British Executions

Augustus Hilton

Age: 28

Sex: male

Crime: murder

Date Of Execution: 10 Aug 1861

Crime Location:

Execution Place: Cambridge

Method: hanging

Executioner: unknown


Augustus Hilton murdered his 22 year old wife Charlotte Hilton at their home in Parson Drove after a trip to the corn market at Wisbeach. They had been married for 2 years and were well to do farmers.

When they got home from the corn market Augustus Hilton accused his wife of withholding money from him that he needed for trade. After he asked her to do something and she replied 'No, you have been slandering me all the time I was at Wisbeach, and i have not come home to wait on you - I'd rather die first', and Augustus Hilton replied 'So you shall' and he chased her up the stairs and and nearly severed her head from her body.

When told that his wife was dead he said 'then i'll die too. I shall not make any resistence. I will go with you wherever you like.' After he said 'When shall I be hanged? I want to die. I want to go to my wife.'

At the trial he insisted on pleading guilty and in the cells he told the turnkeys that he had as much desire to die as other to live.

He went to the scaffold unassisted and dropped to his knees while the chaplain read some parayers. Because of his submissive  manner and utter abnegation of self exhibited he had one upon the hearts of the authorities such that they shed a tear for the ceremony and joined in a deep and fervent emphasis in the amen that followed. The chaplain shook his hand and commended him to the blessing of the almighty. He didnt struggle when the drop fell.

see Essex Standard - Friday 16 August 1861

see National Archives - ASSI 36/10