Dick Turpin facts for kids
Quick facts for kidsDick Turpin
Turpin imagined in William Harrison Ainsworth's novel Rookwood
21 September 1705 (baptised)
Hempstead, Essex, England
|Died||7 April 1739
Knavesmire, York, England
|Cause||Execution by hanging|
|Occupation||Butcher, poacher, burglar, horse thief, highwayman|
Dick Turpin (1705 – 7 April 1739) was an English highwayman. He made a lot of money through many criminal activities, such as poaching, burglary, horse theft and murder. He is most famous for 'highway robbery', on his horse, Black Bess. He was eventually captured and hanged at York Castle in 1739.
Turpin was born in Hempstead, Essex. He was firstly believed to be involved with a gang of poachers, who stole and sold deer that belonged to the King. The rest of his gang were captured and hanged in 1735.
After this, Turpin started robbing rich people on the highways between cities. He did not stay in one place, so police could not catch up with him. He robbed people across the South of England. For a while, he tried to hide by calling himself John Palmer.
Turpin is also known for a fictional 200-mile (320 km) overnight ride from London to York on his horse Black Bess, a story that was made famous by the Victorian novelist William Harrison Ainsworth almost 100 years after Turpin's death.
Turpin became the subject of legend after his execution, romanticised as dashing and heroic in English ballads and popular theatre of the 18th and 19th centuries and in film and television of the 20th century.
Images for kids
Epping Forest was a regular haunt of the Essex Gang.
Thomas Pelham-Holles, 1st Duke of Newcastle, pressed hard to have Turpin tried in London.
This gallows, at Tyburn, was similar in design to that used in York.
The gravestone that reputedly marks the location of Turpin's grave at Fishergate in York
Lobby poster to Dick Turpin, a 1925 American silent film starring cowboy great Tom Mix produced by Fox Film Corporation.
Dick Turpin Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.