Byrnes’s text: #22 Langdon Moore

Link to the REVISED entry on #22 Langdon Moore

Fifty-six years old in 1886. Born in New Hampshire. Light complexion. Height. 5 feet 9 inches. Weight, 180 pounds. Stout build. Always dresses neatly. Generally wears a full beard, which is now quite gray. He has a very good appearance, and looks like a sharp business man, with the exception of his eyes, which have an expression peculiarly their own. When off his guard he is quite nervous.


Langdon W. Moore, his right name, was born in the town of East Washington, N. H., in 1830. His parents, very respectable people, were in moderate circumstances. His father was a farmer. From East Washington, N. H., the family moved to Newburyport, Mass., and remained there until Langdon was twelve years old, when the family moved to Lisbon, N. H. Langdon’s mother died when he was fifteen. The father and children then moved to East Boston, where Langdon, when about twenty years of age, went to work in a currying establishment ; from there to a boot and shoe store on Pearl Street. Along in 1854 Moore went into the grocery business, in South Boston, for about three years; he then sold out this place and opened another on Eutaw Street. His second venture was not a profitable one ; and after paying all his creditors dollar for dollar, he gave up the grocery business and went into the express business. He afterwards sold out the express business and opened a liquor saloon on Broome Street, New York, where he remained for three years. He moved from Broome Street to Mercer, near Canal, where he remained for two years more.

In 1857 he purchased a farm at Natick, Mass., of ninety-four acres, and increased it later on to one hundred and seventy acres ; this place he sold in 1866. In 1861 Moore bought an eating-house and saloon at No. 16 East Houston Street, New York City, which he managed until 1863, when he bought a house corner Houston and Crosby streets. He soon after left New York and went to the farm at Natick, Mass., which he carried on until October 10, 1865 — which is a very interesting fact to note — as the Concord National Bank was robbed on September 25, just fifteen days before Moore left the farm. From Natick he went to Paulsboro, N. J., where he remained six months, living as a man of means. He next appeared in Jersey City, where in May, 1866, he bought a house corner of Grand and Warren streets. He then began to speculate in horses, carriages, and about everything else that offered him a chance to turn a dollar. He lived at Jersey City and Bayonne, N. J., until the fall of 1877, when he moved to Eighty-first Street, New York City.

In 1866, while engaged in speculating, he was married at Bayonne, N. J., to Mrs. Rebecca Cunningham, the widow of Dad Cunningham and a daughter of old Bill Sturges, an old English sneak thief and pickpocket. Moore’s wife was familiarly known as Becky Moore. In June, 1877, Moore and his wife went to Toronto, Canada, where they remained until
September ; from there to Hamilton, Ont. ; then to Niagara Falls, where they remained
a month or two, and returned to New York in December, 1868. He bought out a livery stable and saloon on 125th Street, between Third and Fourth Avenues, New York City.

This place he kept until May, 1870, the time of the robbery of the Lime Rock National Bank of Rockland, Maine. This bank was entered on the night of May 3, 1870. The parties engaged in this robbery were Charles B. Hight, Alden Litchfield, ex-policeman Kieser, John Black, John Graves, Joshua Daniels, Jack Rand and Langdon W. Moore. Kieser’s part in the robbery was to get the policeman out of the way and get the men out of town after the robbery. He induced the policeman, whose suspicions had been aroused, to go to another part of the village, which gave the burglars a clear coast. The safe was blown and they secured about $23,000. Kieser took the men out of town with his team and concealed them in the woods, where he was to call for them on the following night. In the meantime he was under suspicion, and finally weakened and took the authorities to their hiding-place, where all hands were arrested (except Jack Rand, who escaped and went to Canada). Kieser, Black and Graves took the stand for the government, and Daniels and Hight managed to get the burden of responsibility thrown upon Moore. Moore and Hight subsequently pleaded guilty and took their sentences, Litchfield stood a trial, was convicted, and sentenced to four years. Daniels died in jail of consumption, not, as has been reported, from injuries received from the explosion of the bank safe. He
was an outside man and was not in the bank at all, and the story that he was frightfully
injured by the explosion is untrue. Moore was sentenced to the State prison at
Thomaston, Maine, for six years in this case, but was pardoned for good behavior
before he had served his full time.

Becky Moore, his wife, managed his place in 125th Street, New York, until the lease expired in 1873, when she went to the corner of Eighth Avenue and Forty-sixth Street, and kept a place called the ” Woodbine ” until Moore’s release from prison in 1876. Upon his discharge he went to the “Woodbine,” and remained there until April, 1877, when he sold out and removed to Twelfth Street, where he kept a saloon until September, 1877, when he moved to No. 123 East Twenty-ninth Street.

Moore was arrested again in New York City on October 24, 1877, with Kid Leary, charged with being concerned in the Cambridgeport, Mass., Bank robbery in September, 1877. He was discharged in this case, as he could not be identified as one of the men in the robbery. The police of New York as well as Boston were at that time looking for the men that had robbed Mr. Garry of the latter city of $8,000 in United States bonds. This was one of the coolest transactions ever perpetrated in any city. Two men walked into the store of Mr. Garry, who was absent, and while one of them engaged the young lady attendant in conversation, the other one quietly removed the bonds from Mr. Garry’s overcoat pocket almost under her eyes. Moore was arrested on October 25, 1877, in New York City, and held until the young lady came on and identified him, and he was taken to Boston, tried and acquitted, on November 24, 1877.

Moore returned at once to New York, but was unable to find his wife and children, whom
he ascertained had been living with a man named Thompson, who was a witness for old Jimmy Hope in the Dexter Bank robbery. After searching in vain for them some time he learned that they frequented a saloon corner of Eighth Street and Sixth Avenue. Moore went there, laid in wait until half-past twelve o’clock at night, when he saw Thompson and Becky enter. Moore walked in, and Thompson attempted to draw a revolver, but was prevented from using it. Moore could not be pacified, and attacked Thompson with a knife, slashing his cheek and leaving an ugly scar. Moore was arrested in this case and held in $2,000 bail. The Grand Jury failed to indict him, and he was discharged in April, 1878. Moore’s wife returned to him, and he went to Chicago, III, where he remained until December, 1878, when he returned to New York and went to live at No. 105 East Twenty-sixth Street, where he was arrested for the robbery of the Charlestown, Mass., Post-office in March, 1880.

In the spring of 1865 Moore gave his attention to the Concord National Bank and the Middlesex Institution for Savings, both of which were located in the same building, in Concord, Mass. After considerable labor and visits to Concord, he succeeded in getting a key fitted to a heavy outside door. Moore had for an assistant Harry Howard, better known as ” English Harry,” a notorious cracksman, well known in London and New York. Harry soon obtained all the knowledge he required of the people in and around the bank,  and on one occasion Moore and Harry went into the bank while the cashier was at dinner. They found that the cashier kept the combination of the safe marked in lead-pencil on the side of the safe. The next day was set to commit the robbery. Taking a fast horse, they drove from Framingham to Concord, shortly before noon. Moore went to a store almost opposite the bank and bought four pounds of nails, and then visited a saloon close by. It seems that he had his attention all the while directed to the bank, for as soon as the cashier closed the door of the bank to go to dinner he gave Harry the prearranged signal. Harry, with the aid of the duplicate key, soon had the door open, but while proceeding to enter was accosted by a little girl, who wanted to see the cashier. Harry told her the cashier had gone to dinner and would not be back until two o’clock, and then went coolly up stairs, shutting the door behind him. He soon opened the safe with the aid of the combination left behind by the cashier, and then ransacked the vault, which he locked when he got through. The property stolen consisted of $40,000 registered government bonds, $10,000 in Marlboro, Mass., registered bonds, $180,000 United States coupon bonds, and other securities — in all, amounting to $306,000. Harry placed his plunder in an old bag, and then coolly left the bank, locking the door after him. He was shortly after picked up by Moore in the wagon, and the pair started at breakneck pace for Framingham. Harry went to England and Moore to Canada.

Moore was afterwards arrested at his home in Paulsboro, N. J. The officers started away with him. On the road Moore asked them on what conditions the bank would compromise the matter. He was told that he must give up all the proceeds of the robbery in his possession and disclose the hiding-place of ” English Harry,” who was
known to have received $100,000 in money which had been realized from some of the bonds sold. As a result Moore went back with the detectives to his place at Paulsboro, and, going to his stable, ripped up the floor of one of the horse stalls, and handed over a glass jar covered with pitch and rubber, which was found to contain $79,000 in government bonds. He then proceeded down the bank of the Delaware River, and with a spade unearthed a square tin box which had been soldered tightly, in which was found $100,000 more in bonds. Other sums were afterwards surrendered by him which made the total amount returned $202,331. The day this property was surrendered by Moore it was the intention of a woman named Hattie Adams, whom Moore was then living with, to have taken it and fled. Moore then tried to place “English Harry” in the hands of the
authorities, and for that purpose had a “personal” placed in a New York paper. Harry
never noticed it, although it was the method agreed upon to bring them together. Moore
soon after broke up house on the Delaware. Hattie went to live with a man in Brooklyn,
and soon after died, having been drowned in a hack, the horses of which had run away
and jumped into the East River. It was after this that he (Moore) married Dad Cunningham’s widow, who was afterwards known as Becky Moore.

Moore, Ike Marsh, Charley Bullard, and another well known man, who has since reformed, were charged with robbing the messenger of the American Union Express Company on the Hudson River Railroad. They were all arrested in Canada, but finally discharged.

The Cambridgeport Bank robbery was laid to Moore, but there never was evidence
enough against him to warrant his arrest. He was assisted in this robbery by Johnny O’Brien, alias the ” Kid,” and a third party. The third party went into the bank and
drew the cashier’s attention away from the safe, when the ” Kid ” sneaked in and robbed
it. It is also claimed that Moore was the prime mover in the Lechmere Bank robbery, in Cambridge, Mass., in March, 1878. It is a curious fact in: connection with this robbery that two gangs — one from Chicago, and the other from New York — were each awaiting an opportunity to commit this robbery, unknown to the other. The New Yorkers succeeded, but the Chicago parties were so close on them that they all stood in on the division of the spoils. Louise Jourdan, alias Little Louise, who was married to Tom Bigelow at the time, was a leading spirit in this burglary. All the plunder, with the exception of about $12,000, was recovered and returned to the bank.
Shortly before Moore’s arrest for the Charlestown Post-office robbery it appears that he had formed a plan to rob the bank at Quincy, Mass. Both he and his partner, George Mason, alias Gardner, visited that institution, and got a look at the safe. Moore had received information that there was only one night-watchman in the town, and that he was employed in a factory some distance from the bank ; and furthermore, that there were no telegraph wires attached to the bank to give an alarm. The bank was pronounced a “soft job” by Moore, whose plans were frustrated by the arrest of Mason for the Charlestown (Mass.) Post-office robbery. Mason, after spending some time in jail, and finding that Moore, who had escaped, had done nothing for his family nor anything in the way of providing a lawyer for him, informed upon him, and he was arrested in New York City and charged with breaking and entering the Warren Institution for Savings — a bank in the Bunker Hill district of Boston, Mass., on December 4, 1879. He was convicted in the Superior Criminal Court, before Judge Bacon, on March 18, 1880, and sentenced to ten years in State prison, for breaking and entering. On March 30 he was tried again, on another indictment, for having burglars’ tools in his possession, and sentenced to six years — making sixteen years in all. He is now in Concord (Mass.) State prison.

His picture is a good one, taken in 1880.