THE ORDINARY of NEWGATE'S ACCOUNT of the Behaviour, Confession, and Dying Words, Of the SIX MALEFACTORS, Who were executed at TYBURN, On MONDAY the 1April1754. BEING THE Fourth EXECUTION in the Mayoralty OF THE Right Hon. Thomas Rawlinson, Esq. LORD-MAYOR of the CITY of LONDON.
THE ORDINARY of NEWGATE'S ACCOUNT of the Behaviour, Confession, Etc.
BY virtue of the King's commission of the peace, Oyer and Terminer, and jail - delivery of Newgate, held before the right honourable and Thomas Rawlinson, esq ; lord-mayor of the city of London,Sir Martin Wright, knt. Sir Richard Adams, knt. William Moreton, esq ; recorder , and others of His Majesty's justices of Oyer and Terminer, and jail - delivery of Newgate, for the said city and county of Middlesex, holden at Justice-hall in the Old Bailey, on Wednesday the 27th, and Thursday the 28th of February, Friday the 1st, Saturday the 2d, Monday the 4th, Tuesday the 5th, and Wednesday the 6th of March, in the 27th year of His Majesty's Reign, John Arnold, James Abbott, George Miles, Eleanor Conner, otherwise Tobin, Samuel Dean, William Wilson, and Jacob Sampson, were capitally convicted, and received sentence of death accordingly Tobin, who pleading pregnancy, was brought in quick with child.
The behaviour of these Men has been at chapel constant and daily, except Wilson, who, for about 10 days after receiving sentence of death, did hold out to attend the service of God as well as the rest; but somewhat or took the rust, forsook the chapel, and declared he'd not come out again of his cell, till fetched out for the last Time. However, a reverend gentleman coming to see him on Friday last,
among other things, advised him to think of better things than resentment, and to change his mind. He took the gentleman's advice, and on Saturday morning came to chapel again, and attended it to the last. While there, at prayers, I cannot but say, all their behaviour was decent, and apparently devout. They could all read, except Sampson; which has not been the case of a whole set of these unhappy wretches since I have known the place.
On Thursday last, the 28March, the report of six malefactors was made to his Majesty, by the recorder of London; when he was pleased to order them all for execution on Monday the 1April.
1. John Arnold was indicted, for that he, together with Isaac Summers, not yet taken, on Richard Harper did make an assault, in an open place near the king's highway, and stealing from his person one silver watch, value 50s. one seal, value 1s. 6d. one key, value 1d. his property, January the 26th 1753.
2. Samuel Dean was indicted, for that he, on the king;s highway, on Richard Parham did make an assault, putting him in bodily fear and danger of his life, and stealing from his person one silver watch, value 3l. one half guinea, and 3s. in money numbered, 1Feb.
He was a second time indicted, for that he, together with
3. William Wilson, on the king's highway, on George Lewis Jones, clerk , did make an assault, putting him in corporal fear and danger of his life, and stealing from his person one guinea and 3s. in money numbered, 1Feb.
4. Jacob Sampson was indicted, for that he, on William Jones, in the dwelling-house of Thomas Harriss, and make an assault, putting him in corporal fear and danger of his life, and stealing from his person one silver watch, value 50s. his property, 20Feb.
5. James Abbot, otherwise John Champness, was indicted, for that he, on the king's highway, in a certain open place called Hyde-park, on Mary Crook, Widow , did make an assault, putting her in corporal fear and danger of her life, and stealing from her person one linnen shift, value 1s.d. the goods of the said Mary, and several other things, the property of other persons, 1Dec.
6. George Miles was indicted, for that he, in a certain field or open place, near the king;s highway, on John Briscal did make an assault, putting him in fear and danger of his life, and stealing from his person one silver watch, value 3l. one cornelian seal set in silver, value 10s. one silver medal, and 7s. in money, 21Feb.
parish of St. Giles in the Fields, of parents very well known in the neighbourhood for a great number of years to have lived in credit and reputation, though so unhappy an offspring has brought sorrow upon their grey hairs. Proper care was taken to give him such education in his youth, as might have put him in a right way of life; but all their indulgences proved unsuccessful to the good purpose they were designed, by means of an untoward disposition, which, though all his life has appeared, as it by some fatality inbred, and natural to his constitution, Very early bad weeds sprang from whatever cultivation was thrown into the barren soil of his hear; and where wheat was sown, tares soon appeared, and choaked it; so that no fruits ever were brought forth to the advantage of the sower.
He might have been brought up to a very good trade, if any inclination to industry had been in him; but idleness, and a loose way of living, were his delight from his infancy. Nor could all the authority of a parent make any impression upon the violence of his ungoverned passions. Would to God, this was the only instance of his time, that the throbs of many an aching heart might be prevented. For, one to the unhappy sufferer, yet the distress of grief falls too often heavier on the parents and family, and makes them drag on life, for years, with heaviness to the grave.
The unhappy subject of these lines has been a plague to them all his days, and is, no doubt, their greatest grief at the last. How must they now wish, it had pleased providence to have taken him away in his infancy, rather than that he should have lived so long, to bring himself to such an untimely and ignominious end? And that too, you'll say, resolvedly, and premeditately (as to those who have long known him is most evident, both from his words and actions), when, before we have done with him, we make a just representation of his life, as far as we are enabled to do it.
We observed before, he might have been bred to a reputable trade, been a credit to his family, and, by this time, have lived comfortably, and been a support to his parents; yet, for all this prospect, (to which was added good advice and instruction) he rashly resolved to take his own course, and cared for none of these things. Instead of regarding what would have made him a man respected in life, the impetuosity to his evil inclinations has made him a sad spectacle to an in-vain pitying multitude.
In his early days, instead of keeping at home, and minding business, nothing would please his unsteady temper, but being about in streets among coaches and horses; so that his friends, at length, procured him a place of coachman in a good family, where indeed he lived for a few years. But, regularity did not agree with his bent of mind. He must be where he could do as he list, (which was the worst thing he could do), and, for some time after, he took to driving hackney coaches.
Neither would this support his extravagancy, being too forward in loose company of both sexes; so that he, very early in his days, began to pave the way to his ruin.
As he would by no means be kept at home, he soon fell into bad company, going from place to place continually in idleness, he was ready to be drawn into all manner of disorder and wickedness, and was easily made to come into any design that might be mischievous and unlawful. As a gambler, he was soon distinguished, and was one of the foremost at the drawing in the ignorant and unwary to the vile schemes of that set of men, too frequently practised, especially in London. All other such enterprizes, prejudicial to society for a while, and at length, destructive to themselves, he as readily became master of, as his masters could teach him. Such was his turn of mind to the choice or delight in any thing that was vile and infamous.
He went on for a long while in secret, and undiscovered as to any particular fact, though scarce a day past in which he had not done something to deserve the censure of the law. He had a long time been suspected to be a common highwayman and street-robber; but had the good luck to escape, till, at his old tricks of gambling, he had defrauded and robbed 2 poor strange countryman of several goods, in the year 1750, soon after which he was apprehended, and brought to justice.
But before this, he had committed an audacious robbery, in the year 1748. In the month of November of that year, Wilson stole a hamper from behind the Ailesbury coach, as it was going down Holborn, on this side of Holborn bars. After he had taken it, he was observ'd to carry it to Staples-Inn gate, where he rested it one the rails. A man, who observed what he had done, waited till he had taken it up again, and then followed him up Middle Row; Wilson went into a private court, which goes to the back door of the King's-Head tavern, above the bars. But, observing the man following him, he dropp'd the hamper, and ran away. However. he followed, overtook, and laid hold to Wilson, just as he was going into Holborn, and, with the assistance of other people, brought him back to the place where the hamper was dropped. Then they brought him to the King's Head tavern, and charged a constable with him.
While the man, who observed the whole transaction, was gone to the Bell inn in Holborn to see for the coachman, a boy (who is since transported, for felony) opened the door of the room, where Wilson was in custody, and says to him in a cant term, shall I go for the father? The people, who were in the room with him, had no other thought, but that by the father, was meant the poor unhappy old man, who survives (overwhelmed with grief) and began to say many things of his good same, and reputation, and pitied him, that he should have so ungracious a son. But, to their great surprize. about an hour after the boy was gone, their castle was
stormed by ten or twelve men, with pistols and cutlasses. Wilson seeing his old companions come to his assistance, called out with the most wicked, and villanous cry, d-n your eyes, sight, cut away. They, ripe for mischief, began to lay on without mercy. The constable received a great blow on his right-arm, and he and the rest of the people, that guarded him, finding such a set of desperadoes about them, were glad to be quiet and shift for themselves, while Wilson's comrades carried him off in triumph: and he had the good luck to get out of that scrape for a time.
This escape was followed with no other consequence, but an encouragement for him still to go on with his old companions in iniquity, and in his old courses on the highway, and street-robberies, 'till, as before observed, he robbed a man at a house in Chick-lane, an old resort for such fort of people, called in their cant trem, a flash-house.
This poor man, a stranger in the town, as he passed along the Fleet, enquired, who replied, she knew no such person. Immediately a boy, who was upon (what they call) the lay, stept up to him, and told him, he was going to the person's house he enquired son. The man inadvertently embraced the offer of the boy, who, instead of conducting him where he wanted to go, led him to the aforesaid house in Chick-lane. When he came in, he asked, if that was the house he wanted, and was answered, no, But says the boy, I have sold the man you enquire for, a horse for 20l. and I'll enquire whether he has been here to pay me, Accordingly, he called for the landlady, and asked her, if the gentleman had been there to pay the money, She replied, he had been there five or six times; and she would send for him in a minute. So the poor man sat down a little white, expecting the coming of his friend. Soon after Wilson, and Harper (who also was rescued out of the Gatehouse, and afterwards executed in March, 1750) came into the house, and sat down to gaming, at pricking at the belt. Wilson pretended to lose some silver, and a guinea; and then immediately made application to the countryman to change him a 5l. or 5 guinea piece. The poor man very innocently pulled out his money, and silver watch, which he had received in lieu of other money. He had in money a 3l. 12s. piece, two 36s. pieces, and three moidores, all which he took out, and laid upon the table, little thinking what would follow.
Wilson was not content with the appearance of this booty; but perceiving the man had another watch in his pocket, says to him, I think you have got a gold watch. I have let mine run down, pray let me regulate mine by your's. The man replyed, it was only a metal one; so he took it out of his pocket, and gave it to Wilson. Immediately Harpur, who was a stout, lusty man, rose from his seat, laid hold of the countryman by the two arms, and led him out at the door. As he was leading out at one door,
he looked back, and saw Wilson putting his handkerchief over the watches and money; and pulling all to the side of the table he sat on. 'Till now the man suspected no harm; but before the returned to the room again, Wilson, and the boy (who first took in the countryman, and led him to the house in Chick-lane) were gone out at the back door with the booty, and Harpur made the best of his way off from the fore door, leaving the countryman to return by himself to the room to lament his loss, knowing the birds were all flown.
The poor man could have no information of the persons, tho he told the woman of the house, he thought she kept robbers in the house. After paying his reckoning, he went to another house in the neighbourhood, and told his story; when a person, upon hearing him describe the men, went out, and saw Wilson sitting at the door of the house where the man had been so cheated. Wilson having changed his dress, thought himself safe, and was sitting at the door smoking his pipe, as unconcernedly as if he had done no harm.
The people to whom he had related his story, seeing Wilson sit there, and knowing him to be a suspected person, agreed that the countryman should change his dress too, and so pass by, and view him, and upon his giving notice, they were ready to assist him. He passed him a few yards; and having taken a survey of him, the countryman turned to him, and said, " Mon, " thou hast not altered thy head, tho' " thou hast thy dress; thou art the " mon that robbed me." Upon which Wilson was immediately seized; but he was very abusive, and swore he never saw the man before. But, when the man bad put on his own cloaths again, Wilson could not deny but that he had seen him about two hours before he was taken, (which was between 6 and 7 o'clock in the evening of the 18th day of June 1750.) and pretended he went out grumbling, because somebody had robbed him of 6d. But the countryman charged him with the robbery of greater value; and he was that night carried to the Compter, and the next day committed to Newgate.
At the sessions in July following, William Wilson was indicted for stealing six dead pigeons, value 1s. one dead hare, value 3s. one wicker basket, commonly called a hamper, value 1s. the goods of Thomas Clark, Nov. 28, 1748. Upon which indictment he was sound guilty, by the jury, of stealing the hamper, and would for that have been transported; but,
At the same sessions there was another accusation against him. And
William Wilson was indicted, for that he, with two other persons not yet taken, one silver watch, value 3l. one metal watch, value 4l. one 3l, 12s. piece, two 36s. pieces, and three moidores, the property of Joseph Millikin, in the dwelling-house of Ann Glover, did steal, take, and carry away, 18 June.
The court and the jury were satisfied of the evidence laid before them.
He was sound guilty of the fact; but a point of law arising, whether the method of taking the goods was a fraud, or a robbery, the jury gave in their verdict Special, and judgment was respited till the point was decided by the twelve judges of England.
While the point remained undecided, Wilson continued in Newgate, and was one of the greatest reprobates that ever the place was burthened with; and, during the time of his confinement, was many times heard to say, They may as well hang me now, or I shall give them more trouble; for hanged I will be one time or other. Oaths, curses, and blasphemies, too horrid to repeat, were as frequent as speech, or the opening of his mouth to speak. But at length, the point being decided, Wilson received sentence of transportation; and, in pursuance of that sentence. was transported to Maryland.
He was no sooner got into banishment, than his mind was set upon contriving how he should return, Because he would keep his word, he would return in order to do more mischief, and be hanged. And, when he had returned, relying upon it, that but two or three persons, who knew him, wou'd take him up for being seen at large, he guarded himself with strong, and resolute accomplices, that so he might be the less in danger of being apprehended. And, with them he betook himself to his old courses upon the highway, and street-robbing. He was frequently seen on the Highgate and Hampstead roads; and about the very neighbourhood where he first drew vital air, he was long been troublesome to those who passed to and fro. And what a strange, and, most audacious in him, he resorted even to his poor aged father's house, against his will, and had scarce been out of it ten minutes at the time he was apprehended. He was always a wilful, head drong fellow, and one would imagine he had resolved, as he had declared, to be hanged long before he came to it, though he had long deserved it. But, when it came to the rest, ten thousand worlds would not have been too much to give to save his life, had he been so possessed. And though, when he thought death was at a distance, he laughed at it, yet when it made its nearer approaches, he strove to shrink back from it, and used all endeavours he could possibly devise to think of, to save himself from this impending death. From this man's behaviour appears what is the boldness of the wicked; and, we see, it vanishes as soon as real danger appears; as soon as it finds justice in earnest treading upon its heel.
But, because Dean had connection with Wilson, we shall here leave him, and give him the finishing strone after we have introduced his companion and fellow-suffer a little upon the carpet.
2. Samuel Dean, aged 30, says, he was born in the parish of St. Luke's. in Old-Street, London, of honest and reputable parents, who gave him what education was in their power; and, he says, he always received good advice and instruction from them, which,
had he given such heed to as he ought, Tyburn had never been his fate. In his youthful days, he says, he was what is generally called an unlucky one, and of an unfettled mind; but always of a pleasant and good humoured deportment; and, heartily thanks God that he could not charge himself with having abused or ill-treated man, woman, or child; that he always robbed without design of using cruelty, nor did ever; which was more than he could say of his companion Wilson, who, especially of late, being grown desperate, cared not what he he did; but would fire a pistol upon every the least pretence. Dean was bred a coachman , and drove coaches for many years in Goswell-street, where, till he became more intimate with Wilson, since his return from transportation, before as fair a a character among his neighbours as might be expected, for ten, twelve, and sixteen years before. And it is generally thought, and he says himself, he should scarce ever have done such things, had it not been for Wilson's enticements, who was continually buzzing in his ears the booty to be got by robbery; that it was an easy way of working; and, upon account that few people chuse to resist, they might thrive a long time upon rapine rand plunder, and at last escape unpunished. To these fallacious arguments he lent an ear, while Satan prompted him to become partaker with him, and be undone. Such was his own account of the matter; and now, says he, 'tis proved too true for my interest here, whatever may be the case hereafter. He says, he knew Wilson formerly, when both of them followed coach-driving; but he ever was with him at that time any farther than drinking together, nor did he suspect Wilson then of being a thief, or in any particular bad way of life. Of late indeed, he says, he has been but too sensible of it, having been concerned with him and others in a matter of seventy or an hundred robberies. And, he was now become so reprobate, that those who before looked on him as a friend and companion, began to drive him from their company, not being able to bear with his execrable oaths, cursing, and swearing.
One of the first things Dean and Wilson did together was this; they, one night, about ten or eleven o'clock, took a coach in Aldersgate-street, and bid the coachman drive to Islington. The man, not knowing them, did not care to go; but they forced him to drive them up Gaswell-street, and so up the road towards the turnpike. But, before they came there, they made him stop, took him down from the coach-box, and robbed him of all he had about him, and afterwards him of all he had about him, and afterwards made him drive them back again into Old Street, and threatened him with death, pistol, and sword, if he spoke a word. This was a frolick to entertain two others, who had lately taken on with them, and stood beholding the sight. The poor man begged for his money again, but al lto no purpose; they had no charity even for a brother whip. For five or six months they have been concerned together in a multitude of rob-
beries, both in town and country; but having greatly infested St. Giles's in the Fields parish, and Oxford Road, there was diligent search made after them. About a week or ten days before they were taken, they robbed, in that part of the town, a gentleman of distinction, of a considerable booty; but when they were taken all that was gone; and the produce of several other robberies besides was squandered away, and absorbed in drunkenness and debauchery, the only method of passing away time after an evening's patrole in the streets.
Thus far Dean reports; but with regard to any robberies which had not come to light, he was silent, Wilson having out a padlock upon his mouth.
He owned the robbery of Mr. Parham, for which he was singly, at first, convicted; nor pretended to deny what appeared against him in court in evidence, acknowledging his verdict just; the robbery also of the Reverend Mr. George Lewis Jones, with Wilson, together with that of Mr. Lane, for which an indictment was found; but they being before capitally convicted, the last indictment was not tried. This robbery was done just by the old pound in St. Giles's in the Fields; the other at Hockley in the Hole. Their suffering they acknowledged to be just. Dean always behaved well; Wilson only some times. But, before their deaths, in all appearance, both heartily lamented the misconduct of their past lives, and died in hope through Christ.
3. John Arnold, was a youth of about 22 years of age, and says, he was born in the parish of St. James, Clerkenwell. When he was about two years old, he says, his parents removed, and came into the parish of St. Sepulchre, where he has been an inhabitant ever since. His parents brought him up tenderly, and put him to school, first upon snow-hill, afterwards to the parish school, and sometime he went to Haberdasher's alms-house school, at Hoxton: so that he could read and write pretty well. He was afterwards bound apprentice to a plaisterer in the Old-Bailey, in order to be intitled to his freedom, and was afterwards turned over to his mother, who was a plaisterer's widow; and being left with several children, this affair was so managed, because his labour, as a journeyman, might help to support the mother and family.
The young fellow worked journeywork for several persons of reputation, who speak well of him, and always found him industrious and honest, as far as they knew. And, though it is generally said, there's searce ever so great smoak without fire, Arnold yet denied all along, and to the last. at the place of execution, that he had ever been guilty of this fact for which he suffered, or any other of the like kind.
The fact, however, was proved against him, according to the common usage of the court at the Old-Bailey; the accomplice swore positively to his being one in the company that robbed the prosecutor; and seve-
ral circumstances corroborated his evidence. Arnold denied all, but owned he had been too much given to had company of both sexes.
Arnold's pretence to account for being acquainted with the evidence was, that being both plaisteres , they used to meet at King-street end, the usual place of resort for people in that business to get employ, when out of work. Though this seems only an excuse; because, according to what is said of him, by those who knew him, he very rarely, if ever, wanted work, and knew who would employ him every day, without having resort to that place to enquire.
True, however it is, he owns, that there was an acquaintance subsisting between him and the evidence; that they used to drink together; but denies utterly any robbery with him. It guilty, as there's too much reason to fear, what could induce him obstinately to deny, I am at a loss to say. The jury that tried him, at first recommended him to mercy; but, after enquiring about him, before the sessions was over, desired to withdraw the recommendation of him to mercy.
He behaved under sentence very quietly and decently, and was very attentive to reading and prayer, and was resigned to his fate.
On Sunday evening Arnold desired this might be put into the account of him; viz. Let the public know, that I die innocent of the fact, and hope that no-body will reflect on my mother, as if she knew of my doing such things; for she did not. And, as for the public to say I have done such things as what I die for, I have not. I have been bad enough; but not to wrong any-body of any thing, as I am a dying youth. And, I hope all youth will take warning by me, and not keep too much company.
4. James Abbot, otherwise John Champniss, says he is 23 years of age, and that he was born at East Barnet. His parents brought him up to reading, and kept him to school as long as they were able. Sometimes he worked with his father for a while, at husbandry work ; but about ten years ago, he says, he came to London, and got into employ, as a plaisterer's labourer . 'Twere adviseable, methinks, to take care of the youth in that way of business; for, by what has lately appeared, there seems to be a sad contagion among them.
This unhappy young fellow has been a most vile profligate wretch. He was addicted to all manner of vice and debauchery; for all which he never had the least reluctant thought, till since convicted; though it would be difficult to find out a name for a vice which he has not been guilty of, except murder, which he utterly disclaims. He did not deny having been guilty of sundry robberies. He acknowledged that for which he suffered, and another indictment, which was found against him, for stealing two watches; upon which he was not tried, being clearly convicted on the former, which was for robbing a poor woman in Hyde-park, of a bundle of things,
He was of a seeming surly dispoon, of very few words, and theyere in general as bad as his actions while at liberty.
The woman, whose name is Brown, with whom he lived, (who was another man's wife, by whom she had children) was tried, and convicted with him, for receiving those goods, knowing them to be stolen; and was, in the other indictment, charged with receiving the watches, knowing them to be stolen, and is to be transported for fourteen years. Before the justice, she charged him of one of her children, of about seven years of age, but he always denied the fact, and charged her with it, as he did also to the last, at the place of execution.
There was a charge against him for assaulting and robbing Jane Blackshaw, which he owned, together with the robberies, of John Baptist, and William Barnes, of their watches. But, his fellow-sufferer, Wilson, had shut up his mouth also; nor would let him acknowledge any other wicked act, tho' never so much pressed to it.
Abbot behaved, after conviction, in a very quiet sober manner; never appeared grieved at his fate; nor once shed a tear; but his countenance was always the same. He acknowledged he had been a very wicked liver; was very ignorant as to any other part of life; but, he said, he died resigned to the justice of his fate, hoping there was yet mercy for him with God thro' Christ, upon his true repentance. the place of execution, just before he was turned off, he owned himself to be the person that stole a silver tankard from Mr. Weden, at the sign of the City of Newcastle, in Broadstreet; for which robbery one Joseph Little, of Harlington, was tried, and positively sworn against by two servants in the house, and a soldier, at the last sessions at the Old-Bailey, in January, and had been convicted, had not many circumstances concerned to make his innocence appear.
5. Jacob Sampson, aged 47, says, he was born fifteen miles beyond Frankfort in Germany, of Jewish parents, whom he run away from as soon as he remembers he advanced to the 14th year of his age. When he left his native place, he travelled towards the Rhine, as far as Manheim; where he had not been long, before a protestant butcher, of that place, took him in the capacity of an errand boy , into his house. About two years after he was with him, he made a proposal for Sampson to become an apprentice to him; which being agreed to he was bound for seven years, which, he says, he served, and staid with his master a year after; so that he was there ten years in all. Then a wandering thought seized him again, and he travelled back through Germany, Spain, and France, and came to Holland. But, there he had no resting place, tarrying in that country only six months, as it did not suit his purpose of getting a living.
country all over for this sixteen years past; never settled long in any one town or county, but continually in motion, from one place to another. As the game of pricking at the garter or belt is, of all others, in general, appropriated to a certain set of men in the world, who are distinguished by the name of Gamblers; upon enquiry how he came by his knowledge of it, he readily owned he had frequently seen the play among that set of people at markets and fairs, and other public places, in his journies up and down the country; but did not say he was one of that society. However, 'tis to be presumed, he was in friendship among them, or he had never learned the trick. Either he must have been taught it through friendship, or else he must have purchased his knowledge. For a man might stand looking at two persons pricking at the but for six months, and be never the wiser. The artist at it may roll it up, and so order it, that the ignorant shall never win, or if he thinks it will cover his design the better, he may let him (what they call) he in now and then, just as he pleases. Such is the odds in this odd game, if an ignorant person will be fool enough to play with a knowing lose an hundred times, and blame ill luck, as he is not aware of the deceit practised against him.
The same scheme seems to have been laid in Sampson's affair with the Welch-man, and was in the affairs of Wilson with the other countryman, of which account is given before in these papers, and both were trapanned nethe same spot of ground of theMarket; near to which placeral; of these men are reported, by numbers, frequently to appear, in over to pick up young, raw, country people, whom they look upon to be the most proper subjects to practise their frauand tricks upon. And, tho' the practise is so stale, yet too frequent opportunities offer to exercise themselves in such sort of impositions on the unwary.
The account of the matter which Sampson gave was, that he met with one of his old acquaintance, whom he had often met with in his travels in the country (by Name Smith) who taught him to prick at the belt. He told him his design, and he came readily into it; and when he saw the Welchman picked up by his acquaintance, he followed them till, they went into Harris's. the Black-Horse, in Boswell court. Soon after they were gone, Sampson and another man, whose name, he says, he does not know, followed them in, and immediately joined their company. This agrees with the prosecutor's account, who said, he was led there by one, under protence of being told of a place which he wanted, (being then out of place), and that two ment came in presently after, and talked to each other. Then they went to pricking at the string, which Sampson produced, saying, there was no such thing in the world as that. They went to play, and Sampson lent his companion that came In with him a shilling, in order to draw the countryman in. Then the
man that picked up the countryman, and the other two went to play, and asked the countryman to play; which he refused; and beginning to be uneasy, pulled out his watch foolishly to see what it was o'clock, because his intention was to have gone further. They finding he was not to be drawn in to play, were obliged to have recourse to force, in order to make their market of him. And, Sampson owned at last, the taking the watch away forcibly from the man, without saying one word to him, and ran, while the others stood in the gap to prevent his following.
As soon as the other two had jest him, the poor Welchman ran out of the house, and followed, with the cry of Stop Theif. Sampson being overtaken, and the watch found upon him, which the prosecutor charged him with having robbed him of, he was committed to Newgate; and, at the sessions, was convicted of the Indictment, and received sentence of death.
For some time after he was so ill as not to know what was said to him; but upon his recovery from the indisposition of mind, as well as body, he came with the rest to chapel.
Having the appearance of a Jew, I then began to interrogate with respect to his way of religion. He said he was born of Jewish parents; but, upon his running from them, had been among christians, and having served a christian master at Manheim for ten years, he had been used to go with his master and the family to worship, and had been used to look upon himself as a christian ever since. He told me, he had been baptized during his ten years service at Manheim, acknowledged Jesus Christ to be the Saviour of the world, who was crucified under Pontius Pilate, at the instance of the Jews. Desiring to die in the said of Christ, he pretended to no other claim to the favour of God, as he had been a great transgressor, and deserved his wrath, but only the merits of Christ.
At first he equivocated about the robbery for which he suffered. and pretended he won the watch at play, as he had done when he made his defence upon his trial; but, upon his own principles, that it was an unfair play, as he owned. 'Provided he had won the watch, it was before God, and in fore conscientia a theft, because fraudulent and unlawful means were made use of to come at it. He knew the Welchman would not win, had he played; because he could manage the garter so artfully, that it was impossible he should. But he did not play. All this he came at last to own, and acknowledged taking the watch against the will of the prosecutor. He own'd the justice of his fate, dessring to die in the faith of Christ, and hoping for mercy from Him, who died for Jew and Gentile, that should come to the knowledge of Him.
9. George Miles was about twenty-four years old, and says, he was born at Lancashire; that he was of a pretty good family, and was brought up very well, above the rank of life, which, through his own indiscretion, he at last put himself into. He might have been
well introduced into the world, had he not run counter to all his family's inclinations. For, though he was a youth of a mild disposition naturally, yet somehow a certain sowerness and asperity of temper attended him to the last.
He was not brought up to any business, but lived as he thought proper for some years past, to the great discontent of his friends.
He was of a loose disposition, and much addicted to company with lewd women, which forced him to do, what has brought him to ruin. He was very reserved during his lying under sentence of death; had the thoughts of it hung very heavy upon him for a while. But, after some time, finding it necessary to resign to the will of God, who suffers men to be punished for their offences, he began to think of acquiescence under it, and to prepare for another state, by constantly reading the scriptures, and by prayer to God for forgiveness, and by prayer to God for forgiveness, in which he now took delight both day and night.
Upon some disgust he took at home, he listed for a soldier about twelve months ago, which, he says, is all the while he has been in London. He belonged to the first regiment of guards, when he did this robbery, and was taken upon the Parade, in St, James's-Park, and the watch he robbed the prosecutor of was sound upon him.
He always saud, he had never before committed any robbery; and went out when he did this, in hopes to get money to pay a debt, which he was threatned with an arrest for. He averred to the last it was the first fact; and that, tho' having been of loose, and wicked life for many years, he never had by violence before taken any thing from any man. He acknowledged the justice of his suffering, and had hope, that his endeavours to prepare himself for a future state, would meet with acceptance, thro' the intercession and merit of that atonement made by Jesus upon the cross.
At the Place of EXECUTION.
ON Monday, the first instant, between the hours of eight and nine o'clock in the morning, George Miles, James Abbot, and Jacob Sampson, in the first cart; William Wilson, Samuel Dean, and John Arnold, in another; were carried from Newgate to Tyburn, amidst a crowd of spectators. While the executioner was trying their halters to the fatal tree, they all prayed very, fervently, and behaved as became people in their unhappy and melancholy circumstances. Then we spent some time in prayer, and recommended their souls to God's protection, in the name of Christ, and his church.
Arnold expressed himself to the populace in terms, desiring warning might be taken from his sad sate, and said besides, he dy'd innocently,
The rest continued to behave decently; none of them saying any thing more of their own accord. But. Abbot deny'd the murder (which the woman, who was transported for receiving goods from him, knowing them to be stolen) had caused him to be suspected of. And, he owned stealing the tankard, as is before mentioned. There was a Few came to the tail of the cart, and spoke with Sampson. And, as before he had earnestly desired to die in the faith of Christ; I asked him, whether he had altered his mind? To which he made answer direct, and seeming very earnest. he dy'd in the faith of Christ, and disclamed all Fudaism; or, as well as he could express himself, in words to that purpose.