The Lamb Collection - Crime and Punishment  in the 19th century. Click here to return to Crime main page

Report Regarding Setting Up a Gibbet at New Dundee Gaols
(Erected for the execution by hanging of Arthur Wood)
25th March, 1839

This report, written by James Black, was sent to the Provost of Dundee and details the setting up of a gibbet in the 'East Room on the second floor of the Hospital Buildings in front of the new gaols'. This was erected for the execution by hanging of Arthur Wood, for the murder of his son, John Drew Wood. Both he and his wife were tried for the murder, but his wife was acquitted. Both had given different stories to the police regarding what took place preceding the murder, but arguing had been heard and a witness had seen them both carry the strangled body of the son out of their home and leave the body at the foot of a stairway.

The new jail and bridewell had been erected at the corner of Bell Street and Lochee Road, and this report also details the erection of an eight-foot railing around its grounds. The execution of Arthur Wood in 1839 at the new jail attracted a large crowd and two companies of cavalry had been sent from Edinburgh to keep control of them.