Smuggling & Smugglers in Sussex - online book

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

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May 27.—Five or six French prisoners more, near
Shoreham. Clark.
Captain Toosloe sett on shore, by Cleavell,
from Dieppe. Clark.
Shoreham: Three French prisoners more.
Three came on shore in long-boat, and made
their escape through the country. Ogilvie. Oct. 2.—Mr. Heme seized: brought up per messenger.
Seaford. Dec. 12.—Major Boucher, Captain Ogiliby and five
more out of France, seized at Beachy Head, by
express ; brought up by messengers.
Out of a small hoy, near Selsea, seized five
Frenchmen; committed to Chichester gaol, broke
prison, and retaken by J. Field. Seizures of Silks and other French Goods, &c.
Convictions and compositions made and obtained
by the said officers, within the time first above-
menconed, amounting to about six thousand five
hundred pounds—as per records in her Majesty's
Court of Exchequer may appeare. 6,500/. The public records of this period give us other evidence of the calling to which the smugglers betook themselves in time of war, viz., the conveyance of letters and correspondence to the enemy.* Thomas Owen, on January 3, 1703, reported the capture of William Snipp at Lydd, and John Burwash and George Fuller—described in Mr. Baker's letter of 6th of the same month as " part of the old gang of those who were ' owlers ' in the late war "—as openly in communication
* A custom as early, at least, as the time of Elizabeth. See "Sussex Archaeological Collections," vol. v., pp. 195, 196.
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