Unsolved Murders

Hannah Williams

Age: 78

Sex: female

Date: 17 Nov 1900

Place: Mullen Cottage, Began Road, St Mellons, Monmouthshire

Source: www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk

Hannah Williams was an aged widow and was beaten to death in her home with a coal hammer.

She was beaten to death with the coal hammer which was ordinarily kept in the kitchen after which a gash was inflicted in her neck.

Police directed their investigations to tracing an unknown man who was alleged to have left the district by omnibus and who related an extraordinary story to the driver and had seemed unusually agitated.

On 20 February 1901 a 29 year old labourer was tried at the Monmouthshire Assizes but after a trial lasting all day he was found not guilty and discharged. The labourer had been the first to discover her battered body in her home and give the alarm but the evidence against him was circumstantial. He was arrested for her murder was arrested just after he got back from Hannah Williams's funeral.

Hannah Williams was the widow of a gardener on a neighbouring estate and had been pensioned by the landowner. She was said to have been frugal in her habits and added to her small income by market gardening and poultry farming.

It was generally believed that she kept her savings in the house and that robbery had been the motive. Her cottage had been ransacked from top to bottom, but it appeared that the killer had got away with only a metal framed watch and chain worth only a few shillings. Police found a considerable sum of money concealed in a box amongst some old rags and over £5 in her pockets.

It was heard that Hannah Williams' life was insured to the sum of 3d a week with the Prudential and that her relatives would be entitled to something like £5.


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


see Leicester Chronicle - Saturday 17 November 1900

see Dundee Evening Post - Monday 12 November 1900

see Dundee Courier - Monday 12 November 1900

see Western Daily Press - Thursday 21 February 1901

see Royal Cornwall Gazette - Thursday 22 November 1900