For those interested in Social History, the Old Bailey Online website provides a wealth of research tools. Check out all these awesome tools and resources to help you with research into life, crime and punishment in the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries!

Court Records

From the Old Bailey Website:

The Old Bailey Proceedings Online makes available a fully searchable, digitised collection of all surviving editions of the Old Bailey Proceedings from 1674 to 1913, and of the Ordinary of Newgate’s Accounts between 1676 and 1772. It allows access to over 197,000 trials and biographical details of approximately 2,500 men and women executed at Tyburn, free of charge for non-commercial use.


Use the Statistics Search on The Old Bailey to pull data based on keywords, types of crimes, age and gender of defendants or victims. The data can then be used in tables or charts.

I used this data to determine the conviction rates for men accused of rape pre-1841 and post-1841 that I included in a recent article about the Extraordinary Rape at the Stepney Toll House.

Historical Background

Many fascinating articles appear under the Historical Background menu option from The Old Bailey website. Learn about the history of Crime, Justice and Punishment or explore details about what life was like in old London. Learn about the diverse communities in London during the seventeenth, eighteenth and nineteenth centuries such as Blacks, Chinese, Gypsies, homosexuals, and about about the role of gender in the proceedings. Uncover the history of The Old Bailey Courthouse, and how trials were conducted.

Links to The Digital Panopticon

In a February 2018 update to the Old Bailey website, links to ‘Life Archives’ of convicts on the new Digital Panopticon website were added to individual trial accounts.


On 8 August 1822, James, William and George, together with another unnamed companion, attacked and robbed a labourer named John Harper at Edgware Fair. They stole one pair of shoes to the value of 1s., and 5 sovereigns and 18 shillings in cash. Read about their trial on The Old Bailey website and then learn more about their story on The Digital Panopticon.

Related Material

Many case files on the Old Bailey website contain references to associated records. In our recent article about the Extraordinary Rape at the Stepney Toll House, we learned the story of James Const who was tried at the Old Bailey for the rape of Susannah Poole. The information on The Old Bailey website for this trial is quite limited but there are links to related material at the National Archives that provide rich detail about the case.


At the National Archives

Check out Old Bailey Online today!

Web Hosting


  1. I love this site and have found a few of my ancestors there (on both sides!)…it’s wonderful and so helpful – even if just to get the cadence of the more formal language back then.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.