Old Bailey Proceedings Online (www.oldbaileyonline.org, version 8.0, 21 August 2018), April 1790, trial of ELIZABETH MASON THOMAS PERRY (t17900424-18).

ELIZABETH MASON, THOMAS PERRY, Theft > theft from a specified place, Theft > receiving, 24th April 1790.

347. ELIZABETH MASON was indicted for feloniously stealing, on the 21st of March last, one pair of ribbed cotton stockings, value 3 s. one piece of printed linen, value 2 s. 6 d. six muslin caps, value 8 s. a muslin frock, value 3 s. two linen sheets, value 15 s. a damask table cloth, value 10 s. a diaper ditto, value 3 s. four towels, value 6 d. one woollen blanket, value 3 s. eight pillow cases, value 8 s. two diaper napkins, value 2 s. four aprons, value 10 s. one yardof check, value 1 s. a muslin neck-cloth, value 1 s. two handkerchiefs, value 4 s. one shawl, value 4 s. one printed muslin ditto, value 5 s. eight linen handkerchiefs, value 10 s. three linen ditto, value 3 s. one laced ditto, value 1 s. one white lawn ditto, value 1 s. one pair of thread stockings, value 2 s. 6 d. two waistcoats, value 3 s. 6 d. a shift, value 2 s. a cotton waistcoat, value 6 s. three small pieces of cotton, value 3 s. a piece of muslin, value 1 s. a piece of linen, value 1 s. a silver tea spoon, value 2 s. a silk gown, value 3 s. two cotton handkerchiefs, value 3 s. the property of James Lowe , in his dwelling-house .

And THOMAS PERRY was indicted for feloniously receiving, on the 22d of March last, one blanket, one sheet, one table cloth, four towels, two pillow cases, two handkerchiefs, two waistcoats, one linen handkerchief, two other linen handkerchiefs, one pair of stockings, and one muslin neck-cloth, knowing them to be stolen .

JAMES LOWE sworn.

I know both the prisoners. I am a pawnbroker . On Sunday, the 21st of March, I lost one pair of ribbed stockings, value 3 s. one piece of printed linen, value about half a crown, and six muslin caps, value about ten shillings; I had lost the other things in the indictment previous to that, but cannot say the day. On the 21st of March I had a few friends to dine with me; and we went up to Islington after dinner: the prisoner Mason was our servant ; I left word with her, that we should come back to tea; when I returned back, I found the prisoner Mason very much confused; I found my dining room and bed room, which contains a great part of our property, was safe: when I came down stairs I found the prisoner Mason at the street door; I said, Betty, did somebody knock at the door? says she, I thought so, Sir: my wife came home with her friends, and the prisoner then asked her leave to go to see her sister, at Islington, who was not well; Mrs. Lowe seemed rather angry, that she should ask to go out that night, but she gave her leave to go out, and to return in good time: between eight and nine my apprentice and a warehouse boy came in, and went into the kitchen, and found a parcel, which he brought into the parlour to his mistress; and we consulted what to do, and in about an hour after that the prisoner Mason returned home; and soon after she came in we procured an officer; the things were brought forward, and she denied knowing any thing at all of them.

Where were those goods when you went out in the morning? - In the shop window; they were goods for sale; we had her boxes brought down into my parlour; and there were a variety of articles, the greatest part of them had my shop marks; they consist of linen handkerchiefs, aprons, cotton stockings, &c. the things are all in Court; I was present when her boxes were searched; and I can say with certainty that every article we have here is mine: the prisoner was taken to New Prison: I suspected the prisoner Perry, and I got a search warrant, and went to his master; the prisoner Perry was in the yard; he went up stairs before I did; we desired to see his box; he brought it immediately nearer to the door than it had been, and he opened the box; I do not believe the box was then locked, though the key was in it; in opening the box there were several articles that I laid my hands on; and he said these articles were given him by the prisoner Mason; these things had been lost prior to the 21st of March.

What was the value of each of those articles? - They were some pocket handkerchiefs, and half a neck handkerchief; the neck handkerchief was worth one shilling, and the pocket handkerchiefs worth one shilling a piece; the boy was examined, and very frankly told us, that all these articles were given him by the prisoner Mason: having further information against Mason, I went to Islington, to Margaret Snapp 's, and desired to see the things that were brought there, tied up in a handkerchief; there I found, to my great surprize, a fine Holland sheet, a large damask table cloth,six pillow cases, and some other small napkins and towels; she said, that was all that they had; soon after she came to my house with some more things, but I only know from information where she got them: she was examined the next day at Mr. Blackborough's, and the examination was taken down in writing.

Mr. Knowlys, Prisoners Counsel. You are a pawnbroker? - Yes.

Have you any body interested in the business besides yourself? - No; I am the sole owner in the business: the prisoner had lived with me seven months.

Of course she had access to the things in the house? - Yes; particularly that day.

MARGARET SNAPP sworn.

I know the prisoner Mason: I remember some goods being brought to my house by her, first a blanket, and sheet, and two or three towels; they were brought by Thomas Perry ; and Mason brought a bundle, containing one fine sheet; I never opened it till Mr. Lowe come; I put it in the drawer; she brought also a table cloth and two pillow cases; she gave me a child's frock once, for some work I had done, which she said she bought of her mistress; there were only two sheets; she said, she bought them of her mistress.

(The things produced and deposed to.)

THOMAS HILL sworn.

I am apprentice to Mr. Lowe. On the 21st of March, the same evening, I returned home, and turning down the table, I found a pair of stockings, and other things; I informed my master; and they appeared to be his property.

WILLIAM WEAVER sworn.

I took charge of Mason: I found the things in her box, and some in Perry's box, which he very readily owned.

ELIZABETH MASON , GUILTY. 39 s.

Transported for seven years .

THOMAS PERRY , NOT GUILTY .

Tried by the first Middlesex Jury before Lord KENYON.