Today in London’s radical history: imprisoned debtors attempt mass escape, Newgate, 1778.

“On Monday night, about two o’clock, the debtors in one part of the old jail of Newgate which remains on the north side of Newgate-street, attempted to make their escape, and would probably have effected it, if some persons in the neighbourhood, who were alarmed at the noise, had not sent notice to Mr Akerman, [the prison warden] who soon arrived with proper assistance, when it was found the prisoners had broke from their upper apartments, and got the lower outward door. They were secured, and a guard left to prevent any future attempt.”

(from the Annual Register, 1778)


An entry in the 2016 London Rebel History Calendar – check it out online.



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