Thursday, 25 November 2010

The Birch

In April 1900 an eleven year old boy, Frank Rear of 19, Witham Street, Boston was charged with stealing a watch, the property of Mr. John Perrin of Norfolk Place, Boston.
On market days Mr. Perrin had a stall in the Market Place and saw the accused and another boy loitering near his stall which among other things had three watches on it. He was very busy during the afternoon and when he finally came to a quieter time he noticed that one of the watches was missing and informed the police.

Boston Market.
John Broughton, seven years of age, of Colley Street, Boston told the court that on the Wednesday he went with his playmate, the accused, into the market. Frank stopped in front of a stall and said, “Shall we sneak a watch”, the witness saw him take a watch and identified the one produced. They then went to the pawn shop, Frank went into the shop and John stayed outside. Frank was given two shillings and sixpence for the watch and when he came out of the shop he handed John a shilling, two pennies and a half-penny. Frank Rear was found guilty and sentenced to receive six strokes with the birch rod.

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