Find your ancestors in Yorkshire, Sheffield Crime Courts And Convicts 1769-1931

Search for your Sheffield Ancestor in this collection of over 200,000 records which cover both the perpetrators of crime in and around Sheffield, and those who helped bring them to justice.

Each record comprises a transcription from original images. The amount of information listed varies, but the records usually include the following information about your ancestor:

  • Name
  • Birth year
  • Age
  • Place
  • Event date
  • Year
  • Document reference
  • Document title
  • Other details

Discover more about these records

These transcriptions are all taken from original documents held by Sheffield Archives and Local Studies and cover both criminals, and those who were charged with catching them. Specifically, these records are to be found in the following series:

  • Cases prosecuted for desertion, neglect of their children, c1904-1908
  • General gaol delivery, Yorkshire 1841
  • Orders for bankruptcy hearing
  • Police charge book 1838-1865
  • Prosecutions of felons 1837
  • Quarter Sessions prison calendar 1880-1931
  • Sheffield, Magistrates Court Register 1882-1917
  • Sheffield Police Ticket of Leave register, 1864-1874
  • Sheffield Police, Conduct and Commendation Book, 1831-1893
  • Sheffield Quarter Sessions prison calendar
  • Sheffield Watch Committee minutes 1891-1896
  • York Castle prison calendar 1769
  • Yorkshire Assizes prison calendar 1841-1842
  • General Gaol Delivery, Yorkshire 1841

So if your ancestor destroyed cabbage plants, detained 12-year-old Ann Flanagan, or stole a bagatelle ball, you may well find him or her in this collection.

Each record also provides a link back to Sheffield Archives and Local Studies so that you can enquire about obtaining copies of the original images.

The good, the bad, and the sweary

Fred Singleton, Arthur Shandley and Frank Roberts, all in their forties and old enough to know better, were charged with being drunk on the 26th October 1915. They were far from alone in enjoying a tipple. There are nearly 1,800 cases of individuals who were charged with being drunk, including some multiple offenders.

Meanwhile, over 1000 people were charged with using obscene language. Ellen Cooper, born in 1868, appears to have had a particularly strong command of Anglo-Saxon and was charged on three separate occasions in June 1896, May 1898, and June 1898. The comments she reserved for the judge are, unfortunately, unprintable.

As well as the house-breakers, thieves and vagabonds, you’ll also find men like PC Airey and PC Bouchier who were rewarded for catching burglars, and the widow of PC William Henry Cook who benefited from her late husband’s significant gratuity.