Wednesday, May 20, 2020

The runaway apprentice

APPRENTICE RAN AWAY. Penrith 24th of 12th month 1790. Whereas John Thompson (son of John Thompson of Wigton, Clockmaker) an indentured apprentice to William Wilkinson (late of Wigton) Clockmaker, ran away from his said Master some time ago...Notice is hereby given that whoever harbours or employs the said Apprentice, shall be prosecuted as the law directs...William W.

However, the apprentice's father was not content to let it pass at that, but took an advertisement himself shortly after. 

TO THE PUBLIC. Whereas an advertisement appeared in the Cumberland Pacquet of the 29th Ult (previous month) under signature of WILLIAM WILKINSON of Penrith, Clockmaker, charging his apprentice John Thompson... with having some time ago deserted his apprenticeship, The said apprentice;s father will give a sufficient indemnity to any person who may employ or harbour his son and take every method to chastise Wilkinson's insolence; and that the public may not be deceived by his fictitious advertisement, the following facts are laid before them, viz. The young man in March 1787 under necessity of leaving his master, for want of victuals and other bad treatment and about that time a Magistrate (the late Dr Dunn of Lowther) on hearing both parties, ordered him home to his parents with a severe reprimand to Wilkinson ho has ever since known where the said apprentice was, and whose term elapsed the 5th of April last and shortly after Wilkinson directed the gentleman who had the custody of the indentures to cancel them, without (before or since) making any demand of the young man as his apprentice, till very lately, when he saw him at work with Mr Lough, watchmaker, in Penrith when a jealous and malevolent disposition instigated his insolent advertisement. John Thompson Senr. Wigton. Jan 8th 1791.

Extract from 'The Concise Guide to British Clocks' by Brian Loomes

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