Tuesday, 21 November 2017

21st November 1817: A freed Gravenor Henson writes to the governor of Coldbath Fields Prison

Dr Sir

I hope you will excuse my not returning your Coat sooner; which was partly owing to its being so extremely wet, that it took nearly three days drying; it rained all the way from Northampton, and I am fully convinced that to your Kindness, I am indebted to you, for preserving me from a fit of illness (if not) for my Life; when I arrived at Leicester, I shook as though I had an Ague Fit.

I have found my circumstances on coming home in a much worse state than I expected; though the Trade of Nottingham is improved, yet the particular branch of it, that I am employed in presents a most gloomy prospect.

I have been importuned very much to embark in political controversy; arising from a detailed statement given in a paper called the Observer which represents me as being the one of the prime movers of the late disturbances in the County of Derby; it states that I attended at a Meeting in Nottingham on the 27th May, for the purpose of organizing a revolt, though for it is an undeniable Fact that I was in your custody from the 11th April till 13 Novr; I am not aware how much false and impudent statements gets foisted on the Public nor what purpose they can serve; unless it is to persecute without [ceasing] an unoffending Man;

I have taken my resolution, I will not interfere either directly or indirectly in public concerns, and as far as regards myself I can only say, if the World will, why let it be deceived; I am extremely sorry that I could not part in on good terms with His Majesty’s Government, the offence which I gave was purely unintentional on my part,

I saw Mr Bailey on Wednesday, he is well in health, was extremely pleased to learn that your health was so good and very much surprized to hear that Mr Bucket had left

I have nothing further to add than to again return you my sincere thanks for the favors you have conferred on me, and I shall feel myself extremely happy, if ever it lies in my Power to return them either to you or any one of your Family

I am Sir
your much obliged
and Obedient Servant

Gravenor Henson

[To: Mr W Adkins
House of Correction

This letter can be found at HO 42/171.

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