Who were the Welsh Drovers?
The Welsh drovers were not known for their sobriety in life, they were garrulous and there were temptations in the cities. In 1792 at the Old Bailey, a Sarah Loft with others was accused of violent theft and robbery. "I am a Welch-drover. I lost my money on Thursday the 2nd of November. I came to town the day before." William Ellis sworn.
Question. How did it happen? "I will tell you the truth. I light of this young women Sarah Loft at Cow-cross, in the street coming out of an house there, at mid-day: I was sober, I had drank only one pint of beer that day. When I had given her the money, then we had what you know, we laid down on the bed together; ?....... and while I was down they cut my purse, my watch dropped out on the floor........." Question. How much money did you lose? " I lost upwards of £31 and a silver watch". ?......Verdict: Guilty. Punishment: Death.

In January 1811, Sarah Bailey and Thomas Moore were found guilty of theft from David Roberts and were transported for seven years. "I am David Roberts a Welsh drover. On the 7th December about four o'clock, I was in Smithfield; I had been drinking all day. I met a man in the street, he said you are a Welshman......... Question: Did you see the pocket book while you were in the public house. " I put the the £20 and £5 notes in my pocket book at Rumford. I put it in my pocket, and I had never taken it out of my pocket until I found it on the table....................................................

Who were the DroversWith the demise of the trade in cattle "on the hoof", or when drovers retired, they often moved to England to take up a new way of life. There are examples of them becoming graziers in the Midlands and the Home Counties, or taking new trades in the cities. In May 1835, a Thomas Griffiths living in Blackfriars Road, London, met two young girls who wished him to go to their lodging. The Old Bailey account reads "I went to bed with them both; about one o'clock a person came into the room for the rent. I had forty-six sovereigns in my fob and my watch. I saved some in service and got the rest by dealing in cattle and horses; I had come to London from Wales in April and brought the money with the intention of buying a milk-walk. I had sixteen five pound notes of the Llanpedar Bank in the lining of the waistband of my breeches. When I awoke my breeches and possessions had gone". The girls were found guilty of theft and were transported for life..

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