Sort file:- Rochester, July, 2023.

Page Updated:- Saturday, 29 July, 2023.


Earliest 1774-

Silver Oar

Latest 1903+

(Name to)

18 (209) High Street


Silver Oar 1903

Above postcard, dated 1903, also showing the "Bull." Kindly sent by Debi Birkin.

Rochester map 1866

Identified on the 1866 map above as the orange building, bottom.


Kentish Gazette, 20 April, 1774.

Stolen or Strayed, on Sunday the 27th day of March last, out of the Yard or Meadow of Mr. John Cooper, Butcher, of Bramdean, in the County of Southampton.

A black Gelding, near 15 Hands High, of the Saddle Kind, rising 4 years old, with a cut tail not nicked.

If strayed, whoever will give intelligence to Mr. John Bradley, at the "Silver Ore," Rochester, so as he may be had again, shall be handsomely rewarded for their trouble.

If stolen, whoever will stop the said horse and secure the person that stole him, shall, on conviction, received 5 guineas, over and above the reward by Act of Parliament, from me, John Cooper.


Kentish Gazette, 24 April, 1792.

April 19th, 1792. "Silver Ore," City of Rochester.

Mary Turvill, begs leave to acquaint her friends and the public in general, that she has opened the above house, which she flattens herself from the improvement made in the rebuilding, and her constant endeavours to render it agreeable, will meet with the approbation of those who honour her with their commands.

With the highest sense of gratitude, she returns thanks to her numerous friends for the favours they so liberally conferred on her before the late accident, and trusts that she shall continue to have the happiness of meeting with their future support, which will be ever gratefully acknowledged.

By their most obliged and obedient humble servant, Mary Turvill.


Kentish Gazette, 12 July 1814.

To be sold by auction, 5th. Homewood.

At the "Silver Oar," Rochester, on Tuesday, 19th July, at three o'clock in the afternoon, the valuable Lease for an unexpired term of 24 years from 10th of October last, of a Messuage, with a barn, stable, and outbuildings, and several pieces or parcels of land, containing, by measurement, about 70 Acres, with the appurtenances, situate in the parish of Hoo, near Rochester, in the county of Kent, and now or late in the occupation of Mr. William Burton.

Also, the freehold of several pieces or parcels of valuable land, situate in the parish of Hoo aforesaid, and used with the said Leasehold Estate, containing 32 Acres or thereabouts.

Possession may be had at Michaelmas next.

Further plans may be known on application to Mr. Scudamore, Solicitor, Maidstone, the "Silver Oar," Rochester, or of the auctioneer, Gabriel's Hill, Maidstone.


Kentish Gazette 11 June 1819.


June 7th, at Rochester, aged 56 years, Mrs. Sharp, landlady of the "Silver Oar," at that place.


Kentish Chronicle, 24 March 1829.

Death Rochester.

March 14, at Rochester, in his 38th year, Mr. Sharp, of the "Silver Oar Tavern."


From the Kentish Gazette, 28 August 1838.

Melancholy Suicide.

On Monday an inquest was held at the "Silver Oar," Rochester, before R. Hinde, Esq. coroner, on the body of Mrs. Crampton, whose death was occasioned by taking a quantity of the essence of bitter almonds on Saturday evening. It appeared that the unfortunate lady had at intervals been subject to fits of insanity, and that about nine months since she was placed under restraint at Calais for that malady; but latterly she had been very comfortable, and no suspicion existed that she meditated self destruction, though it appeared that she had occasionally dwelt upon the subject, and argued in justification of such an act. Having recently read in a newspaper of a death caused by the above-mentioned ingredient, it is supposed led her to its use, for which purpose she purchased half an ounce on Saturday at Mr. Rackham’s, who cautioned her to be careful as to its use, it being sold, we understand, for flavoring pies, puddings, &c. It was stated that she lived on the happiest terms with her husband, and had been remarkably cheerful throughout the day. She retired to bed about half an hour before Mr. Crampton, and when he went into the bed-room about ten o’clock he found her in her night dress in the agonies of death. Mr. Bell was immediately sent for, and every means used that medical skill could suggest, but she shortly afterwards became a corpse.

The verdict of the jury was, "Temporary Insanity." The unfortunate lady was 31 years of age, and has left a family of three children.


South Eastern Gazette 30 November 1841.


An inquest was held by Mr. Hinde, coroner, on Tuesday last, at the "Silver Oar," Rochester, on the body of Colonel Henry Cuyler, of Boley-hill, who was found dead on Monday morning, in his chamber.

The deceased was 73 years of age, and had been indisposed lately. On the morning in question, the servant went to his room in consequence of his not making his appearance as usual, and found him in a sitting posture, leaning against the wall, near to the night stool, which he had, no doubt, attempted to reach, - quite dead. Mr. Stephenson, his medical attendant, attributed his death to an affection of the heart, a disease remarkably prevalent at this period in elderly persons. The jury returned a verdict of "Died by the visitation of God."

Colonel Cuyler was the oldest colonel in the service, having been longer in it than the Duke of Wellington. He was accustomed jocosely to say, that there were three great men born in one year - the Duke of Wellington, Napoleon, and himself, but that one of them had not been so fortunate as the rest.


From the Kentish Gazette, 1 August 1843.


On Thursday morning some considerable sensation was created in this city and neighbourhood, owing to a young man and young woman of respectable appearance having been found drowned about six o'clock that morning clasped in each other's arms, and lying in the mud of the River Medway, opposite to a place called Phillips Well. They were picked up by a man named John Reed, who on examining the bodies, found they were tied together with tape round their arms between the shoulder and elbow, the left arm of the young man being fastened to the right arm of the young woman. With assistance, he conveyed the bodies to an outhouse at Ladbury’s Quay. The names of the unfortunate couple are William Edward Henderey, aged about 30 years, and Ann Hannah Sancto, about 18 years old. The former is reported to be a widower with two children, and the latter, the daughter of a publican, living in Strood.

Information of the above circumstance was immediately given to the coroner of the city, James Lewis. Esq., who directly ordered the summoning officer to empanel a jury.

The inquisition was held at the "Silver Oar Inn, High-street, when the coroner, after swearing the jury, repaired to the spot and took a view of the bodies.

From the evidence of the father, mother and brother of the deceased, it appeared that the deceased female was 18 years of age, and had formed an intimacy with the deceased Henderey about eleven weeks since. The courtship was not much approved by her parents, but as she seemed much attached to the man, they sanctioned it, and it was arranged that they were to be married on the 19th ult. On the previous day (Tuesday) however, Henderey left Rochester, stating he should return in the evening, but he did not return until the following Monday, and then, on an interview with the deceased female, he said it was not his intention to marry her, as something was hanging on his mind, and he should not be alive on the following Friday. He also asked her if she was willing to die with him. She laughed at him and thought nothing more about it. This she had told her parents. The breaking off the match hung much on her mind, and she was in a very desponding state on Tuesday, on the evening of which day she dressed herself in her best clothes, and left, as she said, for a walk; and was not again seen alive by her friends, who were distressed and anxious at her unaccountable absence. Her brother on Wednesday was sent to the lodgings of Henderey, who denied having seen her. On Wednesday evening her mother went to the lodgings of Henderey, and his landlady then told Mrs. Sancto that her daughter came to the house on Tuesday evening, and that she was there at the time Henderey had denied having seen her. She and Henderey afterwards went out, and no evidence was given of their having been again seen until they were found as described. The young woman bore an irreproachable character. Henderey, at the commencement of the intimacy, frequently, when paying for beer, pulled out 18 or 20 sovereigns from his pocket, but latterly he had appeared short of money.

At ten o’clock at night the jury expressed a wish to adjourn the inquiry, as there were several more witnesses to examine, and the inquest was accordingly adjourned to Monday (yesterday).

This melancholy and extraordinary suicide has caused the most intense excitement, and the jury room was crowded to excess.


From the Kentish Gazette, 17 October 1848.


On Tuesday an inquest was held upon the body of a young woman, who had been found in a ditch in the Fair Meadow at Strood, with a piece of carpet over her face, which it was supposed had suffocated her. She bore no marks of violence, but her pockets were empty, and a shawl which had been seen on her arm, together with a parcel, her handkerchief, and gloves, were missing.

Since the inquest it has been ascertained that the deceased's name was Sarah Abbot; that she had been living in service at Gravesend; that on the Saturday preceding she arrived at Rochester by an omnibus, and was put down at the "Silver Oar Inn," and paid for her fare with a half sovereign, receiving the change. Her box was taken into the coffee-room, to accompany her by a Maidstone omnibus to Hawkhurst, to spend some days with her relatives. She shortly after left the inn, supposed for a walk. It is now believed that the deceased had had some drug applied to her nostrils, which produced stupefaction, and that she was then placed in the ditch and robbed. The box of the deceased, which is at the inn, has been searched by the Superintendent of the Police, and in it is a piece of new edelaine the pattern and colour of deceased's gown, which clears up all doubt as to her identity. Her death, whenever it was accomplished, remains a mystery.

Oct. 14.

(Click for inquest.)


Southeastern Gazette, 4 January 1853.

At the Petty Sessions, held at the Guildhall, on 'Wednesday, George Wakefield, Charles Osborne, and John Dale, were charged with felony; Wakefield and Osborne for stealing a gun, the property of S. H. Bluck, Esq.; Wakefield and Dale for stealing a gun and mahogany case, also the property of Mr. Bluck, from the "Bull Hotel," Rochester.

Mr. M’Carthy Stephenson defended Osborne.

George Harris stated that he had been ostler at the "Bull Inn" for 17 years. Mr. Bluck resided there, and was residing there in August last. On Sunday evening, the 19th of December, witness went into the granary, where Mr. Bluck’s things were kept. The granary is over the Coachhouse in the yard: it was always kept locked. He was sent to fetch the two guns, and went into the bar for the key. He then went into the loft and searched for them. He found the leather cases in which they had been, but the guns were gone. One case was to put the gun in, the other was to put a mahogany case in. He had carried them into the loft, with other luggage, a long time ago—perhaps a twelvemonth. He had seen the guns in the cases, but had not seen them since. He believed those now produced are the same.

Cross-examined:- Mr. Bluck, Mr. McCulloch, and others had access to the granary, as well as Wakefield. There was a pigeon-house made there, and Wakefield went up every morning: to feed the pigeons. He had seen him go up there since August; sometimes twice a day. He might go a dozen times without witness seeing him. He never saw Osborne there, unless it was on Seath’s business, when he brought chaises from the "Silver Oar," which were kept in the Bull yard. He had known Osborne since he was a boy, and never knew anything against him. He did not know how long he had been at the "Silver Oar," but he believed about a year and a half or two years.

John Field, waiter at the "Bull," stated that in consequence of directions he had received from Mrs. Mc.Culloch he went to Mr. Coles, the pawnbroker, on Monday, the 20th December, with a written list of articles to enquire for. He took the gun to the bar of the "Bull" on the same day. Mr. Bluck was in London. Mrs. Mc.Culloch was in the bar. He took no duplicate to redeem the gun. He did not see it again from Monday till the Wednesday following, when it was again given into his charge by Mrs. Mc.Culloch. After he had obtained possession of the gun on Monday, he saw Wakefield the same evening, who was standing in the passage at the "Bull," and saw him come in. He said, "Oh, my God, I know all about it." Witness saw him again on Tuesday at the "Bull," with some papers in his hand. He said to him, "What a foolish young man you must be to commit yourself in this sort of way." He made a heavy sigh, but said nothing. He saw him again in the afternoon, about 4 o’clock, in the commercial-room, and saw him take some pawn tickets from under the carpet. Witness told him the tickets were of no use, for he had redeemed the gun. He handed two tickets to witness, who returned them, and Wakefield burnt them. He saw the name of Coles on one of them.

By the Bench:— He got the money (21s. 4d.) from the bar, and went and redeemed the gun.

Cross-examined:— Wakefield did not tell me he had given the gun to Osborne to pawn. Mr. Coles lives between 100 and 200 yards from Mr. Bluck’s. Mr. Coles’s shop is the nearest to the "Bull" and where Osborne was living. The pawnbroker gave me the gun on my stating that it belonged to Mr. Bluck. He did not ask for a ticket. I said if anything was wanted he knew where to find me.

Mr. J. Coles, pawnbroker, stated that on the evening of the 27th August, Osborne brought him a gun, and said that a man up the street, who was short of money, wanted him to pawn it. He wanted 20s. for it. He told his assistant to make out a ticket, and asked in whose name it was to be. He said in his own name. He gave him the money and a ticket, and he left the shop. On the 20th December he gave up the gun to Field. The gun produced was the same.

Cross-examined:— Field produced no ticket or declaration. He said the parties did not wish to prosecute, if they got the property back.

Superintendent Tuff said that on the 23rd instant, he apprehended Wakefield at the "Bull Inn," and told him the charge against him. He said he was very sorry, and I hoped ho should be forgiven. He said he had taken one gun to the side window in the passage that looked into the back yard of the "Silver Oar," and gave it to Charles Osborne. He then said he took the other gun on the next day to the "Bull Tap," and gave it to John Dale to go and pawn it, which he did. That was all his statement. The next day, the 24th, he apprehended Osborne, telling him what it was for. Osborne said Wakefield had asked him to take the gun and pawn it, which he did, and gave him the money. He had previously asked him if it was all right, and he said it belonged to Mr. Martin, the miller. He pawned it not knowing but what it was Wakefield’s own property; if he had known it he would not have pawned it.

Mr. Bluck identified the gun as his property, and valued it at 8.

Mr. Stephenson submitted that the evidence of Superintendent Tuff was perfectly consistent with the innocence of his client, and a proof that he had pawned it for Wakefield without guilty knowledge.

The two prisoners were then committed for trial. Osborne was admitted to bail, himself in 40 and two sureties in 20 each.

Wakefield and Dale were then charged with stealing another gun in a mahogany case, which also contained some fishing tackle.

The evidence was nearly the same as in the last case.

Mr. Dunning, pawnbroker, of Eastgate, proved that on the 2Sth of August, Dale brought the gun and case to him and wanted 15s. for it. Having some suspicion about it, he asked who it belonged to, and he said to a man outside. He then fetched in Wakefield, who said it was his own, or that it was all right. He than gave Dale 15s. and a ticket, and in his book he added Wakefield’s name to Dale’s.

Superintendent Tuff said he apprehended Dale, on the 24th inst. On telling him what it was for, he said he was in the "Bull Tap," at Rochester, when Wakefield came in and asked him if he would go and pawn a gun for him. He brought it out and accompanied the witness to the pawnbroker's. He received the money for it, and gave it to Wakefield.

They were both committed for trial.


South Eastern Gazette 28 October 1862.


George Hunt was charged with stealing a pewter jug, value 4s., the property of Mr. F. Davis, landlord of the "Silver Oar," public-house, High-Street, Rochester, on the 20th inst.

P. C. 8 said he was on duty at half past nine o'clock on the previous evening, when he saw prisoner go into prosecutor's house and come out again almost immediately with a pewter jug in his hand. Witness took prisoner into custody, and when he told him the charge he made no reply.

Prosecutor said he saw prisoner come into his bar the previous evening, take a jug off the counter, and walk away. He gave information to the police. Witness identified the jug produced by the constable, as his property.

Prisoner, who made no defence, was sentenced to twenty one days' hard labour.



The "Silver Oar" after closure eventually became the "Rochester Bar." As yet, dates unknown and I expect there was a period between when it was not a public house.

The National Archives reference BT99/1721 shows that Charles Sutton was the owner of a vessel called the "Charles and Gordon" in 1891 and had worked for the Merchant Navy.



BRADLEY John 1774+

TURVILL Mary 19/Apr/1794+

SHARP Mrs to 7/June/1819 dec'd

SHARP William 1828-14/Mar/29 dec'd Pigot's Directory 1828-29

SHARP Stephen 1832-47+ Pigot's Directory 1832-34

SEATH William 1852+

CONINGSBY William 1858+

BEADNELL James 1961+ (age 49 in 1861Census)

DAVIS Francis 1862+

COLEGATE George William 1874+

TUFFEY William 1881+ (age 46 in 1881Census)

LADD Henry Richard 1882+

SUTTON Charles 1891+ (age 42 in 1891Census)

WOOLMER Frederick Ernest 1903+ Kelly's 1903



Pigot's Directory 1828-29From the Pigot's Directory 1828-29

Pigot's Directory 1832-34From the Pigot's Directory 1832-33-34

Kelly's 1903From the Kelly's Directory 1903


If anyone should have any further information, or indeed any pictures or photographs of the above licensed premises, please email:-