Offence: Royal Offences > coining offences
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Thomas Halfpeny . I have known the prisoner near six months, the first time I ever saw him was at the Queen's-head, Vere-street, Clare-market; after that I happened to meet him in Field-lane : He said, he was going to take a Publick house. About a week or ten Days after, I met him again, then he told me he was a Jeweller by trade, and that if he had some money to get some materials he would get money enough : I said, why did he not work at his own trade. He said. he could get more money in his own way: I ask'd him, what it was ? He said, if I had patience, I should see. We took a lodging at Mrs. Fryers, Saffron-hill; he went to one Collet near Hitton-garden, and bespoke a pair of moulds or flasks, which was towards the latter end of Jan. I went with him to Shoe-lane to a wire shop, where we bought three crucibles and some argol, which was to give the money a colour: It is a sort of a powder. Then we went and got some spether, that is to mix with, and harden Block tin ; and then I went according to his desire, and bought some good brass; and then at a pewterer's, near Newgate, he got some fine Block-tin ; then he put his mettle into a crucible, and made a charcoal fire round it, and melted it therein with some salt petre. Then we got oyster-shells, and pounded them to a powder, and sisted it, with which he filled his flasks, getting first a Queen Anne's shilling ; he wetted the powder, and beat it down with a hammer, and then turned the mould and cleaned off the dust : Then he shook on some dry dust. Then he fixed on the other frame, and filled that with the same powder, on which he pulled them asunder, and took out the shilling: There was then a mould to cast shillings in. With a half round file he filed the edge smooth, with a three cornered one he mill'd them and scraped the roughness off the edge, and polished them with a piece of deal and pommice. There was about fifteen or sixteen shillings made in all, and not above. I have seen him pass them and receive the change: I saw him pass a Six-pence to a woman that sold oranges; likewise I was with him in a gin-shop, where he threw down one of these six-pences for a dram, and they gave him change as though it were a good one; I was with him one night when he pass'd about two shillings and six pence. Once he came home, and said, he had pass'd one shilling at the Bell-savage Inn; and also that he had pass'd a six pence to Mrs. Jones. She came and challenged him with it.
Robert Maycrost . When we had information of the prisoner's carrying on this business, Mr. Wittenbury and I, and two other persons, went to the house where the prisoner and last witness lodged, near Saffron-hill. Halfpeny was in bed with a lame leg; we found some tools, and a six-pence wrapped up in a paper that was a bad one. The prisoner told us, he could make a very great discovery, saying the six-pence he had paid a way to Mrs. Jones, he took again before Justice Fielding. Part of his information was reduced into writing, against his own son, and Halfpeny, and then refused to go on any farther.
John James . On the 21st of Feb. I received a six pence of the prisoner at the bar, which I put into the drawer; he laid cut a penny, and I gave him change. My mother was gone out, it was a bad six-pence.
John Handcock . On the 21st of Feb. Mrs. Jones had occasion to go out, who desired I'd stay with the young man, the last witness, in the shop; the prisoner at the bar brought a woman in, and laid out a penny, and threw down six-pence. The woman called to me, and said, look at the six pence; said I, it is not worth a farthing, and I bid him put it in a crawer by itself, till Mr. Nunnan came home, when he did, I told him of it; he said, he would give them a good one for it in the morning.
Mrs. Jones. I returned a bad six-pence to the prisoner in a paper. It was produced in court.
Guilty , Death .