The Worlds DEADLIEST Poisons

The Worlds DEADLIEST Poisons

Poisoning was the favoured method for housewives dispatching their husbands in the Victorian era. Commonly used was cyanide – a rat poison widely available at the local chemist! Asides from it’s availability and deadliness, cyanide was also favoured for being – at the time – quite difficult to detect after death. The decline of cyanide poisoning came about with the invention of the Prussian Blue test, a relatively straightforward way of testing for the presence of cyanide. The poisons we’ll be looking at here are a little different though. The most potent poison on this list is up to 50,000 TIMES more potent than cyanide. Strychnine Strychnine, like most poisons, comes from a plant – Strychnos Nux-Vomica. It causes the muscles to spasm uncontrollably and is known for causing an excruciating death. Due the effect that Strychnine has on muscles, victims often end up with what is called a ‘Rictus Grin’, where the muscles in the face contract to make it look like the affected person is smiling. It’s known as the poison of...
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Last Orders!

Last Orders!

Prisoners on Death Row don’t get to make a lot of decisions, but there’s one big one that comes right before they meet their end – their last meal. We’re going to look at the last meals of some of most NOTORIOUS serial killers in history! Killer clown John Wayne Gacy was sentenced to death for the murder of at least 33 young men. His last meal consisted of a dozen deep-fried shrimp, a bucket of original recipe chicken from KFC, French fries, a pound of strawberries, and a bottle of diet Coke. Infamous serial killer Ted Bundy declined to choose and got the traditional last meal - steak cooked medium-rare, eggs over easy, hash browns, toast with butter and jam, milk, and juice. He also refused to eat this. Murderer Aileen Wuornos was a prostitute who murdered seven men in Florida between 1989 – 1990. She was sentenced to death for six of the murders and was executed on 9 October 2002. Wuornos ALSO declined...
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7 CRAZY UK Laws

7 CRAZY UK Laws

We scoured the web and came up with 7 CRAZY UK Laws. We're not entirely sure why all of these exist - but they're worth sharing!! 1. It is illegal to enter the Houses of Parliament wearing a suit of armour. A 1313 Statute Forbidding Bearing of Armour forbids members of Parliament from entering the House while wearing armour or carrying weapons. This weird law stems from a time of intense political turmoil where there was a real worry that people would turn up and start swinging a sword around! 2. It’s considered treason to place a stamp the wrong way up. Placing a postage stamp bearing the monarch’s head upside down on an envelope is considered as act of treason. Also, defacing or destroying anything bearing a likeness of the monarch is illegal, which means damaging notes or coins as well as stamps! 3. It’s illegal to gamble in a library. The Library Offenses Act of 1898 makes it illegal to gamble in a library. The law also prohibits abusive or obscene language. We’re not sure...
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A Slice of History

A Slice of History

I figured we'd talk about a contraption that's a cut above the rest... the guillotine! The guillotine became a popular method of execution during the French Revolution and became an iconic symbol of what was known as the 'Reign of Terror '. Initially it was known as the louisette but was later renamed the guillotine after Dr. Joseph-Ignace Guillotin. Guillotin was a physician who, in 1789, suggested to the National Assembly that capital punishments should always be carried out by decapitation "by means of a simple mechanism". Dr. Joseph-Ignace Guillotin Interestingly though, Guillotin was ANTI death penalty! He loathed the fact that the contraption was named after him. He thought that the guillotine would make it a more swift and painless death than the other (somewhat less successful) methods of execution. The actual inventor of the prototype was a man named Tobias Schmidt working with the king's physician, Antoine Louis. The history of guillotine style machines stretches a long way back before the...
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They love… to KILL!

Thanks to everyone who came to our Date Night at the Museum! Our Curator had a great time telling tales of couples who loved... to KILL. With bubbly and bone chilling crimes, it was an evening not to be missed – the perfect Valentine’s date for all our favourite Bonnie and Clyde’s. Don’t forget it happens every year, so if you missed out, DON’T PANIC! You’ll see our love and death tours again next Valentines… Until then, check out our other KILLER events here! Also on this month, get 20% OFF Mother’s Day entry and see our talk, Mother’s Who KILL! ...
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Screen Screams Part 2

SCREEN SCREAMS! Let’s cross the Channel now to investigate the story of a DARING and charismatic criminal who died in a hail of French Police bullets in 1979. JACQUES MESRINE was a master of disguise who robbed banks, attacked jails to free his friends, captivated the media and even kidnapped a Judge. In May 1978, Mesrine robbed the Deauville Casino. He dropped a .455 CARTRIDGE at the crime scene and we have it HERE in our ‘Cop Killers’ cabinet at The True CRIME Museum. His exploits are sensationally depicted in two gangster flicks, ‘MESRINE – KILLER INSTINCT’ and ‘MESRINE – PUBLIC ENEMY No1’. The celebrity criminal is played by my favourite French actor EVER; -  VINCENT CASSEL, who effortlessly steers Mesrine’s murderous intensity into glib abandon and back again. He spends most of the film throwing hand luggage at beautiful women and shouting, “Pack your shit! QUICKLY! We’re leaving…” (A dating technique I’ve tried myself – with very mixed results.) Both movies play largely to the viewer’s wish-fulfilment and it’s exhilarating to join in...
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A Case of Death

A Case of Death!! At the end of September, we had our EXPLOSIVE murder mystery, A Case of Death! Over 50 eager detective were enthralled by John Eddleston, our master of MYSTERY, as he described to them the case of the DEAD gangster... After much hard pondering and note taking, witness statements and autopsy reports, it was time to reveal all... But not to you! If you want to know who murdered the gangster, you'll have to work it out for yourselves at our next murder mystery! We had some very talented detectives on the case, none more so than the team shown below, who not only WON but got every single answer RIGHT! Truly first class detectives. If you think this is cool, keep an eye out on our Events page for next year's events, coming soon! ...
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SCREEN SCREAMS! Part 1

SCREEN SCREAMS! Did you know that many of the exhibits at The True CRIME Museum come from CRIMES and CRIMINALS whose stories have been turned into MURDEROUS MOVIES! Our Curator (and True CRIME movie obsessive) JOEL GRIGGS talks about three of his favourites… “Here at the museum we have the original bottles that held the CONCENTRATED SULPHURIC ACID used by the British Serial Killer JOHN GEORGE HAIGH to dissolve his last victim. (You can see them in this video I made about the case here): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AK-qajHcKqI Haigh’s hideous and deceitful murders were also told in the 2002 ITV film; ‘A IS FOR ACID’ starring Martin Clunes as the killer. (The full movie is also on Youtube but the transfer quality is not brilliant, so buy the dvd) I had LOW expectations for this, as I’m not a Clunes fan and often find UK TV true crime dramas bland and apologetic for the ugliness of their subject matter. No such issue here though, as into the oil drums go his victims, all soon reduced to sludge...
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Bigger and BETTER!

We’re getting BIGGER! Many of you will have seen glimpses of our Curator, Joel, hard at work on our secret new project… We can now reveal that we’ve expanded! The Museum has gained a new Gift Shop and Box Office for our customers (you guys!) to enjoy. We’ll be putting together some exciting photo opportunities with NOTORIOUS gangster Al Capone as well as the one and only Jack the RIPPER! With the expansion comes a great opportunity to increase the Museum’s collection as well, so keep an eye out in 2020 for some MAJOR new exhibits! The number one piece of feedback we get from our visitors is that they want to see MORE. We’re delighted to be in a place to offer this and hope that you’ll come down and pay our new space a visit! See you soon!!! ...
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Looking SHARP

Looking SHARP

Looking SHARP! Swordsticks (or swordcanes) are just what they sound like – a hidden blade, disguised as a cane. They were popular self-defence weapons in the 1800s, although the concept of a swordstick well precedes the Victorian era, with evidence of them being found in Ancient Egyptian tombs dating back as far as 1334 B.C. Their rise to popularity in Victorian England, however, was due to swords becoming less socially acceptable to wear in public. Those who wanted to continue carrying a sword had to disguise them to get away with it – many of the aristocracy were included in this and the cane was the perfect accompaniment to the developing fashions of the time. Unfortunately, as you can imagine, it wasn’t without incident when just about everyone carried a weapon. A Victorian gentleman named Herbert Bowman is a prime example of this – he was traveling through London and emerged from the Tower Pedestrian Subway in Westminster to be accosted by a ‘Vagrant begging for money’. Herbert pulled the...
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