Their first prize was the Sarah Snow, of Bristol. After they had rifled the vessel and received one man from it, they allowed her to prosecute her voyage. The Delight, of Poole, was the next vessel that fell into their hands; but they not long after captured two others, from one of which they received a quantity of fish, and from the other bread, beef, and pork. They also forced two men from the latter ship. A French ship, not long after, furnished them with wine, oil, figs, oranges, and lemons, to the value of 500l. In a short time after, they captured their last prize, and, as she made no resistance, they plundered and dismissed her.
They next sailed for the Orkney Isles to clean, but were apprehended by a gentleman of that country, brought up to London, and tried before a Court of Admiralty, in May, 1725. When the first indictment was read, Gow obstinately refused to plead, for which the Court ordered his thumbs to be tied together with whipcord. The punishment was several times repeated by the executioner and another officer, they drawing the cord every time till it broke. But he still being stubborn, refusing to submit to the court, the sentence was pronounced against him, which the law appoints in such cases; that is, "That he should be taken back to prison, and there pressed to death." The gaoler was then ordered to conduct him back, and see that the sentence was executed the next morning; meanwhile the trials of the prisoners, his companions, went forward.
But the next morning, when the press was prepared, pursuant to
the order of the Court the day before, he was so terrified with the
apprehension of dying in that manner, that he sent his humble
petition to the Court, praying that he might be admitted to plead.
This request being granted, he was brought again to the bar, and
arraigned upon the first indictment, to which he pleaded Not
guilty. Then the depositions that had been given against the other
prisoners were repeated, upon which he was convicted, and received
the sentence of death accordingly, which he suffered in company
with Captain Weaver and William Ingham.