Page images

I have before said in answer to the same question ; I think I have alr ready answered that question in my last answer but one.

[The witness was directed to withdraw.

Colonel GORDON was again called in and examined by the Com,

mittee as follows: Did you ever hear that there was any suspicion raised respecting the sinall note which was lately put into your hand, whether it was the Duke of York's hand-writing or not, before you were examined al the bar upon that subject ? Certainly I have.

When and where! The best way for me to proceed is to tell the thing exactly as it happened froin the beinning to the end. I think, last Saturday week about half past ten at night, the Duke of York and Mr. Adam called at my house; I had been extremely fatigued and was going to bed; I was undressed; I went in my undress into the room, where were the Duke of York and Mr. Adam ; the first word that was said to ine was by the Duke of York, and I think the words were these : “Here is a very extraordinary business; here is a forgery," l'pon which Mr. Adam related to me, that Captain Sandon and Colonel Hamilton had come to town ; that Colonel Hamilton had called upon him and told him, that he had seen a note of the Duke of York's in the possession of Captain Sandon. After some further conversation, more general, upon this point and others connected with it, it was determined that I should desire Colonel Hamilton to call at the HorseGuards the next day at one o'clock, to meet Mr. Adam ; I did so, and the next day at one o'clock the messenger brought word to me that Colonel Hamilton was waiting in the usual waiting room ; Mr. Adam went out to him, and that is all that I can speak as to this note, of my own knowledge.

Do you mean to state, that the suspicion which you had heard of, respecting this note, was an expression of the Duke of York respecting a torgery? Certainly,

How do you know that this is the same note to which the Duke of York alluded? I really do not know any thing about it, I never heard of any other note.

Have you ever heard of that note from that time to this? Yes, I have. In continuation of what passed on Sunday, I think, I may state that I went the next day, the Monday or Tuesday, 10 the Chancellor of the Exchequer, and I had further conversation upon this very note, but I think merely recapitulation of what I have already stated to this Committee.

Have you had any other conversation about this nole since that time, with any person ? I have carefuliy avoided any conversation upon it; but I think the other evening, three or four evenings ago, waiting in the room above stairs with Colonel Hamilton, some conversation, very general, arose upon the subject of this note ; but it was so very general, so very loose, (for, as I have mentioned before, I carefully avoided interfering in it) that I can only bring to ny recollection that some conversation did arise.

Mare you had any conversation whatever, respecting that note, but this which you have mentioned? I think I mentioned the subject in strict contidence to General Alexander Hope and also to General

upon it.


Brownrigg, perhaps to Mr. William lfarrison, with whom I communi. cate cunndentially; beyond that, I do not think that I have.

What was it that you stated to those gentlemen? I must have stated to them pretty nearly the very same words that I liave stated to this Committee, as nearly as ! can recollect, nor more nor less.

Did you see any copy of this note? Yes, I did.

When was that? I think it was the same evening that the Duke of
York and Mr. Adam called upon me.

In whose possession was it, Mr. Adam's or the Duke of York's ?
I think it was in the possession of Mr. Adam.


hau any conversation with the Duke of York upon that subject since that evening? Yes, I have.

When was that? I have had frequent conversations with him

Detail those conversations as nearly as you can. I think a detail of those conversations would be little more than repetition of the Duke of York's assertion, that he thought the thing was a forgery.

When was the last conversation you had with the Duke of York upon that subject? I will repeat the last conversation, I think, which took place this morning about half-past ten o'clock, when I went to the Duke of York at my us!ial hour of business; the tirst word the Duke of York said to me this morning was, As you are to be called upon to answer certain questions in the House this night, I will not speak to you one word upon the subject. I said, Sir, I have been told that I am summoned to speak upon the subject of the note, to prove the hand-writing, there therefore can be no difficulty upon the part of your Royal Highness in making any communication to me that


think fit, as usual. The Duke of York, I think, said, I can only siate what I have stated to you before, I have no knowledge of the thing, and I believe it to be a forgery.

Was that likewise the substance of the other frequent conversations you have had with the Duke of York upon this subject? Certainly the substance; and, as nearly as I can recollect, the words.

[The Witness was directed to withdraw. Mr. Windham observed on the delicate situation in which the witness had been placed : he held a confidential situation under ihe Duke of York, and many conversations must certainly have passed between them, which it would not be proper to communicalc. He might be al. lowed to remark on this now, as the mischief had occure red, and as a guard in future. In cases where law officers were concernod, they were allowed to entrench them. selves in their situations, and no questions were asked them which could lead to a discovery of a confidenital conimunication. lle thonght the privilege should be general.

Mr. Whitbrcad rose to vindicate his noble friend. If any improper questions were asheil, they would of course be stopped before they were answered: many questions

[ocr errors]

however required an answer, which he was aware it might be unpleasant to give; duties were painful, but yet they were to be perforined.

After a few words on this subject from Mr. Windham, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, and Mr. Yorke,

Mr. ANDREW DICKIE was called in, and examined by the Con

mittee, as follows : You are a clerk al Messrs. Coutts's. I ain.

Did you ever see his Royal Highness the Duke of York write ? ! have seen him sign his name many times, “ Frederick.”

Did you ever see him write any thing beyond his name? I have seen him frank a letter.

[The two letters being shewn to the witness] Do you think yourself sufficiently acquainted with his Royal Highness's hand, to be able to form any satisfactory opinion upon the letters shewn to you? It bears a similarity ; but without the signature being to it, I cannot speak to its being lis Royal Higliness's hand-writing. Major-General ALEXANDER HOPE, a member of the House attending in his place; the short note was shewn to him, and he

was examined by the Committee as follows: Have you observed that note? I hare; it appears to me like the hand-writing of the Duke of York; but to state whether it really is or is not, is what I cannot undertake to say.

[The letter dateil Sundigate being shei:n to General Jlope.) I apply the same answer to that as to the note, only that I certainly should say that I could speak more positively, 1 think, to that than to the note"; but I must always qualify what I say, that it is a shade of difference only, I could not say positively that it is or is not; but certainly the Jetter appears to strike nay mind more forcibly as the hand-writing of the Duke of York than the note,

[The other litter being sketen to General Hope.] I inake the same answer as to the second letter.

Does that shadle of difference, which you state, give you a degree of belief that the letters are the hand-writing of the Duke of York, preferably to that of the note, arise from the quantity of writing there is in the letter, or from any difference in the hand-writing of the note and the letter? I think it very possible it may arise from the quantity of the writing; it strikes me, it seems more like the writing of his Royal Highness; I do not feel able, certainly, to state the comparison between the characters of the note and letters; I spoke from a general impression, as it struck my eye. General BROWNRIGG was again called in, and examined by

the Committee, as follows: If you had not been in the House of Commons last night, should you Havei d any doubt of that short note being the Duke of York's handwriting? I Certamly should, because I do not think that it is very like the Duke's writing.

[The witness was directed to withdraw,

WILLIAN ADAM, Esquire, attending in his place, à note was

shewn to him, and he was examined, as tollows: What is your opinion of the hand-writing of that note? I think it is Like the Duke of York's hansi-writing; but I cannot positively say inure than that.. [The letters being sheren to Mr. Adum.] The letter dated Sandgate, is, in my opinion, in the hand-writing of the Duke of York; I entertain the sanje opinion with regard to this letter, dated from Weymouth, as with respect to the last.

Do you mean that you speak more positively to the letters than you do to the note? I do.

Have you ever been told by the Duke of York, that the note at which you first looked was a forgery? Colonel Gordon, in his testimony upon that subject, has given a very correct description of what I heard the Duke of York say.

Did the Duke of York represent to yon that note in the same light in which he represented it io Colonel Gordon, namely, that it was a forgery? When I first made the communication to the Duke of Yorki, on Saturday evening the Ith February, he declared without hesitation that he had no recollection whatever of such a nute, and that it must be a forgery. Wien I went with hiin to Mr. Perceval's that evening, he inade an asseveration precisely to the same effect; and afterwards, when I went from Mr. Perceval's to Colonel Gordon's he inade the asseveration at Colonel Gordon's, which Colonel Gordon has already given in evidence.

Are those the only occasions on which the Duke of York has informed you that that note was a forgery? Of course I have had repeated conversations with his Royal Highness upon the matter now depending before the House, and in the course of those conversations, without being able to specify the particular time, his Royal Highness has held the same language.

You hare stated, that you thought the writing of the note was like the writing of the Duke of York; do you perceive in the formation of the character of that note, any thing unlike the writing of the Duke of York? I cannot say that in the formation of the character, I perceive any think unlike the writing of the Duke of York; but from the shortness of the note, and from there not being a possibility of correcting judgment with respect to hand-writing, by the general appearance of it, which takes place in a long letter; I am incapable of speaking with the same positiveness with respect to that as witi respect to the letters.

Mr. ANDREW DICKIE was again called in, and examined by the

Coinmittee as follows: What situation do you hold in Messrs. Coutts' house? Principal Clerk.

Are you not, or were you not in the labit lately of accepting billi for that house ; I have been for a considerable time.

Are you not therefore in the habit of overving with great attention upon the brane-writing of individuals who are comected with Coutts and Company? I am in general, but there is a clerk in our housewho is in ore conversatin tiie signatures of the different customers,

who examines the signatures before the bills are brought to me to accept.

13 it not occasionally your business to ascertain the genuinetess of hand-writing? No.

Have you ever seen any draft filled up as well as signed, by the Com: mander in Chief? I have seen drafts signed by the Commander in Chief, but as to the filling up. I cannot pretend to say,

[The note and the letters being shewn to the witness.] Do you see any difference in the hand-writing of that note and those two letters, and if you do, what is that difference? There seems a little difference in the note; strikes me that it is not so like the Duke's, I think, as the others.

Explain in what that difference consists. Being smaller, and not like the others in point of letter-writing.

Did you put in the words " not so like the Duke's?” What I meant by that is this; two letters were laid before me, and I am askerl whether I'conceive them to be the Duke's writing or not; I conceive the note not to be so much like.

Did you insert the words“ not so like the Duke's?" I beg to alter that; not so like as those two letters which were shewn to me, purporting to be the Duke's.

Have you not stated, that you had never seen so much even as a draft filled up by the Duke? To my knowledge, I have seen bis Royal Highness's signature, but I never saw his Royal llighness fill up a draft; but I ain not the cashier of Messrs. Coutts' house.

Do you conceive yourself competent to say, except in the article of signature, whether the letter is like the Duke's hand-writing or not? I an not sufficiently conversant in his Royal Highness's letter handwriting.

[The witness was directed to withdraw. Mr. BENJAMIN TOWN was called in, and examined by the

Committee, as follows : Where do you live? In Bond-street. In what business are you? An Artist. In what line?: A Velvet Painter. Are you acquainted with Mrs. Clarke? Yes. Were you acquainted with her when she lived in Gloucester-place?

Do you ever recollect having heard her say any thing respecting hand-writing? Yes.

Upon what occasion, and what was it that she said ? In the course of conversation she observed she could forge the Duke's name, and she had done it and she shewed it me upon a piece of blank paper, and I could not tell the difference between the Duke's and her own.

What led her to make this observation? That I cannot recollect.

What was your business with her at the time of this conversation 1 gave her a lesson that morning in the art of painting.

Have you attended her for any time, to teach her the art of painting? Yes.

Did the observation at all arise out of the painting and the lesson that you were giving? I do not rightly comprehend you.

Did the observation she made to you arise out of the subject that was


« PreviousContinue »