Author Topic: Was my ancestor a criminal?  (Read 7812 times)

Offline Sandrafamilytree

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Was my ancestor a criminal?
« on: Thursday 24 November 22 20:45 GMT (UK) »
This is a general question rather than a specific one (I'm not asking anyone to look up information for me - just hoping to add to my general knowledge  :))

In my Ancestry hints are three possible hints from the England and Wales Criminal Registers 1791-1892.

It's possible my Suffolk ancestor had two convictions and one acquittal for larceny. Certainly some other Ancestry subscribers seem happy to think the worst of him and have incorporated the information into their trees!!!

The thing is.. he has a very common name and the 'details' In the hints say nothing much more than name, County, crime and sentence.

Surely with no age, address etc given, this could just as easily easily be someone else?

Are there any other sources that could be accessed, to see whether these convictions related to my ancestor or not?

Offline Ruskie

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Re: Was my ancestor a criminal?
« Reply #1 on: Thursday 24 November 22 21:07 GMT (UK) »
I suggest you ingnore the hints and continue with your own research. With common names you need to be especially careful. You are right to be cautious.

If you would like to share details of your family Iím sure someone would be willing to see what else can be found.

Without further details it is difficult to suggest any other avenues for research. Someone may know if there are any criminal registers available, but knowing dates might help.

Offline giblet

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Re: Was my ancestor a criminal?
« Reply #2 on: Thursday 24 November 22 21:14 GMT (UK) »
If there are newspaper articles about the case sometimes there may be little bits included that might help confirm or eliminate if it is your fella.

Offline Galium

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Re: Was my ancestor a criminal?
« Reply #3 on: Thursday 24 November 22 21:17 GMT (UK) »
Some criminal records do give enough detail about age, where the crime was committed, where the person was from etc., so that even with a fairly common name you would know if it was your relative or not.

Also newspaper reports of criminal proceedings can sometimes be more informative about what took place and who was involved.  I have found that FindMyPast tends to be a better source than Ancestry - partly because they have newspaper archive images.
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Offline Jackiemh

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Re: Was my ancestor a criminal?
« Reply #4 on: Thursday 24 November 22 21:35 GMT (UK) »
I have a relation with a criminal record and I have found more information in the newspaper archive (of findmypast) than in their Crime section.
Having a slightly unusual name helped; sometimes there were inaccuracies in the reports but it is well worth checking.
Jackie
Bateman, Baylis, Bellotti, Boag, Bower (Stillgebauer), Cattermole, Chester, Dullage, Felix, French, Fursse, Garrett, Gilbert, Harding, Haynes, Hazelwood, Plume, Putland, Rudge, Strickson, Warren, Whitehead, Whitehorn, Wiltshire, Youthed and many more

Offline Sandrafamilytree

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Re: Was my ancestor a criminal?
« Reply #5 on: Thursday 24 November 22 21:38 GMT (UK) »
Thanks for the replies.

My relative was Henry Gardiner (1841-96). He was born in Great Cornard, Suffolk and lived there until some time in the 1870s when he moved to Jarrow with his wife and family.

The records for Suffolk mention Henry Gardiner in three trials - 19 October 1863 Larcency (guilty), January 1866 Larceny by Servant (guilty) and March 1875 Felony as Receiver (acquitted).

I think my local library still offers access to Find my Past so I can certainly see if the cases come up in a search there.

Thank you.  :)

Offline Sandrafamilytree

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Re: Was my ancestor a criminal?
« Reply #6 on: Thursday 24 November 22 21:38 GMT (UK) »
I have a relation with a criminal record and I have found more information in the newspaper archive (of findmypast) than in their Crime section.
Having a slightly unusual name helped; sometimes there were inaccuracies in the reports but it is well worth checking.
Jackie

Thanks for that. yes, definitely worth a try.

Offline brigidmac

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Re: Was my ancestor a criminal?
« Reply #7 on: Friday 25 November 22 00:47 GMT (UK) »
There are some records of quarter sessions which give quite a lot of detail about the crime and people involved and where they are from .so you can cross reference your relative with his neighbours if they are involved .

Violence may be between family members
Though they can be hard to read .
This Lancashire account even includes the insults used
( I think )
 
.
Roberts,Fellman.Macdermid smith jones,Bloch,Irvine,Hallis Stevenson

Offline giblet

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Re: Was my ancestor a criminal?
« Reply #8 on: Friday 25 November 22 00:59 GMT (UK) »
The indexes were all i could get up but if you register on the below link you can obtain 3 searches free before having to pay for them.

https://www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk/

Published: Saturday 24 October 1863
Newspaper: Norfolk News
County: Norfolk, England

Henry Gardiner, was charged with having, on the 7th of August last embezzled the sum of 165., the property of Mr. Robert Butcher, coal ...
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Published: Wednesday 17 January 1866
Newspaper: Essex Standard
County: Essex, England

Henry Gardiner, 24, labourer, was indicted for stealing 8 bushels 21 pecks of peas, and 9 bushels 3A pecks of barley, the property of ...
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Published: Saturday 27 March 1875
Newspaper: Bury Free Press
County: Suffolk, England

.....probability, the prisoners would have been out of Two cases he would call their attention to those of Alfred Newman and Henry Gardiner. He had read the depositions, and unless there were other witnesses, could not say they ought to send them for trial here ...