Jump to content
The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

Anthony Castor - six months' imprisonment with hard labour


BereniceUK
 Share

Recommended Posts

An 'interesting' record for this man who apparently had served in France prior to the thefts. The press report below appeared in The Bootle Times of January 19, 1917. Did he return to the army after release from prison? He doesn't seem to be listed in the CWGC database, so presumably survived the war.

 

Anthony Castor, a private soldier recently stationed at Thornton [near Great Crosby, Lancashire/Merseyside], came before the West Derby Hundred Court of Quarter Sessions at Islington on Tuesday, charged with various robberies. He pleaded guilty to the indictments. The specific charges set out against prisoner were having stolen £22 in Treasury Notes, a stamp book and postage stamps, the property of Adolphus Henry Rice and others, at Thornton on the 2nd November, 1916.

 

It was stated that prisoner, having first visited the officers' quarters, turned his attention to the non-commissioned officers, and purloined from them. When arrested at Crosby on November 15th and accused of having robbed the quartermaster, among others, he replied, "I am glad it was the quartermaster." Why he should have any special grudge against that officer, said Mr. D'Arcy, prosecuting counsel, was not known. Prisoner also told the police, "It's all right; I spent the money in gambling, and had a good time."

 

Prisoner, although only twenty years of age, had had a very adventurous record both in the Army and in civil life. He had had three charges against him for military offences, breaking out of camp, and so forth. In 1909 he was sent to an Industrial School, and in subsequent years he got into trouble in various ways. Finally he got special leave to join the Army, and that had failed to keep him straight.

 

Prisoner said the trouble was that he had had no pay for some time. He would not mind going to France again if the Court could see their way.

 

The Court could not see their way to return prisoner to the Army. They sentenced him to six months' imprisonment with hard labour.

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Admin

If a man had been released from prison then he would be open to being recalled to active service with the military - whether they did so or not is another matter.

 

Craig

Edited by ss002d6252
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks, Craig. Which raises another question - in a case like this, if the army declined to have him back, how would that sit with others of his age being conscripted? Big incentive for someone who didn't want to serve to be as objectionable as possible, surely?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

26291 Pte. Anthony Castor 2nd South Lancs. Medals forfeited under AO298 of 1920, so did have overseas service. Can't see any service record to say one way or another as to post-crime service.

 

Sometimes medals were forfeited for the service up to the point of the crime, so eg a 1914 star may be forfeited but further service would re-entitle the man to BWM & Vict. That would suggest he didn't rejoin (or serve abroad) after doing his time.

TEW

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Admin
5 minutes ago, BereniceUK said:

Thanks, Craig. Which raises another question - in a case like this, if the army declined to have him back, how would that sit with others of his age being conscripted? Big incentive for someone who didn't want to serve to be as objectionable as possible, surely?

 

I suspect one of four options -  the army would have used him somehow at home, he found work in industry, he was too ill/sick to serve again or he ended up back in prison.

 

If he was just being awkward I'm sure the army could have found a friendly serjeant major to keep him company. One of the reasons the army suspended sentences was to prevent men using it to try and escape from service.

 

Craig

Edited by ss002d6252
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Link to comment
Share on other sites

FMP is having some sort of episode, so i'm struggling to view any records, however Anthony/(also William) Castor appears in the prison registers in 1913, 1917, 1918, 1922 and 1928.

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Admin
Just now, IPT said:

FMP is having some sort of episode, so i'm struggling to view any records, however Anthony/(also William) Castor appears in the prison registers in 1913, 1917, 1918, 1922 and 1928.

 

 

It's doing it for me too - I was just going to check the registers as well.

 

Craig

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, ss002d6252 said:

 

I suspect one of four options -  the army would have used him somehow at home, he found work in industry, he was too ill/sick to serve again or he ended up back in prison.

 

If he was just being awkward I'm sure the army could have found a friendly serjeant major to keep him company. One of the reasons the army suspended sentences was to prevent men using it to try and escape from service.

 

Craig

 

Thank you, looks like option #4 was the one.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Admin

He was admitted to St Pancras Workhouse in 1913 - he had initially given his name as John Thompson. Previously lived at 56 Ashmore Street, Preston. Occupation given as a tailor.

 

Born 1896 in London but was in Preston by 1901.

 

Craig

Edited by ss002d6252
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 hour ago, ss002d6252 said:

He was admitted to St Pancras Workhouse in 1913 - he had initially given his name as John Thompson. Previously lived at 56 Ashmore Street, Preston. Occupation given as a tailor.

 

Craig

Judging by his criminal record I doubt he'd have an honest occupation in his life, unless he turned over a new leaf after coming out of prison.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Admin

So it confirms that before they had a chance to get him back in to the army he was back in Prison -

 

Makes me think of this - "Anthony Castor, you have pleaded guilty to the charges brought by this court, and it is now my duty to pass sentence. You are an habitual criminal, who accepts arrest as an occupational hazard, and presumably accepts imprisonment in the same casual manner. "

 

Craig

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Admin
2 minutes ago, BereniceUK said:

Judging by his criminal record I doubt he'd have an honest occupation in his life, unless he turned over a new leaf after coming out of prison.

Yes, I think 'tailor' was somewhat of an overstatement of any honest occupation he'd ever managed.

 

Craig

Link to comment
Share on other sites

In 1954, he was living in Victoria Street, Ellesmere Port, when his daughter, Hazel, eloped to Gretna Green.

 

I wonder if he's the Francis Anthony Castor that died there in 1985. 

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Admin
9 minutes ago, IPT said:

In 1954, he was living in Victoria Street, Ellesmere Port, when his daughter, Hazel, eloped to Gretna Green.

 

I wonder if he's the Francis Anthony Castor that died there in 1985. 

 

 

There's no records of a Francis Anthony in the FreeBMD birth records between 1894 and 1898 so I think it probably is him but he was also known to use William West and John Thompson.

 

Craig

Edited by ss002d6252
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thank you to IPT, TEW, and Craig for your responses. I had no idea what my post about a bit of thieving would bring to light!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Admin
1 minute ago, BereniceUK said:

Thank you to IPT, TEW, and Craig for your responses. I had no idea what my post about a bit of thieving would bring to light!

It's amazing just how much information can come to light on someone after a hundred years or so.

 

Craig

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...