Mary Ann Cotton

August 24, 2023

Mary Ann Cotton
1832 – 1873

(internet image)

For nearly a decade in the mid-Victorian era, Mary Ann Cotton poisoned a string of her husbands for their insurance money as well as anyone else who got in her way — including 11 of her own children.
(all that’s interesting)

~ in 1872, Mary wanted to marry for the 5th time, but the care of her 7 year old step son prevented her from being able to do so
~ shortly thereafter, he died
~ being suspicious, London police opened an investigation
~ the autopsy found arsenic in the boys stomach
~ the boy wasn’t the first to die under suspicious circumstances
~ three of her four husbands died under suspicious circumstances
~ as well as many of her own children

(internet image)

~ married William Mowbray in 1852
~ before this she was a nurse and dress maker
~ in 1856, four of their five children died of gastric fever
~ Mowbray purchased life insurance to protect himself and remaining three children
~ in the 1860’s, Mowbray and two of his children passed away from the same fever
~ Mary collected the insurance money and left the surviving child with her mother
~ she married a man named George Ward
~ less than a year later he was dead as well
~ she collected his life insurance payout

(internet image)

~ in 1867, she married her third husband – James Robinson
~ she pressured him to take out a life insurance policy, but he refused
~ he escaped with his life and the marriage ended
~ in 1870 she married again – number 4
~ as she collected the insurance money from her fourth husband, she became pregnant by a fifth man’s child
~ he also died of suspicious circumstances

William Calcraft, the executioner who hanged Mary Ann Cotton

~ all in all, Mary killed 21 people, including 11 of her own children
~ on March 24, 1873, Mary Ann Cotton, Britain’s first reported serial killer, was hanged for her crimes

source: all that’s interesting

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