Old Bailey Proceedings Online (www.oldbaileyonline.org, version 7.2, 23 February 2018), September 1794, trial of CHARLES CRESWELL (t17940917-95).

CHARLES CRESWELL, Theft > grand larceny, 17th September 1794.

513. CHARLES CRESWELL was indicted for feloniously stealing, on the 8th of August , eight loaves of wheaten bread, value 5s. three threepenny loaves, value 9d. and a wicker basket, value 1s. the goods of James Crocket .


I am a baker ; I lost my basket and bread, on the 4th of August, the corner of Wardour-street, Oxford-road . I do not remember the day of the week; it was between twelve and one o'clock, I turned it down there, while I was serving my customers that wanted some stale bread for dinner. I left eight quartern loaves in it, and three three-penny loaves, of wheaten bread.

Q. You was absent; how long? - A-about ten minutes; and when I came back my basket was gone.

Q. Did you ever get it again? - Yes, about three hours after.

Q. Where did you find it? - There was a young man coming out of the shop, and he saw the prisoner with the basket.

Q. In whose hands did you first see it after you lost it? - In John Hill's; it was at his mistress's shop, in Chapel-street; his mistress is a baker.

Q. Did you know your bread and basket again? - Yes.

Q. Have you kept it ever since? - Yes; I have got one of the loaves here. I can swear to the loaves and basket too. We have had it some time; it was almost new; we had it about three weeks or a month.

Q. Is there any name on it? - No.

Q. Can you tell it by the size of it? - Yes.

Q. When you saw the basket were there any loaves in it? - Yes, eight quarterns and three three-penny, the same as I lost exactly.

Q. How can you swear to your loaves? - I know them by the make of them; I make them myself, and set them myself, and I know them by baching of them in taking them up; I put my four fingers in.

Q. Don't other bakers do them in the same way? - I never see any.

JOHN HILL sworn.

I am a baker. My mistress's shop is in great Chapel-street. I was in my mistress's shop, and I saw the prisoner at the bar going by my mistress's shop, with a basket, about one o'clock; I immediately came out of my mistress's shop, and followed him; he see me, and he threw down the basket, and ran away.

Q. Did you overtake him? - No, I did not; I immediately took up the basket, and carried it into my mistress's.

Q. What was in the basket? - Eight quartern and three three-penny loaves.

Q. How did you get the prisoner? - I went about half after two for my yeast;and coming back in Carnaby-street I saw the prisoner on the other side of the way; I immediately asked him how he came by the basket? he said, he was going to serve the first house in Crown court.

Q. Is Crown-court near you? - It is the first turning just behind my mistress's; I laid hold of him, and went down to the bottom of Carnaby-street; and at the bottom he got away from me there; I got up directly, and I ran after him, and as I was running, I met this man, and he ran and I ran till we took him.

Q. Which of you took him? - James Crockett laid hold of him.

Crockett. This is one of the loaves, and put my two fingers in on each side when I put them into the oven.

Q. To Hill. Should you have known this not to be your bread? - I should not like to say any thing about it.

Q. Do you batch in the same way? - Sometimes I do, and sometimes I put my hand flat down.

Prisoner. I was coming down King-street, and that there man had lost his basket, he called to me, and I went to him, and he asked me what I had done with his basket, I told him I had no basket; directly he stopped me, and said I must go with him to a justice; and I went with him, knowing myself innocent of the case.

GUILTY . (Aged 20.)

Imprisoned three months in Newgate .

Tried by the first Middlesex Jury before Mr. RECORDER.