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In Their Own Words

August 14, 1740

Prisoner Escape Recorded

The Trustees’ secretary in Georgia, William Stephens, had some bad news to report:

“This Morning began with a very surprising Piece of ill News; that the Spanish prisoner, whom the Magistrates committed above a Year since upon strong Presumption of being a Spy, together with an Irishman his companion … under Apprehensions of a War likely to break out soon, the General had given Orders to be continued in safe Custody: They both broke out of Prison this last Night, and were fled … . Notwithstanding all which Precaution, and they being also locked into a close Cell, they found means to wrench the Staple of that Lock, and got into the outer Prison, where in a most incredible Manner they got free also from their Fetters and Chains, and before Morning found Means to get out at the Top of the Prison Room, by some of the Timber-Work being raised up, which could not be done but by some Help from without; nor could they have effected what they did within, had they not been supplied with proper materials, by some Villains who assisted them; and out of Hatred to the Authority by which this Colony subsists, are wicked enough to turn Parricides, and wish to see Destruction brought upon the Whole… .”

Source: William Stephens, A Journal of the Proceeding in Georgia (no city: Readex Microprint Corporation, 1966), Vol. II, pp. 473-474.