29th June 1785
Reference Numbert17850629-67

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674. MARTIN TAYLOR and ELIZABETH TAYLOR were indicted for burglariously and feloniously breaking and entering the dwelling house of Samuel Hooker at the hour of two in the night, on the 7th of May last, and burglariously stealing therein sixty yards of linen cloth, value 6 l. ten linen handkerchiefs, value 20 s. two hundred and fifty yards of thread lace , value 20 l. one hundred and fifty yards of thread edging, value 10 l. two hundred and fifty yards of black lace, value 10 l. four silver table spoons, value 40 s. five silver tea spoons, value 5 s. a pair of silver tea tongs, value 5 s. a silver milk ewer, value 16 s. two thousand yards of silk ribbon, va lue 80 l. thirty yards of muslin, value 4 l. and two silk handkerchiefs, value 9 s. the property of the said Samuel .

(The case opened by Mr. Silvester.)


I am a housekeeper at Highgate , the woman prisoner lived servant with me about sixteen months ago, I never saw the man before his apprehension to my knowledge; on the 7th of May as was my usual custom, to see my house fastened up, and my family and I retired to bed, the watchman gone half past ten, I fastened the house myself, I was the last person that went up stairs to bed; in the morning when I got up between six and seven, I was surprised by an uncommon strong light which shone into the kitchen, and when I went down, I found a hole had been broke under the kitchen window, the hole was four course of bricks taken down, and by which I or a lustier man than I, could get in: I then

went into the shop, there I missed three boxes of lace, and also six drawers of ribbons, I then directly went out to a neighbour, and took him in to see the situation of my house, I shewed him the distressed situation I was in, and likewise told him I was ruined, for I had lost two hundred pounds worth of goods and upwards, I found two pieces of muslins, and some edgings, and silk handkerchiefs, and pocket handkerchiefs had been taken out of the window, some Irish linens from the counter, and some of the shelves, upon that I immediately applied to the Rotation-office , in Bow-street, and it was advertised, I also applied at Mr. Wilmot's office, but nothing transpired, I also applied to Mr. Seasons the constable, and I went with Seasons to the dwelling house of the prisoner Martin Taylor , that was the 18th, and there I found a cap which had some lace on, which I shall identify; I also found some few yards of ribbon, nothing else was found there.

Jury. Were the ribbons on blocks? - They were not: after his apprehension we went to the house of Mrs. Halloway, there I found different pieces of Irish linen cut into shirts and shifts, and I found a handkerchief on Mr. Powell, which was in my shop window before; I then went with the officer to apprehend Elizabeth Taylor , at Bow-fair , and she attempted to run away from me, she was brought to town to Mr. Seasons's house, she was searched, there was a small quantity of ribbon found in her pocket book, when she was before the Magistrate, she made a confession of the whole transaction.

Was any thing said to her to induce her to confess? - Not to my knowledge.

Mr. Garrow, Prisoner's Council. Was not she told she should be hanged if she did not? - I think, I can competently say, I am very sure she was not, I was out of Court when she made the confession, she acknowledged to me, she took away three boxes of lace, I questioned her to these three boxes; I cannot say whether this confession was taken in writing; she said, that she stood about three or four yards distant from where this hole was made, and that she received the property from two men that committed the robbery.


I live in Dowlings-buildings , Portpool-lane, Leather-lane, at No. 12; I know both the prisoners, the man lodged in my house sometime, and his sister, I know by coming backwards and forwards to see him; I made shirts for him, and shifts for his wife, and he came and left me a bit of cloth to make his sister a couple of shifts; a gentleman came and claimed the cloth, I am sure I received that piece of cloth from the prisoner Martin Taylor .


I am a constable, I searched this woman's house, here is the cloth I took from her house, and some ribbons, these were all found in the apartment of Mrs. Halloway.

Mrs. Halloway. The best part of these things were in my apartment, and others in the apartment of Mrs. Powell.

Mr. Garrow to Mrs. Halloway. Do you know the cloth ? - Mr. Seasons and another shewed me that cloth, my husband is a hackney coachman, and I do a little work for anybody; I am sure I received that cloth from the prisoner Martin Taylor about a fortnight before I had the shirts, he came on Monday to be measured for the shirts, and he was taken up on the Wednesday.

Seasons. This is the linen I received from this woman, we searched the house and the drawers all over, the prosecutor rolls it up and takes hold of it, says he, I verily believe this is my linen, this has my private shop mark; then I took Mrs. Halloway into custody; I went up stairs, and some of the things were found in the room of Mrs. Powell, up one pair of stairs, and this ribbon, and these things were found in her possession.

Court. What did you find in Martin Taylor 's apartment? - We apprehended him first, I went to this place afterwards;

I desired the people to step down stairs, and to mind the door, I did not know he was the landlord of the house; I saw nobody upstairs but a man who was in the glass-cutting way, I found this in Martin Taylor 's apartment, this ribbon, and this bit of linen and this cap; we then went to Bow fair , I did not know Elizabeth Taylor , and the prosecutor said that is she, then we went and took her, and knocked down about a dozen sausage stalls; there were fifty thieves endeavouring to rescue her, I desired them to take particular care of her hands; I took her to my house and examined her, and found this pocket-book on her, with this ribbon, and two duplicates, but they were not relative to this matter: she desired to speak to me on one side; says I, I am very sorry; she said, if a confession of any kind would be of any service to her she would make a confession of the robbery; I said I could hear nothing of it, she then said, she with two more persons, went and committed this burglary.

Mr. Garrow. That is just what she said about it? - Yes.

Was that her expression, or is that your polish when you are giving evidence upon oath, to affect the lives of prisoners?

Powell. The ribbons were not found in my room; there were two shifts found in my room, which I made for Catherine Taylor , the wife of Martin, I know nothing of Elizabeth Taylor , only I have seen her come up and down to her brother.

Prosecutor. This cap and ribbon that was found, it is a pattern of lace which I was pretty positive I had in my shop before I was robbed, and I have a counter part of the same lace; the other things, and the ribbon, I do not so positively swear to; the Irish linen has my shop mark, which is, U. R. W. but it is in characters; I mark all in characters; I cannot positively swear to these, because they have not my mark upon them, they are linen cloth, and in all probability a counter part of these I have here, but this bit of lace was brought to me by Ann Powell , it is a counter part of the lace; this handkerchief was in my shop window the night before the robbery; I have red and purple of the same pattern; there is no mark upon it, it was brought to me by Elizabeth Powell ; this edging was given me by Elizabeth Powell .

Mrs. Powell. I had that edging from the same person, the wife.


I went to see an acquaintance in the Borough, and returning home a man asked me to look at some handkerchiefs, he said he was afraid of the custom-house officers, he shewed me some, I did not approve of them, and I bought some linen of him at 22 d. per yard, he sold it me for fourteen yards, and I brought it home and kept it four or five days, and I got Mrs. Halloway to make it for me, as my wife goes out every day with fruit and fish.


I know nothing at all about it.


GUILTY , Death .

Tried by the first Middlesex Jury before Mr. Justice BULLER.

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