British Executions

George William Parker

Age: 26

Sex: male

Crime: murder

Date Of Execution: 19 Dec 1911

Crime Location: Limekiln Street, Dover

Execution Place: Maidstone

Method: hanging

Executioner: John Ellis


George William Parker was convicted of the murder of Mary Elizabeth Spillar 26 and sentenced to death.

He cut her throat in Dover on 22 July 1911.

Mary Spillar was single but had three children by another man. In April 1911 the man left Dover and George Parker went to lodge with Mary Spillar's step-mother. It was heard that George Parker had been intimate with Mary Spillar for some time and it was thought that they had been being intimate before the other man had left Mary Spillar.

Then, about five weeks before the murder George Parker took a room in the same house as Mary Spillar and for three weeks he was in work and paid the rent and fed Mary Spillar and her children.

However, George Parker then fell out of work and they quarrelled.

Mary Spillar then complained of going without food and spoke to her foster-mother about going back to the other man.

On Saturday 22 July 1911 George Parker came back to the house at about 6pm and called Mary Spillar up to his room. She went up with her 10-month old baby and then, about 15 minutes later, the window was smashed, and Mary Spillar appeared at it with her throat cut. She then said to her foster mother, 'Mother he has done it'.

George Parker told the foster mother that he had done it with a razor and then ran from the house but was caught at once.

A blood-stained razor was found on the floor.

It was thought that it was very improbable that the wound to Mary Spillar's throat could have been self-inflicted, as it was suggested by his defence.

A book was found in his room with the text, 'Kind love to my own boy, Dad and all kind friends. Look after me in my trouble. Good bye'. which the police stated showed some sort of premeditation.

He was found guilty of murder with no recommendation to mercy.

see Dover Express - Friday 01 December 1911

see National Archives - HO 144/1178/216896