Category Archives: Smuggling

St Peter's Church, Bexhill on Sea, East Sussex, England

Gravestone at St Peter’s Church, Bexhill on Sea commemorating Coastguard William Meekes d. 1832 after being wounded in a battle with smugglers

Location

St Peter's Church, Bexhill on Sea, East Sussex, England

Transcript

'In memory of William Meekes, Chief Boatman of the Coastguard Station NO XLII Tower. He was mortally wounded on the night of the 21 February and died on the 23rd February 1832, aged 35 yrs'

Details

Type: Gravestone

People

Meekes, William
Age:
Date of Death: 23/2/1832
Cause of Death: Unknown/None
Rank / Occupation: Chief boatman
Organisation: Coastguard

Extra

Bibliography: William Webb 'Coastguard: an official history of HM Coastguard' (London,1976) p. 28.

St Tallanus' Church, Talland, Cornwall, England

Gravestone in Talland, Cornwall dedicated to Robert Mark d. 1802

Location

St Tallanus' Church, Talland, Cornwall, England

Transcript

'ERECTED / TO THE MEMORY OF / ROBERT MARK / late of Polperro, who unfortunately / was shot at sea the 24th day of Jan. / in the Year of our LORD GOD / 1802, in the 40th Year of his Age / in prime of life, / most suddenly, Sad tidings to relate, / here view my utter destiny, / and pity my sad state. / I by a shot which rapid flew, / Was instantly shot dead. / Lord forbid the offender who / My precious blood did shed, / Grant him to rest, and forgive me / All I have doen amiss: / And that I may be rewarded / With everlasting Bliss.'

Details

Description: Headstone.


Type: Gravestone
Position: Churchyard
Materials: Slate

People

mark, Robert
Age: 40
Date of Death: 24/1/1802
Cause of Death: Unknown/None
Rank / Occupation:
Organisation:

Extra

Notes: A smuggler of the same name was sentenced in May 1799 when the smuggling vessel 'Lottery' was captured.

Cathays Cemetery, Cardiff, Wales

Headstone at Cathays Cemetery, Cardiff commemorating William Cleverdon d. 1924 HM Customs

Location

Cathays Cemetery, Cardiff, Wales

Transcript

'In affectionate remembrance of / William Cleverdon / who died May 1st 1876 / at Dudley Street Docks, / Aged 45 years / My presence shall go with thee / And I will give thee rest / Also of / Mary wife of the above / Who died Dec 30th 1904 / Aged 72 years / By grace ye are saved / Also William / beloved husband of William Ann Cleverdon / And son of the above named / late chief preventative officer of / H.M. Customs & Excise / who died April 4th 1924 / Aged 62 years / In Thy presence is fullness of joy.'

Details

Description: Headstone.
Type: Gravestone
Materials: Sandstone

People

Cleverdon, William
Age: 62
Date of Death: 4/4/1924
Cause of Death: Unknown/None
Rank / Occupation: Preventative Officer
Organisation: HM Customs

Extra

Holy Cross Church, Binstead, Isle of Wight, England

Gravestone at Holy Cross Church, Binstead, Isle of Wight, commemorating Thomas Sivell d. 1786

Location

Holy Cross Church, Binstead, Isle of Wight, England

Transcript

'To the memory of Thomas Sivell who was cruelly shot on board his sloop by some Officers of the Customs of the Port of Portsmouth June 15th 1786 at the age of 61 years, leaving a disconsolate widow and family'

Details

Type: Headstone
Position: Churchyard

People

Sivell, Thomas
Age: 61
Date of Death: 15/6/1786
Cause of Death: Unknown/None
Rank / Occupation: smuggler
Organisation:

Extra

Notes: Smuggler. Shot on board his own ship while attempting to evade pursuing excise officers.
Bibliography: Margaret Green 'Churches of the Isle of Wight' (Winchester, 1969).

St Mary's Church, Tenby, Pembrokeshire, Wales

Gravestone at St Mary’s Church, Tenby, Pembrokeshire commemorating William Chate of the Preventive Service d. 1835

Location

St Mary's Church, Tenby, Pembrokeshire, Wales

Transcript

'Sacred to the memory of William Chate of the Preventive Service, who departed this life April 13, 1835 Age 49 "His end was peace'''

Details

Type: Gravestone
Position: Churchyard

People

Chate, William
Age: 49
Date of Death: 13/4/1835
Cause of Death: Unknown/None
Rank / Occupation:
Organisation: Preventive Service

Extra

Happy Valley Cemetery, Hong Kong, China

Location

Happy Valley Cemetery, Hong Kong, China

Transcript

'In memory of Alfred EAGLES, aged 28 years. Quarter master, H.I.C.M.S. 'PENG CHOA HAI', who was killed by smugglers on the night of May 10th, 1879.This stone is erected by the Commander, Officers and his other shipmates by whom his loss is deeply lamented'

Details

Vessel: HICMS Peng Choa Hai

People

Eagles, Alfred
Age: 28
Date of Death: 10/5/1879
Cause of Death: Unknown/None
Rank / Occupation: Quartermaster
Organisation: Imperial Chinese Navy

Extra

St Mary's Church, Hunstanton, Norfolk, England

Gravestone at St Mary’s Church, Hunstanton, Norfolk commemorating William Webb, 15th Light Dragoons, d. 1784

Location

St Mary's Church, Hunstanton, Norfolk, England

Transcript

'In memory of William Webb late of the 15th Lt. D'ns who was shot from his horse by a party of smugglers on the 26 of Sepr. 1784. / I am not dead but sleepeth here / And when the trumpet sound I will appear / Four balls through me Pearced there [sic] way / Hard it was I'd no time to pray / This stone that her you do see / My comrades erected for the sake of me'

Details

Position: Churchyard

People

Webb, William
Age: Unknown
Date of Death: 26/9/1784
Cause of Death: Murdered
Rank / Occupation: Soldier
Organisation: 15th Light Dragoons

Extra

Bibliography: Joseph Jefferson Farjeon 'The Compleat Smuggler' (London, 1938) p.144.

St Helen's Church, Sandown, Isle of Wight, England

Memorial at St Helen’s Church, Sandown, Isle of Wight, commemorating Richard Matthews d. 1816

Location

St Helen's Church, Sandown, Isle of Wight, England

Details

People

Matthews, Richard
Age:
Date of Death: 220/11/1816
Cause of Death: Unknown/None
Rank / Occupation: smuggler
Organisation:

Extra

Notes: A smuggler shot by a revenue man at Sandown.
Bibliography: H.E. Mathews 'The Smugglers are Out' (1933); Richard J. Hutchings 'Smugglers of the Isle of Wight' (Newport, 1985).

All Saints Church, Wyke Regis, Devon, England

Gravestone at All Saints Church, Wyke Regis, Devon dedicated to William Lewis d. 1822, a smuggler

Location

All Saints Church, Wyke Regis, Devon, England

Transcript

'Sacred to the memory of William Lewis / who was killed by a shot from the 'Pigmy' schooner / 21st April, 1822, Age 33 years', 'Of life bereft (by fell design), / I mingle with my fellow clay. / On God's protection I recline, / To save me on the Judgement Day. / There shall each bloodstained soul appear, / Repent, ah! ere it be too late, / Or else a dreadful doom you'll hear, / For God will sure avenge my fate'

Details

Description: Carved with two ships in low relief.
Type: Gravestone
Position: Churchyard, by roadside wall, north east of church
Materials: Portland stone

People

Lewis, William
Age: 33
Date of Death: 21/4/1822
Cause of Death: Unknown/None
Rank / Occupation: smuggler
Organisation:

Extra

Notes: (From the church guide) refering to the moralising verse 'this is obviously a shaft directed against the crew of the schooner. The fact that the members of the crew were doing their duty, whilst Lewis was the law-breaker, seems to have been ignored by the author of the verse'.
Bibliography: C.R. Domonley 'A History of the Parish Church of All Saints, Wyke Regis, Weymouth.' (Wyke Regis,1976).

Old burial ground, Bexhill on Sea, East Sussex, England

Gravestone at Bexhill on Sea, East Sussex commemorating David Watts of the Coast guard d. 1832 shot by smugglers

Location

Old burial ground, Bexhill on Sea, East Sussex, England

Transcript

'In memory of David Watts of the Coastguard. He was shot and almost instantly expired on the 21 Feb. 1832, aged 45 yrs'

Details

Type: Headstone

People

Watts, David
Age: 45
Date of Death: 21/2/1832
Cause of Death: Murdered
Rank / Occupation: Coastguard
Organisation: HM Coastguard

Extra

Notes: TNA HO 52/20/9 report of the incident by the Mayor of Hastings. Probably the churchyard of St Peter's Bexhill.
Bibliography: William Webb 'Coastguard: an official history of HM Coastguard' (London, 1976) p. 28.