British Executions

Edward Smart


Sex: male

Crime: murder

Date Of Execution: 12 May 1879

Crime Location:

Execution Place: Gloucester

Method: unknown

Executioner: unknown


On 2nd April, a commercial traveller, Charles Cox, was on his way towards Thornsby when he approached a pit pool and saw Smart with the body of a woman, Lucy Derrick, lying at his feet. He told Cox that he had just committed murder, so Cox hurried to the next town and raised the alarm. Smart was taken into custody and admitted the crime, claiming that he'd 'done it out of devilment,' and that the poor woman was a total stranger that he had chanced upon. In his pockets police found a razor and pocket knife, both covered in blood. Thirty five year old Smart was sentenced to death by Mr Justice Hawkins at Worcester Assizes on 25th April. Despite the nature of the crime, the jury recommended him to mercy but it was ignored and he was hanged by William Marwood on the 12th May 1879 in Gloucester. He was seen to breathe for several minutes on the end of the rope.