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Quarter Sessions   

The Quarter Sessions records are largely unindexed. I am starting to go through some of the rolls, extracting Towcester entries, and will post my finds here.


QSR1/34        19 Oct 1675

William Henceman of Towcester yeoman, George Tomkins yeoman, Francis Webb, Richd Blacknell labs all of Towcester in £5 each for their appearance at the next Quarter Sessions to prefer a bill of indictment and give evidence against Thomas Hill, seaman re a breach of the peach         


QSR 1/528     Easter 1788  



QSR1/535      Epiphany 1790

Pauper removal order – Thomas Morris & Ann his wife from Towcester to Quinton 9 Dec 1789. Appeal, order quashed.


List of prisoners in county Gaol, Epiphany Term 1790

Joseph Muddiman of Towcester, servant in husbandry, committed 30 Sep 1789, charged by Ann Timbs of Towcester with having begot a child on her, likely to be born a bastard and chargeable to the parish

Thomas Webb, labourer of Towcester, committed 23 Dec 1789 on the oath of Ann Watson of Milton with having begot a child on her, likely to be born a bastard and chargeable to the parish


QSR 1/536     Easter 1790

Pauper Removal order – Richard Saylors & Judy his wife & Elizabeth their daughter, from Slapton to Towcester 9 Apr 1790. Appeal next Sessions


QSR 1/538     Michaelmas 1790

Removal order Richard Saylors etc quashed, there being no defence.


QSR2/560     Easter 1796

Jury presentment that Ann, wife of Thomas Welford of Towcester, labourer & Barbara Mason of Towcester, sp, stole one whalebone whip belonging to William Adams from George Claridge, servant to William Adams, on 15 Mar 1796. True bill. Ann Welford & Barbara Mason committed to Northampton Goal to be tried 7 Apr 1796.


QSR 1/563     Easter 1797

Pauper Removal Order – Mary Ann Frances Darse, wife of Sham Darse from Towcester to St James Middlesex with statement she was born at sea on her mothers return from Spain, and that her husband, a private in 3rd divn of Marines, is a prisoner in France.  14 Mar 1797.


QSR 1/565     Thomas a Becket 1797

Filiation Order – Robert Wooding of Towcester, grocer was the father of two bastard children by Jane Ashby, widow. 27 Apr 1797. Appeal next Sessions.


QSR 1/566     Michaelmas 1797

Jury presentment of John Pollard late of Towcester, hostler for assault on Thomas Turst. 27 Aug 1797. True bill.


QSR 1/569     Thomas a Becket 1798

Pauper Removal Order – Mary Collins, wife of John Collins, from Gretton to Towcester. 20 Apr 1798. Appeal next sessions


QSR 1/570     Michaelmas 1798

Jury presentment of John Padbury of Towcester, butcher, for assault on Thomas Basford, bailiff of the Sherrif of Northampton. 4 Sep 1798. True bill.



QSR2/49 & QSR2/50          1806  Epiphany

Samuel Powell of Towcester, cordwainer, on 3 Dec 46 year of George III attacked Thomas Draper so that his life was greatly despaired of. Witnesses Francis Kay, Edward Aburn.                      True Bill


16 Jan Gregory Lever of Towcester, Linen Draper and others charged with various unspecified offences


Recognisance:  Samuel Powell, John Powell and Stephen Short all of Towcester, cordwainers, bound as sureties for Samuel Powell to appear at next Quarter Sessions


QSR 2/108 & 109      1813   Easter



QSR 2/136 & 137      1816   Michaelmas



QSR 2/140 & 141      1817   Easter

George Adams & Thomas Ashby both of Towcester labs 21 Jan 1817 with force & arms at Towcester upon Samuel Carr did make an assault & did beat wound and ill treat so that his life was greatly despaired of        True Bill


QSR 2/150 & 151      1818 Thomas a Becket        

22 May 1818  Elizabeth Faulkner of Towcester single woman that she is with child and that the child is likely to be born a Bastard and chargeable to the parish and that George Snedker, turner, is the father of child, Bond Henry Snedker & James May £10



QSR 2/152 and 153  Michaelmas 1818

Thomas Ashby of Towcester Lab 20 Sep 1818 with force & arms one House Brush value 12d from William Earl did steal

Wits William Earl, William Linell, Thomas Bull        True Bill


Thomas Ashby 21 Sep 1818 who saith that he has nothing to say on the subject of the Brush, that he might have taken it or he might not have taken it. He was very drunk and does not recollect what he did


William Earl of Towcester 21 Sep 1818

That about 8 o’clock in the evening of Sunday the 20 Sep the Prisoner Thomas Ashby accompanied by a man of the name of Job Hales came to the House of the Complainant and drank [Four? Five?] pints of Beer, that being refused more Beer he went out of the House, that this complainant followed him and saw him standing against the Window of Thomas Chadwick next door with a Brush in his hand. When next he returned and asked his wife if she had lost a Brush. She said she did not know, but looking in the place where her brush was usually placed found it gone. That the Complainant immediately pursued the Prisoner and found the Brush in a Cart that was repairing at Thomas Osborn’s a wheelwright and that William Linnell of Towcester Horsebreaker saw the
Prisoner put the Brush in the Cart. That with the assistance of the said William Linnell they took the Prisoner to the Constables House


William Linnell said he saw the Prisoner with a long brush Thomas Ashby put the brush in the cart,  went into a Pub, appeared rather intoxicated but not much so



QSR2/154 and QSR2/155   Epiphany 1819

Deposition of Joseph Shackleton of Towcester Glover & Breeches Maker taken 7 Jan 1819

Who saith that he is by trade a Glover and Breeches Maker and buys Rags. That last Night the 6th inst he had a quantity of Rags in his Storeroom which were put up in 5 bags to be sent to the paper Mill, and when he locked them up last he particularly examined them and found all safe. That about 7 o’Clock this Morning he went into his Storeroom & found the Window broken open and the Bags lying on the Ground and one of them missing.

That he had cause to suspect the prisoner had stolen the Rags and went with the constable (Thomas Bull) to search his house. That in a Closet adjoining the prisoners bedroom he found the sack now produced and a large quantity of Rags. That he is sure the sack is his property from the different marks upon it, that there are several places in the bag which the Informant has mended.


Deposition of Thomas Bull, who said he was applied to, to watch the house of John Borfin for some rags. Took the prisoner into custody, who said “that if you have the rags again, you will say nothing about it, and hoped he’d forgive him”


Deposition of John Borfin of Towcester Laborer, 7 Jan 1819, Who saith he is Guilty. He went for the purpose of stealing a small quantity of firing, saw the Bags, and took one , not knowing what was in it.



Examination of William George of Hanley 13 Jan 1819

About 12 o’Clock yesterday William Middleton who was at work for this Informant came and told him that a man had taken a Handkerchief off the Gooseberry bush in the Garden, That 3 other men went in pursuit of him. That when they took him into custody he said he had nothing of the Informants about him, and that the handkerchief produced was delivered to him by his wife.


Deposition of William Middleton of Gayton, that he was thatching Mr George’s house at Hanley about 12 o’clock yesterday (the 12th) when he saw John Peach take a handkerchief and run away

That he ran down the ladder and told his mistress, then his Master. That he picked up the handkerchief from the ground in the direction John Peach had gone.


William George case  True Bill

Witnesses Ann George, Mary Ann George, William Middleton, John Gibbs



QSR2/156 and QSR2/157   Easter 1819

Hannah wife William Harris of Towcester, Labourer 17 Apr 1819

About half past nine o’clock this morning One Sheet, the property of her husband (ill and unable to attend) was stolen from a Hedge where it was hung to dry in Towcester. She hath good cause to suspect James Ashby of Towcester Labourer. Signed (x)


Benjamin Gibbins of Towcester saith that he saw James Ashby of Towcester labourer take a sheet from a Hedge in the Garden in the occupation of William Harris in Towcester and run away with the said sheet


James Ashby otherwise James Southall of Towcester Labourer           true Bill

Wits Hannah Harris, Benjamin Gibbins, Joseph Key, John Gibbs



QSR 2/160 and QSR 2/161 Michaelmas 1819

Ann Eales of Towcester single woman that she is with child and that the child is likely to be born a Bastard and chargeable to the parish and that John Reid is the Father. John Reed of Greens Norton serving man, George Reed of Towcester labourer & Joseph Basford of Towcester cordwainer sureties. George Reed & Joseph Basford bound for £20 each bail for John Reed


QSR 2/162 and QSR 2/163 Epiphany 1820

James Ashby otherwise James Southhorn of Towcester lab on 4 Dec 1819 with force and arms at Towcester upon John Newman did make an assault, did beat, wound and illtreat so that his life was greatly despaired of



William Smart of Towcester on 7 Jan 1820 upon complaint of William Clarke of Whittlebury Under Keeper that William Smart did on the night of 3 Jan inst hunt, course & kill in Whittlebury Forest one Fallow Deer



QSR2/331  Apr 1841 



QSR2/333  Jun 1841



QSR2/341  Jun 1842

14 Jun  Joseph Eales, Edward Clarke, John Clarke, Shoemakers & John Wilcox, Labourer, all of Towcester, did on 8 Jun inst break a window of John Martin, butcher.

Fined 1/3d each, and costs of window 7/3d each. If payment was not immediate, to be imprisioned in the House of Correction at Northampton, hard labour for 1 month


29 Jun            James Evans of Towcester, labourer, stole a part of an iron vice screw of the value of 2d, a head of one sledgehammer of the value of 3/-, one iron cleaver of the value of 3d and one iron ladle of the value of 1d, belonging to John Jarvis, on 21 Jun 1842

Witnesses George Shackleton, Joseph Shackleton, Thomas Hogg.

True Bill