let the lodging—I did not hear her—she told me she could not give a reference—I have not travelled a good deal with Forrester—I have been out with him in search for the person—I had never seen this person before, whoever she was—I have always told the same story—I was examined before the Lord Mayor.
Cross-examined by MR. WILKINS. Q. Did she tell you what her lawyer's name was? A. No—she never said that his name was Jones—I sometimes opened the door to admit the person she said was her lawyer, and sometimes my mother did—I have since seen a person a great deal like him, but I could not swear to his face—that is the one (Fletcher)—I never saw Mrs. Saunders write.
MR. CLARKSON. Q. When you saw Mrs. Saunders at the Mansion-house where was she? A. In the room before she went into the justice-room—she walked past me—there were other persons there—I had no doubt of her when I saw her—I gave an account of the light ringlets before Mrs. Saunders was taken into custody—she was standing by herself at the Mansion-house—I pointed her out to Mr. Forrester before any question was asked about her—I did so as she walked past, to Mr. Weir—I am quite sure that she is the same person.
MR. STONE. Q. When she walked through was she in custody? A. She was—she had not flaxen ringlets on then.
MR. CLARKSON. Q. Was the woman in the habit of coming and sitting with you in the kitchen during the month she was staying there? A. Sometimes—I was in the habit of seeing her every day during the three weeks or month—I waited upon her at her meals as well as in her bed-room.
COURT. Q. Did not the flaxen ringlets make a strange alteration in her appearance? A. She looked rather different, but I took notice of her features—I am twenty-nine years old—I remember her face—she had rather high cheek bones, and her nose was rather broad at the bottom.
MARTHA NEVILLE . I am the mother of the last witness. I remember a person coming to take lodgings at my house—I believe on the 9th of March, but I will not be sure—it was the 8th or 9th—I am not sure which—I saw the person that came to take the lodging—I had some conversation with her
on the day the lodgings were taken, but very little—I afterwards saw that same person calling at the lodging occasionally, generally about every evening—I have sometimes opened the door to let her in, but it wat generally dusk—I recognise Mrs. Dorey as the person—I went with Forrester to a house in Oxford-street, lately, and there saw Mrs. Dorey—between seven and eight o'clock in the evening on which Mrs. Dorey took the lodging, the person for whom she took them came in a c ab with Mrs. Dorey—I asked Mrs. Dorey when she came first, for a reference, and she could not give one, but paid me one week in advance—she staid a very little while after bringing the other lady—that other woman continued to occupy the lodging three weeks and a day, or a month and a day—I do not know which—Mrs. Saunders is that person—I am positive of it—I knew her by the name of Miss Slack—Mrs. Dorey gave her that name—I called her Miss Slack, and no other name—Mrs. Dorey came to see her almost erery evening—a gentleman came to see her, who she said was her lawyer—I cannot be certain how often he has called—about two or three times a-week—I cannot exactly say.
Cross-examined by MR. STONE. Q. HOW long have, you let lodgings? A. I have been in the habit of letting lodgings above forty years—there is nothing unusual in paying a week's lodging in advance—it is often done—I never saw this lady without a bonnet while she was lodging with me—I never saw her before she came to occupy my lodging—she left in the beginning of April—I never saw her after she left my place until I saw her at the Mansion-house—my daughter was then with me—I did not learn from her that she had seen her before I saw her—I do not know in what part of the Mansion-house she was—she was in custody of an officer—she was brought up by the officer, and came through the room where the Lord Mayor was—I have not heard my daughter's description of her here—I have not been in Court—I expected to see the woman when I went to the Mansion-house—I waited for that purpose—my daughter and I were both together—I cannot see very well without spectacles—I constantly wear spectacles at home—I do not know how long ago it is that I went to see Mrs. Dorey—I went with my daughter and Mr. Weir to recognise Mrs. Dorey in Oxford street—Forrester was not with us—when Mrs. Dorey came to see Mrs. Saunders, she used to go into her room—she did not stop a great while—she was there most evenings.
MR. BODKIN. Q. Had you your spectacles on when you were at the Mansion-house? A. Yes—I was not in the room with the Lord Mayors but in a room through which people go, in order to get into his room—several persons had passed through before Mrs. Saunders—I did not notice any thing happening to my daughter when Mrs. Saunders came into the room—she cried a little—I do not know what for—it was when she saw Mrs. Saunders—my attention had not been drawn to several other females at the Mansion-house before I saw her.
Cross-examined by MR. WILKINS. Q. Did you ever see the lady, that was lodging at your house, write? A. No.
COURT. Q. Did she not wear hair of a totally different colour, to what she has on now? A. Yes—that did not alter my opinion of her; still the same person—I heard my daughter say something about her nose here, I believe—I was not in court two minutes—I have not the least doubt about Mrs. Saunders being the woman that was brought to me, under the name of Slack.
JOHN WILLS . I am a proctor in Doctors' Commons. I am acquainted with Mr. Barber—on the 16th of March, he called on me, in company with a female—she was a stranger to me—this entry, in my diary is my head-writing—the female went by the name of Emma Slack—I cannot recollect
whether that name was given by her or Mr. Barber—it was said in his hearing—the date at the top of this will is in my handwriting—I have very little recollection of the subject, but from what little 1 can recollect, the second female (L. Saunders) resembles her—one or the other gave me instructions to obtain probate of this will—I cannot say which—this will was produced to me to obtain probate—Emma Slack is the name mentioned in the will as executrix—I do not know whether the female used the word executrix, she signed the affidavit, and oath was administered to her as executrix—I am not certain whether she or Mr. Barber spoke—I obtained probate of the will—the effects were sworn under 5000l.—I received a check at the time, from Mr. Barber, for 80l., the stamp-duty—on the 22nd of March, I sent the probate to the office of Barber and Co.
Cross-examined by MR. STONE. Q. How long was Mr. Barber and the lady in your presence? A. About five minutes—I saw the lady next at the Mansion-house about a month ago—a great number of persons come to my office for the same purpose—I cannot charge my memory whether the lady spoke at all—I am sure Mr. Barber spoke—it is an ordinary thing for an executor or executrix to take no part in the transaction.
Cross-examined by MR. WILKINS. Q. Was not Mr. Barber's conduct, as far as you witnessed it, perfectly consistent with that of an honourable attorney? A. Perfectly so—I implicitly believed the lady to be Miss Slack—I might have questioned her or Mr. Barber (I cannot say which) as to the time of death of the deceased, and such questions as that—that would be necessary to fill up the ordinary forms—I have known Mr. Barber I think, since some time in 1842—I have not done business for Barber and Bircham since this transaction—this was the last transaction—I had done business for them before—I sent the probate, directed to Barber and Bircham, to their office—I always regarded Mr. Barber as an upright and honourable man.
MR. ERIE. Q. You say when she was introduced, you implicitly believed her to be Miss Slack; did you trust entirely to Mr. Barber for that? A. Yes, I trusted entirely to Mr. Barber—I do not remember such a thing occurring to me, as an entire stranger coming to my office, and employing me to take out probate—they have always been introduced to me by some person I rely upon, who either brings or sends them—I have some reference—a party I know attends with the executor or executrix—I take them on their representation—a person might bring an executor to my office on the recommendation of a friend—I should take that friend's word.
Q. You have said Mr. Barber's conduct was consistent with that of an honourable and honest attorney; was there anything in this matter more than the mere employment of you to take out probate? A. No, nothing more—it was one of the most ordinary transactions that could take place.
JOHN WELDON . I am clerk in the Will-office in the Bank. I produce the Will-taking-in book—on the 27th of March, 1843, probate of the will of Ann Slack was left at the Bank—I cannot say by whom it was left—this letter addressed to the Governor of the Bank was left at the Bank, most likely the day following—I cannot say precisely the day, whether it was that day or the day following—it was left at the Will-office at the Bank—the probate was registered at the Bank on the 31st of March—this letter is an application for the re-transfer of the stock—the probate appears to have been returned on the same day, the 31st, to N. B. Bircham.
Cross-examined by MR. WILKINS. Q. Is the signature of Mr. Bircham attached to that? A. Yes, to the re-delivery of the probate—I cannot tell who it was that lodged the probate on the 27th.
MR. CLARKSON. Q. DOCS that letter bear any memorandum of yours? A. Yes—it bears a copy of the register in the registry book.
MR. DONALD re-examined. I cannot identify whose writing the words "Francis-street, Tottenham Court. road," are—this "17th February," in figures, in the body of the letter, is Mr. Barber's handwriting—the other is in the handwriting of another party.
Cross-examined by MR. MILKINS. Q. Have you not precisely the same means of knowing Mr. Bircham's handwriting as Mr. Barber's? A. I have not paid so many of Mr. Bircham's checks as I have of Mr. Barber's—I have paid several of Mr. Bircham's; but it was seldom two or three checks of his were written alike, therefore I cannot identify his writing—I cannot identify this to be his—I cannot tell how many of his checks I have paid, certainly not scores—there may be a score—Barber and Bircham may have banked at the Bank of England two years—their checks have, generally speaking, been joint checks—I decline to identify this writing—I cannot identify it—I cannot say whether I believe it to be Mr. Bircham's writing—I cannot say that I have ever seen Mr. Barber write in my life.
MR. ERLE. Q. Does Mr. Barber write alike generally? A. Yes, and Mr. Bircham does not.
MB. WILKINS . Q. Have not the checks that have been paid, been the joint checks of Barber and Bircham on almost every occasion? A. Certainly not—I have paid Mr. Barber's checks separately, and have been in the habit of seeing his checks much more frequently than Mr. Bircham's—I have been a clerk in the Bank fifteen years, and am thirty-three years of age—I have never sworn to handwriting from having seen it less frequently than Mr. Bircham's—I have no belief about this handwriting—I have paid sums of money on the sight of Mr. Bircham's writing—I cannot recollect paying any checks written by Mr. Bircham in my life—I have paid on his signature jointly with Mr. Barber's—that is not all I have done with Mr. Barber's—I have paid them from the body—I can prove Mr. Bircham's signature, but not his writing—I can give an opinion on his signature, but not his writing, because, to my knowledge, I have never paid checks written by him.
(This document was as follows:—"To the Governor of the Bank of England. Sir,—There was lately standing in the name of Anne Slack, of Chelsea, spinster, the sum of 3500l., in the Three per Cent Consolidated Bank Annuities. From the period which has elapsed since any dividends have been received, it is possible that the amount may have been carried to the Commissioners for the Reduction of the National Debt. My aunt died on the 17th day of February last, leaving me her sole legatee and executrix. I have since proved the will, the probate whereof has been duly lodged in the Will-office of the Bank, and I shall therefore be glad to have the stock in question transferred into my name. Dated this 24th day of March, 1843. EMMA SLACK, sole legatee and executrix of the deceased Anne Slack, No. 7, Francis-street, Tottenham-court-road."
WILLIAM SMEE, ESQ ., re-examined. I consequence of this letter, I obtained this order, to re-transfer the sum of 3500l. from the Commissioners for the Reduction of the National Debt, to Emma Slack, and to pay the arrears of dividends to Emma Slack, spinster, of No. 7, Francis-street, Tottenham-court-road, sole executrix of Ann Slack, deceased, of Smith-street, Chelsea, spinster—this is the order, and I accordingly made the re-transfer.
Cross-examined by MR. WILKINS. Q. Did you see the female who called herself Emma Slack write? A. No—the signature was not made in my presence—(The order was dated Sd April, 1843, by J. Heath, Esq., deputy governor, to transfer the said 3500l., with the unclaimed dividends, amounting to 1151l. 18s. 10d., to the said Emma Slack.)
7th April, 1843, a female was in company with him, who he represented as Emma Slack—he called her so to me—Mrs. Saunders is that female, to the best of my belief—I had an opportunity of seeing her features, I should say that is the party—I cannot say that I have any doubt about it—Mr. Barber said he came for the purpose of receiving the dividends on the stock that had been transferred from the account Ann Slack to the Commissioners, and which he expected to find re-transferred, and required me to pay the amount—I turned to the book, and having found the stock re-transferred, I gave him to understand that it would be necessary for him to be identified to me, and therefore the stock-broker, or some person that I was personally known to, should accompany him for the purpose of identification—Mr. Barber, I believe, went from the office, and fetched Mr. Philpot, the stock-broker—when he came, I required this document to be signed, (reads) "Paid, 7th April, 1843, Emma Slack, spinster, executrix of Ann Slack, spinster, deceased, known to me," and under those words Mr. Philpot has signed his name—I gave Mr. Barber a memorandum, which enabled the party signing as Emma Slack to receive the amount of the dividends, amounting to 1150l. odd, from the chief cashier—it was merely a memorandum that passes from one office to the other, and which enables him to get the order for 1150l. odd, unclaimed dividends due on Ann Slack's account.
Cross-examined by MR. STONE. Q. What time in the day was it when Mr. Barber, and the person of the name of Emma Slack, came to your office? I should say about one o'clock in the day—there was nothing particular out of the ordinary course of business which took place on that occasion, that I am aware of—it was the usual routine—the female may have been perhaps ten minutes or a quarter of an hour in my presence—I should say a quarter of an hour at least—she did not, that I recollect, make any observation to me—I do not think she made any observation—I do not remember hearing her speak at all—I saw her next at the Mansion-house—I went there for the purpose of seeing her—many other persons came to my office in the course of that year, to transact similar business—fifty or more, it may be 100—there was something that attracted my attention to her—she remained at a distance, and appeared somewhat lame, or leaning as it were on one side—she was standing up—she had a veil on, and was dressed in black, I think—there was a particular leaning of her form, as if labouring under some infirmity—I think the veil was partly down, not completely—I recollect that it was a black veil.
Cross-examined by MR. WILKINS. Q. Did you see Emma Slack write? A. No.
MR. ERLE. Q. Had you an opportunity of seeing her features? A. I had.
COURT. Q. Do you mean positively to swear she is the woman, or only that you believe it? A. I have no reason to doubt her being the party—I entertain no doubt in my own mind that she is the party that came.
THOMAS BROS . I am assistant to the chief cashier at the Bank of England. On the 7th of April last, this authority was brought to me to, give orders for the payment of some dividends, amounting to 1100l. odd—I signed the order—I did not get this from Mr. Noble—it is left in the Cashier's office, and when the parties come for it, it is brought to me and I sign it—it was brought to me, and I in the course of business there signed the order, on the 7th of April, 1843, for the payment of unclaimed dividends in the Long Annuities, amounting to 1151l. 18s. 10d. the amount due on the stock that had been transferred—that is to enable the party to take this to the cashiers of the Bank, at the Drawing-office, and receive the money—that would be the last thing before taking the money—when I give an order of that sort this book is produced, and I take an acknowledgment from the party of the receipt of that order—it is signed Emma Slack, spinster, sole executrix of the said Ann
Slack, spinster, deceased—seeing Emma Slack had signed it in the book was my authority for signing this order—the party who pays it does not come before me—there is a counter at the office, but I am a considerable distance from it.
Cross-examined by MR. WILKINS. Q. Did you see the signature of Emma Slack written? A. No, I saw it was written.
COURT. Q. The order shows whose stock it is that is about to be paid, and who received it? A. Yes, it is the unclaimed dividends of Ann Slack paid to Emma.
Cross-examined by MR. STONE. Q. Where was this book signed? A. At the counter of the chief cashier's office, and from thence brought to me with this order.
ROBERT GUNSTON DOVER . I am a clerk in the Drawing-office of the Bank of England. This order to pay was brought to me on the 7th of April, I believe; I am not positive as to the date—I merely cancelled it, and passed it to the next clerk for payment—I saw that there were two persons who brought it, a man and a woman—I enquired how it should be paid, and I think the man referred me to the back of this document—(reads)—it is "Gold, 600l.; notes, four 100l. and one 100l.;"—"notes, twenty-five," seems to have been rubbed out, and the "one 100l." inserted in its stead—there remains 50l., but it does not appear in what notes that was paid—I merely marked it part bank-notes and part money—the man had a small bag to take the gold in; I told him that would not be sufficient to hold that quantity of gold he asked for—upon that he went away, and procured a, larger one—the next clerk paid it—I do not know who these persons were.
MR. DONALD re-examined. This writing in pencil, at the back of this order, "Gold, 600l., notes, four 100l.," and so on, I believe to be written by Mr. Barber.
WILLIAM OBADIAH WHEELER I am a clerk in the Drawing-office of the Bank of England—I have been acquainted with Mr. Barber's handwriting three or four years—I have paid checks of his—this pencil writing at the back of the order, to pay "Gold 600l., &c.," I should say is Mr. Barber's handwriting, I believe it to be so.
Cross-examined by MR. WILKINS. Q. DO you know Mr. Bircham's writing? A. I have seen it, I am not much acquainted with it—the handwriting at the bottom of this application to re-transfer, "Francis-street," I should certainly not recognise to be Mr. Bircham's—I will not say I do not believe it is (looking at a letter in reply to Mr. Offley's,) I cannot give an opinion on that letter—I am not so familiar with Mr. Bircham's handwriting as I am with Mr. Barber's—very few checks of Mr. Bircham's have come under my inspection—I cannot enumerate the number.
GEORGE WOLFE GOUGH . I am a clerk in the Drawing-office of the Bank of England. On the 7th of April, 1843, an order for 1150l. dividends was presented to me to be paid—I paid it according to the directions at the back of the paper—a man and woman presented it, and came for the money—I do not recollect who the man was—I believe Lydia Saunders, to the best of my belief, to be the person I paid it to.
Cross-examined by MR. STONE. Q. HOW do you know her name is Lydia Saunders? A. She has been pointed out to me as Lydia Saunders when I saw her at the Mansion-house—she was not pointed out to me as Lydia Saunders, I only knew her as Lydia Saunders after she was taken before the Lord Mayor—I cannot say who pointed her out to me as Lydia Saunders—it was not Mr. Weir I believe—it was one of the persons in the court—it was in general conversation—to the best of my recollection the parties came to me about half-past one or from that to a quarter to two o'clock—I think the man
spoke to me on the subject of the payment, and I think the man received the money—I believe the woman spoke to me—I think she did, to the best of my knowledge—she asked how the money should be received—I did not see that on the back until it was pointed out to me—I think it was the man pointed that out—I should say the woman did not tell me how it was to be paid, after the man pointed that out to me—I cannot now recollect what she said—no other persons came to me that day to draw money for unclaimed dividends—it is impossible to say how many came for other money—I see by my book forty other persons received money from me that day, but there was only one unclaimed dividend—the principal part of the payments of that day were to bankers' clerks and brokers—I cannot tell, with or without my book, whether I paid to any woman that day—I had never seen the person before—I bad never seen Lydia Saunders till I saw her the other day at the Mansion-house—she was not pointed out to me—she was afterwards—I did not give any evidence before the Lord Mayor—I did not know it was her until she was pointed out.
COURT. Q. Then you did not pick her out? A. I did pick her out—the question was asked me whether I could tell the woman?—I said, "I believe, to the best of my belief, that is the woman"—there was no name mentioned to me at that time—afterwards I was told it was Lydia Saunders—I believe she stood at the side of the bar—I think just by the door.
MR. STONE. Q. In custody and under charge? A. I do not think she was—of course she was in custody, but not in the dock—she was by the side of the door—I did not see an officer by the side of her—I was not examined before the Lord Mayor.
MR. ERLE. Q. When you paid the money did you have the order signed? A. It came to me already signed—it was not signed in my presence—it is not usual to sign it in the presence of the party paying.
Cross-examined by MR. WILKINS. Q. What makes you believe it was the man that pointed out the directions at the back of that paper? A. I believe it was—there was a man came with the woman, that is all I recollect—I would not swear to the man—the lady had not a white veil on—she had a fall, I believe black, over the bonnet, something like crape over the front of the bonnet—all the entries in this book are in my hand writing—I know the firm of Drewett and Co.—I have no doubt I paid them something on that day, if the entry is made there—I do not remember paying them anything on that day—I do not remember seeing anybody there from that firm on that day—I know Messrs. Goslings—I do not know Mr. Bircham's handwriting.
MR. ERLE. Q. Look at your memorandum, of April the 7th; do you remember your having made a payment to Drewetts when you see your memorandum? A. Yes, seeing this I remember making a payment upon that day—I keep an account of the payments that I make—I do not remember it, but I have not the least doubt I made the payment, because I see it here—it is usual to pay unclaimed dividends to a large amount, but not to pay a large amount in gold—my attention was called particularly to it by that—about twelve or fifteen months previous to this transaction there was a large payment in gold—that was unclaimed dividends.
MR. DONALD re-examined. This address, "Tottenham-court-road," under the signature of Emma Slack, I believe to be Mr. Barber's handwriting.
Cross-examined by MR. STONE. Q. Pray, who wrote these words, "Emma Slack?" A. I cannot say.
(Mr. Smee's certificate of the transfer of 3500l. Three per Cent. Consols, dated the 3rd of April, 1843, formerly standing in the name of Ann Slack, of Smith-street, spinster, from the account of the Commissioners of the National Debt, to Emma Slack, of Francis-street, Tottenham-court-road, spinster, was
here read, Also, the order to pay 1,151l. 18s. 10d. being the unclaimed dividends, on the same, on the back of which was written "Emma Slack, executrix, 7, Francis-street, Tottenham-court-road;" and, in pencil, "gold 600l.,notes 400l., 100l., 50l., 1l. 18s. 10d.; total, 1151l. 18s.10d")
Wednesday, April 17th.
THE QUEEN AGAINST BARBER AND OTHERS CONTINUED.
CAPTAIN FOSKETT re-examined by the COURT. I think nothing was said by myself or Mr. Baxter to Mr. Barber respecting the residence of Miss Slack—I had written to that effect—when I first called on Mr. Barber I announced myself as Captain Foskett, and as having received letters from him on the subject of Miss Slack's affairs—I do not remember whether anything was said about my residence, or where Miss Slack had ever resided—in the statement I made yesterday I may have stated an observation as made at the second interview which passed at the first; I cannot be quite certain as to that, I gave it as it occurred as well as I could—I do not remember at either conversation anything being said about where Miss Slack was living at that time, or had lived.
WILLIAM PHILPOT . I am a stock-broker. I have known the prisoner Fletcher about ten years, and have known Mr. Barber four or five years—I remember a few days before the 7th of April, seeing Mr. Fletcher in the Rotunda at the Bank—he said that Barber had got a good job for me—he did not tell me what it was—he did not say it was to transfer stock, but I understood so—I do not know that it was mentioned—on the 7th of April I saw Barber at my office in Tokenhouse-yard—there was-a lady in his company—I had never seen her before—she was introduced to me by Barber by the name of Emma Slack—it was the prisoner Lydia Saunders—Barber gave me directions to sell 3,500l. Consols, standing in the name of Emma Slack—I do not recollect Lydia Saunders making any observation—Barber told me Mr. Fletcher was expected to meet them—Barber, Mrs. Saunders, and I proceeded over to the Bank, to the Accountant-General's Office for taking unclaimed dividends on 3,500l. Consols—I applied for an order for those dividends, which was given to me—I signed to the identity of Emma Slack—it is usual for a person applying for dividends, to be identified by a broker—I signed these words, "known to me"—this is my signature to the identity—I then went with Barber and Emma Slack to the chief cashier—the order was presented by me, to the best of my belief—we then got an order to go to the drawing-office for the money—that order (looking at it) was given to Barber—I did not observe any pencil writing at the back of it—I left Barber and Mrs. Saunders in the drawing-office to take the money—I then went to put forward the transfer for the 3,500l. stock—I had arranged with Barber to meet again in the Rotunda—I sold the 3,500l. to Clement Smith, a stock-jobber, for 3,386l. 5s., which he paid to me in notes—I have a memorandum here of bank-stock, cash 3,382l., after deducting my commission, which was 4l.—I think I received three 1000l. notes—the others I do not recollect—after receiving that, I came to the Rotunda—on coming from the Drawing-office, before I went to sell, I saw Fletcher in the Rotunda, and observed to him that there was 1100l. in dividends that was being received—I then went and sold the stock, and came back to the Rotunda, and found Barber, Mrs. Saunders, and Fletcher there—I gave the money to Mr. Barber, I heard a conversation between the three, about changing a 1000l. note for
gold—I cannot say who spoke—they then left me, and went away together, where to I do not know—I went to my office—they were all three present when I gave the money to Barber—I gave him the same notes as I received from Clement Smith.
Cross-examined by MR. GREAVES. Q. How many times have you been to the Mansion-house when Fletcher was examined? A. But once—I may have been twice—I was communicating with the attorney for the prosecution while Fletcher was under examination—I was furnishing information to Mr. Freshfield, while Fletcher was being cross-examined by Mr. Clarkson—I swear Fletcher used the words, "a good job," and that the word "introduce" was used—he could introduce me to a good job, something to that purport—he had got me a good job—I mentioned that here to-day—that was the purport of what he said—I cannot exactly recollect whether I named that on my examination in chief—the words were to the purport that I should have a good job—none of the prisoners were present when I received the money from Clement Smith, that I recollect—I received it in the Bank, but not in the Rotunda—very probably in the Consol-office—I do not know in what office I received it.
Cross-examined by MR. STONE. Q. Where was it Fletcher told you something about a job? A. In the Rotunda—nobody was present—I saw Barber with the lady a fortnight or three weeks after—I had never seen her before—it was an ordinary transaction, which very frequently occurs—if a lady or gentleman comes and I know them, I identify them—nothing occurred different to what does on other occasions—they remained in my office about five minutes, while I was writing the instructions for the sale—I do not recollect speaking to her or she to me—I do not recollect seeing Lydia Saunders from that time till she was at the Mansion-house—I was aware that a person named Lydia Saunders had been taken up as the person representing Emma Slack—I do not recollect whether she was dressed the same then as on the 7th of April—I did not notice whether her veil was down when she came to make the transfer—she had a long veil—I saw it down when she came to the Bank—she was dressed in black at the Mansion-house, and had a black veil—it was not by the black veil that I knew her—Mr. Barber and Emma Slack walked over to the Bank, arm-in-arm, to the best of my recollection, and I before them—I did all the work at the Accountant-General's office—we went from there to the cashiers—I think Mr. Barber signed the paper there—I did not observe whether Emma Slack walked lame or not—I had no reason for noticing her—I thought it a straight-forward, ordinary transaction—there was nothing to direct my attention to it further than changing 1000l. note into gold—that drew my attention—I heard no reason assigned for that—it is not at all unusual to get gold for notes—I have identified a great many other persons since the 7th of April—I may have identified 300 persons without knowing them, being introduced by a person I did know.
Cross-examined by MR. WILKINS. Q. May I ask whether your memory is pretty good? A. I can recollect I dare say some things better than others—I will not swear one way or other whether Mr. Barber took any part in the conversation about changing the note—he must have heard it, because he was present—I recollect that, because it was at. the time I paid him the money—that was in the Rotunda—that is not generally speaking a scene of confusion—it has been so in former times, but it is not now—it was not dividend time—they were due, but not payable—there were very few people there—I remember that distinctly—I was not examined at the Mansion-house—I was present four or five times—I missed some—that is correct to the best of my belief—I do not remember any other transaction on the 7th of April, not
on the 6th or 8th—I consider that I have had three transactions with Barber—I may have had more—I will swear I have had more than one other transaction with him—there was one on the 29th of April, 1843—I sold 100l. reduced, for Mary Anderson, where Mr. Barber was the attorney—I have no recollection of his attending to that, but by my book—I recollect the transaction of the 3500l. without the book—I have a memorandum over the account, of the name of Barber—I cannot describe Mary Anderson—I have no recollection at all of her—on the 1st of June, 1842, I had a transaction with Mr. Barber—it was 12,010l. Consols, in the name of Thomas Hunt, sold—I have no recollection of that except from my book—the entries are my own—I do not recollect any other transaction with Barber.
Q. Were Barber and Bircham the attornies? A. I do not know—here is only Barber's name to the power.
MR. ERLE. Q. Did you see Emma Slack's features at all while you were there? A. Yes, and when she was at the Mansion-house, she was the person I had formed in my mind as Emma Slack—I saw her countenance when, she was at the Bank with Barber, her veil was up then—I cannot say at what part of the time that was—the only matter which drew my attention was the proposition to change the 1000l. note for gold—I never recollect a woman changing so large a note for gold—when I identify strangers I rely on an introduction from parties I have done business for—I relied on Mr. Barber in this case—I keep an account of transactions which take place—I should not know of selling stock on any other day for Barber except by my book—I know I have sold stock on other occasions, but cannot particularize the amount or day—I only knew Hunt from the introduction I had—Hunt was a stranger introduced to me—he was the seller—the amount was 12,010l.—Mr. Barber introduced him to me.
JAMES BALLARD . I am a clerk in the 3 per Cent Consols office at the Bank—I am the attesting witness to the transfer of 3500l.—I saw it executed by a person who signed this "Emma Slack"—I have no recollection of the transaction. (The transfer was here read from Emma Slack, of Francis-street, Tottenham-court-road, spinster, to Charles Smith Mortimer.)
MR. PHILPOT re-examined. This transfer is not signed by me, but by Mr. Matthews, who assists in my business.
CLEMENT SMITH . I am a stock jobber. On the 7th of April, 1843, I purchased 3500l. Consols, of Mr. Philpot, for 8382l.—I paid for it in Bank notes—I did not take the numbers of the notes, nor the description, but. I have not the least doubt it would be three of 1000l., and 382l. in small notes—I am the same as positive there was three 1000l. notes—I recollect taking four 1000l. notes, and to the best of my belief I paid three 1000l. notes—I received the four 1000l. notes from C. S. Mortimer—they were the only 1000l. notes I had that day—I paid the other note into Prescott's, the bankers, to the account of Henry Smith—I did not take the particulars of that note.
Cross-examined by MR. GREAVES. Q. What was Philpot's commission on the sale? A. I have nothing to do with that—I paid him 3382l.—the stock came to 3386l. 5s. but I had another transaction with him the same day of 125l. 3 1/2 per Cent.—I am quite positive as to the number of 1000l. notes I had that day—I cannot exactly recollect the number or amount of the other notes—I only mark the notes—to the best of my belief I had three notes of 1000l.—I have not the least idea how many I had that week, nor on any day, except on the 7th of April, in that week, unless I had my memorandums
with me—I know the day of the week, because I have it before me—my attention was first called to this about six weeks or two months ago—I was not examined before the Lord Mayor.
COURT. Q. Is it an unusual thing for you to have so large an amount of Bank notes as thousands? A. Certainly not—I am in the habit of having 5000l. or 10,000l. about me—I cannot remember unless I have my account with me—1000l. notes frequently pass through my hands every week.
MR. ERLE. Q. When your attention was drawn to this five or six weeks ago, did you examine your accounts and memorandums? A. I did, and ascertained that I had only four 1000l. notes on the 7th of April, and I had them from Charles Smith Mortimer—I bought the stock of Philpot, and it was transferred to Mr. Mortimer.
COURT. Q. What accounts are you alluding to, when you say in reference to them you had four 1000l. notes on the 7th of April, and four only? A. I allude to my own accounts.
MR. ERLE. Q. When your attention was drawn to this inquiry, did yon examine your books and papers to see if you had more than four 1000l. notes on the 7th of April? A. Yes—I have the account before me—I had not any so large as 1000l., except the four I had from Mortimer—this is the original paper made on that day—I have kept it since—I have no description of the notes, but I remember the circumstance of going to Mortimer, and sending to him for these notes—after I looked at the account I remembered the circumstance—I am the same as positive that I received four 1000l. notes from him—I will swear it, to the best of my belief—I remember having four 1000l. notes of Mr. Mortimer.
CHARLES SMITH MORTIMER . I am a member of the Stock Exchange. My attention has been called to the 7th of April, 1843—on that day I lent Clement Smith 3000l.—I paid him notes to the amount of 4000l.—I know there were four notes of 1000l. each—I received two of the 1000l. notes from Mr. Brewer, and two from White—I have not the numbers.
Cross-examined by MR. GREAVES. Q. Does not a great deal of money pass through your hands? A. Yes—I always put down in my book if notes are otherwise than 1000l.—I know it, because I have no entry that they were the 1000l.—I do not put down 1000l.—I put down the gross amount then—(producing his memorandum.)
Q. Your memorandum says, "Mr. Brewer, 2000.; White, 2000.; Bank, 4000."? A. Yes—that shows me they were four of 1000l. each—I always make a memorandum when they are otherwise than thousands—this entry of 600l. were paid in a check, and this 1452l. was paid with a check—I received the money from Brewer on the 7th of April—the name "Brewer" is written over the line—that was done about a month ago—the whole memorandum, except that, was made at that time, which was written since this inquiry—I ought to have done it at the time—I did it merely to correct my book—I never thought of looking at the book till this inquiry—I received the other two 1000l. notes the same day—there is a memorandum of that.
EDWIN JOHN BREWER . I am a member of the Stock Exchange. My attention has been called to the 7th of April, 1843—on that day I sold 2300l. Consols to Edward Pearce, for which I received two 1000l. Bank notes, Nos. 91295 and 91767, and sundry smaller notes to make up the total—I have not the dates of the notes—I received them that day—I regret to say there is a mistake in the number of one of the notes—I have seen a note which, I believe, passed through my hands, from marks on it, but I have put one figure before another—(looking at a 1000l. note, No. 92195)—I should say this is one of the notes I had—there is "Henry Mortimer" on it, and "E. P.," which I think are Mr. Pearce's initials, his own writing; but I have put the 1 before the 2 in
the hurry of business—I gave those two notes to Charles Smith Mortimer, of the Stock Exchange, for their check of 2000l.
Cross-examined by MR. GREAVES. Q. What memorandums are those you have been looking at? A. An abstract of my book, devoid of technicalities—it is made from my book, which is also here—I took the numbers of the notes received of Pearce at the time they were in my possession, but not as regards giving them to Mortimer—I was asked some three months since by Mr. Mortimer whether I had given them to him—I looked at the memorandum-book, and saw I had made them up, as I call it, to pay into my banker's—I went to my banker's to see whether a check drawn by Mortimer was paid that day—there is nomemorandum made about that time which shows that I paid them to Mortimer—I have a recollection of it—I did pay them to him—I have since asked Jones Loyd whether I paid in a check that day from Mortimer—I certainly had doubts whether I did pay these notes on that particular day.
Q. Are you not speaking as to your recollection of having paid these notes on that day from what you have ascertained from people since? A. I have the numbers down, and there is Pearce's initials, and Mr. Mortimer's name, on the notes—I paid Mortimer that day two 1000l. notes for their check, and the numbers agree.
Q. Are you not speaking of what you paid that day from information you have since acquired? A. Yes—I put the name of the person I paid to here long subsequent to the 7th of April—I put the date here the day I paid it—the memorandum was made from information I received long after the 7th of April—the note before me is the one which does not agree in the number—there is nothing in this one from which I will swear it was in my possession on the 7th of April—I would rather not swear to it, the number being wrong.
MR. ERLE. Q. Turn to the entry you made at the time, 7th of April; can you say whether you had two 1000l. notes? A. I had—I entered the name of the person I received them from—I have the initials of E. Pearce on it—I think this "E. P." is his writing—I believe the "E. P.," on the note, No. 92195, to be Pearce's writing—I did not observe that on them, when in my possession.
MR. MORTIMER re-examined. The name of Mortimer, on these notes, it not the writing of myself or brother, it looks like Smith's writing.
THOMAS PHILLIPS . I am a clerk in the Accountant's-office at the Bank of England. I have searched the Bank books to ascertain whether such a 1000l. note as No. 91295 was in circulation on the 7th of April, 1848—it was not in circulation—it was paid in on the 4th of April.
Cross-examined by MR. GREAVES. Q. How do you ascertain that it was paid in on the 4th of April? A. By our ledger—it would be received by a clerk, and posted in the proper office—I never remember a mistake in the Bank books as to the day a note came in—there have been mistakes as to the numbers of notes, but they are rectified the same day.
JOHN MILLER . I am a pay clerk in the Bank of England. On the 8th of April I exchanged a lot of Bank notes, to the value of 1580l., for gold—I have my book here—the clerk who took the notes from me comes from another office—they are marked by the inspector—I do not put a mark on them.
HENRY VENDISH LEIGHTON . I am a clerk in the Bank. On the 8th of April I have entered some notes to the amount of 1530l. as being cashed—I received them from John Miller—among them was one for 1000l.—I did not take the number or date—I entered the name at the back, which was Slack—if a bundle of notes are brought to me, I enter the numbers of the first and last note, not the intermediate ones—the intermediate ones are identified by a number printed on them—the No. 401 is printed on these—this 1000l. note, No. 91767, was in the bundle I took that day—I know it by a mark on the outside—I received them from Miller; be cashed them, and took an account of them—the number is entered in my book—it was paid for gold—Miller pays nothing but gold.
Cross-examined by MR. WILKINS. Q. How many are there besides Miller in that department? A. I do not know; a great many—I was never so employed.
COURT. Q. Are you enabled to say confidently that the bundle of notes for 1530l. came from Miller? A. Quite confident—(the indorsement on the bundle of notes was, "Miss Slack, Francis-street, Tottenham-court-road.")
MR. STONE. Q. Did you observe this address on it when delivered to you? A. Yes; I have written that in the book against it—it is the last note.
JOSEPH DERMER . I am a clerk in the Tellers' office. On the 10th of April I exchanged for gold a 1000l. note in the name of Slack—I do not take the number or date, but hand the notes forward—my entry is, "Slack, 1000l.," for which I gave 500 sovereigns and a ticket for a 500l. note—we require a name to be put on a note before it is paid, and I put that name in the book—the entry shows there was such a payment made to a person named E. Slack.
Cross-examined by MR. STONE. Q. Who did you pay it to? A. I do not know—the book does not tell whether it was man or woman.
Cross-examined by MR. GREAVES. Q. The entry is "Slack" alone? A. Yes—on the ticket for the note is "E. Slack"—it is a copy from the note—the name was on the note before it was brought to me—that was on the note for which I gave 500 sovereigns and a ticket for a 500l. note.
ROBERT HYETT . I am a clerk in the Bank. On the 10th of April I received 1000l. from Dermer, which he had cashed for 500 sovereigns and a 5002. note—I took down the number of the note which I got from Dermer—it was 92195, dated the 1st of Feb.
WILLIAM TAYLOR . I am assistant pay clerk in the Bank of England. On the 10th of April, 1843, 1 had a ticket for a 500l. notes in the name of E. Slack, drawn by Dermer—the number of the note I gave for it was 41856, dated the 2nd of Jan., 1843—I received the ticket, entered, and posted it—my partner gave the note.
Cross-examined by MR. STONE. Q. What quantity was it? A. I cannot say how many.
Cross-examined by MR. WILKINS. Q. IS your department confined exclusively
to giving gold? A. Gold and silver—I may sometimes give as much as 5000l. or 10,000l. in gold in one lot to a banker—a great many country people take gold in various amounts.
EDWARD GRATTAN . I am a clerk in the Southwark branch of the London and Westminster Bank. I have known Fletcher about four years—he keeps an account there—I am well acquainted with his writing—the name, "Emma Slack, 7, Francis-street, Tottenham-court-road," on this 500l. note, is his writing; also, the same name and address on this 1000l. note, No. 92195; and on this 1000l. note, No. 91492—on the 10th of April, 1843, 500l. in gold was paid in by Fletcher in person to the credit of his deposit account—on the 18th of April, 1843, 480l. in gold, and 20l. in notes, making 500l., was paid in by Fletcher in person, and placed to his account—on the 13th of April, 1843, 1000l. in gold was paid in to his credit, on his deposit account, by Fletcher in person.
FREDERICK NELSON re-examined. I received the note from Miller and handed it to Vansommer—I received a parcel of notes from the witness and handed the whole to Vansommer—they were all paid notes—I cannot give the numbers.
MR. GREAVES to MR. GRATTAN. Q. How long has Fletcher kept an account with you? A. Since Dec. 1838.
Cross-examined by MR. WILKINS. Q. I believe he kept a very respectable account? A. He did not keep a large account—he kept a respectable one. (Several letters were here put into the witness's hands, some of which he identified as Fletcher's handwriting, but none of them were read.)
GEORGE GORSUCH . I am at present shopman in the employ of Messrs. Halling, Pearce, and Stone. On the 29th March, 1843, I went into the employ of Mr. and Mrs. Dorey, in Oxford-street, and continued there three weeks—Mr. Dorey's name is Josiah, and he is the husband of the prisoner—on Friday, the 7th April, 1843, Lydia Saunders, who is Mrs. Dorey's sister, came to the house in a cab in company of Mrs. Dorey, towards the latter part of the day—I believe after five o'clock—she had on a blue and black cloth check cloak, and a black velvet bonnet—the cloak was not taken off in my presence—she staid till the following Monday—the morning after she arrived Mr. Dorey showed me a 1000l. note in the shop, over the counter, as a curiosity not seen every day—Mrs. Dorey and Mrs. Saunders were not present—shortly after Mr. Dorey had shown me the note, Mrs. Saunders came into the shop from up stairs, passed through it, and went in an omnibus towards the City—it was in the early part of the morning—I should say ten, or it might be eleven o'clock—I saw her take the omnibus—she returned, it might be two hours afterwards—I really cannot say—I noticed that she brought back with her what I considered to be a canvas bag, which I judged from the sound contained gold—I should say about the space containing a thousand sovereigns, from what I have seen in-silver—after Mrs. Saunders came back she looked out several articles, I believe to take away—there was a particular dress which she mentioned was for her daughter—it was a striped silk—a shawl and some other articles were selected at the same time—I heard Mrs. Saunders tell Mr. Dorey that she was going to Bristol on the Monday—that was in the shop before she left—during the time I was in Mrs. Dorey's employ I had an opportunity of seeing her write, and becoming acquainted with her handwriting—I believe the name "Miss Slack, 7, Francis-street, Tottenham-court-road" on this note No. 91767, to be the handwriting of
Mrs. Dorey—(looking at a gown produced by Daniel Forrester)—this is the same pattern and colour as was purchased by Mrs. Saunders for her daughter—at that time there might have been one thousand yards of it.
Cross-examined by MR. STONE. Q. Did you reside in the house with Mr. Dorey? A. Yes, I lived with him—I had never seen Mrs. Saunders before the 7th of April—she was not introduced to me at the time she came into the house—she was, the first time I went into the house, from the shop, the same day she came, after five o'clock, she was introduced to me as Mrs. Dorey's sister from Bristol—Mr. Dorey had informed me before she came to the house that Mrs. Dorey's sister was coming to see them from Bristol—I am not aware how long Mr. Dorey had been married—I believe from his statement about a month or six weeks—I was not with him at the time he was married—Mrs. Saunders did not take off her bonnet in the shop—I noticed afterwards that she was dressed in black—she was in black during the whole time she was there—I noticed a something, I thought an imperfection in her walk—that she did not walk quite firm—it might be she had corns—I did not breakfast with her on the next morning—I saw her on the 8th—I dined with her—she was there, as far as I could judge, on a visit to her sister—I did not breakfast or dine with her on the Monday—it is the custom in small houses of that description for the assistants to dine at a separate table from the employers—that was the custom there—I saw her on the Monday morning before twelve—it might be half-past nine, ten, eleven, or half-past eleven—I believe it to be soon after nine—I generally got into the shop rather before eight—I am not aware that I saw her on the Saturday before I saw her pass through the shop—that was in less than half an hour after Mr. Dorey showed me the note—he attended in the shop himself—I cannot recollect whether Mrs. Dorey went out that day—I saw her in the shop on the Saturday, but I cannot recollect whether she went out—Mrs. Saunders got into the omnibus at the door—I did not hear what she said—she only got into the omnibus and went away—she returned in less than two hours—I cannot state the time—I have no recollection whether I saw Mrs. Dorey from the time Mrs. Saunders left until she returned—Mrs. Saunders merely passed through the shop on her return—I had an opportunity of looking at the bag in her hand as she passed—I cannot say whether she had a cloak on—I believe she had—I was behind the counter—I cannot say what I was about—I was perfectly disengaged—she merely walked straight through—I cannot say which hand the bag was in—I left Mr. Dorey of my own accord because it did not answer my expectations—it does not at all concern this case—I had no misunderstanding or dispute with Mr. or Mrs. Dorey—it was on the Saturday that Mrs. Saunders looked out some articles in the shop—I am not aware whether it was before or after she went out—I believe it was after—I swear I was not dismissed from the service—I left on the 19th April, 1843—I cannot recollect what passed that induced me to go—goods were looked out three or four times while Mrs. Saunders was there—they were looked out also on the Monday—I understood she was to leave on the Monday by the two o'clock train—I saw her leave about one, or half-past—it was about the middle of the day—I never saw any bag in her possession except at the time she passed through the shop.
MR. ERLE. Q. Did you see her at all except in the shop, and when you were dining with her? A. Yes, I saw her in the shop, and when I was dining with her—she lived up stairs with the family—when she came back with the bag she went up stairs to the apartment of the family—I judged the bag to be a canvas one—I saw it—it was the colour of a canvas bag, and the sound I judged to be gold—I repeatedly saw her while she was in the house, conversed with her at times, and became acquainted with her.
MR. STONE. Q. Might it not have been a carpet bag the had? A. Oh no, I am sure of that—I should think it was about that size (about a foot), the shape a bag generally is—bags with gold are not generally very deep—I have no recollection of the depth, more than I thought it was a bag containing gold of the usual size, such as a cash-bag—I have seen bags given at bankers'—I believe it was not yellow—it was a lighter colour—I cannot swear to the colour.
MR. ERLE. Q. Have you seen such bags as that for money? A. I have.
ELIZA ROSSER . I am now living as servant with Mr. Taplin, a solicitor—I have been living with him little more than ten months—before that I was living with Mr. and Mrs. Saunders—they carried on business as fishmongers at Bristol—I think about eight days elapsed between the time of my leaving Mr. Saunders and going to Mr. Taplin's—I left Mr. Saunders because I thought I could better myself—they gave me a month's-warning—before Mrs. Saunders gave me warning she had been in London for about two months—I should suppose she gave me warning about a week after she came back—I cannot exactly say—she brought back with her three silk dresses—they were not made up (looking at the silk dress produced by Forrester)—I cannot say that is the silk dress—I think that has been washed—she brought home something similar to this, but I cannot say—it was such a pattern as this appears to be—I cannot speak to it—she brought three dresses, for herself and two daughters—one of those daughters was living with Bucknell and Spark, drapers, at College-green, Bristol—during the time Mrs. Saunders was in town Mr. Saunders left Bristol for a few days—he went at the latter part of the week, and came back at the beginning of the next week—Mrs. Saunders returned to Bristol about a week after that time—he came back by himself a week before her—I never saw Mrs. Dorey but once—she was at Bristol for about six weeks, staying with Mrs. Saunders—that was, I should say, a month before Mrs. Saunders went to London—I cannot say exactly.
Cross-examined by MR. STONE. Q. Are they not carrying on business in a very large way in Bristol as fish dealers? A. Yes, one of the largest fish shops in Bristol—Mr. Saunders was not frequently from home while I was there—I cannot say how often he was away—he might corns to London and stay one night and return next day, once in a month or six weeks—he has not been away for a month or three weeks to my knowledge—while Mrs. Saunders was away he was at home attending to the business, during the whole of that two months, except that short time—I do not know whether Mrs. Dorey was married when she was at Bristol—she was called Mrs. Dorey, but I do not know whether she was so or not.
Cross-examined by MR. WILKINS. Q. Do you know Mr. Saunders's writing? A. No, I have seen him write, but I never took any notice of it, and I should not know it again—I cannot write, or read writing—I do not know whether Mrs. Saunders was at Bath in Jan.—I do not know of her going to Bath—she was not away from home except when she went to London—I do not recollect it—I will not swear it—Mrs. Saunders had a blue and black plaid cloak made, to go to London in—I do not know in what month she went away to go to London—it was in the winter season—Mrs. Dorey had left before that—I cannot say that I ever saw Fletcher there—I do not know him—as far as I know I have never seen him.
EDWARD GILL . I am a clerk in the bank of Messrs. Stuckey and Co., of Bristol. The prisoner William Saunders had an account there—it was opened in Sept., 1842—he has an account with us now—since he opened it he has frequently been in the habit of bringing money to pay in to his account—be
has generally brought cash, notes, and gold—he once brought a large quantity of gold—that was on the 5th of Sept., 1843, he brought 1000 sovereigns—I said to him on that occasion, "Really, Mr. Saunders, it appears as if there was a mint in your house"—I am not aware that he made any reply—he had before that brought in thirty or forty sovereigns at a time, perhaps less, and sometimes more, at different times during the summer—I noticed that some of them were new, because I made the observation at the time that I wished other customers brought in such nice gold as he did—I apply that, not to the 1000l., but to former credits—to the best of my belief all the 1000 sovereigns paid in on the 5th of Sept. were new.
Cross-examined by MR. PHINN. Q. Were you at the counter yourself receiving the money? A. I was the cashier—the whole amount paid in that day was 1040l. 11s. 6d., of which 1000l. was in sovereigns—I am quite sure—I made the entry at the time—I have it here—it is in my handwriting.
Cross-examined by MR. GREAVES. Q. Just look at that note (1000l., No. 92195,) do you know that handwriting at the top? A. Yes—I do not know Fletcher's handwriting—I should say this is Mr. Saunders's handwriting—I believe it is—I should say the handwriting on this 500l. note, No. 41856, is written by the same person—I believe the endorsement on this note No. 91492 is written by the same party—I am well acquainted with Mr. Saunders's handwriting by seeing his checks.
Cross-examined by MR. STONE. Q. Did you ever see him write in your life? A. Yes, credit tickets—I have never seen him write checks—(looking at the notes again)—these do resemble Saunders's handwriting—I saw them in Bristol—they were shown to me by Mr. Weir—I do not exactly recollect the date—I told him I believed them to be Mr. Saunders's writing—I do not recollect the reply he made.
Cross-examined by MR. WILKINS. Q. Look at this writing, without turning it over, especially these two words, "Miss Slack," and tell me whose writing you believe it to be? A. Looking at it indiscriminately I should say it was Mr. Saunders's writing—I do not know Mrs. Saunders's writing.
MR. ERLE. Q. YOU saw Mr. Weir at Bristol, was that at the time an examination was going on about some notes that had been obtained? A. Yes—Mr. Weir showed me certain notes, and asked me if I knew the writing—the name written on the top I believed to be Saunders's writing on comparing it with some of Mr. Saunders's—(looking at some others)—I believe this to be Mr. Saunders's writing—I did not know what case Mr. Weir was inquiring about—I know I saw a letter signed by Hunt—the name Thomas Hunt on these notes I believe is in Saunders's writing—this is the letter I saw—it is signed Thomas Hunt—I believe the notes Mr. Weir showed me then had "Thomas Hunt" endorsed on them, those were the notes I believed to be endorsed in the handwriting of Saunders, and these I believe are in the handwriting of Saunders, judging from his other writing—I have seen these notes endorsed Emma Slack before, and I believe it is William Saunders's writing, by the resemblance to his handwriting—there are two for 1000l., and one for 500l.
DANIEL FORRESTER . I was first employed in this case in respect of Mrs. Dorey—I went with Miss Neville to Oxford-street about the 4th or 5th of Jan.—I went to Bristol to see for Mrs. Saunders—I did not find her there—I understood she was not there—I did not apprehend her—I got this dress from the daughter at the house of Bucknell and Spark, linen-drapers, College-green, where she was living—she gave it me—I had been there before, and asked for Miss Saunders, and she had spoken to me on a previous occasion—they
stated she was up stairs, and she was fetched down—I went to Mr. Barber's office, and among other things found this certificate of the death of Ann Slack on a table there—it was handed to me by Mr. Bircham with a parcel of other papers—I cannot say exactly that I saw it on the table, but it was passed to me with other papers—no doubt they were on the table—I went to Bristol again in Feb.—I made all the search I could there, and in the neighbourhood to find the Saunders's, but could not find them or hear of their having been there for some time—my earliest visit was in Jan.
Cross-examined by MR. WILKINS. Q. You found, I believe, a great many papers at Mr. Barber's office? A. Yes—Mr. Barber had not been in custody perhaps an hour when I went there—I left a great many papers behind—all the papers I produce were found in his office—the papers connected with Slack's transactions were tied up together, with an inscription on the back, stating, that they referred to Slack—I think this paper, "Re Slack, probate of the will of Ann Slack, spinster, deceased," was the outside one—I do not know Mr. Bircham's writing—I had been set to watch Mr. Barber's movements for some time before I went to his office—I cannot charge my memory with the length of time—I think it might have been the middle of Nov., to the best of my recollection—he was arrested on the 9th of Dec.—I had seen him go to his office during that time, I will not say most days—I was not there every day myself—I think I did not see him come to his office at the most six times—I was not there always of a morning, I sent some one else—that person is not here—I took away from Mr. Barber's office his diary of 1843—I handed it to Mr. Freshfield, by Mr. Barber's wish—I forget now, exactly, whether it was Mr. Giddy or Mr. Barber—Mr. Giddy was the solicitor for Mr. Barber, in the first instance, I believe—I did not hand to Mr. Freshfield all the papers I seized—I handed some to Mr. Weir since I have been here—yesterday I think it was—I do not know of any application being made to me to let Mr. Barber have copies of those papers—there had been an application on the part of Mr. Giddy, to the best of my belief, at the beginning, to inspect those papers, which he did, and saw them—no application has been made to me for copies of those papers, nor in my hearing—I have not seen Mr. Barber with a tearful eye ask for them—I do not recollect that I ever heard him ask for them—I gave a great many papers up to Mr. Giddy, which I took to the Compter to Mr. Barber, and to the best of my recollection, I offered them to Mr. Barber, and he refused to take them—I then went into the other office, and gave them to Mr. Giddy—I think I have had about ten papers of Mr. Barber's in my possession—Mr. Freshfield and Mr. Weir knew I had them—they have inspected them—I have been to Mr. Freshfield's office a great many times during the last month—I had not those papers in my possession when I went there—I kept some of them at the Mansion-house, and one relating to Slack's matter I kept at home—I gave it up yesterday—I took from Mr. Barber's person his pocket-book, keys, and everything he had, and they were returned to him shortly after—they were kept for several days—the keys enabled me to open drawers at Mr. Barber's—I do not recollect a desk—I ransacked every place in the office that was accessible—I ransacked his cash-box—I have been making every possible inquiry about Mr. Barber, wherever I could—I do not think I went to his residence in Nelson-square—I do not know whether I did or not—I cannot charge my memory, whether I went to the door, but I never went into the place to search it.
MR. ERLE. Q. As to this searching the drawers and cash-box, was the partner, Mr. Bircham, by all the time you did that? A. Yes, he was there the whole time I searched—there was also another person in the office, but
whether he was a clerk or not, I do not know—I think his name was Price—it is usual to search persons apprehended for felony, and take articles from them—the paper I kept at home was this certificate—the papers I handed to Mr. Freshfield were what either Mr. Barber or Mr. Giddy desired me to hand for their inspection—I know Mr. Giddy inspected the papers I had, which I produced here yesterday—as far as I know, he inspected them—he has applied for no copies to me—I gave up to Mr. Barber and Mr. Giddy those which they had not requested me to hand to Mr. Freshfield—I think it was within a week after Mr. Barber was apprehended—I do not exactly recollect the date.
MR. WILKINS. Q. Where did you get that blue cheek cloak? A. From the house of Mrs. Dorey.
MR. ERLE. Q. Did you see when Mrs. Dorey was down on a visit there whether she had a cloak with her? A. No, Mrs. Dorey had a cloak made up of the same pattern.
JOHN FORRESTER . I was employed to endeavour to apprehend the Saunder's—I did not find them at Bristol—my brother had been there—I arrived in Edinburgh on the 11th of March, and on the 13th I took Mr. Saunders into custody at Edinburgh; and on the 20th I took Mrs. Saunders also at Edinburgh—Mr. Saunders came to a shop, and was apprehended in the street, not by me—I gave instructions that if he came there he should be taken into custody—I was not present when Mrs. Saunders was taken—I was in Edinburgh at the time—I saw them there—I saw him on the 13th, and her on the 20th, and took them into custody.
JAMES WILLIAM FRESHFIELD , Esq. I am the solicitor to the Bank. In consequence of the inquiry about Ann Slack's will, on the 15th of Nov. I called on the prisoner Barber—I told him that I came from the Bank—I made this memorandum at the time.
MR. WILKINS. Q. Do you mean you made it in Mr. Barber's presence? A. No, immediately after my return home.
MR. ERLE. Q. You said you came from the Bank of England? A. Yes, in reference to a sum of stock which had been transferred from the name of Miss Ann Slack, under a will which appeared to have been proved by Mr. Barber, and which was irregular—he said that he remembered the transaction—(I am giving it now as written)—that Miss Slack came to him with the will, which was quite regular; that the property was mentioned in the will; that she stated that her aunt had died about six weeks before; that he got the will proved, and got her the money; which was all that he knew of the business—I asked him who the lady was—(I meant the Miss Slack, living)—he said she resided in some street out of Holborn; that she was a most respectable person, and he had no doubt the transaction was all right—I asked him if she was introduced, and by whom—he said yes, he had no doubt she was, but he did not recollect by whom; that he would endeavour to recall the fact, but to him it was a mere matter of business, and he knew nothing more of it—I told him that was quite inconsistent with the fact that he had himself been in communication with Captain Foskett some months before the alleged death of Miss Ann Slack, respecting this very property—he said at first that he had certainly had some communication with Captain Foskett, but not, he thought, respecting this property—he could not recollect—he spoke hesitatingly—I told him that his letters were distinctly respecting a property of Miss Ann
Slack—after some hesitation, he said it might be to, that be would not deny it, but that it was a mere matter of business, and he did not feel authorized in disclosing the affairs of his clients—I told him that I did not wish him to tell me more than he chose; that I should not at all press him, but it was necessary I should apprize him that a fraud and forgery had been committed, and that he was gravely implicated in the transaction, by the fact that he had been inquiring and negociating respecting this very property, six months before the alleged death of Miss Ann Slack, and before the right of his client accrued; and that I desired to knew under what circumstances he had so negociated—he said he supposed he could tell, and he would endeavour to recollect—that Miss Slack was a most respectable woman, and that he had no doubt it was all right—I told him that was beside the question, which was, how he came to be interfering six months before he saw her—he said that he did not know that he could tell, or ought to tell, but he would refresh his memory, and he wished me to look at his books, that I might see it was only a matter of business with him—he then produced the probate his ledger, and an account-book, which he opened—there was an entry in the ledger of 90l. odd for the proctor's bill, and 15l., odd for hit attendance—he laid that was all he got out of the transaction, that his bill, as cast, amounted to 18l. odd, and Miss Slack made it 15l.—the book showed the produce of the stock, 4500l. odd on one side, and was signed "Emma Slack"—she had signed his book—I do not remember which of the books that was in—the entry was only signed in one, at recognising or proving the account—I then told him that was not the question, upon which he said he would endeavour to refresh his memory, and if I would call on a future occasion, he would let me know the result—I told him that his character was implicated, that I desired to give him an opportunity to explain if he pleased, but that did not intend to press him at all—that I should report the case to the Treasury, who. would no doubt prosecute the case, and that if he chose to tend me an explanation I would report that also, but that I could not delay.
COURT. Q. Have you any doubt that matter to that effect did pass between you? have you a recollection of it, independent of the paper? A. I have a distinct recollection of the whole of it without the paper, but I, of course, speak with more particularity from having taken it down at the moment.
MR. ERLE. Q. From that time till after Mr. Barber was apprehended, did he ever communicate to you that Fletcher had introduced Mitt Slack? A. He did not—I had no communication from him whatever, from that moment till he was apprehended.
Cross-examined by MR. WILKINS. Q. Put that paper aside, and repeat to the Jury what you have said? A. His Lordship will probably allow me to refer to my notes—I have no doubt I could give you a correct account of the transaction without the paper, but there would be variances in words, and it was for that express object I took it down on paper.
COURT. Q. Are you enabled to give an account? A. I am enabled to give an account of the transaction as it is stated here—I could give the account without this paper, but there would undoubtedly be variances of words, and variances of expressions.
MR. WILKINS. Q. That it exactly what I want A. I took this down at the time correctly—I put it down after my return home, about an hour after it happened—I decline to state what took place without the paper, unless you wish me—I swear the conversation took place in the order in which I have read it—Mr. Barber expressed an angry feeling—it hardly amounted to an angry feeling, but he said, "I hardly understand in what character you put these questions"—he spoke in a mild tone of voice.
COURT. Q. Y ou did not mention that, I think? A. No, I did not—it was then I told him what is here—he said that on the occasion of my pressing him with the fact that he had been negociating on the subject of this property six months before his client had come to him—it was in reference to that—I put that point strongly.
MR. WILKINS. Q. Pray had you forgotten that when you made that memorandum? A. I had not—I have stated the substance of what passed. Q. Was it wilfully omitted, yes or no? A. It was wilfully omitted—he did not express indignation more than once—I do not think he said he must decline furnishing me with the name of his informant for the present—I will swear he did not—he did not say, "I think at the present time I ought not to mention his name"—I swear he said nothing of the kind—I have a sufficient recollection of the whole of the conversation to swear he did not say that.
Q. Why then decline to tell what did take place without your paper? A. Because having taken down what did pass, for the purpose of accuracy, I decline to run the risk of stating it inaccurately—I read it over at the time once or twice, and subsequently I have not read it over at all, until yesterday, I think—I have probably read it over three or four times altogether—I will not swear I have not read it over six times altogether—I had occasion to explain it to a great number of persons immediately after the occurrence, and I may have read it over six times—I was not required to attend at the Mansion-house, the business devolved on my brother—I did not think it necessary—I have never given this information on oath before to-day—the notes I have read were the very notes I made (handing them to Mr. Wilkins)—this "Mr. James F.'s memoranda" is Mr. Weir's writing, it has been put among the papers relating to this prosecution—Mr. Barber did not show me his diary—I will swear he did not offer to do so—Mr. Weir is our clerk—I did not instruct Forrester to watch Mr. Barber's office, nor give instructions for it—I think I never heard of it—I am not conscious of having heard of the fact—I certainly gave no such instructions, and am not aware that such instructions were given——it was about three weeks after this that Mr. Barber was apprehended—Mr. Barber said if I would call in three or four days he should be happy to give me information—I did not call.
MR. ERLE. Q. What was it he said about the information? just look to your memoranda as to that. A. If I would call on a future occasion he would let us know the result—I told him I could not call again—I told him that I meant to go to the Treasury immediately, and report the case.
COURT. Q. Are you sure you said you would not call again? A. Yes—I said, if he chose to send me any explanation, I would report that also, but I could not delay it.
MR. WILKINS. Q. Then you did not say that you would not call again? A. I do not think I made use of those words—Mr. Barber produced two books, and I really do not speak positively in which it was I saw the entry of 90l. odd, and 15l.—I will swear I saw it in some book.
MR. ERLE. Q. Did you take any part in getting up this case? A. None whatever—I reported the case to the Treasury two days after this interview, and have taken no further part in the case—my brother, and Mr. Weir, my clerk, have been concerned in it—I had this interview with Mr. Barber at his own office, in Bridge-street—I went to him immediately after having seen Miss Slack at the Bank—this prosecution is by the Treasury—I had no further concern in it on the part of the Bank than to report it to the Treasury.
MR. SAMUEL ROBERT GOODMAN . I am the chief clerk at the Mansion House. I was there when the prisoner Barber was first brought up, when the will was produced, and Miss Slack and the proctor, Mr. Wills, were examined—after they
had been examined, Mr. Barber applied to be discharged on bail—Mr. Clarkson said that further evidence would be brought forward, and, upon that, the Lord Mayor declined taking bail—Mr. Clarkson asked if Mr. Fletcher was in the room, and no answer was given to him by any person—a short time elapsed, and some communication was made by some person whom I did not know at that time, and whom I should not recognise now; and Mr. Barber then spoke to a party in the room, who afterwards turned out to be Mr. Fletcher.
Q. How soon after? A. Immediately afterwards—Mr. Barber then made a statement to the Lord Mayor, which I took down in writing, and, after he had made his statement, he then called Mr. Fletcher as his witness.
Cross-examined by MR. WILKINS. Q. Do you remember Mr. Barber examining Mr. Fletcher? A. I do, and also his cross-examining Miss Slack—I have a copy of that cross-examination—it is some length—it runs four pages in my book.
MR. ERLE. Q. You say he called Mr. Fletcher as his witness, was that after the Lord Mayor had refused to bail him? A. Certainly—he spoke to Fletcher before he called him—the proceedings were kept waiting, I should say, a quarter of an hour, whilst he was in conversation with Mr. Fletcher in the same room.
(The will was here read, dated 3rd June, 1842; it purported to be the last will and testament of Ann Slack, formerly of Smith-street, Chelsea, spinster, but then of South-terrace, Pimlico, and bequeathed to Emma Slack, her niece, 3500l. three per cent Consols, standing in her name in the Bank of England, with all other property she might possess, and appointing her sole executrix.)
(The affidavit for probate was dated 16th March, 1843, and was to the effect that the deponent, Emma Slack, of No. 7, Francis-street, Tottenham Court-road, spinster, was the sole executrix, named in the last will and testament of said Ann Slack, late of South-terrace, Pimlico, Middlesex, spinster, who died on or about the 17th of Feb. 1843, and declaring her effects to be under 5000l.)
(The power of attorney granted by Miss Slack to Aderne Hulme, Esq., to receive her dividends, on the Three per Cents., was also read.)
Thursday, 15th April, 1844.
THE QUEEN AGAINST BARBER AND OTHERS CONTINUED.
WILLIAM OBADIAH WHEELER re-examined. I am a clerk in the Bank. Mr. Barber kept an account there up to the time of his apprehension—I think the account began in 1839 or 1840—there was a private account of his, and a joint account of Barber and Bircham.
DANIEL FORRESTER re-examined. I went to Bristol to look after Mrs. Saunders—I found the business of a fishmonger carrying on there—the name of Saunders was up at the place—I looked for her—I searched there for the husband as well as her—the business was still carried on by a young man about twenty, who was stated to be the son, and a young lady about sixteen went over the house with me—I took her for the daughter.
MR. ERLE. Q. Could you get from them where the mother and father were? A. They stated they did not know.
(MR. JAMES here applied, on behalf of the prisoner Dorey, to be allowed to withdraw her plea and plead guilty, which was accordingly done.)
John Hutchinson, surgeon, Nelson-square; Charles Brady, surgeon, Black-friars-road;
William Schoones, solicitor, Tunbridge, Kent; Stephen Geary, architect and surveyor; Alexander Morton, gentleman, Park-road, Chelsea; Edward Evans, surgeon, Borough-road; William Long, solicitor, Bouverie-street; William Eeles, surgeon, Union-street, Borough;—Parrell, solicitor. North-street; John William Cousins, gentleman; John Elston Rogers, publisher of the "Economist" newspaper; Francis Squire, engineer; Charles Spong, clerk to Elmore and Co., merchants; Henry Macnamara, pleader, Inner Temple;——Pilcher, surgeon; Cornelius Wittenoon, cashier to Grissel and Peto;——Bernard, architect and surveyor; and——Martin, undertaker, deposed to Barber's good character.
BARBER— GUILTY . Aged 36.
FLETCHER— GUILTY . Aged 50.
WILLIAM SAUNDERS— NOT GUILTY .
LYDIA SAUNDERS— GUILTY . Aged 38.
DOREY —Aged 32.
Confined Two years.
Monday, April 22, 1844.
Before Mr. Baron Gurney.