Friday, 8 May 2015

8th May 1815: George Coldham writes of sending a spy into Yorkshire

Dear Sir

I am favored with Lord Sidmouth’s letter in reply to my letter to him on the subject of Peter Green and have directed the enquiries therein suggested to be made and shall do myself pleasure of addressing myself again to his Lordship as soon as I learn the result:—

I am honored with his Lordship’s letter of yesterday in reply to the representation made by the Magistrates in favor of Jane Ward and Frances Shannon and am not at all surprized at the opinion expressed by Lord Sidmouth as I may now venture confidentially to inform you that the Representation made was communicated by me not as an act conformable to my own Judgement for I reasoned a good deal with those from whose instructions I acted before I obeyed them — the Mayor and my brother declined giving any personal sanction to the measure from the impression made upon them as well as myself that the nature and Character of the Offence and the circumstances attending scarcely admitted hopes of any further extension of the Royal mercy.—

I now transmit you the last Report of our Informant, received yesterday by which you will perceive that these Gentlemen still entertain hopes of affecting a Revolution altho’ they are not so sanguine as they were.—If there seems a fair and reasonable prospect of our Informant proceeding into Yorkshire as a Delegate from hence without the probability of exciting Suspicion we shall take care to enable him to do so in order to be enabled to communicate to you what information he may acquire.—The person whose address at Sheffield has spoken of his known to have been here and his Character corresponds to what they describe of him, his acquaintance here being amongst the most violent and hot headed.—Hill is well known to us and is precisely the Character he is portrayed by Badder, too bad that even Treatchery to trust.—We have been putting all the most notorious of these persons upon the lists of person summonsed for Nonpayment of Poor Rates and by that means have been enabled to take a pretty observant survey of their persons and countenances, 6 or 8 of them have in this way passed in review before the confidential Magistrates, one of the Secret Committee and myself, to day at the Guildhall

Your’s very truly.―
Geo. Coldham

8th May 1815

[To: John Beckett]

This letter can be found at HO 42/144. Once again, the informer's report that is alluded to is not in the relevant folio.

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