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Smuggling in dorset


Valued Member
Gold Coast
While researching and trying to find the families of Isaac Wakely Miller and his wife Mary Barns in the Chideock, Dorset area, I came across this article

"Women Smugglers
Not only were women useful to the smugglers as signallers and carriers of messages from members of the gang to each other, but they actually brought goods in from the shore for them.
The voluminous skirt was a particularly useful fashion, for the women wound yards of silk and lace round their bodies and reached home as a rule quite peacefully with their contraband.
There have been cases, however, when women have, on inspection, been found to have had their petticoats puffed out by bladders filled with spirits.
A report from a Hampshire Chronicle of March 25th 1799 stated that
"A woman of the name of Maclane, residing at Gosport, accustomed to supply the crew of Queen Charlotte with slops went out in a wherry to Spithead, when a sudden squall coming on, the boat sank; the watermen were drowned, but the life of the woman was providentially saved, by being buoyed up with a quantity of bladders, which had been secreted round her for the purpose of smuggling liquor into the ship, until she was picked up by the boat of a transport lying near." A case of being buoyed up by good spirits no doubt!"

Made me laugh :2fun: >:D :2fun:

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