This section is from the book "The Gardener's Monthly And Horticulturist V23", by Thomas Meehan. See also: Four-Season Harvest: Organic Vegetables from Your Home Garden All Year Long.
Under date of Nov. 20th, we have the following from Mr. Fred. Hahman, Philadelphia: "A brief article of the conviction of William Cowan (spelled thus) for theft in our establishment appeared in the Ledger and also in the Record of the 18th inst., and as it may be of interest to the readers of the Monthly, I give particulars.
"These robberies had been carried on for a long time, to an extent of which it is impossible to judge, as nearly all florists in this part of the city suffered from these depredations; for rosebuds and other cut-flowers were continually disappearing in a most mysterious manner. At last, by marking specimens, we became convinced that they were stolen during the night. We procured new locks and fastened all doors securely, but to no avail; so, as a last resource, we determined to keep watch.
"On the first night, the 2d inst., no one appeared. The following night, between 2 and 3 A. M., the man on guard detected the intruder, whom he ordered to surrender.
" The man fled, however, letting fall his plunder (500 rosebuds) and was pursued by the sentinel, who shot him in the right leg with a load of bird-shot, but the thief effected his escape.
"William Cowan was subsequently arrested and convicted for a term of eighteen months imprisonment. He had entered the greenhouses by means of a ventilating sash."