British Executions

Thomas Munroe

Age: 18

Sex: male

Crime: murder

Date Of Execution: 13 Mar 1855

Crime Location: Lamplugh, Whitehaven

Execution Place: Carlisle

Method: hanging

Executioner: Calcraft


Thomas Munroe was convicted of the murder of Isaac Turner although he denied it until the end.

At first he denied any involvement in the murder saying that he had been in a pub in Wath Brow Top with another man. However, after he was convicted he made a confession saying that he had said he was in the pub to clear both himself and his brother who was also involved. He said that he had otherwise expected to be reprieved saying that he did not expect them to hang one as young as him and would not have made a confession of his part in the affair.

He said that the Friday before the murder he had been working the night shift with his brother who had told him secretly that he was going to murder Isaac Turner so that he could suceed as foreman and asked him to run across the fields towards Cleator at about 11 o'clock when the murder was to take place to create the impression that a Cleator man was the murderer.

At 11 o'clock he went to the scene of the crime but said he did not see either his brother or Isaac Turner and then ran off towards Cleator. He said that he was not wearing his normal clothes and that his brother had been wearing his waistcoat.

It was noted that because he had made false statements, thus making his testimony invalid and because his brother was not interviewed or questioned to validate his story many people believed there sufficient doubt over his conviction and that he should not have been executed.

When convicted by the judge Thomas Munroe said 'I am as innocent of the crime laid to my charge as the child unborn. I hope the Lord will bring to light the man who did this horrid deed, that all the world may know that I am innocent indeed.'

His execution was witnessed by several thousand spectators.

see Carlisle Journal - Friday 16 March 1855