NUMBER III. For the said YEAR.
Printed for, and sold by T. PARKER, in Jewin-street, and C. CORBETT, over-against St. Dunstan's Church, in Fleet-street, the only authorised Printers of the Dying Speeches.
THE ORDINARY OF NEWGATE'S ACCOUNT of the Behaviour, Confession, &c.
BY Virtue of the King's Commission of the Peace, OYER, and TERMINER, and Goal-Delivery of Newgate, held before the Right Honourable Sir ROBERT LADBROKE , Knight , Lord-Mayor of the City of London ; the Honourable the Lord Chief Baron PARKER, Mr. Justice FOSTER, JOHN STRACEY , Esq ; Recorder , and others of his Majesty's Justices of OYER and TERMINER, for the City of London, and Justices of Goal-Delivery of Newgate, holden for the said City, and County of Middlesex, at Justice-Hall in the Old Bailey, on Friday the 15th, Saturday the 16th, and Monday the 18th of January, in the 21st Year of his Majesty's Reign; ROBERT SCOTT, and SAMUEL CHILVERS, were capitally convicted, and received Sentence of Death accordingly.
And by Virtue of the King's Commission of the Peace, OYER, and TERMINER, and Goal Delivery of Newgate, held before the Right Honourable Sir ROBERT LADBROKE , Knight , Lord-Mayor of the City of London , the Honourable Mr. Justice WRIGHT, the Honourable Mr. Justice BIRCH, the Honourable Mr. Baron LEGGE, JOHN STRACEY , Esq ; Recorder , and others of his Majesty's Justices of OYER, and TERMINER, for the City of London, and Justices of Goal-Delivery of Newgate, holden for the said City, and County of Middlesex, at Justice-Hall in the Old Bailey, on Wednesday the 24th, Thursday the 25th, Friday the 26th, and Saturday the 27th of February, in the 21st Year of his Majesty's Reign; WILLIAM STEVENS, FRANCIS HILL, WILLIAM WHURRIER, and JOHN PARKES, were capitally convicted, and received Sentence of Death accordingly.
The Behaviour of Robert Scott , and Samuel Chilvers , ever since their Conviction, has been most remarkably serious, pious, and devout. Their Attendance at Chappel has been constant, and their Prayers and Supplications were always attended with such Symptoms, as plainly shewed them to be in Earnest in the Addresses they made to God, or the Praises which they rendered unto him. In a Word, their Appearance was always with such decent Deportment, as I never before observed, though I could heartily wish it were always the Case with these unhappy Wretches.
The other four have behaved with Decency, Humility, and Resignation to the Will of Providence; and, as their Attendance at Chappel was constant since their Conviction, their Behaviour was agreeable to the melancholy Situation they were in.
On Thursday the 10th Instant, the Report of the seven Malefactors was made by Mr. Recorder to his Majesty, when he was pleased to order the six following for Execution, viz. Robert Scott, Samuel Chilvers, William Stevens, Francis Hill, William Whurrier, and John Parkes.
1, 2. ROBERT SCOTT , late of Yarmouth in the County of Norfolk, Mariner , and SAMUEL CHILVERS , late of Long-Stratton in the County of Norfolk, Labourer , were indicted, for that they, together with divers other Persons, to the Number of ten, after the 24th Day of June, in the 19th Year of His Majesty's Reign, to wit, on the 5th Day of December, in the 21st Year of His Majesty's Reign, at Eastbridge in the Parish of Thorberton, in the County of Suffolk, did with Fire-Arms, and other offensive Weapons, unlawfully, riotously, and feloniously assemble themselves together, in order to be aiding and assisting in running and landing uncustomed Goods, and Goods liable to pay Duties, in Defiance and Contempt of the King and his Laws, to the evil Example of all others, against the Peace of the King, and against the Form of the Statute in that Case made and provided .
3, 4. WILLIAM STEVENS and FRANCIS HILL , of St. Giles in the Fields, were indicted for breaking and entering the Dwelling-house of John Burnell in the Night-time, and stealing six Gallons of Brandy, value 3 l. one Gallon of Usquebaugh, value 4 s. and half a Pound of Tobacco, value 16 d. the Property of the said John Burnell, December 27 .
5. WILLIAM WHURRIER of Finchley, in the County of Middlesex, was indicted for the Murder of Henry Rogers , on the 11th Day of February, in the 21st Year of His Majesty's Reign, by striking him with a Sword made of Iron and Steel, of the Value of 12 d. and giving the said Henry one mortal Wound on the Forehead near the left Eye, of the Length of one Inch and three Quarters, and the Depth of half an Inch, of which he languished, fromthe said 11th of February, to the 14th Day of the same Month, and then died. He was a second Time indicted on the Coroner's Inquisition, for the Murder of the said Henry Rogers .
6. JOHN PARKES , late of London, Labourer , was indicted, for that he, on the 5th Day of February, in the 21st Year of His Majesty's Reign, at London; that is to say, at the Parish of St. Mary Staining, in the Ward of Aldersgate, in London aforesaid, feloniously did falsely make, forge, and counterfeit, and did cause to be made, forged, and counterfeited, a certain Paper Writing, with the Name of Paul de Lamerie subscribed thereto, and directed to Mr. Foxall, Refiner in Oat-Lane, purporting to be an Order, under the Hand of Paul de Lamerie, to John Foxall and Peter Floyer , Copartners in Trade, (the said Paul de Lamerie being a Person well known to the said John Foxall and Peter Floyer) for the Delivery of two hundred Ounces of Sterling (meaning Sterling Silver) and directed to the said John Foxall ; which said false, forged, and counterfeited Paper Writing was as follows, to wit:
To Mr. Foxall and Company.
"Please to deliver to the Bearer
"two hundred Ounces of Sterling. I
"promise to pay in fourteen Days
Feb. 5, 1747-8.
To Mr. Foxall, Refiner in Oat-Lane.
He was also indicted for feloniously uttering and publishing the said false, forged, counterfeited Order, knowing it to be false, forged, and counterfeited, with an Intent to defraud the same Paul de Lamerie .
John Parkes , aged 45, was born near Wrexham in Denbyshire, in Wales; he was bound Apprentice to a Silversmith , served his Time faithfully, and has at several Times, for upwards of twenty Years past, worked with many worthy and good Tradesmen in the City of London. He says he might have lived as well as any Man, and did for many Years, till he forsook God, who then gave him up to work his Ruin by his own evil Inventions.
Robert Scott , aged 28, was born at Yarmouth in the County of Norfolk; he was bound Apprentice ; and served his Time to a Collier . After his Time was out, he still continued in the Coal-Trade, bore the Character of an honest, sober Lad; and sometimes went to Rotterdam to carry corn. He says he generally failed in one or other of these Employs till within this twelve Month last past; during which Time he acknowledges to have left off his own Occupation, and to have been concerned with Smuggler s. He says indeed, that he was ignorant of, and did not in the least suspect the ill Consequences of it; though now he finds, to his great Grief, that his Life must pay for it, which he might very willingly part with, but the Thoughts of leaving behind him a Wife, and two poor helpless Orphans, occasions greatUneasiness in his Breast. As he fell into these unhappy Methods of opposing the Laws of his Country unadvisedly, and without knowing whereto such Practices would lead him, he doubts not but to meet with the Pity and Compassion of his Fellow-Creatures in this Extremity; and resigning up his Life to the Resentment of the Laws of his Country, and his Soul into the Hands of a merciful God, he hopes through Christ, whose. Merits are greater than his Sins, upon his Repentance to obtain Forgiveness.
Samuel Chilvers , aged 26, was born at Little Stratton, in the Country of Norfolk. He was always used to be a Labourer at Husbandry , till, unhappily for him, he was inveigled into the Service of some Smuggler s, to which he was led by Promises of great Gains for little, and that not hard Labour. He says, when he first went among them, he had no Thoughts of doing Mischief, nor has he ever done any to any Man's Person. He is sensible, however, of having greatly offended against the Laws of his Country, by appearing with armed Force, contrary to the Laws thereof; and has no more to say, but that he hopes Forgiveness of this and all other his Offences at the Hand of God, through the Merits of Jesus Christ, declaring himself sincerely penitent, and in Love and Charity with all Men.
William Whurrier , aged 28, born near Morpeth in Northumberland, was bred to Husbandry , and followed that Occupation till about twenty Years of Age, when he listed for a Soldier : He has been in the Army about eight Years, and belonged to General Sir John Cope 's Regiment at the Time he was so wicked as to commit this cowardly and barbarous Murder upon John Rogers. He says, he had been in the Service in Flanders for these five Years and a half past, and a very unfortunate coming over for him it was now, and even much against his Will that he was sent over; but he could not refuse to comply with the Orders or Directions of his Superior Officer.
The Reason of his coming over was as follows, as himself related: Some Horses being wanting in the Regiment to which he belonged, he and some others were pitched upon to take care and conduct them, that they might be brought over safe, and in good Order. The above desired to be excused, for that he had rather tarry in Flanders with the Army ; but his Officer having himself bought a Horse, which he had particular Value for, chose rather to commit it to his Care than any Body's else, and so he was obliged to comply.
He arrived from Holland in the Beginning of February, and the unhappy 11th, on which this bloody Scene was acted, as he and the Command to which he belonged, were going from Hampsted to Barnet, he says, that their commanding Officer, being a Sergeant, met a Man, whom he inlisted for a Soldier, and gave him some Earnest. The Man afterwards repented his Bargain, but having spent the Money, was forced to return to Hampsted e'er he could reimburse the Sergeant. The Sergeant sent the unhappy Soldier backwith him, and he requested that another might be his Comrade in that retrograde Expedition.
When they came to Hampsted, the Fellow having Friends there, returned the Money he had received, and being unfit, i.e. too low of Stature for the Service, he says they willingly let him go about his Business, and set out again for Barnet. The Comrade complaining he was Foot-fore, upon Finchley Common they saw the Post-Boy, and agreeing with him about the riding a led Horse, left the unfortunate Soldier, though he desired he would not, and said he had much rather he would walk, that they might keep Company: However, the one rode of, and the other walking over Finchley Common, overtook a Woman; he and the Woman had some Converse together, in which they discovered that they were of the same Country; he asked her to drink with him, which she did, and afterwards they proceeded on together towards Barnet.
As the Soldier and Woman walked upon the Common, he says he turned back, and saw one Man in a Sailor's Habit coming behind them, and at some Distance he saw three more habited like Sailors; upon which he asked the Woman, whether she was Wife to either of the Sailors, or if they and she had any Acquaintance? And her Answer being in the Negative, he says he knew not what to think. He suspected that they were about to beset him and the Woman; or else that there was a Combination between them and the Woman against him. He saw them mend their Pace, and so he imagined they had some bad Design.
The first that came up to him was, however, the unhappy Person, who made too much Haste to his Fate, who, he says, accosted him with rough and unbecoming Words, asking, What Business he had with the Woman? The Soldier, somewhat exasperated, told him, It was no Matter to him, and that he had best go about his own Business. The other Three made to the Road, he says, and came up with him too, using opprobrious Language, and brandishing their Sticks at him. This more enraged him, and being somewhat frighted, he says, he thought it Time to draw his Sword, not considering what might be the Consequence. Immediately upon which, they seemed to retreat, and he thought proper to return his Sword, as he called it; which, as he was about to do, one of the Sailors snatched at it, and caught hold of it, whilst another, he solemnly declares, as a Dying Man, cried out, and swore, If he had got the Sword, he would kill the Dog. However, by main Force, he wrested the Sword from the Sailor, and began to lay about him. Upon this, they all endeavour'd to run away, but the Deceased, not being so nimble of Heels as the rest, unhappily fell under his merciless Blows. He overtook him, and being overcome with Liquor and Passion, he gave him several Blows, and declares, that when he struck him on the Forehead, he believes that was the Blow that felled him, and laid him flat on the Ground.
He says, he is very sensible how cruel and barbarous an Act he hasbeen guilty of; but that he never saw the Person he murdered before. He says, he can account for the rash Act of Violence no otherwise, than as being much dipped in a certain Sort of Liquor, too much in use now-a-days, which maddens the Minds, and debauches the Morals of People; he was insensibly led on from one Degree of Passion to another, till he had worked his own Ruin in that of his Brother.
He declares himself heartily sorry for this and all the Offences of his Life; and having endeavoured all that is in his Power to repair the Breach he has made in his Duty to God and his Neighbour, hopes his ill Example may never take Place in the Breast of another, unless to warn him to take special Care how he lays open a Way for Anger, or any other evil Affection of the Mind to grow upon him, so as to become absolute and uncontroulable. He declares to put his Trust in God; hopes his Repentance will take away the Scandal that this most wicked Act of his has given to others; that such Warning may be taken from his fatal Doom, that this most crying Sin may never again be committed; and having a true Sense of all his Sins, and especially of the Crime he suffers for, he endeavours that his Heart may be so wounded with Sorrow, that his Repentance may be sincere and prevailing.
William Stevens , aged 17, was born in the Parish of St. Anne's Westminster. He was once put Apprentice to a Shoemaker , whom he served faithfully for two Years; after which he went to live and work at the same Trade with his Father, at St. Giles's in the Fields, with whom he continued, and in whose House he was when apprehended. He owns that he has been an unlucky wicked Youth, but says, he never was concerned with any Thievry, or Gang of Thieves, till within these three Months last past; and that W - n, the Evidence, who now swore against him, first led him into it.
The Beginning of his Acquaintance with him, Stevens says, was about two Years ago; that he never knew him guilty of any ill Thing, nor suspected him of Thievry, or House breaking, till about three Months last, as above, when he declares, W - n would often come to his Father's House, and, enticing him away, would carry him to Drinking with him, and frequently to lewd Women. This was their Practice, he says, generally on Sundays, and, instead of going to Church to serve God, the Works of the Devil began now to be uppermost in all his Thoughts. However, when he found that such a Way of Life was not to be supported without much Expence, and frequently complained of Want of Money, his Companion, W - n, with Oaths and Curses, he says, would say, Why do you not get Money as I do? And now W - n began to take him in an Assistant or Accomplice in his Robberies; and three others, besides what he is now convicted for, Stevens has been concerned with him in. The first Robbery they were Confederates in, was at a House in Fleet-Lane, belonging to a Cheesemonger in the New Market, which, Stevens says, W - went into, and plundered of five Guineasand an half, and a new Hat, whilst he waited for him in his (W - 's) Mother-in-law's House, next Door. The Money was divided between them, but the Hat W - kept. During this Time they both lived together, and had done so for some Time, when Stevens, afraid of being discovered, was persuaded in himself to leave W -; which he did, and went Home to his Father's for about a Fortnight. But W - wanting his Assistance, or resolved to ensnare the poor unhappy Youth, was frequently after him at his Father's House; and at length meeting with him when in Liquor, got him away again, and that Night they went again to the same House in Fleet-Lane. W -, in the first Place, (No-body being within) broke open his Mother-in-law's House, and, from the Garret-Windows of her House, got into the Garret-Window of the above-mentioned House, whilst Stevens waited his Return. In this Exploit the Adventurers got a Pair of Silver Buckles and a Gold Ring; but what became of them Stevens could not remember.
W - a third Time must employ Stevens, and he tells him, that one who had been Servant in a great Man's House, where once he licked the Dishes, and went of Errands, had got Plate, and he knew how to make himself Master of it. The poor Man's House was accordingly robbed by them of a Silver Porringer, a Silver Watch, Silver Shoe-Buckles, and a Silver Stock-Buckle, &c. and as yet they were undiscovered.
The fourth and last Robbery Stevens is acquainted with, is that for which he is convicted, and suffers Death; in which too he declares W - was the chief Actor. He had again withdrawn himself from W - 's Company, resolving never to pursue these Practices more; and, for a Month before this Fact was committed, had not seen his Face. But he was not so to escape; for W - tries him once more, and comes to call him up, under pretence of going to hear the Waits. The poor Youth unhappily once more obeyed his Call, and has now found it to be once too often.
Sensible of the dreadful Consequence of bearing false Witness, he turns the Tables upon W -, and, upon his dying Word, declares he acted the very Part which, at the Trial, he swore Stevens did. He owns he helped to pull open the Door, so as that another might reach the Bolt; but declares still W - pushed back the Bolt, and drew the Liquor, &c. and brought it to Hill, the other Sufferer, whilst himself stood at a Distance to watch, and give Notice, if any one was coming towards them.
Being young, and entirely unacquainted with the Nature of the World, he has thus unhappily been brought to his End. He declares however to be very sorry for the Offences he has been guilty of against God and Man, to die in Charity with all Men, and rejoices to have Hopes of Salvation thro' the Mercies of God and the Merits of Christ.
Francis Hill , aged 23, was born in St. Martin's, Westminster. At about 12 or 13, he says, he was bound Apprentice , but being sickly and weak, was obliged to return Home again to his Parents, who sent him into the Country, and there he remained some Years, living a quiet and sober Life. At length he returned to Town again, and having gotten an Insight into that Trade or Calling, he sold Rabbits about Town, and thereby obtained a tolerable good Livelihood. He says he and his Wife lived together very well, till she unfortunately fell sick; during which Sickness, what little Matter they had saved was expended. Her Sickness still encreasing, and being obliged to be put into an Hospital, he went to Lodgings, at Two Shillings per Week. But thinking that too much to pay out of the Labour of his Hands for Lodging only, he went and took Part of a Bed with another young Man, at One Shilling per Week. Whilst at this Lodging, he says, on Saturday Night, about Twelve o'Clock, W - came to him, and said, Mr. S - d's Son (who, he says, is a very honest, sober young Man) wanted to speak with him. Now this, he found, was only a Decoy to get him out from his Lodgings, which he not suspecting, went with W -, who carried him to Stevens's House, and they all three went together. He protests upon his Word, as a dying Man, he stood at a great Distance from the Place when the Liquor was drawing, though he had before helped to strain the Cellar-Door so far as that the Bolt might be pushed back. He believes that W - unbolted the Cellar-Door, that he did draw and bring off the Liquor; for that he received one Gallon and half a Pint of Brandy, which W - brought him, and promised him Two Shillings for Selling of it. After the Thing was over, and the Brandy sold, he says, he had great Uneasiness in his Mind, and wished the Jobb undone, but it was too late. However, knowing that he had done what was not right, in order to get out of the Way of what might follow, he went and hired himself out as a Labourer in St. James's-Square, to a Bricklayer , where an old House was pulling down. However about a Month or Six Weeks afterwards he returned to his last Lodgings, and finding that there was a Search Warrant out after him, he was terribly affrighted for some Time; till being persuaded that he could not be hurt, and being himself of Opinion that he had done nothing that might touch his Life, or otherwise be of Prejudice to him, he resolved to see it out. When the Officers came to apprehend him, he says, he might have got away, having Notice before-hand of their coming; but as he had done amiss, he was determined to see the Event of it.
The Receipt of the Brandy from W - he owns, knowing, at least believing, it to be stolen; and acknowledges therefore the Justice of his Sentence, and prays to God that his Trespasses may be forgiven him, as he sincerely forgives, and dies in Charity with all Men, trusting in the all-sufficient Merits of Christ Jesus.
The Confession of John Parkes , Condemned for endeavouring to Defraud Messrs. Foxall and Co. of Two hundred Ounces of Sterling: Containing a full and ingenuous Account of that Fact, as well as of some others of the like Kind which he has committed: All wrote with his own Hand, whilst under Sentence of Death in Newgate.
BEING desired by a Friend to open to the World the many Scenes of Villany I have by myself committed, I shall, in order to acquit my Conscience, as well as that others may not be suspected or accused wrongfully, as a Dying Man, with the strictest Regard to Sacred Truth, lay before the Public what I blush to read, even while I write. But, as God Almighty knows the Secrets of all Hearts, knows when we speak Truth, and when we lie, so I will deliver it as tho' I were before that awful Tribunal where I am so soon to appear.
I shall begin with an Account of the Fact for which I deservedly suffer.
On Friday, February the 1st, I wrote a Note, in the Name of Paul de Lamerie, for Two hundred Ounces of Sterling, and enclosed it in a Letter directed to Messrs. Foxall and Co. which I carried myself; and the Apprentice only being in the Shop, I delivered it to him, who asked me, if it required an Answer? I told him, Yes, and that I came from Mr. Lamerie. He said Mr. Floyer was not at Home, but he would carry it up Stairs to Mr. Foxall; and he and I came out of the Shop together. He locked the Shop-Door, and bid me stay in the Passage till he came down. I thought he stayed a long Time, and Guilt made me conclude they were comparing the Note with some of Mr. Lamerie's Writing: However, by-and-by the Apprentice came running down Stairs, and said, Mr. Floyer was but just by, and he would fetch him. Accordingly the Gentleman came, and asked, Who wanted the Silver? I told him I did; and he bid me walk into the Shop, and sit down, saying, the * Assay would come in a Quarter of an Hour. In the mean Time the Apprentice went for a Constable, who was directly charged with me, and I was carried before the Lord-Mayor; who being just then going out, I was carried to Woodstreet-Compter,
* Assay is what the Workmen in Silver call the Proof, to know if the Silver is Standard.
and ordered up next Day, at Four o'Clock. Accordingly, being brought up next Day, and examined, I was sent to Newgate, where I remained till Friday, the third Day in Lent, when I was tried, and deservedly condemned, not for receiving the Silver, but for forging the Note, which is Death by the Law.
Surely I must be out of my Senses at that Time, to offer or attempt such a Thing; and even after I was so wickedly foolish, I suffered myself to be flattered by three or four Persons, that the Prosecutor would not appear against me; which I too fondly believed, or might have had many Persons to have appeared in my Behalf; but now it is too late. I have no other Comfort left, but to trust in my Blessed Redeemer, and to hope, through his Merits and Mediation, Pardon for my manifold Sins.
As I have done several Acts of the same Kind, I will set them down as near to the Truth as I can possibly remember, and hope the Gentlemen whose Names I have made use of, as well as those I have defrauded, will forgive me, and pray for my poor lost Soul.
About the 20th of August last I drew a Note in the Name of Mr. Henton Brown , a Goldsmith in Lombard-Street, on Mr. Scott, a Refiner in Love-Lane, for One hundred Ounces of Sterling; which Note I enclosed in a Letter directed to Mr. Scott, and carried it myself to his House in the Dusk of the Evening. There were two Apprentices in the Shop, the Eldest of whom opened the Letter, and, after reading it, he asked me, If I was a Silversmith, and where I work'd? I told him, at Mr. Robinson's, in Bond-street; he said he knew Mr. Robinson very well, but did not remember they had any Dealings with Mr. Brown, and could therefore say nothing to it, without his Master was at home; but if I would come at Eight next Morning, 'twas possible I might have the Silver.
Being thus disappointed, I went away, promising to call in the Morning, and ruminated the whole Evening in what Manner I should act, but could form nothing to my Mind; so went to Bed, and rose about 7 o'Clock next Morning; and, the Lord forgive me! as I had seen Mr. Robinson's Writing several times, and could very well imitate it, I fell to writing a Letter in his Name, signifying if Mr. Scott doubted Mr. Brown's Note, he would himself be answerable for the hundred Ounces of Silver. When I had finished my Epistle, I set out, tho' not determined whether I should carry it myself, or send a Porter; I had said in the Letter sign'd with Mr. Robinson's Name, that the Silver was to make three Waiters, which were in a great Hurry, and beg'd that Mr. Scott would not disappoint Mr. Brown, because if they were not done in Time, he would lose a good Customer. I went into an Alehouse by Cripplegate, and called for a Pint of Beer, and perceiving a Porter coming along, I called him, and ask'd if he would go of an Errand? he replied, Yes; and giving him the Letter, I read the Direction to him, and bid him say he came from Mr. Robinson's, in Bond-street, and that the Manwho was there the Night before, was taken ill, and could not come himself; I gave him 3 Pence for going, and a a little Bag to put the Silver in, and he set out. As soon as he was gone I paid for my Beer, and told the Woman of the House I was going hard by, and if the Man came back before I returned, to bid him leave the Bag 'till I called for it: I soon overtook the Fellow, and watch'd him into the House, and then turned up a narrow Passage, faceing Love-lane, the other Side of Wood-street, to observe when he came out, and whether any one followed him: In a little Time I perceived the Porter come out with the Silver, and not seeing any Body come after him, I kept at a little Distance, and got into the Alehouse almost as soon as he, and took the Bag from him, pretending to be in a great Hurry, and away I went to have it melted down, in order to turn it into Cash as soon as I could, having no Conveniency of melting it down at my own Lodgings; I apply'd to an Acquaintance of mine, near the Seven Dials, who granted me the Use of his Room, where I melted down about half of it, clean Silver without any Allay to it, and sold it the same Day to a Refiner in the City; the remaining Half I tied up in my Handkerchief, and carried it home to my Lodgings: and about thirteen or fourteen Days after, wanting about 30 or forty Shillings, I went to my Friend's again, who being busy I left it to his Care for two or three Days, and then came again and melted it, and put about 3 Ounces of Copper to it; I carried it to the same Refiner who bought the first Parcel, when I found a wide Difference in the Price, but I dared not complain, knowing how I came by it, tho' my unhappy Affair with Mr. Foxall and the Refiner's comparing Notes together made me shrewdly suspected; and I rejoice that I have it in my Power to acquit any innocent Person of a Guilt that alone lies at my Door.
Many more Attempts have I made to defraud Mankind, tho' they have not always met with Success. I remember I once went in the Name of that very worthy Goldsmith Mr. Slate, to Mrs. Ch - t, in Holborn; I likewise went to Mr. Foster in the Borough, and to Alderman Blachford for Silver; but, thank God, they had more Wit than to deliver me any: I sent a Porter also to Mr. Milson, on Saffron-hill, in the Name of Mr. Methuen, for some Buckles, but he did not deliver them; and other Attempts I have made, too many for my confused Mind at present to recollect; but Justice at length has overtaken me, and I am to suffer an ignominious Death, and the Lord have Mercy on my poor Soul.
One Reason of my following this shameful wicked Practice was my being indebted to my Friend at the Seven Dials, who threatned hard to arrest me, for a Score run up at his Alehouse: and here let me warn all People, especially such who work for their Bread, never to run into Alehouse-People's Debts; it is attended with a Train of Evils, too many for my weak Capacity to enumerate; and by fatal Experience 'tis found that a poor working Man, who earns but a certain weekly Stipend, and has perhaps a Family tomaintain out of those Earnings, can never recover perhaps a Score of only a few Shilings, unless he plucks up a Spirit to refrain Drinking, which Resolution only can effect; but if once he suffers the Habit of Sotting to grow upon him, 'tis hard, very hard to break it; Work must be neglected, his Family must starve, fall to the Parish, or he turn out, as I have done, a Villain, and come to be hang'd: But I implore the Almighty merciful God, that mine may be the last Instance, and that Mankind by my Catastrophe may shun such wicked Acts, and that the next Generation may by their Innocence, Frugality, and Industry, recover what their Forefathers lost by their Villainy, Prodigality, and Idleness.
After I had taken the foregoing Account from Whurrier's own Mouth, he got the following Paper written and delivered to me, desiring me to exhibit it to the World. He calls it,
WHURRIER 's Declaration.
THIS is to let the World know, that I have lived in good Credit, and have served his present Majesty eight Years and two Months. In the Time of my Service, I have stood six Campaigns, and always obeyed all lawful Commands; I have been in three Battles, and at Bergen-op-zoom during the Time it was besieged. The first Battle was at Dettingen, June 1743, and his Majesty headed his Army: The second was in the Year 1745, April 30, at Fontenoy: The third was in Luckland by Liege; besides several other Skirmishes, and other great Dangers. I had rather it had been my Fate to have died in the Field of Battle, where I have seen many Thousands lie wallowing in their Blood, than come to such Disgrace: But, alas! I have escaped all these Dangers, to come to that unhappy Fate to suffer at Tyburn, and afterwards to hang in Chains on a Gibbet, which last is the nearest Concern to me; and I cannot help expressing, that it would be more beneficial to the Public, to employ Blacksmiths to make Breast-plates for the Soldiery, than Irons to enclose their Bodies, to be exposed to the Fowls of the Air.
I have been a true Subject, and a faithful Servant, as is well known to the Officers of the Regiment to which I did belong. If I had been a Pickpocket or Thief, I should suffer much more deservedly in my own Opinion than I do now, for what I did was in my own Defence; I was upon the King's Duty, and was assaulted byfour Men in Sailors Habits, who gave me so many hard Blows, as well as so much bad Language, that I could no longer bear it, and was obliged to draw my Sword in my own Defence; and being in too great a Passion, as well as much in Liquor, I own I struck without Mercy, as thinking my Life in Danger, surrounded by four Men whom I thought designed to murder me; who or what they were, the Lord knows, it is plain they had a false Pass, as it was proved, and that they had travelled but seven Miles in nine Days; but I forgive them, as I hope Forgiveness, and the Lord have Mercy on my Soul, and the poor Man's whom I killed.
Stevens 's and Hill 's Letter.
THIS is to desire you to forgive us, as we forgive you We are sorry you valued your Goods at Three Pounds, which an eminent Distiller says, were not worth half the Money. You have Children of your own, we hope they may never come under the Misfortune as we are; but if they do, we hope they will meet with more Mercy from their Prosecutors than you have shewn us. And as for the Evidence saying we set him on, is entirely false, we not knowing his Design or Intent: So we hope God will forgive for the false Oaths that he took, and you encouraged him in for to make him an Evidence, for he swore false against us, saying I broke open the Cellar Door, and drew the Liquor, which I am innocent of, and did not; and we had but a Galton and half Pint of him to sell. Though we are going but a short Time before, we hope God will forgive you all, as we hope God will forgive us for all our Sins past, and will receive our Souls: So you will bear no more from us, till after our Decease, so no more at present of two dying Sinners.
March 12, 1747.
Letter to Mr. B - 1.
At the PLACE of EXECUTION.
ABOUT Nine o'Clock on Friday Morning last, Robert Scott , Samuel Chilvers , William Stevens , Francis Hill , William Whurrier , and John Parkes , went from Newgate to the Place of Execution, the three former in one Cart, the three latter in another, attended by a Party of Soldiers. Their Behaviour to the last Moment of their Lives was consistent with what is said before of them; and having for some Time continued in Prayer, they seemed to meet their Fate with composed Minds.