The Road Through Harpenden

by Chris Reynolds



This is the only reference I have so far found to robbery on the Harpenden Road.

Attempt at Highway Robbery. – On Saturday evening last, about seven o’clock, as Mr J. Austin, of Hertford, was proceeding in his four-wheel chaise to Luton, Bedfordshire, when, between St Albans and Harpenden, about 2 miles from the former place, he passed two men on the road; immediately after which one of them seized Mr A. by the cape of his cloak, and pulled him backwards. Mr A. was much alarmed and set off his horse at full gallop, and the ruffian, after hanging as long as he could, was obliged to leave go, and left the cape nearly severed from the cloak, hanging to it. In the scuffle Mr Austin lost his hat, which he saw one of the villains in the act of picking up after he had been released from his grasp. The man who did not attack him had a bludgeon, but fortunately he had not time to come up before Mr Austin set his horse off. They were both young men, about 22 and 25, and dressed in short gaberdines; the youngest, who attacked Mr Austin, was a short thick-set man, light complexion and hair, and without whiskers; the other rather taller, and not quite so stout.

The Bucks Gazette 28th March 1829

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