Old Bailey Proceedings Online (www.oldbaileyonline.org, version 8.0, 24 October 2021), December 1790, trial of MARY otherwise ANN HAWKINS (t17901208-31).

MARY HAWKINS, Theft > burglary, 8th December 1790.

31. MARY otherwise ANN HAWKINS , was indicted, for that she, on the 8th of December last, about the hour of four in the night of the same day, being in the dwelling house of Thomas Marshall , four silver table-spoons, value 20 s. and a diaper table-cloth, value 1 s. and a tin box, value 1 d. the property of the said Thomas, burglariously and feloniously did steal, and afterwards did break the said dwelling house about the hour of four in the night, to get out of the same .

The witnesses examined separate, at the request of Mr. Knapp, prisoner's counsel.

(The case opened by Mr. Knowlys.)

ANN MARSHALL sworn.

I am wife of Thomas Marshall , in the precinct of St. Catherines , a wharfinger . I know the prisoner; she came to me last Tuesday; I had her character from a Mrs. Yates, in Portland-street, by word of mouth; I hired her as a house servant ; she did her work on the Wednesday very well, and made no complaint, only she said there was a great many windows to shut; but she did not intimate that she was going away; on Wednesday night I saw all the doors fast; the street door was chained, and bolted with two bolts, and double locked; she took off the cloth from supper at half past ten; our spoons were not in use; I believe the prisoner followed me up immediately; we had two tinder-boxes in the house, one in the kitchen, which I missed, and the other was up stairs; she broke some matches into that tinder-box at twelve that night; I saw her no more till Friday, at the Justice's; I awaked about six; and the street door is just under my room; I set up some time, and I heard a watchman ring at the bell; and somebody went down and opened the door without taking down the chain; it was not light then; I got up about a quarter after seven; I missed four plain silver tablespoons; a large spoon, and a spoon that was cyphered, were left; the diaper table cloth that had been used the night before, and the tinder-box was gone that was in the kitchen the night before; it was a tin box; I put two of the spoons in the case that evening; and I locked the case, and the key was hanging by a bit of string; and I saw the other spoons in the case, only the vacancy of one spoon; I am quite positivethese four table spoons were in the case at night; the table-cloth and spoons were never found; I saw a tinder-box produced.

DANIEL CLARKSON MARSHALL sworn.

I am brother to the prosecutor: I slept in his house on Wednesday last: I got up at ten minutes before seven; the day was just beginning to break; I cannot say it was light; I was called as usual by the watchman; nobody went down while I was dressing me; I laid hold of the latch and pulled it back; but whether it had catched, I cannot say; but I think it was fast; it was not chained or bolted.

Mr. Knapp, prisoner's counsel. It was darkish then? - Yes; there was some light from a window over the door.

RICHARD WALKER sworn.

I lodged in Mr. Marshall's house; I got up after Mr. Clarkson Marshall.

Had you ever gone out that night? - No.

THOMAS MARSHALL sworn.

I keep this house; I am husband of the first witness, Ann Marshall . On this Thursday morning I heard the watchman ring at the door; I did not perceive it was light; I came down about seven, within two or three minutes under or over; hearing the door open without being unchained and unbolted, I got up; I went into the maid's room, and she was not there, nor in the house; I was with the officer when he took her at her lodgings; she gave no intimation of her going; I heard my brother get up and open his door, which makes a noise; I heard nobody come down or go about the house, after the watchman wrang, and my brother went out.

If the door had been opened, and the bolts drawn back between those times, should you have heard it? - I am sure I heard nobody; and it was dark when the watchman rang; my wife's mother was in the house, besides the people that have been mentioned; I did not open the door in the night; I found her at her lodgings; nobody was there but herself, from whence I conclude they were her lodgings; on searching her pocket I found a tin box, and to the amount of two pounds six shillings; we found nothing else that belonged to me; there were some duplicates, one for two shillings, the 26th of November; after we had taken her into custody, the officer and me went back to her lodgings, and found a tinder-box which I cannot swear to.

Mr. Knapp. You heard no question during the course of the night? - None, it was a remarkable dark morning, it was dusk when I went out; there was a brass kitchen candlestick standing behind the door, without any candle in it, or grease or ashes.

ANN FANCOURT sworn.

Deposed to the same effect, being Mrs. Marshall's mother.

ROBERT DAWSON sworn.

I attend one of the publick offices. I went with Mr. Marshall, on Thursday, to various places; but yesterday morning I found her alone in a room, in Pennington-street; I searched her and the room, and found these duplicates, and two shillings and sixpence, in a paper; I found nothing then more than that: we took the prisoner into custody, and went back to her lodgings, and found a tinder box and a steel with it: she said, they were her own lodgings and goods, and had lodged three months.

Court. In what part of the room did you find this tinder box? - In the corner of the room, under a piece of green cloth.

(The tinder box and steel deposed to by Mrs. Marshall.)

The seam of it was unsoldered by the maid's setting a hot iron on it, and in consequence of that there is a little solder run down to the bottom.

How long had that been in your house under your observation? - I fancy eight or nine years; I have no doubt of it: I describedit to Dawson: I came here, and was sworn to tell the truth, and I would not say any other if I might have the place full of money: I am positive it is my property; I have seen it so long and so often it is impossible I should be mistaken.

CHRISTIAN MILLER sworn.

I have done chare-work in Mrs. Marshall's house five years, I know this tinder box; it is Mrs. Marshall's; I am quite sure of it; I have seen it very often.

HANNAH SMITH sworn.

I am the person in whose house the prisoner lodged; she took them three months ago: she did not tell me she was going away; she said, she was going to keep her Christmas; but I forget where: she was taken away yesterday: the furniture was her own.

Prisoner. I am innocent.

David Yates , her late master, gave her a good character.

GUILTY of stealing to the value of 1 d. but not of the burglary .

Transported for seven years .

Tried by the second Middlesex Jury before Mr. RECORDER.