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Spanish schooner was then in sight. The mate of the schooner came on board the Malta soon after the conversation between the prisoner and the natives; he spoke good English, and asked prisoner, if he had any goods to sell? the prisoner's reply was, that he had some woollen cloth, beads, iron, and four women. The Spaniard appeared to catch at the mention of the women, and asked to see them; they were brought out of the steerage by witness, under the prisoner's direction. The Spaniard viewed them one by one; he said there was a French slaver laying farther up the river, and as the Frenchman had no small articles, he could get no slaves; he would, therefore, be likely to purchase them, especially as they were goodlooking women; Nourah, in particular, seemed to please him, but the prisoner objected to parting with her. The Spaniard went away next morning. His name was Rotch. On the 18th of November, the Spanish mate returned with the schooner, and was received with a salute of four guns; her captain and four of the crew came on board the Malta. The Spanish captain, the prisoner, and a man named Antonio Tong, who interpreted between them, went down into the cabin, and had something to drink there. Witness heard the interpreter tell prisoner, that the Spanish captain came to buy the goods of him, and the prisoner then said, "Tell him, that the four women whom I spoke to the mate about, may be had for sale." Witness was then ordered by prisoner to bring them up from the steerage, in order that they might he seen ; they were stripped, and the Spanish captain took them one after another by the shoulders,
and turned them round, and after examining them, he went away to his own vessel; the next morning, he returned, and after conversing for some time about the small goods, beads, cutlery, &c. the prisoner desired Antonio Tong to tell the Spanish captain that "he wanted to get the women off his hands at all events." The communication being made, the Spaniard asked Tong what price was set upon them, and prisoner replied, "I want only sixty dollars for each." The Spanish captain said, he would not give so much, and placed twenty-eight dollars on the table, as the price of one. The prisoner said, "No, no, I will not take that." The Spaniard declared, that he would give'no more, and the prisoner, after some delay, said, "Well, let him have them." Soon afterwards a boat came from the schooner with money, which her captain sent for; it consisted of dollars, and when counted out, the interpreter told the prisoner, "This is the money for the women." Prisoner counted it, and gave it to witness to put in a bag. The Spanish captain then went away, and prisoner said to witness, "As for Nourah, I do not want to part with her, on account of her friends being people of some consequence; besides, she is an old acquaintance; but d—n her let her go—111 sell her, for it is not likely I shall ever come to this coast again." They were then brought upon deck, and as they were going over the gunwale into the boat the prisoner said, "Well, Nourah, you are going for a Spanish man." The women were crying bitterly as they were lowered down the side of the vessel, and the prisoner must have perceived their distress, as he was standing on the side. On that occasion, presents were exchanged between the prisoner and the captain of the Spanish vessel; witness was sent to the schooner the next day, and saw there the four women; they cried hullah, and shook him by the hand, with symptoms of friendly remembrance. There were about sixty or eighty slaves in all on board the schooner; the males were manacled two and two; the females were not in irons; a few of the slaves were on deck, the others in the hold, but the former were to go below. The tide ebbs and flows in the river Danjah, where the Malta was then moored.
Cross-examined by Mr. Curwood. — Prisoner had quarrelled with some of the crew, and got a good drubbing while the Malta lay in the river Danjah; both his eyes were blackened, and his head cut; there was not a mutiny in the ship; did not consider that it was an act of mutiny in a seaman to strike the captain, when the captain first struck the seaman. There were some desertions, four of the crew left the vessel; was always on good terms with the prisoner, though the latter had accused witness of stealing cloth, after he had been made prisoner on board the Brazen; it was in that ship witness first made the charge against the prisoner; did not know that he was entitled to prize-money on account of the ship becoming forfeited for trafficking in slaves; had no such object in view when this charge was brought.
John Walker examined by Mr. Solicitor-general. — Was mate of the Malta during her last voyage to Africa. When lying in the river Danjah, there were six women in pawn—one of the other two
was the wife of the captain; the sixth, belonged to a trade man— they were all redeemed; but the prisoner said he should keep four of them, on account of a debt which the king of Gamboon had not settled. He held them as hostages, and would sell them for slaves, unless it was paid within a certain time. The mate of a Spanish Schooner came on board the Malta, and witness heard the prisoner ask him to buy the women; in order to enhance their value, the prisoner said, that they belonged to families of some consequence in Gamboon, and if taken there, they might be exchanged very advantageously, as their husbands would give four slaves for each of them. Heard the prisoner say, that he was a native of Galway in Ireland.
By Mr. Justice Park. — Came home from Africa in the Edward, a transport ship. The Malta was condemned for slave-dealing at Sierra Leone. Prisoner had charged him with robbery, but without any grounds for so doing.
Laurence Woods, examined by Mr. Solicitor-general.—Was present at the sale of the four women to the captain of the Spanish schooner; they seemed very reluctant to leave the vessel, until assured that they were going to be sent home to their own country. The prisoner had frequent quarrels with the crew owing to his own want of firmness.
The case for the prosecution closed here.
The prisoner then handed in a written defence, which was read by the clerk of the Court. He contended that the women never had been sold; but that they were only transferred to the Spanish schooner, for the purpose of being left at their own country, when the Malta was leaving the African coast; and that the charge of which he was now accused, was got up amongst some of the crew, who had good reason to expect that he (the captain) would prosecute them for mutiny when the vessel returned to England.
The jury retired at half-past four o'clock, and in about twenty minutes they returned a verdict of "Not Guilty."
Admiralty Sessions, Oct. 25, The King v. Kenny. Edward Kenny, lieutenant of the 89th regiment of foot, was next put on his trial, charged with the manslaughter of Mr. Robert Charlton, surgeon of the Bussorah, on her voyage from Madras to England. The circumstances of the case were shortly these:—In March last, the Bussorah sailed from Madras for England, having on board lieutenant Kenny and Mr. Robert Charlton. When she arrived off the Cape, these gentlemen were on such terms of friendship, that Mr. Charlton was in the habit of living in lieut. Kenny's cabin, where they ate and slept together. On the 23rd of April, which day was celebrated as the king's birth-day, a great deal of wine was drank by them. About 12 o'clock at night they went up to the poop of the ship, and there a flash of a pistol was seen. Mr. Oakes and the captain immediately examined the poop, but seeing nobody, they went below again, and, shortly after, another discharge of pistols was heard, upon which they went up again, and saw Mr. Charlton, who had been shot, in the 'arms of the prisoner. As to '
the cause of this quarrel, there was no evidence whatever; the only circumstance which could throw any light on it, was an observation made shortly after the fatal occurrence, by lieutenant Kenny—" It is all through a d—d woman." ,
William Metge, lieutenant of the 45th regiment of foot, examined by Mr. Maule.—In the month of April last I was on board the Bussorah. We sailed from Madras on the 3rd of March. The prisoner was on board, being on his return to England, on account of ill health. Mr. Charlton was the ship's surgeon. On the 23rd of April, we were off the Cape of Good Hope; I had seen lieutenant Kenny and Mr. Charlton that evening; they were occupying the same cabin; and were on terms of the strictest friendship. I was in Mr. Kenny's cabin with them. We were drinking rather deeply; we sang several songs—"God save the King," &c. At length, I proposed going away; Mr. Charlton got up, and said to me, that I should not go then. He then went out, and I remained for about a minute or two in conversation with lieutenant Kenny. On going away, I saw Mr. Charlton coming back with a bottle of wine in his hand. The next time I saw them was about twelve o'clock, on deck; Mr. Charlton was in great bodily pain; lieutenant Kenny, in great distress of mind, quite frantic, and saying, "Throw me overboard, or do what you will with me." This occurred about an hour after I had left the prisoner's cabin. On reaching the spot on which the conflict had taken place, I saw the body of the deceased; examined it, and found what I considered to be a bullet wound immediately under the right breast. The ball apr peared to have gone through the body, and to have come out at the opposite side.
Cross-examined by Mr. Alley.— There had been, owing to a certain irregularity in Dr. Charlton's conduct, a difference between him and the captain, who had, in consequence, expelled him from his table, deprived him of his cabin, and of his allowance of fresh provisions. The deceased would have been thus without a bed on which to rest, and reduced to the necessity of eating salt provisions for the remainder of the voyage, but for the kindness of the prisoner, who shared his own cabin and his own allowance of freshprovisions with him. Charles Oakes was then called, sworn, and examined by Mr. Twiss. —I was an officer on board the Bussorah, on her homeward voyage, on the 23rd of April last. I saw Mr. Kenny and Dr. Charlton together, at about twelve o'clock that night, near the poop. It was a beautiful moonlight night; I saw a flash as if from a pistol held by Mr. Kenny, upon which I immediately went below, and called the captain, who came out directly in his shirt and slippers; we went to the steerage, but did not find the parties there, and, on our return from thence, heard the report of pistols; five minutes had elapsed between the time at which I saw the first flash, and the report of which I now speak. Immediately on hearing the report of the pistols, I ran to the poop, and saw a sailor lifting up the deceased, who, he said, had been shot dead. Lieutenant Kenny was on the deck at that time, and said, "Oh, God, I have shot the best friend 1 ever had in my life."
Here the case for the prosecution closed
The prisoner, in a most impressive manner, proceeded to read an address, which contained the following statement:—
"On the 26th of January last, I embarked for England, on board the Bussorah merchant, private trader, having obtained leave to return to Europe, on account of ill health. My disease was of a very painful nature, and had been contracting during service with my regiment, the 89th foot, in the Burmese empire. My disorder affected the superior and inferior extremities, and even extended to some part of my body, and at that time I had suffered acutely under its ravages, for a period of more than ten months; and although I now feel a material improvement in my health, my disorder was much too deeply rooted to admit of an easy or a speedy cure, and I still continue to suffer severely from its effects. On the 12th or 13th of March, circumstances which are not necessary to be repeated in detail, had the effect of depriving the deceased of his cabin, of his seat at the cuddy-table, and of placing him on fait provisions. When I was apprised of this order, I immediately entreated him to share my meals and my cabin (to which I was then confined by indisposition), and he accepted my offer with apparent gratitude. About the 15th of April the deceased came to me in a state of great agitation; he told me he had been insulted, and desired me to call for an immediate explanation. On inquiry, I found he had conceived an erroneous idea, and that no insult was intended, and he acquiesced in my opinion and conciliatory advice; soon after, another affair, but of a more delicate nature, demanded the services of a friend, and he again made use of mine. This affair, however, was also compromised by my assistance and friendly attention. Motives of delicacy prevent me from detailing the circumstances, but they are well known to lieutenant Metge. In this state we continued until the 23rd of April. The fbrmer part of that day was spent like the preceding days—we rose early, sat down to breakfast at eight, and to dinner about three o'clock, in my cabin. Being still indisposed, I ate but sparingly, and, to avoid temptation after dinner, repaired to the steerage, where the deceased soon after joined me, and entered into conversation with a lady in one of the stern cabins. In the evening, as usual, we attended the ladies on deck, and, shortly after, met on the poop, where we remained till about eight o'clock, amusing ourselves with general conversation. About nine the deceased, lieutenant Metge, and myself, repaired to my cabin, to pass a convivial hour, it being the anniversary of his majesty's birthday. A bottle of Madeira was opened; and, after drinking the king's health, and the singing of two or three appropriate songs, I presented the deceased with a silk handkerchief in remembrance of the day, which he accepted with expressions of the warmest gratitude. It was now about a quarter or half-past ten o'clock, when a bottle of claret was placed on the table, of which the deceased and myself only partook, lieutenant Metge having declined to do so. About eleven the deceased went out for another bottle of wine, leaving lieutenant Metge and myself in conversation. In this state we remained for about ten or fifteen minutes, when lieutenant Metge
went away. The deceased returned soon after his departure ; and from that moment, I have to date the origin of my irreparable misfortune. On the return of the deceased, I was standing by my cabin-door, where I observed something, which prompted me to charge him with having broken his promise. His answer was, to a gentleman, the most insulting expression which the English language affords; to this insult, I replied with equal warmth. An immediate challenge was the consequence—the instruments of destruction were unfortunately too near at hand, and in a few minutes I became the most miserable of mankind: The offensive words which caused so sudden an appeal to arms, were spoken outside my cabin-door, and that in a crowded ship. I might have imagined that both challenge and insult would have been overheard by many persons: but I was every way doomed to be unfortunate, and the very act of my kindness towards the deceased—the fact of our living together in the same small space, became the cause of the fatal occurrence, and of dooming me to perpetual anguish in the recollection of the event. From the fatal day, the 23rd of April, to the 9th of July, I was a prisoner on board, and for a great part of that time, closely confined, with centinels at my cabin-door, nor was I, for the whole of thatperiod, permitted to go on deck. From the 9th of July, the day on which I landed in England, up to the 19th of August, when I was admitted to bail, by the kindness of the lord chief justice, I was under confinement, and for the greater part of the time in the gaol of Newgate; having thus suffered an imprisonment of four months, while labouringincessantly