The Trial of John Grant, Sheriff-Clerk Depute of the Shire of Inverness before the Circuit Court of Justiciary Held There on May 1, 1793 For Forgery

Author(s): Grant, John


The...... defect of Mr. Grant's case is his not
Shewing the cause for which McEdward
put his name on the back of the bill —
From this silence one would be led to imagine
that the Pannel availing himself of McEdward
drunkenneſs had fraudulently induced him to
put his name on the bill — How the
jury could be brought to return a verdict
finding him guilty of forgery is more than
I can conceive— the was not the vestage
of Proof upon that head— for McEdward
admits having written his name upon
a piece of paper like a bill and upon
being interrogated whether it was a bill
or not — his answer was "not that I
Know of —" which evidently implies that
it might have been a bill, but that he
did not Know it was one —
Nov, 15. About eleven o'clock forenoon,
Mr Thomas Muir, younger of
Hunterthill, was taken from the tolbooth,
and conveyed to Newhaven in a
coach, where he was ſent on board the
Royal George Excite yacht, Captain
Ogilvie, now in Leith roads, for London.
There were ſent along with him, John
Grant, who was convicted of forgery at
Inverneſs Circuit — John Stirling, who
petitioned for tranſportation, being concerned
in robbing Nellfield houſe —
Bearhope, concerned in ſtealing watches,
and who alſo petitioned for baniſhment
— and James Mackay, lately condemned
to death for ſtreet-robbery, but who
afterwards obtained a reſpite during his
Majesty's pleaſure. 1793
ON MAY, 1. 1793.
INNOCENCE, fruſtrated in every attempt to vindicate
herſelf by judicial proceedings, in the caſe
of the Pannel in this trial, now throws herſelf,
with full confidence of ſympathy, into the arms
of the Public. From them the victim of private
revenge ſeeks no redreſs. He is now baniſhed
from his native country: his conſcience is at peace
with his own heart, and his ſoul is reſigned above
the fretful fevers of this tempoary life.---
He, however, ſolaces himſelf with the hope, that,
when he is gone, ſhould it be found out that
there was defects if. the form of procedure in his
trial, in the ſelectionaof his jury, or, that any
undue influence was uſed with any indiv:dual,---
Legiſlature may be induced to prevent ſuch in
future, by adopting meaſures to purify the ſtreams
of juſtice, and, by its wiſdom, to render the
channels of truth ſafe and ſecure.
In the great maſs of mankind, he believes that
there may be found the warmeſt humanity, the
trueſt virtues, and the moſt ſtrict juſtice; to
them, therefore, he leaves his ſecond verdict,
not doubting but it will be the ſame with the deciſion
of that holy tribunal, before which all muſt
He begs leave to apologize, by the ſuddeneſs
of his removal, for not being able to give here,
as he intended, verbatim, the pathetic charge of
Lord Henderland to the jury; alſo, his judicial
declaration, which laſt he had not time to procure
a copy of, being ordered, on a ſhort warning,
to mount the waves that are to tear him away
from his friends forever.
Calumnies innumerable had been privately
circulated previous to the trial, and they have
been indefatigable ſince in their endeavours to
ſoil his character, in order to juſtify his puniſhment,
on other grounds, to thoſe who might not
be pleated with his ſentence. But theſe falſe and
malignant aſperſions were no ſooner communicated
to him by his undiſguiſed friends, than they
vaniſhed into nothing, as the dewy cloud when
the ſun warms the atmoſphere. Some of theſe,
he has had too much reaſon to believe, produced
the deſired effeft of their inventors on certain
perſons. All of them, however, now fall to the
ground, as ſoon as diſcovered. To contradict
what has reached his ear, he ſolemnly declares,
that he never had, as was reported, any matrimonial
connection with a lady of fortune in London,
nor received any money from any one whatever,
in the manner ſlander inſinuated.
In proof of his conduct, he lays every thing
before the Public, and challenges an anſwer from
any party; not doubting that, if any contradiction
offers, light may be thrown upon his innocency,
by the colliſion of public inveſtigation.
GEORGE, &c. JOHN GRANT, Sheriff-Clerk
Depute of the ſhire of Inverneſs, you are indicted
and accuſed at the inſtance of ROBERT DUNDAS
Eſq. of Arniſton, his Majeſty's Advocate,
for his Majeſty's intereſt, THAT ALBEIT, by
the laws of this and every other well-governed
realm, FORGERY, as alſo, the feloniouſly uttering
and uſing any forged writing, more particularly
the feloniouſly forging, or feloniouſly
procuring to be forged, the ſubſcription of any
perſon as indorſee of any Bill or Draft; AS ALSO,
the feloniouſly uttering and uſing any ſuch
Bill with a forged ſubſcription thereon, or cauſing
the ſame to be uttered, uſed, or diſcounted,
knowing the ſubſcriptions thereon to be forged,
are crimes of an heinous nature, and ſeverely puniſhable;
That you, the ſaid JOHN GRANT, have
preſumed to commit, and are guilty actor, art
and part, of the foreſaid crime, IN SO FAR AS
you, the ſaid John Grant, having drawn a Bill
or Draft, bearing date the 21ſt day of July 1792,
for Twenty Pounds Sterling, addreſſed to Donald
M'Gilvray in Tullich of Strathdearn, and accepted,
or pretended to be accepted, by him, of
which the tenor follows, viz. '£. 20 Sterling.
'Inverneſs, 21ſt July 1792. Three months af'ter
date, pay to me, or my order, within the
'Poſt-Office here, the ſum of Twenty Pounds
'Sterling money, for value of (ſigned) John
'Grant. To Mr. Donald M'Gilvray, in Tul'lich
of Strathdearn. (Signed) Donald M'Gil
'vray.' --You attempted to get ſaid Bill diſcounted
at the Office of the Branch of the ROYAL
BANK, eſtabliſhed at Invernefs; and the Managers
of ſaid Bank having refuſed to diſcount ſaid
Bill, you, the ſaid John Grant, did, at Inverneſs,
or elſewhere in the county of Invernefs,
upon one or other of the days of the month of
July 1792, or of Auguſt immediately following,
falſely and feloniouſly forge, or feloniouſly procure
to be forged, the ſubſcription of Angus
M'Edward, drover in Balneſpick, in Badenoch,
upon the back of ſaid Bill, as ſecond indorſer
thereof, thus, 'ANGUS M'EDWARD;' and upon
one or other of the days of the month of July,
1792, or of Auguſt or September immediately
following, you, the ſaid John Grant, gave the
ſaid Bill, with the forged ſubſcription thereon,
as a true and genuine Bill, and as being truly
ſigned by the ſaid Angus M'Edward, as indorſer,
to John Miller, merchant in Inverneſs, in partial
or full payment of a debt, which you owed to
the ſaid John Miller; and the ſaid John Miller
received the ſame as a true and genuine Bill, and
as being truly ſigned by the perfons whoſe ſubſcriptions
were adhibited thereto, although the
name of the ſaid Angus M'Edward, as indorſer
of ſaid Bill, is falſe and forged, and was falſely
and feloniouſly forged by you the ſaid John Grant,
AT LEAST, known by you when you uſed and
uttered the ſame, by giving it to the ſaid John
Miller, in payment of the debt you owed him,
to be falſe and forged; and you, the ſaid John
Grant, having been brought before Simon Fraſer,
Eſq. Advocate, Sheriff-Depute of the ſhire
of Inverneſs, upon the 31ſt day of December;
1792, did emit and ſign a Declaration, which was
alſo ſubſcribed by the ſaid Simon Fraſer, Eſq.
WHICH DECLARATION, together with the
Bill particularly deſcribed and recited above;
ALSO another Bill, dated, Forres, 19th May,
1792, for £. 100 Steeling, at ſix months, drawn
by John Gordon, and accpted by the ſaid Angus
M'Edward, which Bill is marked, No. 1,018;
AS ALSO, another Bill, dated, Forres, the 11th
Auguſt, 1792, for £. 100 Sterling, at three
months date, drawn by John Gordon, and accepted
by Angus M'Edward, which Bill is marked,
No. 2,126.; AS ALSO, a Letter, wrote by
the ſaid Angus M'Edward, dated, Balldow, the
28th day of December, 1792, addreſſed, on the
back, to 'Mr. Alexander Cameron, taylor at
Alvie;' being all to be uſed in evidence againſt.
you the ſaid John Grant, will, for that purpoſe,
be lodged with the Clerk of the Circuit Court
of Juſticiary, before which you are to be tried,
that you may have an opportunity of ſeeing the
ſame. AT LEAST, time and place foreſaid,
the ſubſcription of the ſaid Angus M'Edward
was feloniouſly forged, and the Bill above recited,
having the ſaid forged ſubſcription thereon,
was feloniouſly uttered, uſed, and paſſed, by a
perſon knowing the pretended ſubſcription of
Angus M'Edward thereon to be falſe and forged,
and you, the ſaid John Grant, are guilty of the
foreſaid crimes, or one or other of them. ALL
WHICH, or part thereof, being found proven
by the verdict of an aſſize,
(Signed) JOHN BURNETT, A. D.
Æneas Mackintoſh, Eſq. of Mackintoſh
Arthur Forbes, Eſq. of Culloden
Colonel Duncan M'Pherſon, of Bleaton
George Cameron, Eſq. of Letterfinlay
Mr. John M'Lean, jun. at Cluny
Captain John M'Pherſon, at Invereſhie
Ranald M'Donald, younger, of Glenturrat
John Roſe, Eſq. of Holm
David Davidſon, Eſq. of Contray
Duncan Grant, of Dalſhangie
James Alves, tackſman of Connadge
Hugh Fraſer, tackſman of Erchite
William Edwards, tackſman of Knockuagial
Alex. Tulloch, merchant in Campbelton
Thomas Gilleſpie, tackſman of Glenguioch
Capt. John Robertſon, reſiding in Inverneſs
Henry Andrews, merchant there
Hugh Cobban, merchant there
John Simpſon, merchant there
John M'Pherſon, merchant there
General Charles Roſs, of Moringie
Lewis M'Kenzie, younger, of Scatwell
Allan Cameron, Eſq. at Tyriſh
Captain John Roſs, of Caſtle-Craigs
George Munro, of Culrain
Charles Munro, of Allan
John M‘Kinnon, Tain
Hugh Roſs, younger, of Gladfield
David Urquhart, land ſurvevor at Newhall
Alexander M'Kenzie, of Dachnalian.
William Brodie, Eſq. of Milntoun
Peter Roſe Watſon, Eſq. of Coltifield
James Miln, Eſq. of Biſhopſmill
William Robertſon, Eſq. of Auchinroth,
Mr. Iſaac Forſyth, ſtationer in Elgin
Laurence Sutherland, Eſq. reſiding there
Robert Rae, tackſman of Shiraſton
William Forſyth, tackſman of Ardgay
Hugh Tod, tackſman of Myreſide
Thomas Craig, tackſman of Barmuckety
John Hoyes, merchant in Forres
Alexander Urquhart, merchant there
Charles Bingeſs, feuar in Garmouth
John Anderſon, tackſman of Bands
Samuel Falconer, Eſq. of Falcon Park
(Signed) ROBT. M'QUEEN.
William Fraſer, innkeeper in Inverneſs
William M'Intoſh, clerk to the ſaid John Grant
Angus M'Edward, drover in Balneſpick, Badenoch,
county of Inverneſs
Donald M'Gilvray, in Tullich of Strathdearn,
ſaid county
John Miller, merchant in Inverneſs
Donald Grant, clerk to the ſaid John Grant
James Gordon, ſhepherd to Captain Lewis
Grant, in Down of Rothiemuchas, and
county foreſaid
Alexander Cameron, taylor in Alvie, and
county foreſaid
James Davidſon, alias, M‘Kay, drover in
Moymore of Strathdearn, and county
John Roſs, clerk in the Bank of Scotland
Branch at Inverneſs
Mary Grant, ſpouſe to Donald Roſe, ſmith
in the Park of Inches, near Inverneſs
Captain John M‘Pherſon, at Invereſhie
Thomas Young, clerk to the ſaid John Grant
Daniel Clark, ſheriff-officer in Inverneſs
Alexander Mackintoſh, burgh officer there
Simon Fraſer, Eſq. ſheriff-depute of the ſhire
of Inverneſs
Lord Henderland was preſiding Judge. — The
Court aſſembled preciſely at ten o'clock, on the
1ſt day of May 1793.
CHARLES Ross, Eſq. A. D.
To this Indictment Grant pleaded, NOT GUILTY;
and, according to the practice of the law of
Scotland, requiring the perſon accuſed to communicate,
upon the evening preceding the trial,
in writing, the ſubſtance of his defence, with a
liſt of the witneſſes in exculpation, Grant complied
with this rule, and the Clerk of Court then
read the following defences
The Pannel pleads NOT GUILTY of the Crime
laid to his charge, and that he could have no motive
or inducement whatever in committing ſuch
a crime: As alſo, That the proſecution has been
maliciouſly and groundleſsly inſtigated by his enemies.

Under proteſtation to add and eik.
(Signed) JOHN GRANT.
LIST of WITNESSES, adduced in Exculpation.
John Smith, meſſenger in Inverneſs
John Miller, merchant in Inverneſs
Alexander M'Intoſh, burgh officer in Inverneſs
Alexander M'Pherſon, vintner in Corryburgh
Lachlan M'Kenzie, Poſt, Pitmain, Badenoch
Donald M'Kay, waiter to Mr. M'Laren,
William Kennedy, ſervant to Alexander Macpherſon,
vintner in Corryburgh
Donald M'Gilvray, in Tullicb of Strathdearn.
JAMES GRANT, Eſq. of Corrymony, Counſel
for the Pannel, having made no objection to the
relevancy of the Libel, the following Interlocutor
was pronounced:
'The Lord Henderland, having conſidered the
'criminal Libel, raiſed and purſued at the in'ſtance
of Robert Dundas, Eſq. of Arniſton, his
Majeſty's Advocate, for his Majeſty's intereſt,
'againſt the ſaid John Grant, Pannel, finds the
'Libel relevant to infer the pains of law, but
'allows the Pannel to prove all facts and circum'ſtances
that may tend to exculpate him, or al'leviate
his guilt; and remits the Pannel, with
the Libel, as found relevant, to the knowledge
of an affize.'
1. Arthur Forbes, Eſq. of Culloden
General Charles Roſs, of Morringie
Allan Cameron, Eſq. of Tyriſh
George Munro, of Culrain
5. Charles Munro, of Allan
John M'Kinnon, merchant in Tain
Peter Roſe Watſon, Eſq. of Coltfield
Henry Andrews, merchant in Inverneſs
John Hoyes, merchant in Forres
10. Alexander Urquhart, merchant there
Captain John Roſs, of Caſtle Craigs
Hugh Roſs, younger, of Gladfield
Alexander Tulloch, merchant in Campbelton
Mr. Iſaac Forſyth, ſtationer in Elgin
James Miln, Eſq. of Biſhopſmiln
Lord HENDERLAND aſked the Counſel for the
Pannel, If he had any thing further to ſtate in
ſupport of theſe defences, as in the courſe of the
trial he would not be at liberty to adduce any
thing extraneous.
Mr. GRANT, Counſel for the Pannel, then
roſe, and ſaid, that, according to the rules of
Court, his Client, on the preceding evening,
communicated to the Public Proſecutor the ſubſtance
of his defence in writing, and he had no
doubt in his own mind of being able to prove every
word ſtated in that defence; and further,
that M'Edward had voluntarily offered to indorſe
the unlucky Bill in queſtion; had his Client acted
wrong, he never would have allowed himſelf to
be taken into cuſtody; at leaſt, he would have
gladly embraced the tender from His Majeſty's
Advocate, of withdrawing himſelf from Scotland
for a time, without putting himſelf on his defence.

No objection having been made to any of the
Jury, the Counſel for the Crown now proceeded
to call the witneſſes.
The Counſel for the Pannel objected to this
witneſs, obſerving that he had a manifeſt intereſt
in the cauſe, and conſequently could not be admitted;
that, moreover, he was conſcious the
Proſecution was carried on wantonly and maliciouſly
by the Pannel's enemies, and the benefactors
of the witneſs. The Judge however repelled
the objection, obſerving that, in caſes of
this nature, the teſtimony of the Private Proſeſecutor
was the moſt eſſential that could be adduced;
he was therefore clearly of opinion,
that the witnefs ſhould be called, but directed
the Jury to lay ſuch ſtreſs on his evidence as they
thought it really merited; and accordingly he was called.
Depones, That he was in company with the
Pannel and James Davidſon, alias M'Kay, drover
in Moymore of Strathdearn, on the night of
the 21ſt of July laſt, in the houſe of William
Porterfield, vintner in Inverneſs, where they
drank freely, though not ſo much as to be intoxicate,
but bad no converſation relative to Bills of
any kind; that he never ſaw the Pannel before
but once, which was, between Blair in Athol
and Dalwhinnie, in Auguſt 1790, when the Pannel
was on his way from England; and the Pannel
having learned that he was from Badenoch,
he ordered the chaiſe driver to give him a horſe,
which followed the chaife, (otherwiſe termed a
return horſe) but, from that time until the 2I ſt
July laft, he never ſaw him; that, on Sunday
morning the 22d of July, after breakfaſt, the
Pannel went home, but in a ſhort time thereafter
called, as he underſtood, for ſome of his Clients
at the houſe of Alexander Cunas, vintner in
Inverneſs, where he then was; that, to his knowledge,
fourteen half mutchkins of ſpirits was
drank, beſides two bottles given by him and
the Pannel; That, about one o'clock, they left
the houſe of Alexander Clunas for their reſpective
places of abode, and, about two miles
diſtant from Inverneſs, the Panncl, who was eſcorting
his father, overtook them; that, after
ſome perſuaſion, the Pannel and his father, with
two of the Pannel's Clerks, accompanied them
into the houſe of Donald Roſe, vintner in the
Park of Inches, where a conſiderable quantity of
ſpirits was drank; that the name of Donald
M'Gilvray was introduced, as being left behind,
when the Pannel enquired if he was acquainted
with M'Gillvray, and it he was in good circumſtances,
his anſwer was in the affirmative; That
the Bill now ſhewn to him, bearing his indorſation,
was never ſigned by him, nor was he aſked
to ſign it.
Interrogate for the Pannel.---
Q. Was you drunk when in Roſe's. --- A. No.
Q. What quantity of ſpirits was then drank?
A. Better than two bottles, --- beſides porter?
Q. Did you call for pen and ink? --- A. Yes.
Q. For what purpoſe?
A. To write my addreſs.
Q. To what end?
A. The Pannel wiſhed to correſpond with me;
as I was going to Falkirk Tryſt, he ſeemed anxous
to know how cattle ſold.
Q. And did you write your addreſs? A. Yes.
Q. In what manner?
A. "Angus M'Edward, drover in Balneſ"pick,
Q. Upon what paper did you write; was it a
Bill? --- A. Not that I know off.
Q. If the Pannel was to write you at Falkirk,
why give him your addreſs in Badenoch?
A. I do not know.
Q. What ſiZe was the paper you wrote on?
A. Much about the ſize of a Bill.
Q. Who gave you the paper that you wrote
on? --- A. The Pannel.
Q. Did you write your name more than once?
A. Yes.
Q. Was it at the deſire of the Pannel?
A. No, --- but merely to pleaſe myſelf.
Q. Did you always write on the ſame paper?
A. No.
Q. What other paper did you write on?
A. A letter which I had in my own pocket.
Interrogate by the Judge. ---
Q. Do you always ſign your name in the ſame
manner? --- A. No.
Q. How do you ſign in general?
A. Sometimes, "Angs. M'Edwards," "An"gus
Mac Edward," and, at other times, "A.
"Mac Edward."
The witneſs, during his examination, ſpoke
ſo low and indiſtinctly, that his Lordſhip repeatedly
threatened to have him ſet upon the Court
Depones, That he was employed by John
Miller, merchant in Inverneſs, the latter end of
October laſt, to raiſe diligence on a bill drawn
by the Pannel, accepted by Donald M'Gilvray,
and indorſed by Angus M'Edward; and that accordingly
he raiſed Horning thereon, and upon
the 17th November laſt ſerved the Pannel and
M'Gilvray with copies thereof in prefence of each
other. ---
Interrogate for the Pannel. —
Q. When did you charge M'Edward?
A. On the 27th December laſt.
Q. Thy delay him ſo long?
A. Becauſe M'Gilvray, the acceptor, promiſed
to ſee M'Edward, and ſettle it; however, he
failed in his promiſe, and as I had no other buſineſs
in Badenoch, where M'Edward reſided, I
declined going on purpoſe, as it was my intention
to go to Edinburgh in December, and in
paſſing through Badenoch I meant to charge him,
which I did.
Q. Did you ſee the Pannel frequently in the
intermediate period?
A. I had occaſion to ſee him daily in his office.

Q. Did you ſee him when on your way to
charge M'Edward?
A. Yes; I was a night with him at Corryburgh
Inn, on his way from the country to Inverneſs.

Q. Did he diſſuade you from charging M'Edward?

A. No; on the contrary, he advifed me to it,
and deſired I would ſend the Caption to Mr.
Miller from Edinburgh, as ſoon as poſſible. I
gave him a ſecond copy of charge, and told him,
I meant to give M'Gilvray one alſo, in order
to ſave two executions.
Q. Did you tell Mr. Miller that the Pannel
had the Bill now in queſtion, previous to its being
indorſed to him? A. Yes.
Q. How did you know?
A. M'Gilvray the acceptor told me, that he
had granted ſuch, and that he had a balance to
get after paying the Pannel any thing he owed
him, and that, how ſoon he diſcounted it, he
would pay him.
Q. Did you ſend the letter to M'Edward which
Miller gave you, notifying to M'Edward, that
the Bill was diſhonoured?
A. I put it into the Poſt-Office myfelf.
Q. Did you ſee M'Edward when you went to
the houſe to charge him?
A. No; but I ſaw his father, who told me he
knew there was ſuch a Bill, but did not think it
would come the length of a Horning.
Depones, That the Pannel, upon the 25th day
of July 1792, gave him a Bill for £. 20 Sterling,
accepted by Donald M'Gilvray, and indorſed
by Angus M'Edward, which he diſcounted,
and gave the Pannel £. 9, not having more caſh
then by him; he alſo gave the Pannel a letter,
acknowledging to have got the Bill, and obliging
himſelf to pay the balance; that he was informed
by John Smith the meſſenger, that
M‘Gilvray had granted his acceptance to the
Pannel to the amount of £. 20 but did not know
it was indorſed by M'Edward until he ſaw it,
nor would he place any dependence on his indorſation,
being utterly unacquainted with him;
that he would diſcount the Bill as ſoon without
as with the name of M'Edward; that, it was on
the faith of M'Gilvray and the Pannel's ſignatures
he diſcounted the Bill; that he offered to
the Pannel, to take his own acceptance ſometime
before the Horning was executed, which he declined,
and deſired that he would uſe all
diligence; that he wrote both M'Gilvray and
M'Edward before any diligence was uſed, notifying
his intention of raiſing Horning on the
Bill, unleſs it was paid, but received no anſwer.
Depones, That the ſubſcription of Angus
M'Edward, adhibited to the Bill now ſhewn
him, does not appear to be the writing of M'Edward.

Q. How do you think it is not his writing?
A. I ſeldom or ever faw him write ſo large ---
the two Bills mentioned in the indictment being
ſhown to him, and aſked, if he thought they
were M'Edward's ſubſcriptions?
A. I believe they are more like than the other.
Q. Are you in the habit of correſponding with
M'Edward? --- A. No.
Q. And how did you become acquainted with
his writing?
A. I was at the ſchool with him when he was
writing text copies.
Q. Did you ever ſee him ſign his name when,
he was drunk? --- A. No.
Depones, That the name Donald M'Gilvray,
adhibited to the Bill now ſhewn, is his writing;
that he has no knowledge of the writing of
M'Edward; that he had a converſation with
M'Edward relative to the Bill in queſtion; that
he told him, he did not recollect to have indorſed
it; that he wrote his addreſs on a blank
piece of paper, in the houſe of Donald Roſe,
ſmith in Leys, but did not think it was a Bill.
Deposes, That, on the Sunday ſubſequent to
the laſt July market, the Pannel and ſeveral
others came to her houſe, and called for ſome
ſpirits and porter; that M‘Edward called for a
whole bottle, and mixed it with ſome milk, and,
to the beſt of her remembrance, he drank it all
Q. Was any in the company drunk when they
went to your houſe? --- A. Several of them.
Q. Was M'Edward drunk?
A. I really think was.
Q. What quantity of ſpirits was drunk in
your houſe?
A. Better than two bottles, beſides porter.
Q. Who paid the reckoning?
A. The Pannel.
Q. Did you ſee any perſon writing?
A. No; but I heard pen and ink called for.
Q. By whom?
A. I am not very certain; but I think it was
by M'Edward.
Depones, That, on Saturday the 21ſt July
laſt, he was in company with the Pannel and
Angus M'Edward, in the houſe of William Porterfield,
vintner in Inverneſs, where they ſtaid
all night; that they drank very freely, and
were rather intoxicated than otherwiſe; that,
after breakfaſt, on Sunday morning the 22d July,
the Pannel left them, but ſoon after joined them
in the houſe of Alexander Clunas, vintner in
Inverneſs, where there was a good number of
people; that, to the beſt of his knowledge,
about fourteen half mutchkins of ſpirits, beſides
two bottles given by the Pannel and M'Edward,
was drank; that ſeveral of the company, who
intended to leave town, were obliged to go to
bed; that he, M'Edward, and ſome others left
Inverneſs about one o'Clock, and, about two
miles from town, the Pannel, who was eſcorting
his father, overtook them about two miles diſtant
from Inverneſs, whom they intreated to accompany
them into the houſe of Donald Roſe,
vintner in the Park of Inches, which they did;
that a conſiderable quantity of ſpirits was drank,
beſides porter; that M'Edward was very much
intoxicated, but did not ſee him write any,
though he heard him call for pen and ink; that
he was ſo deeply engaged in converſation with
one of the Pannel's clerks, a deal might be
wrote during the time without his knowledge;
that, towards the evening, they proceeded on
their journey till they arrived at the houſe of
Alexander Fraſer, vintner in Faillie, three miles
diſtant from the houſe of Donald Roſe; that
M'Edward, on his arrival, was ſo very much in
liquor, that he fell off his chair; that there was
no houſe betwixt Roſe's and Fraſer's; that they
all remained in Fraſer's for the night, and
M'Edward, from his intoxication, ſlept on the
kitchen floor with the grey-hound; that he
heard the Pannel and M'Edward converſe about
M'Gilvray, while in the houſe of Donald Roſe.
Depones, that he is clerk to the Pannel, and.
on Sunday the 22d of July laſt, in the houſe of
Alexander Clunas, vintner in the Caſtle-ſtreet,
Inverneſs, where he happened to call for ſome
of his friends from the country, whom he found
engaged with the Pannel, he ſaw M'Edward,
M'Gilvray, and ſeveral others there drinking;
that he ſaw about fourteen half mutchkins of
ſpirits, beſides two bottles, given by the Pannel
and M'Edward, drank; that Mr. Grant, the
Pannel's father, was then waiting for his ſon as
he was leaving town; that the Pannel ſent him
with an apology, that he was engaged, but
would ſoon wait on him, and accordingly, about
one o'Clock, he came, when Mr. Grant left
town, and William M'Intoſh, another of the
Pannel's clerks, accompanied them out of town,
and about two miles diſtant they fell in with
Angus M'Edward, and ſeveral others, who entreated
the Pannel. and his father to accompany
them into the houſe of Donald Roſe, vintner in
the Park of Inches, which they did; that a good
deal of ſpirits was drank, and the company in
general was intoxicated, except Mr. Grant the
Pannel's father; that he heard the Pannel and
M'Edward converſe about M'Gilvray, and ſaw
the Pannel taking a ſmall paper from his pocket
book, which he preſented to M'Edward, who
immediately called for pen and ink, and wrote
his name upon the paper, which appeared to him
to be a Bill, but, being at ſome little diſtance,
could not diſtinguiſh the ſtamp; that M'Edward
was very familiar with the Pannel, and had his
arm round his waiſt, or ſomewhat higher.
Depones, That he is clerk to the Pannel; that,
on Sunday the 22d. of July laſt, he was in the
houſe of Alexander Clunas, vintner in Inverneſs,
where he ſaw Angus M'Edward and ſeveral others.

This witncfs concurs with the preceding witneſs,
as to what happened in the houſe of Alexander
Clunas; but, having the charge of the
Pannel's Father's Horſe, he did not ſee any thing
that paſſed in Roſe's.
Depones, That the Subſcription to the Bill
now ſhown to him, drawn by the Pannel, and
accepted by Donald M'Gilvray, and apparently
indorſed by M'Edward, does not appear to him
to be the ſignature of M'Edward; that he ſeldom
or ever ſaw him write in ſuch a large character;
That the two other Bills ſhewn to him as mentioned
in the indictment, appears to be the writing
of M'Edward, but that he never ſaw him
ſubſcribe his name; That he correſponded with
the Sheriff of Inverneſs about the Bill in queſtion,
and examined ſeveral witneſſes therenent.
Depones, That the Pannel, in the month of
July laſt, incloſed him a Bill for £. 20, to be
counted; that it was accepted by Donald M'Gilvray,
and, as his conſtituents were not in town,
he could not take upon himſelf to tranſmit any
buſineſs, otherwiſe, that he would have been
glad to ſerve the Pannel, and, to that effect, returned
the Pannel a letter; did not examine if
it was indorſed, not having it in his power to
diſcount it.
Depones, That the Bill now ſhewn him, drawn
by the Pannel accepted by Donald M'Gilvray,
and indorſed by M'Edward, is the very
identical Bill given to him by John Smith, previous
to his ſetting off for Edinburgh, to be given
to either of the parties who paid him the money.
The Pannel having admitted the declaration
emitted before the Sheriff, it was accordingly
read, when the Counſel for the Crown declared
his proof concluded, and the Courſel for the Pannel
commenced to examine the witneſſes in Esculpation.

Depones, That, on Monday the 31ſt. December
laſt, he met with Angus M'Edward in Inverneſs,
and, on the following day, proceeded on
their journey to Badenoch together; that their
converſation principally turned about the Pannel,
when M'Edward told him, that he had ſigned a
paper for the Pannel in the houſe of Donald Roſe.
vintner at the Park of Inches, on Sunday the 22d
July laſt, but, to the beſt of his knowledge, it was
not a Bill; yet, when he ſaw the Bill in the hands
of the Sheriff, he could not poſitively deny but it
was his writing, and that nothing led him to
think otherwiſe, but that he was informed, a
Sheriff Clerk could write all manner of hands.
Depone, That he heard Angus M'Edward
acknowledge to have called for pen and ink, in
the houſe of Donald Roſe, vintner in the Park
of Inches, in order to write his name, by way of
addreſs for the Pannel, he wrote on a ſlip
of paper, but did not recollect what paper it was.
The other witneſſes cited in Exculpation. (except
Alexander M'Pherſon and Lachlan M'Kenzie,
who were prevented by ſiniſter means from
attending,) having been examined by the Crown,
and interrogate for the Pannel, it was not thought
neceſſary by his Counſel to call them, as he conſidered
the Panuel ſufficiently acquitted, and declared
his proof ended.
The Counſel for the Crown then addreſſed the
Jury in a few words, and told them, that as his
Lordſhip had taken down full notes of the evidence
it would be unneceſſary for him to comment
on that evidence, as his Lordſhip with his
uſual accuracy, in ſumming up the whole, would
point out to them, whether or not the Pannel was
guilty, and that they would return a verdict agreeable
to the dictates of their own conſcience.
The Counſel for the Pannel then addreſſed the
Jury to the following effect.
Gentlemen of the Jury,
The buſineſs, which has occupied your time
and attention this day, is now concluded, and
the witneſſes for the Crown have ſo fully demonſtrated
the innocence of my Client, that I thought
it unneceſſary to call any more witneſſes in
exculpation. There are two of the Pannel's
moſt material witneſſes, Alexander M'Pherſon
vintner in Corryburgh, and Lachlan M'Kenzie,
poſt pitmain, Badenoch, who have been regularly
cited, but, from motives beſt known to themſelves,
did not attend; the poſt is more excuſeable, as his
buſineſs is urgent, but if my Client ſhould unfortunately,
and moft unexpectedly be found
guilty, from their non-attendance, I for ever
will lament it; however, the all-wiſe Providence
will direct the Jury, in whoſe hands the fate of
the Pannel muſt reſt; and, from the evidence
that has been adduced againſt him, I think, in
my own opinion, there is no ground of conviction.
The.firſt witneſs that was called is, Angus
M'Edward the Private Proſecutor; and, to
his teſtimony I objected, as he has a manifeſt intereſt
in the caufe; but his Lordſhip was pleaſed
to repel the objection, and, with his uſual candour,
directed you, Gentlemen of the Jury, to
lay ſuch ſtreſs on his evidence as you think it
really merits, and, in my opinion, that is none
at all. --- He ſays, he wrote his addrefs on a ſmall
ſlip of paper, but not a bill; --- he alſo ſays, he
wrote his name more than once, and for what
purpoſe? Merely to pleaſe himſelf. --- He ſays,
that the paper on which he wrote, at the deſire
of the Pannel, had no writing on it when he ſigned
his name: it is well known, that the drawer
of a bill ſeldom indorſes his name on the back
until he is diſcounting it, or paying it away;
and it muſt be known to you, Gentlemen of the
Jury, from the evidence you have heard, that
the paper on which he wrote, at the deſire of the
Pannel, was the Bill in queſtion. Donald Grant,
another witneſs examined in this cauſe, tells you,
that he ſaw the Pannel take a ſmall paper from
his pocket-book, and preſenting it to M'Edward,
who called for pen and ink, and wrote his name
on it. Can there be more circumſtantial evidence?
I think not. And, after what that witneſs
has ſaid, I will not trouble you by commenting
on the reſt of the evidence; indeed, I do not
conſider it neceſſary. --- You, Gentlemen of the
Jury, muſt be ſenſible that the teſtimony of Alexander
Cameron and James Gordon, two illiterate
men, cannot be paid any regard to; they
cannot read the Engliſh language; they have
been examined in the Galic, and ſurely, that being
the caſe, they cannot be ſuppoſed to be competent
judges of writing; it is morally impoſſible.
Another evidence, Captain John M'Pherſon
of Invereſhie, in examining the Bill in queſtion,
and comparing it with the bills mentioned
in the indictment, he ſays, that the ſubſcription
adhibited to the Bill challenged is not like MacEdward's;
that he feldom or ever ſaw any of his
write in ſuch large characters. The Advocate--
Depute was pleaſed to aſk this witneſs, If he ever
ſaw M‘Edward ſubſcribe his name? and he
told, he never did. From the whole of this gentleman's
evidence, however reſpectable he may
be, I am clearly of opinion, it muſt paſs for nothing.
And, as for the Bills lodged in Court
for compariſon, ought to have no weight on your
minds, as it is well known, that when a man is
drunk, he cannot ſign ſo exactly as if he was ſoher:
Moreover, M'Edward tells you, that he
ſigns his name three different ways. James
M'K'ay tells you, that M'Edward was drunk; ---
you cannot therefore have any heſitation in returning
a verdict, finding my Client not Guilty.
I have obſerved ſome of the Gentlemen of the
Jury taking down full notes of the evidence,
which renders my taſk leſs arduous; and to God
and you, I commit the life of my Client.
The Court retired at half paſt eleven o'clock
at night, and met again the following day, at
ten o'clock in the morning, when the Jury returned
the following Verdict:
At Inverneſs, the ſecond day of May, One
thouſand ſeven hundred and ninety three years.
The above aſſize, having incloſed, made choice
of the ſaid Arthur Forbes, Eſq; of Culloden, to
be their Chancellor, and the ſaid Mr. Iſaac Forſyth
to be their Clerk; and, having conſidered
the criminal libel, raiſed and purſued at the inſtance
of His Majeſty's Advocate for His Majeſty's
intereſt, againſt John Grant, Pannel, and the
interlocator of relevancy pronounced thereupon
by the Court, the evidence adduced in proof of
the libel, and evidence in exculpation, with the
witneſſes produced in the courſe of the trial,
they all, in one voice, find the Pannel Guilty:
In witneſs whereof, their ſaid Chancellor and
Clerk have ſubſcribed theſe preſents, in their
name, and by their appointment, place and date
(Signed) ARTHUR FORBES, Chan.
The Clerk had no ſooner read the Verdict,
than Arthur Forbes, Eſq; of Culloden, Chancellor,
preſented a letter to his Lordship, of the
tenor following viz.
Inverneſs, 2d May, 1793.
My Lord,
'Though the Jury have found themſelves un'der
the diſagreeable neceſſity of returning an
'unanimous Verdict, finding the unfortunate
'priſoner at your bar guilty, ſolely influenced
'by motives of humanity, and alſo taking under
'their conſideration the time of life of the un'happy
young man, they, with. the ſame unani'mity
and greateſt ſubmiſſion, recommend him
'to the mercy of this Court, in full reliance, (if
'admiſſible,) that your Lordfhip will be pleaſed
'to pay attention to the above recommendation.
'I have the honour, in the name of the Gentle'men
of the Jury, to ſubſcribe myſelf,
My Lord,
Your Lordſhip's moſt obedient humble ſervant,
"Addreſſed to the Right Honourable Lord
His Lordſhip, upon reading the above letter;
(privately) aſſured the Gentlemen of the Jury,
that every attention would be paid to their recommendation:
That he would lay the whole
caſe, with their letter, before the Court; and,
in the meantime, grant warrant for tranſmitting
the Pannel to Edinburgh, to have his ſentence
pronounced the 3d day of June. His Lordſhip
accordingly granted a warrant, of which the following
is a copy:
'The Lord Henderland remits the Pannel,
'and the forefaid Verdict, to the conſideration
'of the High Court of Juſticiary, to be held at
'Edinburgh, on Monday the third day of June
'next to come, continues the diet againſt the
'Pannel till that time, and ordains him to be
'carried back to priſon; and further grants war'rant
to ſheriffs of counties, meſſengers at arms,
'and all other officers of the law, for tranſmit'ting
him from the Tolbooth of Inverneſs, to
'the Tolbooth of Edinbugh; and ordains the
'Magiſtrates of Edinburgh, and keepers of their
'Tolbooth, to receive and detain him till further
'orders of Court; on his being otherways libe'rate
in due courſe of law.
In terms of, and conform to the above warrant,
the ſaid John Grant was, on the 7th day
of May, ſent off from Inverneſs gaol, and was
delivered in the gaol of Edinburgh, on the 15th.
of the ſaid month. And,
On the 3d day of June, he was called to their
Lordſhip's bar, when Lord Henderland reported
to the Court, that, after the Verdict had been
returned at Inverneſs, he had received a letter
from Mr. Forbes of Culloden, (of which a copy
is already given.)
That the Counſel for the Pannel had likewiſe
repreſented, That, in caſes of Forgery, the Court
had not gone the length of a capital puniſhiment,
and therefore he had remitted the conſideration
of this caſe, the Pannel being very young, to their
Lordſhips' conſideration, that they might either
pronounce a capital ſentence againſt the Pannel,
and tranſmit the recommendation of the Jury to
be laid before his Majeſty, or inflict a puniſhment
leſs than death, as they ſhould 'think proper.

came to Court preciſely at eleven o'clock in the
forenoon of the 3d day of June.
J. Montgommery, Eſq. counſel for the Crown.
— William Honneyman, Eſq. James Grant, Eſq.
for the Pannel.
But, as nothing remained to determine the
fate of the unfortunate Pannel but their Lordſhips'
fentenee, the Counſel on both ſides had nothing
to ſay.
Lord HENDERLAN then addreſſed their Lordſhips
in the following manner:
I have now before me the ſubſtance of the evidence,
adduced againſt the unfortunate Pannel at
your Lordſhips' bar, on his trial at Inverneſs;
and I think it would be unneceſſary for me to recapitulate
that evidence, aS it induced the Jury
to return a verdict of guilt againſt the unhappy
Pannel. It only remains for your Lordſhips to
determine what puniſhment ought to be inflicted.
I have produced a letter of recommendation from
Mr. Forbes of Culloden, in favour of the Pannel,
to this Court. Mr. Forbes is a gentleman of
great reputation, and I truſt your Lordſhips will
pay every attention to it.
LORD JUSTICE CLERK. I feel for the unhappy
young man at the bar, but the crime for which
he is convicted is of ſo heinous a nature, that,
unleſs a ſevere puniſhment was inflicted, in all
probability ſuch cauſes would be before us every
day. I do not know any crime that is more
dangerous; high-way robbery is not near ſo
dangerous, for, in the latter caſe, a man has a
chance of guarding himſelf, but in caſes of forgery
a man cannot keep his money ſafe in the moſt ſecure
corner of his houſe. My Lord Henderland
has very properly remitted the eaſe to this
court; and, had I preſided as Judge on the trial-of
this unfortunate young man, I would have
done the ſame; and, My Lords, the Court of
Seſſion is the moſt competent Court for trying
caſes of this kind in the firſt inſtance; I wiſh from
my heart, that the Pannel's caſe had come before
that Court: And, as that Court often paſſes
ſentence without a remit to this High Court, I
am clearly of opinion, that we may do ſo in this
caſe, that that ſentence may be leſs than death;
as I have no doubt, were we to paſs the ſentence
of death upon the unhappy Pannel at the bar, but
he would obtain a pardon; I therefore think, that
tranſportation for life ought to be the ſentence of
this Court.
LORD HENDERLAND. I am clearly of your
Lordſhips' opinion.
LORD DUNSINNAN. I agree with your Lordſhips.

LORD ABERCROMBY. I perfectly agree with
your Lordſhips in the ſentence pronounced.
The ſentence was then recorded, of which the
following is a copy.
The Lord Juſtice Clerk, and Lords Commiſſioners
of Juſticiary, haying conſide red the Verdict
of an Aſſize, dated the ſecond, and returned
the third day of May laſt, in the Circuit Court
of Juſticiary, holden at Inverneſs, in the trial of
the ſaid John Grant, Pannel, whereby the Aſſize,
all in one voice, found the Pannel Guilty, with
the remit of ſaid Verdict to this Court, and
what is before repreſented by the Lord Henderland,
Judge at the ſaid Circuit, and recommendation
by the Jury, the ſaid Lords, in reſpect of the
ſaid Verdict, and what has been ſo repreſented,
In terms of an act paſſed in the twenty-fifth
year of the reign of his preſent Majeſty, intituled
"An Act for the more effectual tranſportation
of Felons and other Offenders, in that part
of Great Britain called Scotland; "ORDER
and ADJUDGE, that the ſaid John Grant be
tranſported beyond ſeas, to ſuch place as his Majeſty,
with the advice of his Privy Council, ſhall
declare and appoint, and that for all the days of
his life; WITH CERTIFICITION to the ſaid
John Grant, if, after being ſo tranſported, he ſhall
ever return to, and be found at large wiithin, any
part of Great Britain, without ſome lawful cauſe,
and being thereof lawfully convicted, he ſhall
ſuffer death, as in caſe of felony, without the benefit
of Clergy, by the Law of England. AND
ORDAIN the ſaid John Grant to be carried back
to priſon, therein to be detained till he is delivered
over for being ſo tranſported, for which
this ſhall be to all concerned a ſufficient warrant.
(Signed) ROBERT M'QUEEN J. P. D.
I have now furniſhed the public with the
grounds of my unfortunate trial, and the evidence
as taken down in Court. If I have erred
ſolemnly declare, it is not voluntarily, and as
have not been induced to lay my caſe before you
from vain or idle curioſity, I truſt it will meet
with your approbation. I am actuated to lay it
before you to contradict ſome baſe inſinuations
propagated againſt me of having been guilty of
ſimilar crimes, in anſwer to which I ſhall only ſay,
that it is, in one word, FALSE, equally falſe,
baſe, and attrocious, with M'Edwards accuſation,
and if he will but examine his own heart, he muſt
join me in ſaying that I am innocent. — Innocent
I ſay, becauſe I am conſcious of being ſo, as
much ſo of the crimes laid to my charge as the
angels that ſurround the Throne of Glory. But
it is evident that the proſecution has been wantonly
and maliciouſly ſet on foot by my enemies,
who have been too, too ſucceſsful in their deſigns;
to their machinations I attribute all my
ſufferings; I have not the Officers of the Crown
to blame for thoſe ſufferings, they did their
duty. But let M'Edward, and ſome other witneſſes
adduced againſt me, remember, that they
muſt one day appear before the awful Tribunal
of God, that upright Judge, whoſe preſence none
can avoid, where no corrupt evidence will be
received, and where no excuſe will be admitted.
There and then will their conduct towards me
fly in their face: May they meet with forgivenſs
is my earneſt wiſh; I have a conſolation under
my ſufferings, which they have not, and that
conſolation will be my companion through life.
I can appeal to the all Almighty with a clear conſcience
that I am innocent.
It cannot be ſuppoſed for a moment, that had
I been conſcious of having acted wrong, I would
have ſtaid in the country until this Bill fell due,
far leſs until horning was raiſed on it, and eſpecially
when on the 1.7th of November I was charged
by virtue of that horning; and ſurely had I any
thing to dread I would have fled. Every man
poſſeſſed of common reaſon would have done it:
this is not all; ſix weeks elapſed afterwards,
and nothing further was heard or done relative
to the Bill, and had I been afraid of any danger,
I had time enough to make my eſcape. I was
not in cuſtody; and on the 26th December, I
was on my return from the country to Inverneſs,
when I met the meſſenger at Coryburgh on
way to charge M'Edward; and in order to ſave
two executions, I got a ſecond copy of charge;
and ſo far from diſſuading the meſſenger to execute
the Horning againſt M'Edward, that I poſitively
deſired him to put it in force, and ſend
the Caption to Mr. Miller with all convenient ſpeed.
Armed with an innocent conſcience I went home
to Inverneſs; and on Monday following the 31 ſt
December, I was informed by William Kennedy,
ſervant to Alexander M‘Pherſon in Coryburgh,
that M'Edward was come to town, and deſired
his ſubſcription, to which I could give no credit.
This happened about eleven o'clock A.M. and
bout ſix in the evening, I was called before the
Sheriff for examination, when I not only gave
pointed and accurate anſwers to every queſtion
that was put to me, but gave up all the names of
the witneſſes preſent at the tranſaction, and cited
againſt me, but helped the Sheriff to diſcover
where the Bill lay; yet it is believed that men in
general know, that, however prudent it may be
for an innocent perſon to anſwer any queſtion
fairly, it may be otherwiſe for a perſon couſcious
of guilt; I acted upon the principle of an innocent
perſon, expecting it would have due weight;
had not that been the caſe, I was not bound to
ſay who held the Bill. It would have been my
province to conceal it, and get it ſettled; but I
wiſhed to let my baſe accuſer ſee it, ſuppoſing
it impoſſible for him to deny his own handwriting.
The reverſe was the caſe, and with the
utmoſt effrontery he declared, that it was not his
writing; a warrant of commitment was in conſequence
granted, and I was thrown into a horrible
dungeon, to await the event of a precognition
of the witneſſes on whom I condeſcended. It
was afterwards ſent to the Crown Agent, and a
long delay being made in returning it, I applied
for letters of intimation againſt the procurator
fiſcals and private party, to fix a diet for my trial,
which I obtained and executed; and upon the very
day the time, limited by the act of Parliament,
was expired, that day I was ſerved with an indictment,
from the High Court of Juſticiary, to
ſtand trial fifteen days thereafter.
Soon after my incarceration, I applied to the
ſheriff to be admitted to bail, which he refuſed,
though in ſimilar caſes, he had granted it to
others. What his reaſon was in refuſing me, is
beſt known to himſelf.
What I have ſince ſuffered may be conceived,
but cannot well be expreſſed, what I even ſuffered
coming from Inverneſs to the Gaol of Edinburgh,
is puniſhment enough for almoſt any
crime; but in order that you may judge, I will
here inſert it for your peruſal.
Upon the 7th day of May, I was politely eſcorted
by the Sheriff of Inverneſs, to the end of
the town, my hands bound in irons, a party of
ſoldiers with ſcrewed bayonets, and a Sheriff--
officer attending me with a horſe and cart to carry
my baggage, and if I inclined to fit in it
when fatigued; this party conducted me to the
town of Nairn, the next county town, ſixteen
miles diſtant from Inverneſs; when I was thrown
into goal, when delivered to the Subſtitute
Sheriff; there he cauſed his officers to ſearch not
only myſelf but my trunk, fearful I had any
dangerous weapons, but found none. I was
then thrown into a miſerable dungeon, ſtill in
irons, ſome ſtraw given me for a bed; yet they
were ſo deſtitute of humanity, that they would
not allow me to take off my cloaths --- I was fed
like a child --- I could not feed myſelf --- I threw
myfelf amongſt the ſtraw --- what I ſuffered that
night, I leave every feeling heart to judge. I
was ſent in the ſame manner to Elgin, under
the eſcort of twelve ſoldiers and eighteen men
choſen by the Sheriff, but to their praiſe they
took off my hand-cuffs until we arrived near the
town, when they were obliged, conſiſtent with
their orders, to replace them, I was received
there in the ſame manner, thrown into a wretched
dungeon, and both my legs faſtened in irons,
well ſupplied with a ſtraw bed. The next ſtage
was Banff, where I was conducted in the ſame
manner, and where I was ſtill worſe uſed, (if
worſe uſage was poſſible.) I was ſent off about
two o'Clock in the morning, eſcorted by thirty
men, ſome armed with ſwords, ſome with
bludgeons, ſome with guns, and others with
ruſty ſwords, both my legs fixed in irons by a
blackſmith, and exhibited like a puppet ſhew,
through the ſtreets of Aberdeen, on the top of a
cart, when hundreds of people aſſembled to ſee
me. By this time I thought I had arrived in a
Chriſtian place, as one meſſenger and three men
were my only attendants: they delivered me in
Stonehive goal, where none was but myſelf:
From thence I was ſent to Forfar, eſcorted by
thirty-five old and young men, with my hands
tied with cords behind my back, and in the ſame
manner from Forfar to Perth. But it was there
that I found myſelf amongſt Chriſtians; the
Honourable Sheriff (Mr. Smith) was ſhocked
at the inhumanity I was treated with, and the
manner in which I was ſent, obſerving that my
ſituation in life intitled me to a carriage, and he
accordingly ſent me to Edinburgh in a carriage
with a meſſenger and two men only. Had I been
riotous, or had I wiſhed to eſcape, I would conſider
this treatment as deſerving; but I challenge
my attendants to ſay, that ever I expreſſed a wiſh
to avoid my fate; on the contrary, I was determined
to attend the bar of the High Court of
Juſticiary, and receive my ſentence; and if that
ſentence had been death, I would mount the
ſcaffold in the moſt ſerene manner. No puniſhment
can daunt the innocent heart: God, who
knows my innocence, ſupported me through thoſe
ſufferings, and whatever they may yet be, I truſt
God will grant me grace to ſupport them.
No. I.
SIMON FRASER, Eſq. of Farralene, Advocate,
Sheriff-Depute of Inverneſs-ſhire, to
my officers in that part, conjunctly and ſeverally,
ſpecially conſtitute, greeting: Whereas, by petition
given in and preſented to me by John
Grant, preſent priſoner in the tolbooth of Inverneſs,
humbly ſhewing, That where the petitioner
being incarcerate within the ſaid tolbooth, by
warrant of me, for the crime of forgery alledged
committed by him, conform to an information
ſubſcribed againſt him by Simon Fraſer and James
Cuming, writers in Inverneſs. joint procurators
fiſcals for the public intereſt. In which tolbooth
he has continued for ſome conſiderable time without
any appearance of being brought to a trial,
whereby he might vindicate his innocence of the
ſaid alledged crime: Therefore humbly addreſſed
himſelf to me for the benefit of the act of Parliament
of King William, made in the year ſeventeen
hundred and one, intituled, 'An Act for
preventing wrongous impriſonment, and againſt
undue delays in trials,' having, in terms of the
ſaid act, produced the double of the warrant of
my commitment, under the hand of the keeper
of the priſon; and therefore craving, that it
might pleaſe me to grant warrant for letters of
intimation, for charging the procurators fiſcals,
and party appearing by the warrant, to be concerned
to fix a diet for my trial within ſixty days
in the terms and under the certifications contained
in the ſaid act, as the ſaid petition bears: —
Which petition, with a double of the warrant of
commitment, ſigned by the keeper of the priſon,
therewith produced, being read and conſidered
by me, I, by my deliverance thereon of this
date, ordained theſe my letters to be directed
thereon, in manner under written: --- My will is
herefore, and I charge you ſtrictly, and command,
That, incontinent theſe my letters ſeen,
ye paſs, and, in his Majeſty's name and authority,
and in mine, make due and lawful intimation
to the ſaid Simon Fraſer and James Cuming,
procurators fiſcals, and the party appearing by
the atteſted double of the warrant of commitment,
to be concerned to fix a diet for the ſaid
John Grant his trial, within ſixty days next after
the intimation, in the terms and under the
certifications contained in the act of Parliament
above mentioned; according to Juſtice, as ye will
anſwer to me thereupon. The which to do, &c.
Given under the hands of the Clerk of Court, at
Inverneſs, the ninth day of February, ſeventeen
hundred and ninety-three years.
No. II.
UPON the twenty-firſt day of February, one
thouſand ſeven hundred and ninety-three years,
I Duncan Cameron, one of the ſheriff-officers of
Inverneſs-ſhire, paſt, at command of letters of
intimation, at the inſtance of John Grant, preſent
priſoner in the tolbooth of Inverneſs, and by
virtue thereof, in his Majeſty's name and authority,
and in name and authority therein contained,
made due and lawful intimation to Angus
M'Edward, drover in Balneſpick, Badenoch, the
private party by the warrant appearing to be
concerned, to fix a diet for the ſaid John Grant
his trial, within the ſpace, under the pains, and
I made certification, as is within expreſſed. This
I did, after the form and tenor of the ſaid letters,
in all points, by delivering a full double of the
letters, with a ſhort copy upon the end thereof,
ſubſcribed by me, to the ſaid Angus M'Edward,
the private party appearing by the warrant to
be concerned; by delivering a full double of the
ſaid letters, and a ſhort copy thereto ſubjoined,
leaving the ſame with Janet M'Edward his ſiſter,
within the dwelling houſe of his father, to be given
him, as I did not perſonally apprehend him:
which copy did contain the day and date hereof,
witneſſes' names and deſignations therein inſert,
preſent thereat, and hereto ſubſcribing, viz,
John M'Intoſh, and Angus M'Intyre, both reſidenters
in Ruthven, Badenoch; and for the
more verification hereof, I and the ſaid witneſſes
have ſubſcribed the ſame.
JOHN M'INTOSH, witneſs.
ALEX. WINTYRE, witnefs.
Juſt Publſhed,
- By J. ROBERTSON, No. 4, Horſe-wynd,
Price only EIGHT-PENCE; or, ONE SHILLING with
a Striking PORTRAIT of MR. MUIR.
Alſo, Skirving.'s Edition of the TRIAL of the
The SPEECHES of the Hon. Charles J. FOX, in
the Houſe of Commons, February 1ſt, 12th, and 18th,
on the ſubject of WAR with FRANCE. ALSO,
DEBATES in the Houſe of Commons, on the 6th and
7th of May 1793, on the Motion of Charles Grey, Eſq;
for a Parliamentary Reform, with a Copy of the Petition
for the ſame, and the States of the Repreſentation
of Scotland, England, and Wales, &c.
To be had of J. ROBERTSON.

On the Subject of the CONCERT of PRINCES —
The Diſmemberment of Poland — And the War
with France.
A LETTER to the Earl of Lauderdale,
To prove that the High Court of Parliament
has a juriſdiction in Caſes of Appeal againſt the
judgment of the High Court of Juſticiary in
By John Martin, of Richmond-Buildings, Soho,
Attorney of the Courts of England, and Solicitor of
the Courts of Scotland, &c.
THESE are the TIMES that TRY
Mens Souls!
A LETTER to JOHN FROST, Priſoner in
Henry Yorke,


Cite this Document

APA Style:

The Trial of John Grant, Sheriff-Clerk Depute of the Shire of Inverness before the Circuit Court of Justiciary Held There on May 1, 1793 For Forgery. 2024. In The Corpus of Modern Scottish Writing. Glasgow: University of Glasgow. Retrieved 19 July 2024, from

MLA Style:

"The Trial of John Grant, Sheriff-Clerk Depute of the Shire of Inverness before the Circuit Court of Justiciary Held There on May 1, 1793 For Forgery." The Corpus of Modern Scottish Writing. Glasgow: University of Glasgow, 2024. Web. 19 July 2024.

Chicago Style

The Corpus of Modern Scottish Writing, s.v., "The Trial of John Grant, Sheriff-Clerk Depute of the Shire of Inverness before the Circuit Court of Justiciary Held There on May 1, 1793 For Forgery," accessed 19 July 2024,

If your style guide prefers a single bibliography entry for this resource, we recommend:

The Corpus of Modern Scottish Writing. 2024. Glasgow: University of Glasgow.


The Trial of John Grant, Sheriff-Clerk Depute of the Shire of Inverness before the Circuit Court of Justiciary Held There on May 1, 1793 For Forgery

Document Information

Document ID 7
Title The Trial of John Grant, Sheriff-Clerk Depute of the Shire of Inverness before the Circuit Court of Justiciary Held There on May 1, 1793 For Forgery
Year group 1750-1800
Genre Administrative prose
Year of publication 1793
Wordcount 10078

Author information: Grant, John

Author ID 230
Forenames John
Surname Grant
Gender Male
Occupation Clerk
Locations where resident Inverness