Interesting Revelations On Cleveland Street

Posted: January 29, 2009 in Cleveland Street Scandal
I found the following article in an American newspaper in regards to the Cleveland Street Scandal. It was already common knowledge to several individuals that there was a house of ill-repute in Cleveland Street as early as June 1888:
Revival of the Great London Scandal That Besmirched the Nobility.
Herbert John Ames, aged nineteen, who was an inmate of Charles R. Hammond’s notorious Cleveland street house, in London, and who escaped with Hammond to this country, made a statement concerning the notorious place and swore to its truth before a notary public, in the presence of several witnesses.
Hammond is under sentence for two years in the penitentiary for grand larceny, and the boy, who has heretofore been afraid to tell his story because of Hammond’s threats of personal violence, now tells it voluntarily.
Young Ames was secretary for Hammond, and says he wrote many letters last year to English noblemen demanding hush money. His sworn statement in part is as follows: "In June, 1888, Thomas Conway, a boy of nineteen years of age, told me of the existence of a house kept by Hammond on Cleveland Street, London, and induced me to go there with him.
"As the life was an easy one and money was plenty, I remained there till June, 1889, at which time a discovery of the nature of the house compelled Hammond and myself to leave London. I was told by Hammond that he had been running the place between three and four years, and during the year that I was there about twenty men visited the house regularly.
"Many of these were introduced into the house under a false name, and the names of some were never known either to Hammond or myself. Seven of the men I became personally acquainted with, and their names were: The earl of Euston, Lord Arthur Somerset, Robert Jervoice, queen officer at Winchester Barracks; Dr. Maitland of Harvard, a suburb of London; Percy Stafford, a capitalist of London; Hugh Waglin, a banker, London; and Captain Barbey of the army.
"All the visitors to the house were from the highest class and they were always liberal with their money. Then the exposure occurred which caused the house to shut down. Hammond took me with him and went to Calais and from there went to Paris. In Paris we stayed three weeks with Mrs. Hammond’s sister and then went to Langley, France.
"At Langley, Hammond was met by Arthur Newton, a lawyer acting in the interests of the visitors to the Cleveland street house, and he wanted us to go to America at once. On the following day two English detectives went to the French officers and had Hammond expelled from the country. They told him to leave by noontime.
"In July, 1889, we left France and went to Belfast, and then to Halanzy, where we stayed three weeks. While in Halanzy, Newton, the lawyer, sent word to Hammond to go to Antwerp, where he would meet him and arrange matters. We met Newton at Brussels, and in a room in one of the hotels there Newton asked what he would take to go to America.
"I was in the room at the time, and Hammond told him that he would have to have £5000 to start with. The matter was finally compromised between them for £800. We sailed under fictitious names on the steamer Penland for New York, and when we arrived there a man named Harris, who had been sent by Newton to see that we arrived all right, paid $4000 over to Hammond.
"Hammond cannot write, and since he has been here I have done that work for him. I have written letters for him demanding money from the earl of Euston, Lord Somerset and Robert Jervoice demanding £100 for Hammond, who stated that he was in trouble. Whether or not Hammond ever received any return I cannot positively state.
"While Hammond was running the Haymarket saloon I once asked him for money. He was very pleasant and offered me some whiskey to drink, but I did not touch it, as there was a substance in the bottom of the glass that looked like poison."
Source: The Omaha Daily Bee of Monday, January 19, 1891

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