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William Gibson

William Gibson, one of 200 convicts transported on the England, 31 March 1832

Name, Aliases & Gender

Name: William Gibson
Aliases: none
Gender: m

Birth, Occupation & Death

Date of Birth: 1811
Occupation: Clerk
Date of Death: 17th February, 1851
Age: 40 years

Life Span

Life span

Male median life span was 53 years*

* Median life span based on contributions

Conviction & Transportation

Sentence Severity

Sentence Severity

Sentenced to Life

Crime: Housebreaking
Convicted at: Middlesex Gaol Delivery
Sentence term: Life
Ship: England
Departure date: 31st March, 1832
Arrival date: 18th July, 1832
Place of arrival Van Diemen's Land
Passenger manifest Travelled with 199 other convicts


Primary source: Australian Joint Copying Project. Microfilm Roll 89, Class and Piece Number HO11/8, Page Number 294
Source description: This record is one of the entries in the British convict transportation registers 1787-1867 database compiled by State Library of Queensland from British Home Office (HO) records which are available on microfilm as part of the Australian Joint Copying Project.

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Community Contributions

Dianne Jones on 22nd May, 2021 wrote:

1831, 1 December: WILLIAM GIBSON, 20, was convicted at the Old Bailey and sentenced to death:

“Second Middlesex Jury, before Mr. Baron Vaughan.

#14. ARTHUR POOLE and WILLIAM GIBSON were indicted for feloniously breaking and entering the dwelling-house of Gilbert Ainslie Young, on the 28th of October, at St. Marylebone, and stealing therein 45 forks, value 60l. 12s.; 50 spoons, value 51l. 7s.; 3 ladles, value 7l. 9s.; 1 pair ofasparagus-tongs, value 24s.; 1 pair of kniferests, value 7s.; 1 bottle-table, value 12s., and 1 box, value 2l. 2s., his property; THOMAS HALL and JOHN LACY were indicted for that they, well-knowing the prisoners to have done and committed the aforesaid felony, feloniously did receive, harbour, and maintain them; and RALPH BENJAMIN was indicted for feloniously receiving the said goods, well knowing them to have been stolen.

MESSRS. ADOLPHUS and BARRY conducted the prosecution, and declined offering any evidence against Lacy, who was here ACQUITTED.

DAVID LEWIS. I am a tailor. In October last I lived at No. 40. Great Titchfield-street, Marylebone - I have known Poole about two months, and Gibson about three years; he is clerk to his father, who is a surveyor in Norton-street. About a week before the 27th of October Poole and I were at the Crown and Angel public-house: Poole told me he was in want of money - I said I had none to lend him; he said, “I don’t mean any thing of that sort; if you can keep your own counsel, we can get money otherwise,” and that he knew where to get some silver if I knew where to sell it; he said he could get the silver at Mr. Young’s, No. 2, Upper Portland-place; I said I did not know where to make away with the silver, but I dare say Gibson knew - Gibson was not present; that was all that occurred at that time - Gibson and I went to the Crown and Angel on the Thursday night following; Poole came in there, and when we were going home, after we left the public-house, we were all three talking - Poole asked Gibson if he knew where to sell silver; Gibson said Yes, and it passed over till the next Thursday night - we all three met again on the Tuesday at the Angel and Crown, about ten o’clock, not by agreement - it was the Tuesday before the robbery; we then agreed that Poole should go on Wednesday and take a model of the key of Mr. Young’s area door - he got a model on the Wednesday; he told us he had got it - he did not show it to us; Poole came to my lodgings on the Thursday night - Gibson was there at the time; we all three went together from Titchfield-street, as far as Portland-road - Poole went on to Mr. Young’s; Gibson and I followed close behind him - we kept our eyes on him, and saw him go down Mr. Young’s area; I went opposite the area gate, on the same side - Gibson and I walked up and down by the area gate; Poole remained down there about ten minutes; I saw him trying to open the area door, which leads into the house - he came up the area steps, and told us he had broken one of the keys in attempting to open the door; he had got three keys, something like the model; he came up the steps - we went as far as Weymonth-street, and agreed that he should directly go back to Mr. Young’s to supper- we agreed to meet at the Crown and Angel, Eden-court, Eden-street, Regent-street, that night, about twelve o’clock - he left us, came to us there at twelve, and we all three went from there to the Black Bull, Great Windmill-street, Haymarket; we had no conversation there with him - there were two females with us; I told him to leave them as soon as possible, which he did, and after leaving the Black Bull we agreed that Poole should go to Mr. Young’s the next night, to supper, to come out of the kitchen when the footman went to draw the beer for supper, and slip into the water-closet; to let the footman go and draw the beer, and wait there till he returned past the water-closet door, which is in the passage - he said he would then come out of the water-closet, open the area and pantry doors, go back into the kitchen, and shut the water-closet door, as if he had then come out of there - he said nothing more; we met at nine o’clock on Friday night, at Gibson’s lodging, No. 1, Upper Charlton-street (Poole lodged at a milk-shop in Charlton-street) - it is about a minute’s walk from Portland-place; Gibson came to my lodging at eight o’clock- we went from there to his house; Poole came to us there, and we all went together, about ten minutes after nine, to Portland-road - we walked all three in a row, till we got into Portland-road, and then Poole went before us- I saw him go down Mr. Young’s area; I and Gibson were walking up and down - I did not see the footman; I saw a light - Poole went down, rang the bell, and went into the area door below, which leads into the house - I did not observe whether any body let him in; we walked up and down about twenty minutes, till we saw the footman come out into the area to draw the beer, and go back with it in his hand - I went down the area steps very shortly after that.

Q. Had you any signal to go down? A. No; Poole had been out before the footman drew the beer, and put us into the coal-cellar under the street, and told us to wait there till the footman had drawn the beer, but we came out as soon as Poole turned his back, and went into the street- after the footman had drawn the beer, I went down, and saw the area house door was open - Gibson followed me down, and he (Gibson) went into the house, and brought out a box; I remained in the area - Gibson was not gone a minute; he brought the box up to the top of the steps, with a pair of trousers on his arm - I helped him carry the box from the area gate to my lodging, at Mrs. Lacy’s, No. 20, Titchfield-street; we got there about ten o’clock - I let myself in, and took the box up to the back garret, where I and Lacy’s son used to sleep together; Gibson helped me carry the box into the garret - Mrs. Lacy lighted us up stairs from the second floor to the garret, and she went into the room; Gibson opened the box with a bodkin- it contained forks, spoons, a ladle, plated asparagus-tongs and silver articles - it was about a foot and a half long and a foot wide; we took the plate out of the box and put it into a handkerchief - I left the box in the middle of the room; Mrs. Lacy was in the room all this time: Mr. Lacy said he would not have it in his house - Mr. and Mrs. Lacy both came into the room, and Mr. Lacy said he did not like it to stop in his house; Gibson and I said we would take it to Gibson’s lodging, and Mrs. Lacy said she would take it under her shawl.
Q. How came she to say that? A.Because some of the forks were sticking out of the handkerchief, and I believe I asked her to take it; the bundle contained all the property except two knife-rests and a claret label, which was left at Mrs. Lacy’s - she consented to carry it; I and Mrs. Lacy went to Gibson’s with it, leaving Gibson behind - we took it to No. 1, Upper Charlton-street, Fitzroy-square, and left it in the front garret there; Mrs. Lacy went up stairs with me - she threw the plate on the bed; we had met Poole as we were on our way there - he and I walked on before Mrs. Lacy to Gibson’s lodging, and we left Poole there with the plate; I and Mrs. Lacy returned to her house - I was to take Gibson back to his lodging, where Poole was; we had a 1s. worth of gin between me, Mr. and Mrs. Lacy, and Gibson - I and Gibson then returned to his lodging to Poole: when I first met Poole in the street, he told us that the butler had missed the plate. and the servants had all consented to go and tell Mr. Young, and the butler told Poole he had better go, for Mr. Young would suspect he was having supper: we all went from Gibson’s lodging to the Ball’s Head, Dean-street, Soho, (this was about half-past ten or eleven o’clock) and expected to meet a man named Hall there to hear some singing - I knew him by his conducting concert-rooms; he know nothing of the plate at that time - we met there; the singing took place - Gibson then asked Hall if he knew a place where he could sell some plate; he said Yes, (it had been left at Gibson’s) - I and Gibson agreed to meet Hall at ten o’clock next morning (Saturday) at the Three Tons, Smithfield; we met - I and Gibson carried the plate between us in two handkerchiefs; we met Hall there - we did not open the bundle there, but went from there to a public-house in Liverpool-street, where we had a pint of beer; Hall went out to fetch a blue bag to put the plate in - he had not seen the plate at this time; he returned with the bag, and put the two bundles into the bag himself, without untying them - I walked with them as far as the corner of Liverpool-street; Gibson and Hall left me, as Hall said it would not do for three to go to sell the plate, for the man would not buy it if so many went; they returned to the corner of Liverpool-street and Bishopsgate-street in about twenty-five minutes - I was waiting there for them; Gibson put both his hands up twice, and said, when he came up to me, that he got 20l. for the plate - I asked if he had given Hall any thing for showing him where to sell it - Hall was present; I told Gibson to ask Hall if a guinea would satisfy him - Hall said Yes; we had some oysters in Long-lane, and went from there to the Three Tuns, Smithfield - Hall was with us; Gibson there gave me 6l., and kept 1l. himself, which I was to spend - he took 6l. for himself, and 1l. he was going to spend; he reserved 5l. for Poole - Gibson gave some money for beefsteaks, which we had at the Three Tuns; we went to Field-lane - Hall bought a great-coat, Gibson bought a greatcoat, I bought a pair of shoes, and the others bought a pair- I forgot to state that at the office; I went to Mr. Lacy’s, left a bundle I had there, and was taken into custody at my father’s house, about half-past four o’clock that Saturday afternoon - the Policeman took four sovereigns from me, which was part of the money I had received as my share; I afterwards stated the part I took in this affair.

Cross-examined by MR. PHILLIPS. Q.Notwithstanding that you were taken a prisoner to the Police-office? A. Yes; there were four examinations - I was examined on the Saturday, at the first examinations, but not as a witness; I was a prisoner all that time; I was in the office as a prisoner during the examinations, but not at the bar - I was not sworn and examined as a witness at the office, only at Hicks’-hall.

Q. Then before you were examined at Hicks’-hall had you not an opportunity of hearing the distinct account given in evidence by the witnesses? A. Yes, I knew what they had sworn; I heard the different depositions read at the office - I was never taken up for any thing in my life; I live by my trade as a tailor - I was in full business at that time, working with Lacy; I was not in want- I joined in the robbery of my own free will; I did not care who I robbed, but I never robbed any body before -I knew who it was proposed to rob; I had no animosity towards the prosecutor - I know I did enough to be placed at the bar myself.

Q. It is to avoid standing there that you give evidence? A. Yes, because Gibson said if I did not give evidence he would; I never went by any other name - I can only write a little - I can read; I have written a letter home since I have been in prison - I have written nothing else in prison that I recollect.

Q. Remember you are on your oath? A. Yes - I wrote a paper this morning, and wrote your name on the top of it; what I wrote was a falsehood - I did not do it deliberately; I did it to save myself from getting ill used by Poole and the prisoners in the prison - that was my only reason; I did not write what is at the bottom of the paper in pencil - I wrote what is in ink; I wrote it in the chapel yard - there might be seven or nine persons there; I cannot swear there were not twenty - I know the officers of the prison were there, but did not know I could complain to them; I did not suppose they would trouble about it: I wrote the paper to satisfy Poole till he was gone; nobody was near us at the desk - they were in the same room by the fire; Poole was going to write it himself, but he said, “Will you write this, for my hand shakes;” he did not threaten me, but I was afraid - I had not been threatened by any body.

COURT. Q. How came you there with persons you were going to give evidence against? A.After giving evidence at Hicks’-hall, I asked leave to be in a different yard to where I was before, and the turnkey put me in the chapel-yard; I was committed as a thief; I gave evidence at the office, but was not sworn.

MR. PHILLIPS. Q. If Poole did not threaten you, what was there to frighten you? A. Nothing, only when I first came into the yard, I went up stairs to Poole’s apartment, and the rest of the prisoners said, “Poole, here is a friend of yours” - Poole said, “No friend of mine, I am afraid;” he had not threatened me with any violence.

Q. And yet, being afraid some mischief would be done, you wrote this “Sir, Poole knows nothing about the box, only by sleeping with me, as that is the chief thing against him;” you wrote that, and sent it to me, knowing I was Poole’s counsel? A. Yes - it was not to mislead you; Poole said his hand shook, and asked me to write it for him - he put the words into my mouth, and I wrote it.

Q. Did you not know it to be a falsehood? A. No, Sir; he told me you had taken the capital off - I wrote his own words, in his name, not as coming from me.

COURT. Q. Is his name put to it? A. No; Poole asked me to put my name to it; I said I would not, as Mr. Phillips would think it came from me.

MR. PHILLIPS. Q. Did you not intend me to think it came from you? A. No, I did not think you would have it at all; Poole did not tell me be would send it to you - he intended to send it, but I thought he would not have occasion; I do not know why I thought so.

Cross-examined by MR. BALL. Q. How old are you? A.Sixteen; my father is a tailor; I did not live with him, because he has not sufficient work to keep me - that was my only reason; we are on good terms at present, and were so then, but are not always so - he charged me with pledging a coat of his about ten months ago; I was not taken before a Magistrate; I gave my father the money it was pawned for - I have only been charged once with robbing him; nobody charged me with selling a plane - I was never charged with stealing pocket-handkerchiefs in the street; I have not been apprenticed - I learned my trade with my father, and have worked with several people; Gibson was not present when the robbery was first walked of, and he stopped at Lacy’s while the plate was taken to his lodging - he has not lived there above a month, for he came out of the House of Correction, having been there for three months.

MR. BARRY. Q. You wrote the paper under Poole’s direction? A. Yes, and gave it to Poole - I did not send it to Mr. Phillips.

WILLIAM MALLETT. I am butler to Mr. Young; Poole was in his service, as footman, for seven or eight months, and left on the 1st of April, or about that time - he has occasionally called to see us since, about once in a month or six weeks. On Friday evening, the 28th of October, he came to the house about five minutes to nine o’clock; he was there on the Thursday, but to the best of my recollection I did not see him, but I gathered from his conversation on the Friday that he had been on Thursday, and I was in my pantry on the Thursday night, when he went away - he bade me good night as he went out, but I did not see him; when he came on Friday night, James, the footman, went to the door; he asked if he had not left an umbrella there the night before - he was told he had not; he then came in: I went out that evening while he was in the house, and at that time master’s plate-chest, with the plate in it, was in my pantry, in a recess on the dresser, which is the place it was usually kept in while Poole was in the service - I was gone about a quarter of an hour or twenty minutes the outside - when I came back Poole was there; as I came in I found the area gate open, the area door and my pantry door were also open - I had left the footman and Poole in my pantry when I went out, and told them I should not be gone more than ten minutes or a quarter of an hour; I left them there, washing up the tea things - when I came back I went into my pantry; I thought something must be amiss, as my fellow-servant had left the pantry, and nobody was there - I missed the plate-box, which contained the articles stated in the indictment,(enumerating them) - the asparagus-tongs and knife-rests were plated; all the rest of the articles were silver, and worth more than 50l.; I have seen none of the plate again- I saw the box at Marylebone office - (looking at it) this is it; I know it well - I saw nothing of Gibson or Lewis.

Cross-examined by MR. PHILLIPS. Q. After missing the plate-chest did you go into the kitchen? A. No, I came out, and met my fellow-servant in the passage, and then all the other servants came; Poole came out of the kitchen with them, on my giving the alarm - I do not know whether he afterwards went into the kitchen, for I did not go in; I went out to look for a Policeman - he staid in the house a few minutes; I could not see a Policeman, and returned - I said, “I cannot see one, and will go and tell Mr. Young;” Poole was there then.

COURT. Q. Does the door fasten in any particular way? A. My pantry door fastens with a spring lock; nobody who was a stranger could open it; Poole merely walked in there with the footman when he was going to wash the tea things.

JAMES MITCHELL. I was in Mr. Young’s service in October, as footman. and had lived there eight months. I knew Poole by his coming to the house; I saw him at the house on the Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday - I saw him about five minutes to six o’clock on the Wednesday night- he came into my pantry that night, but he went into the butler’s pantry, and had a glass of beer; I saw nothing more of him that night. On the Thursday night, about half-past nine o’clock, as I sat at supper, I heard a key put into the area door, as if it was my fellow-servant coming; the door was fast - I went to the kitchen staircase, and seeing the door was shut I took no further notice, as nobody was there; I saw Poole walk by as I went to the area door, after I heard the noise - he passed by the area gate, on the pavement; he said to me as I was out at the area door, “James, what are you looking for?” I said I thought I heard somebody put a key into the door, as if Mallett had come in and gone out again - he came down the steps into my pantry, and stopped about half an hour - three of my fellow-servants were there; I let him out at the area gate, and he took leave of the butler as she went along the passage.

Q. Did you see Poole on the Friday night? A. Yes, at a few minutes before nine o’clock - I first saw him at the area door, down the steps; I said, “Why, Arthur, it is like an appointment, for Sarah is here,” (who was an old fellow-servant of his) - he went up to her, and shook hands with her; she had come to return an umbrella which she had borrowed - Poole came back to me, and said,“James, did not I leave an umbrella here last night?” I said No, I had not seen one; I was in the butler’s pantry - the butler said, “Arthur, you might as well walk a little way with Sarah;” he said, “I am otherwise engaged;” the butler said, “If you won’t, I will;” he went, and said he should he home by nine o’clock; I said, “No you will not, for it is nine now;” he said he should be back in about a quarter of an hour; the butler’s pantry was open at this time - he left me and Poole in the pantry; he returned in about twenty minutes - I put out the lamp in the pantry before the butler returned; I know the plate-chest was safe there at nine o’clock - it was safe when I put out the lamp and left the pantry the last

Dianne Jones on 22nd May, 2021 wrote:

TRIAL contd:

“... time; it was in its place - Poole and I then went into my pantry; I waited there about five minutes till the porter boy came - I let the porter boy in; he delivered the porter in the kitchen - I saw him go out: he could not have taken the box out - I then went and drew the beer, leaving Poole in my pantry; after drawing the beer I shut the area door, returned to Poole in my pantry, and asked if he would take supper; he said, “Thank you”- we came out of my pantry - I saw that the area door was fast; I shut the butler’s pantry door and the hall door - we went along the passage, and Poole made a stop to go to the water-closet, which is within the house; I went into the kitchen, leaving him to go to the water-closet, which is about ten yards from the kitchen - he was absent two or three minutes, then returned to the kitchen, and took supper; I had heard a noise at the water-closet door, as if Poole was coming out - that was before supper; he took his seat at the table; the butler came in in about ten minutes, and said, “Jem, the small plate-chest is gone; you must have left the door open;” there was a general alarm, and Poole came out with the other servants.

Cross-examined by MR. PHILLIPS. Q. Is the area door lock like a common stable lock, opened by pressure? A. No, the butler’s pantry opens by the pressure of the finger - I had pulled that door too when I came out with the prisoner; I am positive it was shut - I did not fasten it till I returned from drawing the beer: I had not clasped it - I shut it too before I went to supper; I never saw such a lock before - it does not open so easy as a stable lock; it opens by the pressure of the thumb over the handle - the spring is sunk in; any body looking at it could see that; I saw the beer boy going up the area steps; I was not in the pantry after he went out - Poole was absent a minute or two; the handle of the water-closet makes a noise, and there is a handle to the butler’s pantry door - I am sure it was the handle of the water-closet I heard; Poole remained some time in the house - he made no attempt to go away: I do not believe he would have gone unless the maid-servants had told him to go; he staid about half an hour after I had invited him to supper, and about five minutes after the alarm; he said, in the butler’s pantry, when the alarm was given, that he was a witness that I had shut the area door, which was the truth.

MR. ADOLPHUS. Q. You heard the water-closet door shut? A. I heard a noise, as if it was shut - Poole staid two or three minutes after I heard that door shut before he made his appearance in the kitchen; the lock of the pantry door projects in - the spring dents into the wood; after the lamp in the pantry was put out it would be darkness; there was a lamp in the passage.

GILBERT AINSLIE YOUNG, ESQ. I live at No.2, Upper Portland-place, in the parish of Marylebone, and keep the house. On the 28th of October my attention was called to the state of my pantry; I discovered that one of my plate chests was gone - I went for a Policeman, and began a search; I did not see Poole in my house that night - he was brought to my house about eight o’clock next morning, by a Policeman - I did not make him any threat or promise; I took a memorandum in writing of what he stated to me at the time; (reads) - he said he had slept, on the Friday night, with one David Lewis , at a coffee-house, No.20 or 21, Great Titchfield-street, kept by Mr. Lacy - I asked how he came at my house that night; he said he called about nine o’clock, and asked James, the servant, for an umbrella, which he supposed he had left there; that he went into the butler’s pantry, who was talking to Sarah Fulbrook, who had left my service about two months or six weeks, that he could not hear distinctly what the butler said to Sarah, but he asked him to go home with her, and as soon as the butler left the house he went into the footman’s pantry with the footman, but did not remain there above five minutes, and was not alone from the time he came into the house till he left; but on recollection he said, “I now remember I was alone while James went to draw the beer, but I was not alone at any other time;” that after he had finished his supper he heard the butler return - that he heard high words in the passage, went out with the other servants, saw the butler go to where the chest usually stood, and point out to the servants that it was gone - he was told by the butler that he had better go out of the house before I came down; that he accordingly went for a Policeman with James, the footman; that he went as far as the New-road, and subsequently returned up Portland-place, as far as Weymouth-street, and met Lewis in Weymouth-street, by Portland-road - Lewis asked him to go to the Bull’s Head in Dean-street, and he borrowed 6d. of his landlady, who he had seen standing at the door of his lodging, in Charlton-street - they had three pints of beer at the Bull’s Head, and as he did not like to return to his lodging that night he went and slept with Lewis, in Titchfield-street, as he did not wish to disturb the people at his lodging, as he had remained so late at the Bull’s Head - that it was seven o’clock in the morning when he left Titchfield-street, and went to Mr. Withers’, in Dean’s-court, Soho, a shoemaker, who he was in the habit of working with - he there heard the officers had been making inquiry for him, in consequence of which he returned immediately to his lodging, in Charlton-street, gave himself up to the Police, and was brought to my house.

Q. Have you seen some knife-rests and a claret-label? A. Yes, these are them (looking at them) - I can swear positively to the label, as it corresponds in pattern with mine, and the knife-rests correspond in pattern, but have no particular mark - in consequence of information I went with the officers (Thompson, Harrison, and Clark) to Benjamin’s house, in Cutler-street, Houndsditch - we took the prisoner Gibson with us; Gibson and Harrison entered the house a very short time before I did - the house was searched, and Benjamin taken into custody - nothing of mine was found; the officers said they were in search of some plate, which was stolen from Portland-place - he said he knew nothing of it, and that he would know nothing of it; I am not aware that any further questions were asked.

Cross-examined by MR. PHILLIPS. Q. You took down, from Poole’s lips, what he said? A. I took the substance of it; what he said was voluntary - he had lived with me seven or eight months; I received an excellent character with him, and was prepared to give him one also.

WILLIAM MALLETT. I swear to one of the knife-rests, by one of the knobs being loose - it comes off occasionally - I am sure it is Mr. Young’s, and believe the claret label to be his.

ELLEN LACY. I am the wife of John Lacy, a tailor, at No.20, Great Titchfield-street; there is a coffee-shop there - Lewis worked with my husband - I have known Gibson about seven weeks. On a Friday night, in October, between nine and ten o’clock, Gibson and Lewis came to my house; I and my husband were looking out of window at the time - they had a small box, carrying it between them; I believe this to be the box - they went up stairs with it, into the front garret, where Lewis lodged and slept - Lewis came down, asked me for a light, and I went up to the room; I think Lewis carried the light up- I saw the box opened in the room; it appeared to be all of plate - my husband was in the room, and as soon he saw it open he thought it had not come into the house the right way - he said he thought the property did not belong to them, and both of us were in a great fright about it - my husband requested them to take it out of the house directly, and so did I - my husband then went down stairs, and said he would see nothing of it; Gibson took a handkerchief from his pocket, I believe - I know was his; he laid it on the floor, and they emptied the box, at the plate into the handkerchief, tied up the four corners of it, and several articles projected out - Lewis took he bundle off the floor, put it on his arms, and said, I can never carry it through the street like this, without its being seen;” he said, “Mrs. Lacy, will you carry I round to Gibson’s lodging for us?” he did not say how, and without any thought or consideration of the danger I as exposing myself to, I said I would - Lewis walked before me, as I did not know my way; Gibson remained at our house - as we went up Titchfield-street Lewis met a young man, who I believe to be Poole, but when I saw him at the office I should not have known him but for his dress - they walked on some distance before me; I went to a house, which I heard was in Charlson-street, but I do not know - it seemed a good distance from my house; they went up stairs before me to a garret, and I went up; Mrs. Gibson was the only person there before we went - Lewis and Poole. I believe, went up before me (the woman I had seen there the night before, called herself Mrs. Gibson, and she called on me the next day) - as soon as I went into the room I said nothing, but threw the bundle out on the bed, with the plate in it, just as it was - two knife-rests and a claret label were left at my house; I believe those produced to be the same - Lewis went home with me; I know a stranger slept with him that night, but I did not see the person - a person, named Withers, called on me; he was quite a stranger to me - the knife-rests and label were found at my house, but I was not at home then - I was in the yard of the Police-office on the Saturday after, and gave Thompson, the Policeman, information of the matter voluntarily - it was about twelve o’clock.

Cross-examined by MR. PHILLIPS. Q. I suppose you were terribly frightened that night, when you took the things away? A. Yes - nobody but my husband desired me to give information; he was taken up in consequence of the information, and so was I - we were kept in the watch-house from Saturday night till Monday; from the state of mind I was in I should be sorry to swear to a person, unless I had seen him before, and do not positively swear to Poole - I think it was him; he wore remarkable sort of clothes - I had not much view of his face, for I hurried out of Gibson’s as fast as I could; he wore a brown coat with brass buttons, and a pair of grey trousers - I knew him by his clothes; I was not sure of his face - I think I went up to the attic (from the appearance of the room), but will not swear it was not the second floor - I was very frightened or I should not have carried it through the street, for the dearest friend I had - I did it from fright and want of thought.

Cross-examined by MR. BALL. Q. Your husband stood at the bar just now? A. Yes - I do not know of any arrangement that no evidence should be offered against him; I do not know the meaning of it - I heard last night that he was going to have an acquittal.

MR. ADOLPHUS. Q. You saw a great deal of plate brought into your house, did you ever see so much before? A. No - I was alarmed at their bringing it there, and glad to carry it any where to get it out - I went, and told the Policeman next day; at that time neither I nor my husband had been taken, or questioned about it.

JOSEPH WITHERS. I am a boot and shoemaker - Poole was in my employ, as an apprentice. On Friday night, the 28th of October, Mr. Young called on me - I saw Poole next morning, the 29th; he rang my bell at seven o’clock to come to work, as usual - I told him some officers had been after him, and asked him what they came about - he said he did not know, it was not any thing concerning him, for he was innocent of every thing - I told him a gentleman had been with them, describing him, and that the officers said it was Mr. Young; I asked what he had been doing - he said let what would come against him he had been doing nothing; I said it was very strange so many officers should come after him, if he was innocent - he said he was innocent; after breakfast I was going to take some work home, and he said he would go to his lodging - as I was going up Bernard-street he asked me to go to Mr. and Mrs. Lacy’s coffee-shop, in Titchfield-street, which I did, and to tell her to make away with the box and the other little articles she had had given to her - Mrs. Lacy pulled the box out from under the bed, and lifted up a piece of carpet at the foot of the bedstead; she took a pair of knife-rests and a claret label from a hole in the floor, covered up - I was to tell them to burn or make away with the box and articles, as Poole was to say that he slept there that night - I told Mrs. Lacy all this; she seemed very much frightened, and put the things down the hole again.

Cross-examined by MR. PHILLIPS. Q. He did not say he had slept there, but that he was to say so? A. No - he did not say he had brought the things there; he had lived with me about six months - he did not lodge with me; he generally left me about nine o’clock to go home - he told me that he would go to his lodging directly, and wait there for the officers to come; he protested all through that he was innocent of the robbery - he left me about nine o’clock- I went to his lodging about eleven, but did not see him.

DANIEL MOORE. I am a Policeman of the division D. I apprehended Poole at No. 10, Charlton-street, about half-past nine o’clock on Saturday morning, the 29th of October, at his own lodging - when he came into the house he asked his landlady for the key of his own door, and at that moment I stepped up, seized him by the arm, and told him to come with me - he asked what for? I said he would know in a little time what it was for; he said, “I partly guess what it is for, for I have received information this morning, that there were several Police-constables after me last night, and rather than absent myself from my lodging I have come home, as I am not ashamed to show my face;” he said he had always an invitation from Mr. Young’s servants to go to the house whenever he liked - that on Friday he went and supped with them, and after supper, the butler who had been out, came home, and found the door open, also the pantry door open, and the plate-chest gone, and gave an alarm that his master was robbed; the footman came out, and words arose between them - he followed the footman, who told him as such a thing had happened, it was improper he should remain at the house longer; that he went off directly, and on his way met Lewis, who asked him to go to the Bull’s Head, and have a pint or two of beer together - they sat part of the night together, that he(Poole) having no money, went to his landlady, and borrowed 6d. of her; they went to the Bull’s Head, and remained there from ten to twelve o’clock, then went to Lewis’ lodging, and remained there till the morning; he said all this voluntarily - I went to the station-house, and gave information to the inspector that he was suspected of the robbery which took place on the 28th.

CHARLES CLARKE. I am a Policeman. I apprehended Gibson in Eden-court, Regent-street, at a public-house - I told him I wanted him, by information I had got from Lewis; he asked what for - I told him, and he said he knew nothing about it; I told him it was for a robbery at Mr. Young’s, Portland-place, and asked if he knew Arthur Poole ; he said he knew a young man named Arthur, but could not say whether it was Poole; I took him to the station, and found two sovereigns, 27s. 6d. in silver, and 6d. in copper - the inspector ordered me to lock him up, and go after Hall, in consequence of what Lewis’ had told us. On Saturday evening, after Gibson heard Lewis’ confession at the office, he told me Lewis had not spoken the truth - he said there was a pair of knife-rests which he had not named, and a claret-label left behind at Mrs. Lacy’s, which Lewis had not mentioned; we then went to Lacy’s, and found the rests and label - Mr. Lacy told his little girl to get them, and they were produced; I and Thompson went to Eden-street - Hall came in with another man; and they had handkerchiefs on which Lewis had described.

Cross-examined by MR. BALL. Q.At what time did you apprehended Gibson? A. About eight o’clock in the evening: he came into the tap-room while I was there - he said Lewis had not spoken all the truth.

The prisoners made no Defence.

THOMAS HARLEY. Poole lodged at my house, No. 10, Lower Charlton-street. The night before he was taken I lent him 6d. out of the drawer; my wife stood between me and the door; I saw her hand it to him - I have known him between three and four months; he bore a sober honest character.

Two other witnesses gave Poole a good character.



HALL and BENJAMIN - NOT GUILTY.” (see oldbaileyonline.net)


Dianne Jones on 22nd May, 2021 wrote:

1831: William Gibson petitioned for clemency, as per this summary record from the National Archives:

“HO 17/69/8 ...Prisoner name: William Gibson.

Prisoner age: 20.

Court and date of trial: Old Bailey, December Sessions 1831.

Crime: Housebreaking. Stealing plate above the value of five pounds. Victim and Prosecutor, Gilbert Ainslie Young.

Initial sentence: [Death] sentence commuted to transportation for life.

Annotated (Outcome): ‘Considered at Report in Council 6 February 1832’.

Petitioner(s): The prisoner, undersigned by 14 supporters including the prisoner’s father and the Prosecutor.

Letter from [J Halse] to Lord Melbourne enclosing three letters from [J Gibson] the prisoner’s father, two of which enclose a letter from the prisoner.

Two adjoined letters from Maria Gibson, the prisoner’s wife.

Grounds for clemency (Petition Details): Prisoner was entrapped; prisoner is contrite and intended to tell victim where the goods had been sold; youth; Prosecutor recommends mercy and had told prisoner he would try and get him admitted evidence; prisoner’s family are distraught; prisoner’s health impaired by imprisonment.

Other papers: Letter from prisoner to J Halse.

Date: 1831 Dec-1834 Feb
Held by: The National Archives, Kew.”

Dianne Jones on 22nd May, 2021 wrote:

1832, 6 February: William Gibson’s death sentence was commuted to transportation for life.

1832: On arrival in VDL, he was listed as 22, a clerk and married to Maria who was living at his native place in London.

1833-34: William was assigned to the Board of Assignment as a clerk until he was dismissed in June 1834 for “laying before the Principal Superintendent a paper for the assignment of a servant to an improper person, purporting to be by an order of the Assignment Board, such not being the fact”. He was also sent to the treadwheel for 3 days (see https://stors.tas.gov.au/CON31-1-16$init=CON31-1-16p96).

Dianne Jones on 22nd May, 2021 wrote:

1840, 11 May: He was granted a Ticket of Leave,

1843, 17 May: His Conditional Pardon was approved (see https://stors.tas.gov.au/CON31-1-16$init=CON31-1-16p96).

1851, 17 February: William Gibson, a consignment clerk aged 40, died in Hobart from “delirium tremens” (DTS). The “informant” was RB Burgess, his friend, of Campbell Street, Hobart (see https://stors.tas.gov.au/RGD35-1-3p56j2k).

Convict Changes History

Dianne Jones on 22nd May, 2021 made the following changes:

gender: m, occupation

Dianne Jones on 22nd May, 2021 made the following changes:

date of birth: 1811 (prev. 0000), date of death: 17th February, 1851 (prev. 0000), crime

This record was discovered and printed on ConvictRecords.com.au