Wednesday, 27 August 2008

1740 Henry Spurdle witness for the prosecution

There is a new (ish) website called Old Bailey Online which covers all the proceedings from from the Old Bailey covering the period 1674-1913. Of course I couldn't resist typing in Spurdle to see if a Spurdle had ever been tried there - I didn't expect that there would be one, usually when I search for Spurdles on online databases I get zero results. But there was a Spurdle - a witness in a case against James Watmore in 1740. His name was Henry Spurdle and he seemed a man of few words!

When Mr Findon detected the Prisoner, he called me over to his House, and I saw the Quartern Loaf taken out of his Breeches, and then I was call'd home.

Henry Spurdle, 9th July 1740

Unfortunately there's no more about Henry. He seems to have been living in St Mary Hill in London.

James Watmore was sentenced to transportation for theft. Transportation - isn't it crazy to think how people could just be removed in that way? I won't write anymore about the case as if you're interested you should look at the Old Bailey Online website - it is a fantastic resource.