Women On The Gallows
These are some of the cases of women who died at the end of an executioners rope for varied crimes from infanticide, murder of a grandchild and an uncle, to a woman charged with being a resurrectionist a few years after the exploits of Burke and Hare.
Included is a horrific tale of a woman who took children from a workhouse and starved and beat them until some of them died. There is the case of a hard hearted stepmother who murdered her own children and her stepchildren because they were ‘in the way’. Catherine Foster was so beautiful that she was called the Belle of Acton, but that didn’t stop her from murdering her husband, because she never loved him and didn’t want to be married. A young girl hanged for infanticide who tried to appeal to the other women lodging with her for mercy. None was shown to her and she was arrested and sentenced.
All these women all ended up being hung and sometimes even these judicial deaths themselves were so horrific, that calls for the end of capital punishment were heard in Britain. Legal brains even discussed alternative methods of execution which would hopefully be less traumatic.