Crayon manner engraving. 3 portraits of John Thurtell, Joseph Hunt and William Probert, all involved in the case of the murder of Mr Weare near Elstree in 1823.
This case was one of Hertfordshire's most famous murders. On 24th October 1823 a London solicitor and card-sharp, William Weare, was driven to a cottage near Elstree by a fellow gambler, John Thurtell, for 'a few days' shooting', but his holiday proved much shorter. That evening, two men were seen driving very fast in a gig, with their horse out of breath: the equivalent of a sports car and squealing tyres today. A farmer at Aldenham heard a shot and a 'great groan', Weare's reward for having cheated Thurtell and two friends of £300 at cards. The 'friends' turned King's Evidence and Weare was found at the bottom of a local pond beonging to William Probert. Thurtell was tried and executed at Hertford on 9 January 1824 while his accomplice Joseph Hunt was sentenced to transportation.
The case, though sordid, excited enormous interest, and much sympathy for Thurtell, who made a fine speech in his own defence, and died nobly.
Part of the Lewis Evans Collection.
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