Colonel Thorn and the Thieves

It’s unsurprising, with so much ostenatatious wealth, that the Thorn’s were occasionally robbed over the years. I’ve found a few references to these incidents. One occasion was August 1839 when they were on holiday in Italy. They had been living in Paris for almost a decade at that time, and they travelled often.

Colonel Thorn, famous American, lives in Paris a large hotel located rue de Varennes, 23, whose gardens extend to the street to which the young pupil of the Polytechnic Vanneau, killed on July 29, 1830 in the attack of the Swiss barracks. Colonel Thorn, absent at the moment for a trip to Italy, had left the guard of his hotel to a concierge on whose integrity and dedication he can count, but whose vigilance has however just been put in default. Thieves, taking advantage of the darkness of the night, entered the hotel through the garden walls on the side of the (1056) rue Vanneau. Once inside, they managed to fracture, without be heard, the blinds and shutters of one of the rooms ground floor: once this outcome had been achieved, they entered the apartments, where they removed a quantity of furniture, lingerie and toiletries, the value of which may be estimated from 15 to 20,000 fr. Mr. Colonel Thorn, luckily, had taken part of his silverware on his trip, and the the rest had been, by wise precaution, deposited with his goldsmith. The police commissioner of the Invalides district has, on the complaint from the concierge, noted the signs of break-in, and immediately kings in search of thieves that we could not, moreover, so far to come to know.

Another incident a few years later in 1844, was much more personal in nature. Just before the Colonel and Jane Mary left for Dieppe baths in 1844, they were robbed by their Irish lady’s maid Catherine Dwine. It’s quite a long article, so I won’t post it all here. In it, the victim of the theft is described as being upon Mrs

Lace 1844

(Jauncey), so I’m not sure if this was James’s wife, or they are referring to Jane Mary Thorn when they say Mrs Jauncey. I know that James and his wife lived with the family in Paris and this occurred a year before James died. The article reports that Catherine had stolen from a previous employer, and then when she was at rue de Varenne, she took lace and other items belonging to her employer. There is a suggestion that she was under the spell of a man. The penalty was two years imprisonment.

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