Unsolved Murders

Mary Sophia Money

Age: 22

Sex: female

Date: 24 Sep 1905

Place: Merstham, Surrey

Source: en.wikipedia.org

Mary Money's body was found in the Merstham railway tunnel. The autopsy showed a scarf had been thrust into her mouth and marks were discovered on the tunnel wall showing Miss Money had been thrown to her death from a moving train.

She lived at 245 Lavender Hill, Clapham and had no men friends. On Sunday 24 September 1905 she went out for 'a little walk'. She was later seen at 7pm in a sweet shop when she said she was going to Victoria.

From Victoria she went to London Bridge and caught the 9.33pm train for Brighton. Witnesses said they later saw a woman that looked like Mary Money struggling with a man at East Croydon and Purley Oaks.

She was found dead at 11pm in the Merstham tunnel.

The Encyclopaedia of Murder notes that her brother who had been seeing two sisters took them and some other people to Eastbourne in 1912 where he shot them and then himself after setting fire to the house. The book states that it was remotely probable that he had killed his sister.

A woman who worked at the dairy in Lavender Hill said that Mary Money had spent quite a bit of time that day consulting a time table but she said she didn't know what route she had been looking at.

On 13 September Mary Money had been to the Adelphi Theatre with two tickets that had been given to her by a friend although she did not know if she had gone alone or with someone else.

A doctor who examined Mary Money after said that he examined every part of her clothing and said that they were practically covered all over with stains of blood, grease, soot and brain matter. He also said that there were indications that the scarf had been in contact with her mouth and noted that her gloves did not have a thick coating of soot on them as they might have if they had been wiped along the wall of the tunnel and concluded that her hands had not come into contact with the tunnel. He also said that he was satisfied that the bruises on her right hand, wrist and arm were not produced by the train. He further stated that he thought that Mary Money went out of the trains backwards and alive and that she had no poisons in her system such as chloroform.

She had also had her leg cut off, her head seriously damaged and her arm crushed as she rebounded from the tunnel wall and hen underneath the train.

The police later considered a man as a strong suspect but didn't arrest him.

Further clues where developed after the Daily Mail found that Mary Money and a well-dressed gentlemanly looking man had been going to the Chrichton Restaurant in Clapham Junction twice a week for tea and they were in the restaurant on either the Wednesday or Friday before her death. It was also noted that the description of the gentleman fitted the description of a man Mary Money had been seen with at Victoria Station on the day of her death.

Some commentators including detectives said they favoured the theory that she committed suicide.

Her brother, Robert Henry Money, later set fire to a house on 19 August 1912 at Enys Road in Eastbourne which killed him and four other people including his wife and child. He shot them and then shot himself. He shot another woman twice, but she managed to escape him. He had been living a double life with two women.


*map pointers are rough estimates based on known location details as per Place field above.


see Encyclopedia of Murder, Wilson

see National Archives MEPO 3/169, COPY 1/489/587 (photo of Mary Money)

see British Transport Police

see Crimes and Punishment 28 page 759

see The Scotsman - Thursday 19 September 1912

see Dundee Evening Telegraph - Friday 11 October 1912

see Western Chronicle - Friday 30 August 1912