Smuggling & Smugglers in Sussex - online book

An Account of a notorious Smuggling gang in the early 18th Century

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SUSSEX SMUGGLERS.                             131
rest, to be concerned in the murder of Chater, lest they might, one day or other, run to the government, and make themselves an evidence, but by being guilty of murder, it would be an entire bar to them.
The afternoon preceding their execution, a person came to take measure of Jackson, Cobby, Hammond, Carter and Tapner, in order to make their irons in which they were to be hung in chains! which threw the prisoners into very great confusion, and they seemed under a greater concern than ever they had shewed before. But when old Mills and his son were told that they were exempted from that part of the punishment, they seemed to be mightily pleased at it, and contented to be hung only as common malefactors.
But it deserves particular notice, with respect to Jackson, that he was no sooner told that he was to be hung in chains, but he was seized with such horror and confusion, that he died in two hours afterwards; and though he was very ill before, yet it is believed that this hastened his end, and was the immediate cause of his death.
The foregoing accounts are a melancholy proof of the dreadful effects which are the fatal but too frequent consequences of the offence of smuggling—a crime which, however prejudicial to the kingdom in general, and to every fair trader in particular, perhaps may not, from an inattention to the many and monstrous mischiefs derived from it, have met with that general detestation and abhorrence it so highly deserves.
But a perusal of these sheets, shocking to every reader, cannot fail to alarm the nation, and open the eyes of all people, who must reflect with horror upon a set of dissolute and desperate wretches, united by a parity of inclinations and iniquities, formed into
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