Lengthy as this report is, it not only helps detail several areas and folk of other local interest, but gives an insight into 1863 police and court proceedings. An interesting read predating any televised Crime Scene Investigations. Brief sentencing is further presented under 19th Century Criminal Justice.
At Mansfield Petty Sessions,last week, Joseph Young, butcher, Derby. and William Vardy, framework knitter, Hucknall Huthwaite, were brought up and charged with having, at the Parish of Teversall, on the 19th of March, stolen one ewe and two wether sheep, the property of Joseph Caudwell, farmer, and Zadok Ironmonger, butcher, Derby, was charged with receiving the same, knowing them to have been stolen.
Mr. Flewker, appeared, for the prisoners Young and Ironmonger; Vardy, the other prisoner, had no legal assistance.
Joseph Caudwell said – I am a farmer, and live at Whitebro’ Farm, in the Parish of Teversall. My farm and land are in a retired situation, about a mile and a half from the town of Teversall, and adjoin a lane called Harper Lane, leading from Hucknall Huthwaite to the Mansfield and Tibshelf turnpike-road. I have several closes of land on the opposite side of the lane to my house. The top close is called Marlhill Close. It is a turnip field, and is in the Parish of Teversall. I had in this turnip field on Thursday the 12th March, 29 sheep, and 16 wethers, each of which had the remains of a pitch brand on the left hand side, and each of the ewes having in addition a bit cut out under the left ear. I saw them and counted them myself between three and four o’clock in the afternoon of that day, and they were then all right, and the flake in the gap at the top corner of the field was quite safe and fast. At about six o’clock the following morning I went to feed the sheep. When I counted them I found three missing; namely, one ewe and two wethers. I then went to the gap at the top corner of the field, and found the flake in the gap thrown down and lying backwards by the side of it, leaving a free passage through the gap. I then examined the gap more carefully, and noticed some wool on the sides of the gap. On examining the ground I found hoof marks, and the track of a horse and cart, running from Hucknall up Harper Lane into Newton Wood-lane. The grass in the lane against the gap was much trodden down. After making these observations I went and gave information to police-sergeant Radford, who went to the place, which we again examined together.
Cross-examined --- Went with Radford to Derby. Did not go with Radford to Ironmonger’s house. Inspector Fearn went with Radford. Was told he was slaughterman to Young. Missed one ewe and two sheep. They were not the worst of my sheep. One was a rather poor animal, but the other two were fine large animals. At the time I missed my sheep the roads near my fields were not dry and dusty. The lane was always damp, and the wheels of the cart could easily be traced for some time after I missed the sheep. Did not go with police to Young’s house. They had taken Young into custardy before I went to Ironmonger’s house. Ironmonger told me the skins were sent to the auction mart. Did not learn this from Inspector Fearn. The inspector did not tell me that Young had told him all about it.
John Ashley deposed – I live with my father at Hucknall-under-Huthwaite. At about five o’clock in the afternoon of the 19th of March I was playing on Hucknall Common, when this man (pointing to the prisoner Young) came up alone in a light cart. I walked by the side of the cart into Hucknall. When we got against our yard end, this man (Young) said to me ,”Do you know where young William Vardy lives?” I said “Yes.” He said “I’ll give you a penny if you will go and show me where.” We went up to the town together ,and when we got to the yard end where Vardy’s brother lives ,this man (Young) stopped while I went to the house .I saw the prisoner Vardy, and said, ”There’s a man wants you against the yard end.” He said “Who is it ?” I said “I don’t know.” Vardy then came out and we went to the man in the cart. We all went to Kesteven’s public-house together. When we got to Kesteven’s Young threw me a penny and I went away.
Roland Kesteven deposed to Young coming to his house about five o’clock in the afternoon of the day in question, in a light spring cart, drawn by a bay horse. The name on the cart was “Joseph Poole, Derby.” Young was accompanied by Vardy. They put the horse and cart up at my house and then went into the stable. Did not see them again till eight o’clock , when they had some ale together. I saw them no more till about ten minutes to eleven o’clock, when I saw Vardy lead a horse and cart out, and Vardy and Young went away with it in the direction of Harper-lane, where Mr. Caudwell,s farm is situated.
Matthew Taylor deposed - I am a hosier, and live at Hucknall-under-Huthwaite. About eleven o’clock on the night in question I left my warehouse and went up Harper –lane. I saw a cart in the lane, just outside the village, with a man in it. Whilst looking at the cart the prisoner Vardy came up. He said, “Heigh,up.” I replied,”Heigh,up.” Vardy then said ,”Is that Matthew Taylor?” I said, ”Yes.”He then bid me good night. Vardy then went up to the cart and said to the man in it, ”Come on,this way.” The man then drove the cart up the lane, Vardy walking by the side of it.
William Hoiles deposed that he lived at Derby, and was classer in Mr. Brearey’s skin market. On Friday the 20th March, a man named Ironmonger brought three skins to the auction to be sold, saying “They belong to Joseph Young.” I took the skins and put them in their proper classes. A short time afterwards the sale took place. Two of the skins were sold by themselves to the witness Young, and the third skin was also sold to him with some others.
Issac Young deposed that he lived at Lenton, and was foreman over the fellmongers’s in Mr. Bailey’s skin yard. He attended Mr. Brearey’s skin auction ,at Derby , on the 20th of March. He bought there the skins produced by police-sergeant Radford. They were sent to Lenton ,and afterwards given up to Radford.
Police –sergeant Radford, after corroborating Caudwell’s statement, relative to giving him information on the loss of his sheep, and their examining together the ground near the gap, proceeded to say - From information I received I went to Derby, accompanied by Caudwell. I went to Young’s house there, and was present when he was apprehended and taken to the Derby lock-up. I charged him with being at the Whitebro’ Farm, at Teversall, the previous night, and stealing three sheep. Prisoner said ,”I took a party that had been at Derby assizes to Hucknall; I didn’t know who the party was. The sheep I bought at Ripley about five o’clock of a party I did not know, and never seen before. I brought the sheep and delivered them to Ironmonger about four o’clock the following morning . I had two carcasses and Ironmonger had the other. Found one of the carcasses in the shop of Young’s brother ,the leg bones and tail of which I now produce , fitted in the skin belonging to it. I then went to the witness Chambers, and received from him a fore-quarter, a piece of loin (The tall side), and the breast of a carcass . I then went to Ironmonger’s, accompanied by Caudwell, and in his slaughter house I found a carcass of mutton, the tail and leg bones of which I now produce. I apprehended Ironmonger, and charged him with having committed the felony. I then went to Lenton, and received the three skins I now produce from Mr. Bailey’s man. I conveyed the two prisoners to the Mansfield lock-up. I also took the skin and carcasses there to be examined by the witness Raynord.
This witness was most rigidly cross examined by Mr. Flewker, for the prisoners Young and Ironmonger, but without in the least shaking his evidence.
Police – constable Thomas Meadows deposed to apprehending the prisoner Vardy, on the 23rd ult., at the Shoulder of Mutton public house, at Hucknall-under-Huthwaite, and charging him with being concerned with others in stealing three sheep from a field at Whitebro’ Farm the property of Mr. Caudwell, on Thursday night, the 19th ult. Prisoner replied, ”Very well, I know nothing about it.” He took him to the Mansfield Police-station. Prisoner had been away from home three or four days.
John Raynor, butcher, gave corroborative evidence.
In answer to the charge Young said – “I am quite innocent”
Vardy – “I have nothing to say, only that I am innocent. I know nothing at all about it”
Ironmonger – “I am innocent of the charge. I further say that I am nothing but a servant to Young. I am his slaughterer, and I cannot say whether he bought the sheep or not. He merely brought them for me to kill, and that is all that I know.”
The prisoners were then committed to take their trial at the General Quarter Sessions, to be held in Nottingham on Monday.
Mr. Flewker applied to have his clients admitted to bail, but the bench declined to accede to the application.
Written 21 Nov 09 Revised 21 Nov 09 © by Gary Elliott