28th June 1780
Reference Numbert17800628-112

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416. JAMES JACKSON was indicted for that he together with five hundred other persons and more, did unlawfully, riotously, and tumultuously assemble, on the 6th of June , to the disturbance of the publick peace, and did begin to demolish and pull down the dwelling-house of Richard Akerman , against the form of the statute, &c.

JOHN LUCY sworn.

I am an hair-dresser, in St. John's-street, Clerkenwell. On Tuesday the 6th of June in the afternoon I was at Westminster; about the hour of five o'clock, as near as I can recollect, I observed a very large mob in Palace-yard, and a very great tumult; a party of horse rode amongst them; as I was informed, by the order of Justice Hyde; the prisoner hoisted a black and red flag, which was upon a pole; he stood the next man to me, or next but one. He cried Hyde's house, a-boy; he was seconded by several of the mob. They proceeded immediately there; I followed at a distance. I had known the prisoner some years, which made me take the more notice of him.

What is he? - A sailor I believe for the latter part of his life; the mob followed him, and I followed him at a distance. I saw the flag at Charing-Cross; I followed into St. Martin's-street, where I understood Justice Hyde's house was, and the mob followed the flag to Mr. Hyde's house. I do not lay any thing to the prisoner's charge that he did there, only walking through the mob; they staid there near an hour, as near as I can recollect; the prisoner still had the flag. Then he cried out Newgate, a-boy; that was about six o'clock, as near as I can recollect; he went down Orange-street coming towards Newgate; great numbers of the mob followed him. I went into Leicester-fields and staid some time; I then made the best of my way towards where I live in St. John's-street, Clerkenwell; when I came into Holbourn I was informed the mob was just gone by to Newgate. I went there, where I observed the same kind of flag at a distance; I saw the people attempting to break in at Mr. Akerman's windows; the flag was prety near, but I could not see who had it; I was opposite Mr. Akerman's house; the flag was close to Mr. Akerman's house; I continued to see the flag at a distance till the house was entered.

Did you see any other flag of that kind there? - No; after the goods were all

thrown out I saw the prisoner at the bar inside the house waving the same sort of flag out of the parlour window next the Sessions-house; the windows were then all broke away.

Are you sure that it was the prisoner? - I am sure it was the prisoner; I have known him fourteen years; I had a distinct view of his person; it was very light and I had a full view of him.

At that time they had, I believe, demolished a great part of Mr. Akerman's house? - They had demolished the goods and the window frames.

And the door? - They had broke in at the door, I do not know that they had demolished the door.

When did you first give information against the prisoner? - The Thursday following, to Mr. Bond who keeps the tap at New Prison; Mr. Bond told me I had better stay a few days, it was not safe yet to take him into custody.

Cross Examination.

It was not Mr. Bond at Sir John Fielding 's whom you gave the information to? - No, his brother.

You are the discoverer of this? - Yes.

And you are entitled to the reward? - No; I do not expect any reward.

When did you give any information to the magistrate? - There was no magistrate sitting at that time till the 12th; then he was taken up and carried to the Artillery Ground.

Did not the magistrates act every day? - I understood they did not at that time.

Do you mean in London or Middlesex that the magistrates did not act? - In Middlesex.

How large was the flag? - About a yard square.

How high was the pole? - About two feet perhaps above their heads, but I did not take particular notice.

Jury. Was the flag so much above the mob that they might see it? - Yes.

Did they appear to be led by it? - Yes.

How was the man dressed? - In a brown coat, a round hat, a checque shirt, and a pair of long trowsers.

Did you see no other flag at Newgate? - No.

At what o'clock did you see him at St. Martin's-street? - I think between the hours of five and six; it was about six when they went off. I saw him at Newgate at near seven o'clock; I think it was a little before eight when I left the place.

Have you ever been into the prison since he has been there to look at him? - I went there about a little business, but I did not see the prisoner there.

Did those who were with you see the prisoner? - I believe one of them did. I have had some threatening letters about this business.

Did not some other persons go with you? - One James Bayes did; I went to see Mr. Bond, I did not see the prisoner; I believe he did.

Court. What did Bayes and you go there for? - Bayes came to me and told me he knew the same person who carried the flag.

And you went to know whether the person Bayes had seen was the person you had seen? - I had described him to him; he knew him before, but did not know his name.


I work for Mr. Price, a tinman, in Holbourn; I follow lamp-lighting. At rather more than half after six o'clock, while I was standing at my master's door, which is two doors from Fetter-lane, I saw the prisoner come by with a blue and red flag. I went to the prison with the last witness; Lucy did not go in; but I pitched upon the prisoner as I saw him through the wicket.

What number of people were there in Holbourn? - I believe two or three hundred people followed him; I followed them to St. Andrew's Church; the prisoner stopped a little bit there, while the others came up, and while they drank some beer; when they stopped he said Newgate, a-boy; he then waved the flag and went on; I saw no more of him; I went to my work.

Are you sure the prisoner is the person? - Yes, I am; he had a round hat on, a yellow Barcello handkerchief, a brown bath coat, and a pair of long trowsers.

You did not observe his shirt? - No.

Cross Examination.

When was you examined by the magistrate? - I was examined at Hick's-Hall; I was not examined when Lucy gave the information.

How long have you been acquainted with Lucy? - I have known him two years; we were not much acquainted; I used to see him some days, as I go by his door, two or three times a day. I acquainted Mr. Dickins of it, and he acquainted Lucy.

How long was that after the proclamation of a reward? - I know nothing of the proclamation for the reward, I don't do it for that; I did not know he was taken up.

Did you see more than one flag in Holbourn? - No. I was talking with Dickins, and I said I saw a man with a flag go down Holbourn; I described the prisoner to him; he told it to Lucy; and Mr. Lucy called upon me, and desired me to come to him the next morning.

Jury. Did Lucy help your recollection? - No.

Nor was not with you when you pointed him out? - No.

Had the prisoner the same clothes on when he was in New Prison which he had on in Holbourn? - He had not the trowsers on.

Did not Lucy and you compare notes before you went? - No.

You did not know him before you saw him in Holbourn? - No.

Are you sure the prisoner is the man you saw in Holbourn? - I am.

You did not observe his shirt? - No; his handkerchief was tied round his neck I could not see his shirt.


I was at Mr. Hyde's house when the mob were there; I was overtaken by the mob at the end of Hedge-lane as they were going to Mr. Hyde's house.

Did you hear a person with a flag say any thing? - I heard a person, but I do not know him, cry a-boy for Newgate; there were three flags; one a green silk flag with a motto, one was a black flag with a red cross, the third flag was the Union.

Did you observe the persons bearing the flags so as to know them again? - No, I could not.

Cross Examination.

Did the cry a boy for Newgate come from one person only? - I heard it from more than one.


I am a constable of the Parish of St. James's, Clerkenwell; I apprehended the prisoner on the 12th of June.

What clothes had he on when you apprehended him? - A brown coat, and white breeches; his coat was buttoned; I cannot say what stockings he had on. I found a pair of trowsers in his lodgings.

Jury. Had he an hat with him? - Yes; I cannot recollect whether it was round or cocked. Lucy gave information of him; I knew him and his father before; I saw him come from his father's; I did not choose to take him in the neighbourhood; I followed him to an house in Compton-street; I did not know that he lodged there; I waited till he came out and then took him in Woods-Close.

Cross Examination.

You and Lucy live in the neighbourhood of the prisoner? - Yes.

You knew he wore trowsers openly? - I have seen him in trowsers.

You found him publickly in the street? - Yes.

Justice HYDE sworn.

On the 6th of June I saw the prisoner in Palace-yard; he was exceedingly daring and impudent. He lifted up his fist several times.

Had he any thing in his hand? - No.

Did you see such a flag as has been described? - No.


I am innocent of the crime I am charged with. I had been ill of a fever some time and was totally unable to carry a flag, or even to walk with the mob. The prosecutor has sworn I had a cheque shirt and trowsers on; I had neither cheque shirt nor trowsers on, nor did I leave work till six o'clock at night, when I went to my brother's lodging in Compton-street, and ate a bit of bread and

cheese and returned to my father's to work, till six o'clock; then I went to Cloth Fair to buy a file, and returned to my brother's; my brother's wife came home, and a man who carries milk for him, says he, Jim, Newgate is on fire by G - d. I said, that is false, for it is all stone. I had promised to go to the King's-Head, in Newgate-street, to drink a pint of beer with my brother, who is a printer; unfortunately I went. The people as I was going along, said, Newgate was on fire. I went down with the people, and staid some time. I went to see for my brother, but could not find him. The prosecutor came on Friday, I think it was, to look at me, as they pretended something was amiss with my irons; they viewed me; there was nothing amiss with my irons, and then I went back.

For the Prisoner.


When the the mob came down Holbourn, on the 6th of June, I stood at the steps of St Andrew's-church, and saw the mob; I took particular notice of the man who carried the flag; I am certain the prisoner is not the man; that man was more lusty, of a fair complexion, and pock-fretted; he had to be sure a brown coat but he had no trowsers on.

Cross Examination.

What are you? - A serjeant at mace. I belong to the Compter. I never saw the prisoner in my life; as to his being the person who carried the flag, I am sure he is not.

Do you know the prisoner at the bar? - No, I never saw him, I do not know his name now.

What time was this? - Six o'clock to the best of my knowledge. I came down Turnagain-lane to avoid the mob, and came down Breakneck-steps; the mob over-took me, and before I had got up there they had reached Newgate.

Was there any body with you? - Not that I know of.

You did not see any body you knew? - No, I cannot recollect any body.

Jury. What kind of flag was that? - A dirty looking flag; black and red; it looked as if it had been taken out of the kennel.

Jury. Who applied to you to give this evidence? - Nobody at all, only being here, I made mention, as the witnesses were giving their evidence, that I thought it was not true.

How near was you to the flag when you was on the steps? - As near as to the back of the jury box.

Did you follow it with your eye at all? - I did not stop at all; I stood till most of the mob past me; I heard them say they were going to Newgate. I went up Turnagain-lane, and went up Breakneck steps, thinking to get to Newgate before them; but they got there before me.

Did you then go your way or come opposite to Newgate? - I went to Newgate.

Counsel. When you came to Newgate did you observe the same man you saw with the flag in Holbourn? - I cannot say, I saw the flag at Newgate. I saw a man with a pick-ax at Mr. Akerman's door.

Court. Can you describe the colour of the flag? - It was black and red or black and blue; it was a dirty looking flag.

Did you see more flags than one? - No.


I saw the man with the flag in Holbourn, at the back of Middle-row. I took particular notice of him.

Is that the man at the bar? - He is not. It was a tall, stout man; he had a dirty brown great coat on, a new shirt, his breast was open; and he had a pair of long trowsers. His skin was a copper colour with dirt and nastiness. I am certain the prisoner is not the man who carried the flag.

Cross Examination.

What are you? - A bookseller in Middle-row, Holbourn.

What sort of flag was it? - A silk blue flag taken out of St. Giles's; there was one flag with a red cross on it. There were two flags, one was silk with a coat of arms. What arms I cannot say it was a green ground. The other was a very dirty flag; I should think it had been blue, but it was so abused by the weather. I could hardly see what colour it was

Are you sure the man who carried the dirty flag had a pair of long trowsers on? - Yes.

Do you keep a shop in Middle-row? - I do. They took the green silk flag from a publick house in St. Giles's. What coat of arms it was I cannot say; nor will I say whether there was a motto or not.

You took particular notice of the person who was carrying the dirty flag? - I took notice of his face.

Had he trowsers on? - I think he had not but I will not take upon me to swear that he had not.

Did not you swear he had? - I think he had not. I know he had a brown coat on; he had a dirty ragged great coat unbuttonned. His face was very pale.

- JACKSON sworn.

I am brother to the prisoner.

Do you remember seeing your brother on the afternoon of the 6th of June last? - Yes.

Be careful what you say, remember you are upon your oath. Where was it you saw him? - By Hick's Hall, about the hour of six in the afternoon; he was dressed in a brownish coat, a whitish waistcoat, and white breeches.

What shirt? - I cannot say. I saw him at a distance, going up in a hurry to Cannonbury-house.

Was you in court when the prisoner made his defence? - No.

ANN GILL sworn.

I am servant to Mrs. Jackson, a milk-woman, with whom the prisoner lodged.

Not the prisoner's wife? - No.

Where does your mistress live? - In Compton-street, Clerkenwell. On the night when Newgate was burnt, the prisoner was at our house at three o'clock in the afternoon. He staid about three quarters of an hour. He came again between six and seven o'clock, and staid till past eight, and ate a piece of supper before he went out.

How was he dressed? - He had black stockings, white breeches, waistcoat, and shirt.

Cross Examination.

Who is your mistress? - Mrs. Jackson, she is sister-in-law to the prisoner.

What made you take such particular notice of the time? - Because the people came and said Newgate was on fire.

How came you to know the exact time of the prisoner's coming in and going out? - Our carrier comes at three o'clock and goes out about four, and then comes between six and seven; and the clock struck eight before she came home.

Any other day have you been exact to the time of the prisoner's coming in and out? - Yes, mostly when the carrier is at home we do not go to dinner till between three and four o'clock.

Was he at home in the morning? - Yes.

What time did he go out or come in in the morning? - I do not know.


On the day when Newgate was burnt I remember seeing the prisoner at my mistress's when I came down with the milk about three o'clock. I went about a quarter before four and left him there; I returned home about a quarter or half after seven; I found him at home; then I went away at past eight o'clock, and left him at home.

You are a milk-carrier? - Yes.

Cross Examination.

Where do you live? - At Islington.

Where did you see him that afternoon? - At my mistress's in Wood's-close.

What room was he in? - The kitchen where we live.

Has he a room of his own there? - Yes, he lodges there, he and his wife, in the two-pair-of-stairs; I found him in the kitchen both times.

Are you sure he has a wife? - Yes.


I have known the prisoner from his infancy. I never knew any thing to affect his character before this time; he used to work with his father at watch-wheel cutting. I lived next door to him.

Has he been at sea? - Once. I am not speaking to his character for this twelvemonth.

Has he been ill? - I do not know that.


I have known the prisoner from his cradle. I never heard any thing bad of him till this affair.

He always bore a good character? - I never heard to the contrary.

What are you? - A glazier.

Have you known the prisoner lately? Not within ten or twelve months; he has been at sea; I have not known him since he returned.


I have known him from a child; the last time I saw him was the day Newgate was on fire; he had a pair of black stockings on, a white shirt and white breeches, and the same dress he has on now. I have lodged in his brother's house eight months.

Do you know of the prisoner having been ill before he was taken up? - He came out of the country very ill.

And was weak in consequence of that illness? - Yes, he spit blood for a good while.


I am the prisoner's brother; he had been ill of a fever some time; he had not been out but a day or two before Newgate was burnt down.

(The prisoner called William Hawkins who had known him eleven years. John Groff fourteen years. - Redman between three and four years. Mary Tuffnell three years. Eliza Davis nine years, and six other witnesses who had known him from a child, who all gave him a good character.)

GUILTY ( Death .)

Tried by the First London Jury before Mr. RECORDER.

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