Elizabeth Fisher, Rebecca Holden, George Holden, George Holden.
3rd September 1740
Reference Numbert17400903-19
VerdictsGuilty > theft under 40s; Guilty; Not Guilty

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283. + Elizabeth Fisher , of St Luke's Middlesex , was indicted for stealing a strip'd Sattin Gown, value 30 s. a cotton Gown, value 12 s. a linnen Gown, value 10 s. a camblet Gown, value 13 s. a Gold Ring, val 7 s . a Silver Tea-spoon, val. 1 s. 2 dimitty Petticoats, value 2 s. and a woollen Petticoat, val. 12 d. the Goods of William Walsham , in his Dwelling-house , Aug. 17 . And

284. 285. George Holden , and Rebecca his Wife , were indicted for receiving the same, knowing them to be stole , August 17.

William Walsham. I live in Whitecross-street , and am a Butcher . I lost on the 17th of August last, all the Things mentioned in the Indictment out of my Dining-Room, up one Pair of Stairs. I saw them in the Room on Saturday Night; they were all stole at once, on the Sabbath-day, but I did not miss them till Monday. The 4 Gowns were worth about 40 s. or 3 l. the Ring 7 s. the Tea-spoon 1 s. or 2, and-the three Petticoats were worth about 4 s. I would not over-rate them. I did not suspect the Prisoner (Fisher) till she was taken up and put in Newgate . Then I went to her, and she confessed she took all the Things, and that Holden and his Wife received them. I did not know her, for I never saw her in my Life, before that Time; but upon my asking her if she knew any Thing of the Goods I had lost, she told me, that Mrs Holden shewed her our Back-door, and told her, if she could get up Stairs, she would find something of Value. That she accordingly went up, and put the Things into her Apron, while Mrs Holden waited for her at the End of Whitecross-street, and when the Prisoner came to her with the Things, she (Holden) took them from her, and carry'd them to her Room. All the Gowns and Petticoats I had again; I found them at the Places Fisher directed me to. The strip'd silk Gown I found in Holden's House; two others in Chick-Lane, at one Fountaine's , who sells old Cloaths. The other I found at Pinchbeck's , in Field-Lane . One Petticoat was sold to a Woman in the Rope-walk , who let me have it again; another to one Howard, in Golden-Lane; and the third Petticoat I found at Holden's House, between the Bed and the Sacking, where he and his Wife lay; I found the Silk Gown and the Petticoat in their House, with a Sheet and a Table-cloth, which are not in the Indictment. And these Things I found in the Presence of Holden and his Wife. The Tea-spoon I found at one Stevenson's, (who goes by the Name of Penn) in Golden-Lane; and the Ring was sold at a Silversmith's in Newgate-street , but she (Fisher) could not tell which was the Shop.

Rebecca Holden. I ask him where he found the Gown?

Walsham. The Gown hung up in a Sort of a Press: it was not concealed, but the Petticoat was hid, between the Bottom of the Bed and the Sacking.

Holden. Did I refuse to let you search?

Walsham. They could not; I had a Search-Warrant.

Lawrence Fowler confirmed Mr Walsham's Account, of the Prisoner Fisher's Confession, and of the finding the Goods in the Manner he related. He added, that when the Holdens were before Mr Justice Wroth, they said, they bought the Gown, which was found in their Room, of the Prisoner Fisher, for a Crown; and the Petticoat (found under the Bed) she left there, to be made less in the Waist; and that they took her (when she brought these Things to them) to be a Dealer in Rag-Fair .

Mrs De La Fountaine. I bought 2 Gowns of an elderly Woman and a Girl, last Monday was a Fort night; the Girl at the Bar brought them, and the Woman (Holden) was with her. I gave 8 s. for one, and 4 for the other. The Constable has got them, but he is not here.

Mr Walsham. I saw them hang up at this Witness's Door, and I swear they are mine.

De La Fountaine . I tender'd the Money for one of them to the Old Woman; and I think the Girl (Fisher) took the Money for the other. I asked Holden how she came by the Things? She said, she was under Misfortunes, and that she was sorry to part with her Cloaths ; but she must part with them, she said, to pay her Debts. Holden had a Child in her Arms, as she has now; and Fisher told me the Child was her Brother, and that Holden was her Mother; and upon their Complaints, I gave them 2 Shillings more for one of the Gowns, than it was worth. I have never seen either of them since, nor have I had any Discourse with them.

Rebecca Holden. Did I come into the Shop, before you had bargained with the Girl, and had sent out for Change.

De La Fountaine . She came in, while the Change was sent for: Fisher, the Girl, came in and bargained for the Things? Holden was at the Door, and upon her telling me 'twas her Mother, I bid her come in, and the 8 s. for one of the Gowns, I

tender'd down to her in Shillings, all in a Row; and she took them up.

Mary Pinchbeck . The young Prisoner (Fisher) brought me a strip'd Holland Gown, and the old Woman was her. I bid her 7 s. for it, but she went away, and would not take it. In an Hour's Time they came back, and would take the Money. Fisher said it was her own Gown, and I told her she was a nasty Slut to wear such a Gown, and draggle it so. She told me, she could not help it; she bought it, and it was too long for her, and now she was obliged to sell it, because her Husband was in Woodstreet-Counter . The old Woman was all the Time at the Door, and did not say any Thing at all.

Margaret Franlin . I saw the Gown and Petticoat taken out of Holden's Room, as hath been related. Rebecca Holden said, that Fisher lodged in the House, but not in that Room where the Things were found: she own'd Fisher brought them in, but thought (as she said) that she had brought them from her Washerwoman's.

Fisher the Girl. I lodg'd in these People's House; she said to me that Sunday Morning, - Betty, you owe me a small Matter of Money, I will give you a Dram or 2, and will shew you where you may get something. So she carried me to Mr. Walsham's Back-door, and I went up, and took the Things; she waited for me, and took them out of my Apron into her own, and went with me to sell 'em.

Rebecca Holden. No; I was in my own Room, and she called me down Stairs, when she brought them into my House.

George Holden, I know nothing of the matter; I keep a House in Robin-Hood's-Court, in Shoe-Lane, and take the Toll in Smithfield for that Gentleman, - Mr. Leigh.

George Leigh . I know nothing of Rebecca Holden, and all I know of the Man is, that I have paid Toll to him, when I have bought or sold Cattle, in Smithfield.

Ann Thomas . I have known the 2 Holdens 2 Years. I have liv'd 3 Quarters in their House. I never knew any Harm of them. He is a Bailiff's Follower ; and she does nothing, but look after her House.

Alice Brown , and Thomas Brown never heard ill of the Holdens before.

Rebecca Holden. Ask Mrs Brown, where I was, when the Girl brought the Cloaths in.

Alice Brown . I live in Holden's House, - up one pair of stairs. Mrs. Holden was up in my Room that Morning, and her Husband was in the Garden. The Girl came in and called her down stairs, and said she had fetched some Things from her Washerwoman's. I came down stairs, and saw a new Cotton Gown, and said, - This Gown never came from the Washerwoman's. She said it did, and borrowed a Shilling of Holden to pay for her washing.

Rebecca Holden. Did not she say she would hang 20 People, before she would hang me, - I mean before she would hang herself.

Brown. When the Constable came into the House, she said so. She goes by the Name of Fisher, but her right Name is Ballenger.

Fisher * Guilty 39 s. Rebecca Holden Guilty . George Holden Acquitted .

* There were two other Indictment against, but not try'd.

[Transportation. See summary.]

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