Posted by: Graham | July 8, 2009

Thomas Cragg hung in Durham Gaol for murder of Henderson Gateshead

Thomas Craig was a twenty-six year old former miner who was convicted of the murder of Thomas Henderson who was twenty-five, the husband of his former sweetheart. He was hanged on 12th July 1910 in Durham Goal. The executioner was Henry Pierrepoint, the father of perhaps the most famous executioner in the UK, Albert Pierrepoint.

Henry Pierrepoint

Henry Pierrepoint


Thomas Craig had a relationship with a girl during 1908. Unfortunately for him, this relationship was broken, when he was sentenced to seven years in prison. He asked the girl to wait for him and she visited him in prison a number of times and wrote to him as well.

However, whilst Craig was in prison the girl met and married Thomas Henderson. She cut off all contact with Craig, though he wrote to her saying that he was looking forward to carrying on the relationship when he was released.

Upon his release in March 1910, Craig went to the girlfriend’s former home in Gateshead. When he saw the girl she told him that she had fallen in love with Henderson. Craig responded by shooting both the girl and Thomas Henderson. Thomas Henderson was killed, but Mrs Henderson survived and able to give evidence.

Craig was quickly arrested. He was tried and convicted at Durham Assizes on 26th June and hung less than a month later.

One footnote to this crime was that after the execution, Craig’s father called at the police station and said that his son had left the gun in his will to him and could he have it! Not surprisingly he was not allowed to have the weapon.

Sources:

Real Crime
The Pierrepoints

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