I blogged some time ago about discovering that my 3xg-grandfather Hugh Hall from Wilton was convicted of smuggling in 1857 and sentenced to hard labour in Jedburgh prison. Sadly the court papers for his case don’t survive, so I was hoping to find out more details – in particular what he smuggled – through the local newspapers.
I asked the local archive in Hawick to check newspapers for me. They looked at all of the Hawick Advertiser, the Kelso Chronicle, and the Southern Reporter. Sadly none of the papers, not even the Hawick one, reported on the case. Indeed the archives assistant observed that only the most serious crimes like murder were reported.
So what Hugh smuggled must remain a mystery.