26th May 1784
Reference Numbert17840526-75

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593. MARY, wife of JOHN LAWRENCE , was indicted for feloniously stealing, on the 21st day of April last, one pair of silver salt spoons, value 3 s. five silver table spoons, value 30 s. two silver tea spoons, value 2 s. one pair of tea tongs, value 3 s. a silk gown, value 15 s. two muslin gowns, value 20 s. one muslin petticoat, value 20 s. one pair of stone buckles, value 2 s. a shagreen case, value 2 d. a gold locket, value 2 s. two gold mourning rings, value 4 s. two silk cloaks, value 5 s. one camblet cloak, value 1 s. two linen table cloths, value 2 s. the property of Lillias Warden ; one silk gown, value 10 s. and one muslin apron, value 2 s. the property of Elizabeth Delayne ; one satin petticoat, value 3 s. one cotton gown, value 3 s. and one dimity petticoat, value 2 s. the property of Ann Pearson , in the dwelling house of the said Lillias Warden .


I missed my things, and found them at the pawnbroker's on the 22d; Mrs. Pearson missed some things, she lives in the house with me; the prisoner was my servant two years and a half.


I missed a gown which I wanted to put on, on the 21st of April, I enquired of the prisoner for it, she told me it was up stairs, I was going up stairs to see for it and she prevented me, saying she would go up herself for it, but did not; the next morning I went to see for it myself, but did not find it, and when I came to look, I missed another gown and two petticoats, that caused a great confusion in the house, and then we missed the other things; I came down and could not find the prisoner, but when she returned she was called up stairs, and she owned then that the things were at the pawnbroker's; she owned to a part, but not to them all.

Court. Was any thing said to induce her to make a full confession? - I believe not any thing.

Did they tell her she should have favour shewn her? - Elizabeth Devayne called her up, but what she said to her I cannot say.


I called up the prisoner; I missed my gown, she said it was in my room, when I came to look I missed a striped silk gown of my own; I rung the bell for her, she came up soon after, I asked her what was become of my gown, she said it was below stairs; I asked her what business she had to take it below, she then began to equivocate, and could not tell where it was, at last she said it was pawned.

What did you say to her to prevail on her to tell where it was? - Nothing; I said I hope you have not taken any of your mistress's things; she said she had pawned a great many things, but she did not tell me what: I am sure I made her no promise; she took me to the pawnbroker, to James Ashborne 's, and Ann Pearson went with me.

Court. Were the things taken at one time or at different times? - At different times.


I am a pawnbroker in the Strand; I had these things from the prisoner from the 13th of January to the 21st of April.

Court. There was nothing to any large amount pledged at any one time I suppose? - No, Sir, not higher than fifteen shillings.

(The things deposed to belonging to the different owners.)

Prisoner. I have nothing to say.

Prosecutor. My Lord, I wish to speak for her, she always behaved very well to me before this, she was a very good servant for two years and a half, she had a very good character before, and had been fourteen years in one house.


Court to Prisoner. You may think yourself very fortunate, that from some circumstances which the tenderness of the law in favour of life has enabled me to distinguish in this indictment, so as not to render it capital, your life is saved; but your crime is certainly of a very aggravated nature, especially as a servant living in a family, and plundering every thing that came to your hands; this entirely destroys all the comfort and security of private families, and renders it difficult to know whom we can trust: it is therefore necessary that examples should be made; it was the wish of your master (not knowing that the tenderness of the law would do it) to save your life; but I should think myself wanting in justice if I carried the favour of the Court any further, and no punishment short of death is too much for your offence; the sentence of the law upon you therefore is, that you be

Transported to America for seven years .

Tried by the second Middlesex Jury, before Mr. RECORDER.

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