Dark Dorset Online Scrapbook is an archive of current and past events relating to local history, folklore and mysteries that can be discovered in the English county of Dorset.

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Saturday, 11 November 2000

The mystery of Martha Brown

She was the last woman to be publicly hanged in Dorset, as witnessed by Thomas Hardy - but little was known about her, until now...

"I Remember what a fine figure she showed against the sky as she hung in the misty rain and how the tight, black, silk gown set off her shape as she wheeled half round and back."

Thomas Hardy was 86 when he wrote those haunting words recalling the public hanging of Martha Brown that he had witnessed in Dorset when a boy of 16. For 70 years could not exorcise the memory of her execution from his mind.

READ MORE - Source: Dorset Echo Saturday 11th Nov 2000

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