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Albert Pierrepoint
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Bureaucrat
    (March 30, 1905-July 10, 1992)
    Born in North Bierley, England, United Kingdom
    Chief Executioner of England (1932-1956)
    Hanged 433 men and 17 women
    Had second careers as a grocery deliveryman and pub owner
    Wrote the autobiography 'Executioner: Pierrepoint' (1974)
    At eleven, he wrote a 'when I grow up' essay declaring, 'I should like to be the Official Executioner.'
    He resigned over a pay dispute after the under-sheriff of Lancashire refused to pay his standard fee after the prisoner received a last-minute reprieve.
    He decided capital punishment did not work as a deterrent, but kept quiet until after he resigned.
    His former assistant executioner suggested his change of heart on capital punishment was merely a publicity hook to sell his autobiography.
    He was often called England's 'last hangman,' but executions continued until 1964.
    His father and uncle had both been executioners, so he kept the job in the family.
    Due to his reputation for efficiency, Field Marshall Montgomery personally requested that he be sent to Germany to execute some two hundred Nazi war criminals.
    He said of the people he executed, 'If I can give them respect and dignity at the last moment, that's my job and I come away satisfied.'
    He dedicated his autobiography to his wife 'for her loyalty and discretion.'

Credit: C. Fishel


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