1 April 1872 – Williams Frederick Horry

If she can’t live with him and he can’t live without her, what’s a couple to do? Bump her off; at least that’s what William Horry thought.

A Staffordshire hotel landlord, Horry was estranged from his wife Jane as she could not put up with his drinking. In a weird set-up, she actually sought sanctuary from her alcoholic husband with Horry’s dad in Boston, Lincolnshire.

Upset by the fact that he’d been deserted by his wife, Horry went out in search of her armed with a shotgun. He soon caught up with her and immediately planted a bullet in her. He was arrested, promptly charged and found guilty of murder

Way to go

His execution took place at Lincoln Castle, notable only in that he was the first of the renowned Victorian executioner William Marwood’s droppings. Consequently he was the first person in England to be executed by what was known as the long-drop method.

Ahead of the game

Without wanting to bore you, it’s probably the most scientific in that it uses height and weight ratios. Pioneered by William Marwood in the 1870s, the method came into its own in the 20th century, led by the Pierrepoint family who would meticulously calculate in order to execute as humanely as possible.

Of course, if you get it wrong, the miscalculations can take your head off, literally, as with Barzan Ibrahim al-Hasan al-Tikriti.

Horry was just 28, when he was hanged…head and body thankfully intact.

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