The Newgate Calendar - Supplement 3
JOHN UPTON was born at Deptford, of honest but poor parents, who gave him an education such as their circumstances could afford. He served an apprenticeship to a waterman upon the river. In the character of boatswain, quarter-master, and other inferior offices, he served on board different men-of-war. After the death of his wife, he found several demands made upon him, and several actions raised, for which he was in danger of being arrested; he therefore went on board the John and Elizabeth merchant- man, bound for Bonavista, in Newfoundland.
When he arrived there he was discharged, and served a planter during a year, for the sum of eighteen pounds. He next went a passenger to Boston, and from thence made a voyage to the Bay of Honduras. He next went on board the Perry galley, bound to Barbados and Bristol. At Barbados the ship was delivered and loaded again, and set forward to England. The Perry galley, in her voyage home, was taken by a pirate, and Upton was constrained to enter along with them.
The pirate carried the Perry galley to the island of Ruby, and, in a short time, they captured a Dutch sloop. Upton and some others were put on board that sloop, and, embracing an opportunity, escaped, carrying off the sloop.
He left the pirate service, and, after moving from place to place, he was, at last, pressed on board his Majesty's ship the Nottingham, where he remained until he was accused of piracy, and brought home for trial.
Upon his trial it was proved, that he had entered with the pirates, signed their articles, been active in their exploits, and received a share of their plunder; and that he had advised to burn the Perry galley, with her captain and mate in her; and that he had made a cat-o'-nine-tails, with which the mate received two hundred lashes. He was condemned, and, at the age of fifty years, suffered as a pirate.