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TITLE
Warrant of Commitment: Anne Jackson, p3
EXTERNAL ID
Z_GB232_L_INV_HC_5I_03
DATE OF IMAGE
1754
PERIOD
1750s
SOURCE
Highland Archive Centre
ASSET ID
5711
KEYWORDS
court papers
court records
Warrant of Commitment: Anne Jackson, p3

This is a page of the Extract Act and Warrant of Commitment by Alexander Fraser of Strichen and James Ferguson, Baronet of Kilkerran, at Inverness. Anne Jackson was found guilty of forgery. The warrant is dated 9 September, 1754

Anne Jackson was tried and found guilty on 7th September and her sentence is spelled out in meticulous detail. She is to be held in the Tolbooth until Friday 27 September, 1754, on which day she is to be:
"taken furth of the sd [said] Tolbooth, having her hands tyed behind her back with a Rope, attended with the common Executioner walking behind her, having the end of the sd Rope in his hand and having a Labell on paper pinned upon her Breast, with this Inscription in Capital Letters writt thereupon "Anne Jackson ane Infamous Person convicted of the Crime of Forgery." To the mercat Cross of Inverness upon the publick street thereof", then to be put on pillory from 11 a.m. to 12 midday, carried back to the Tolbooth and subsequently transported to an American plantation by the first available merchant shipmaster. He is to pay a caution of £10 and produce a certificate to prove she has been transported. This certificate is to be presented to the court within 12 months of the Bail Bond. The transportation is for life. This same document also grants warrant for her re-arrest in the event she ever returns to Scotland, for her transportation to Inverness Tolbooth and (while awaiting the next opportunity to re-transport her to the American plantations) for her to be " publickly whipt thro the Town of Inverness by the hands of the common Hangman, receiving the ordinary number of Stripes upon her naked Back at each of the usual places, and at the accustomed time of Day"

It is a pity we do not know the content of the forged letter, but the use of the word Infamous to describe Anne Jackson implies that she was well known as a criminal, possibly because of repeated offences. Integral to her punishment is humiliation, but the punishment was also physical. Although the hour she has to endure on the pillory may not sound like a long penalty, it is clearly stated that she is to be taken from the Tolbooth and paraded through the streets, but will be carried back after her hour. The transportation which is to follow could have been set at a fixed period, say 20 years, but she is given a lifetime banishment. This was the one step down from execution. Her punishment should she ever return to Scotland is still more brutal, but chillingly, the terms used imply that this was not an uncommon occurrence.

Her audacity in making the forgery in the first place suggests desperation or overconfidence. Was she in a situation where she would try anything? Or perhaps so accustomed to getting away with forgery that she pushed it too far? The unavailable contents of the letter become all the more intriguing.

The Clerk of the Court, Robert Leith, has not written this copy himself, but he approves it by signing each page


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Warrant of Commitment: Anne Jackson, p3

1750s

court papers; court records

Highland Archive Centre

Inverness County Sheriff Court Records

This is a page of the Extract Act and Warrant of Commitment by Alexander Fraser of Strichen and James Ferguson, Baronet of Kilkerran, at Inverness. Anne Jackson was found guilty of forgery. The warrant is dated 9 September, 1754<br /> <br /> Anne Jackson was tried and found guilty on 7th September and her sentence is spelled out in meticulous detail. She is to be held in the Tolbooth until Friday 27 September, 1754, on which day she is to be:<br /> "taken furth of the sd [said] Tolbooth, having her hands tyed behind her back with a Rope, attended with the common Executioner walking behind her, having the end of the sd Rope in his hand and having a Labell on paper pinned upon her Breast, with this Inscription in Capital Letters writt thereupon "Anne Jackson ane Infamous Person convicted of the Crime of Forgery." To the mercat Cross of Inverness upon the publick street thereof", then to be put on pillory from 11 a.m. to 12 midday, carried back to the Tolbooth and subsequently transported to an American plantation by the first available merchant shipmaster. He is to pay a caution of £10 and produce a certificate to prove she has been transported. This certificate is to be presented to the court within 12 months of the Bail Bond. The transportation is for life. This same document also grants warrant for her re-arrest in the event she ever returns to Scotland, for her transportation to Inverness Tolbooth and (while awaiting the next opportunity to re-transport her to the American plantations) for her to be " publickly whipt thro the Town of Inverness by the hands of the common Hangman, receiving the ordinary number of Stripes upon her naked Back at each of the usual places, and at the accustomed time of Day"<br /> <br /> It is a pity we do not know the content of the forged letter, but the use of the word Infamous to describe Anne Jackson implies that she was well known as a criminal, possibly because of repeated offences. Integral to her punishment is humiliation, but the punishment was also physical. Although the hour she has to endure on the pillory may not sound like a long penalty, it is clearly stated that she is to be taken from the Tolbooth and paraded through the streets, but will be carried back after her hour. The transportation which is to follow could have been set at a fixed period, say 20 years, but she is given a lifetime banishment. This was the one step down from execution. Her punishment should she ever return to Scotland is still more brutal, but chillingly, the terms used imply that this was not an uncommon occurrence.<br /> <br /> Her audacity in making the forgery in the first place suggests desperation or overconfidence. Was she in a situation where she would try anything? Or perhaps so accustomed to getting away with forgery that she pushed it too far? The unavailable contents of the letter become all the more intriguing.<br /> <br /> The Clerk of the Court, Robert Leith, has not written this copy himself, but he approves it by signing each page <br /> <br /> <br /> For further information about this item and the collection to which it belongs, please <a href="mailto: archives@highlifehighland.com">email</a> the Highland Archive Service