Unsolved Murders

Margaret Laurie

Age: 37

Sex: female

Date: 23 Oct 1905

Place: Portobello, Edinburgh

Source: www.britishnewspaperarchive.co.uk

Margaret Laurie was found dead on the beach at Portobello.

Her body was found at the West end of the promenade almost opposite the entrance to Fife Street a few minutes after 6am on Monday 23 October 1905.

It was said that it was apparent that she had been in the water for some time.

Her identity was not initially known.

Her description was that of a woman, over 30 years of age, 5ft 2in tall, of medium build, with dark brown hair and with a fresh complexion. She was also noted as having four false upper teeth and to have apparently had a recent burning or scalding accident as her thumb and fingers on both hands were each separately bound up in linen.

She had been wearing a black skirt, dark grey jacket, red and black spotted blouse, a dark brown fur necklet and a black hat trimmed with black silk and two red roses.

Her cause of death was either strangulation or drowning. She had a couple of handkerchiefs tightly bound around her nose and mouth. At her inquest it was suggested that it might be safer to surmise that, in the circumstances, that both causes contributed to her death.

She was later identified as Margaret Laurie, a shop assistant who had lived at Abbey Hill, Edinburgh. It was said that she had left home on the Sunday evening apparently in good spirits to purchase some dressing for her fingers from a chemist's shop but was not seen again.

It was not known how she had got from Abbey Hill to the sea.


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


see Aberdeen People's Journal - Saturday 28 October 1905