Crime in Georgian London was a frequent occurrence, even touching such small and relatively distant communities as Dulwich. The following is the transcript of a trial held at the Old Bailey on 6 July 1768.
John Ingram was indicted for stealing two store pigs, value 40 shillings, the property of William Clark.
William Clark. I live in Marylebone parish; I lost two pigs on the 30th of May out of my yard; I saw them again at Mr Oxlade's and swore to them.
Mr Oxlade.* I live at Dulwich. On the 1st June between nine and ten in the morning, I bought a pig of the prisoner at the bar for 22 shillings and one Berier a labouring man bought the other of him; they were both in a sty at Berier's; Mr Clark's kinsman came and owned them.
Clark. My kinsman brought them both home to me at Lisson-green; my kinsman is not here.
Oxlade. I know Mr Clark and his kinsman too.
Clark. I hearing where they were, sent my kinsman (named Ibord) for them.
Oxlade. The prisoner told me he bought them from Reading in Berkshire.
Thomas Berier. On the 31st of May I saw the prisoner driving the two pigs along the road at Dulwich; he said he was going to Sydenham to sell them; I bought one of them of him, and Mr Oxlade came and agreed with him for the other; they were put into my sty; there were two clips on the shoulders of each of them, they were spotted black and white.
Clark. That is my mark, and they are as he describes them.
Prisoner's Defence. I bought the pigs at Hounslow fair on the Tuesday morning, of a man that had forty-seven pigs.
Verdict Guilty and sentenced to Transportation.
* William Oxlade acquired the premises of the Tile and Brick Kiln on Dulwich Common and turned it into a glue factory. Following complaints about the smell from this process from his neighbours in what is now named Pond Cottages (one of which Oxlade built), he was obliged to relocate his manufactory to Ambrook Hill, near the top of Cox's Walk.
The following is a transcript of the trial of two men for cattle stealing. The trial was held at the Old Bailey in 1830.
Thomas Edwards (18) and Henry Duffy (20) were indicted for stealing, on 3rd of September 1829, at Hornsey, 2 cows price £40, the property of John Bacon.
John Bacon. I live at Grenville-mews, Somer's-town. On the 3rd of August 1829 I had six cows at Southwood-lane, Hornsey, which I should think is at least thirteen miles from Dulwich - my man left them in Southwood-lane, on 3rd of August - he was examined at the office, but the Magistrate did not bind him over, on account of the expense: I saw them in the field about three days before, I think; I will swear I saw them safe three days before they were stolen - on the 3rd of August, about two o'clock, I found two of them were gone; I went to Smithfield, and inquired about them among the drovers and Police - I got information, and went back to my fields to be certain they had not broken out - I found them both in Kennington -pound on Tuesday morning, the 4th of August, about ten o'clock; they appeared jaded, and very thin indeed - their bags were ready to burst with milk - I took Edwards in custody on Tuesday morning, in an open shed, at Dulwich; he had lived with me, and left me on the 17th of February - the prisoners are own brothers; Duffy came twice to see him while he lived with me - Edwards gave the name of Edwards when he lived with me- the other goes by the name of Henry Duffy; I know him by his visiting his brother - I took him in Bunhill-row, on the 6th of August, in consequence of information.
James Page. I live at Muswell-hill. On Monday morning, the 3rd of August, between four and five o'clock, I was going to work, and saw the two prisoners in Mr Bacon's field- Edwards opened the gate, the other drove them out, and Edwards fastened the gate up after him - I live adjoining the field, and knew the cows; I have seen them since, and I know them to be the same - I knew Thomas Edwards before, but not Duffy; I rather think he is the other man by his clothes - I looked at him, and believe he is the man, but I am not exactly positive; I said I thought him the lad, when he was taken up, and still think so still.
Jury Question. Have you any other means of being certain of him except by his clothes? (Answer) No; I thought they were going to take them home - I knew Edwards had been in Bacon's service.
Stephen Brown. I live at Mr Upjohn's, at Highgate - I know Bacon, and knew his cows. On the 3rd of August, between four and five o'clock in the morning, I was about half a mile from Bacon's field, and saw his two cows - I have seen them since, and know them to be the same; Edwards was one person who was driving them, and Duffy the other- I knew Edwards in Bacon's service, and thought he was going to take them home; I am sure of the other prisoner - I had never seen him before, but took notice of him, and said he was the man when he was apprehended.
George Cork. I am an assistant to Mr Moyes, a salesman, of Smithfield-market. On Monday, the 3rd of August, about eight o'clock, Edwards brought me two cows, and delivered them to a drover's charge, to tie them up; the drover asked who was to sell them; he said, "The salesman that stands before the Bear and Ragged Staff;" we usually stand there-at one o 'clock Edwards came to Mr Moyes, and the cows were taken away - I never saw Duffy.
John Warren. I am an officer. I was on duty at Dulwich, on the 3rd of August, and saw Bacon, who informed me of the robbery - I only know that two cows were turned out in a field at Dulwich.
Samuel Chambers. I am a Bow-street patrol, and was with Warren.
John Bacon. Edwards left my service on 17th of February, and lived with Mr Marsh, of John Street, Kent Road.
Duffy's Defence. I neither had any thing to do with what I am charged with, not do I know any thing about them.
Verdict Guilty. Sentence Death
The following is the transcript of the trial of Charles Newman (19) found guilty of theft from Lancelot Baugh Allen, formerly the Master of Dulwich College on 9 January 1822, living on Dulwich Common.
Charles Newman was indicted for stealing, on the 17th of December, one coat value £2; one pair of gloves, value 1 shilling; and one handkerchief value 3 shillings, the goods of Lancelot Baugh Allen Esq.
John Newcombe I am the servant to Lancelot Baugh Allen Esq., of Dulwich. On the 17th of December I drove his gig to London - I stopped at Morrison's music shop, in Princes-street, Soho. I left the gig about two minutes at the door in the charge of Morrison's son, my master's coat was on the driving seat, hanging over the back; I heard the cry of Stop thief! Went to the door, it was gone, and the boy was pursuing somebody; he returned with the coat, the gloves and the handkerchief were in the pocket. I saw the prisoner in charge about five minutes later.
Thomas Dudley I am a brass founder, and live in King Street, Soho. I was passing down King Street, about six o'clock, and heard the cry of Stop thief! The prisoner was turning the corner of Macclesfield-street, running- nobody was before him, I collared him, and asked why he was running; he said, he knew nothing about it, I said he must have heard the cry - while I was talking to him, Morrison's son came up, and said , he had stolen a coat from a gig in Princes-street; he said "Bless your soul, I know nothing of it."
William Morrison I am near fourteen years old. Allen's servant came with a gig and I took care of it, and stood opposite the horse's head; the prisoner came up and pulled the coat off, and ran off with it; I gave the alarm and pursued, Mr Dudley stopped him, and saw him drop the coat on Ryder's foot, in Gerrard-street; when I came up, I charged him with stealing it, he denied it, I never lost sight of him.
Charles Ryder I am a publican, and live in Oxford -street. I was in Gerrard-street, and saw a man running with a coat on his arm, he went off the pavement and threw it at my feet, I picked it up, two boys were running after him, he turned up Macclesfield-street.
(Property produced and sworn to.)
Prisoner's Defence they have all sworn false, for the boy was at the shop when I was brought back, they told him to swear to me, right or wrong.
Verdict: Guilty - Transported for seven years