Photos that make you think.

3 captured members of Otto Skorzeny's Einheits Stielau get the good news on December 23rd, 1944. Captured in US uniform on December 17th @ Aywaille
View attachment 607055

Wilhelm Schmidt, Obergefreiter, 5th Komp. 12th Fallschirmjäger Regiment.
Günther Billing, Oberfähnrich of the, 5th Komp. 12th Fallschirmjäger Regiment.
Manfred Pernass, Unterofficier 5th Komp.12th Fallschirmjäger Regiment
Skorzeny died in his bed decades later. The Kunt. Dedicated nazi.
 
If you watch the last scene in the film Let him have it you'll see how speedy the event is.
Only because we are on this particular subject:

The hanging scene from 10 Rillington place. I was impressed with the 'secret' door/room to where the hanging takes place.

Apologies for the poor quality.

 

A helmet shaped urn for your loved one's ashes.
Pretty ghoulish, if you ask me

il_794xN.3066646837_3387.jpg
I think the word you're looking for is "Tacky". Either that or "Tasteless".
 

4(T)

LE
Unfortunately the US were allowed to keep some of their habits:

Albert Pierrepoint is known to have disapproved of the Americans' practice of reading out to the condemned man as he stood on the trap-door the details of his offence and sentence, then allowing him to make a final statement. He said:


The common system in use in Europe was far worse. The prisoner had the noose placed whilst stood on the ground or solid surface (no trapdoor), and then was hauled up onto the gibbet like a sack of spuds. As this usually failed to break the neck, the prisoner was left being strangled slowly in agony. It was a duty of the executioner(s) to assist the process by hanging onto the legs if necessary. No wonder many of the executions were horribly botched.
 
The common system in use in Europe was far worse. The prisoner had the noose placed whilst stood on the ground or solid surface (no trapdoor), and then was hauled up onto the gibbet like a sack of spuds. As this usually failed to break the neck, the prisoner was left being strangled slowly in agony. It was a duty of the executioner(s) to assist the process by hanging onto the legs if necessary. No wonder many of the executions were horribly botched.
Scene in the abovementioned Shepherds and Butchers, where a chap is choking - warders had to drag him up by the rope, and drop him again - to satisfy the 'letter of the law' - hanged by the neck etc.
They couldn't pull his legs. nor touch him in any way.
 
The common system in use in Europe was far worse. The prisoner had the noose placed whilst stood on the ground or solid surface (no trapdoor), and then was hauled up onto the gibbet like a sack of spuds. As this usually failed to break the neck, the prisoner was left being strangled slowly in agony. It was a duty of the executioner(s) to assist the process by hanging onto the legs if necessary. No wonder many of the executions were horribly botched.

It's where the expression, pulling your leg, comes from. Gallows humour, eh?

Edit typo
 
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3 captured members of Otto Skorzeny's Einheits Stielau get the good news on December 23rd, 1944. Captured in US uniform on December 17th @ Aywaille
View attachment 607055

Wilhelm Schmidt, Obergefreiter, 5th Komp. 12th Fallschirmjäger Regiment.
Günther Billing, Oberfähnrich of the, 5th Komp. 12th Fallschirmjäger Regiment.
Manfred Pernass, Unterofficier 5th Komp.12th Fallschirmjäger Regiment
That's quite a range, I would expected the firing party to be closer to get a better chance of hitting something vital. At that range the condemned could have seriously wounded but not killed outright.
 
That's quite a range, I would expected the firing party to be closer to get a better chance of hitting something vital. At that range the condemned could have seriously wounded but not killed outright.
Each one of the targets had at least 4 rifles pointing at them, and those rifles had an effective range of 500 yards, M1 Garand .30 caliber. ;)
 
The common system in use in Europe was far worse. The prisoner had the noose placed whilst stood on the ground or solid surface (no trapdoor), and then was hauled up onto the gibbet like a sack of spuds. As this usually failed to break the neck, the prisoner was left being strangled slowly in agony. It was a duty of the executioner(s) to assist the process by hanging onto the legs if necessary. No wonder many of the executions were horribly botched.
A risky business for the paid executioner as the dangling thrashing body could kick out, or worse release a bowel full of brown soup as they fought against the rope. It was in the executioners interest to do a good job rather than have to hold onto a pair legs with crap rushing down to the ankles....
 
Seems to me I remember a hangman (I think it was an American) who was criticized for deliberately botching the job and making sure the Nazi war criminals he was responsible for dispatching at least suffered a little bit for the crimes they had done.
I don't set much store by Woods' claim to have deliberately bodged the jobs, it sounds more like a damage-limitation exercise by him to cover his failures.
Most accounts of Woods state that he lied about his qualifications for the job and in fact had none, it's also claimed that he bodged the executions of US servicemen in France so no self-righteous Nazi factor there.
Nasty piece of work.
 
A risky business for the paid executioner as the dangling thrashing body could kick out, or worse release a bowel full of brown soup as they fought against the rope. It was in the executioners interest to do a good job rather than have to hold onto a pair legs with crap rushing down to the ankles....
see above, re Lifting by the Rope.
 
I was impressed with the 'secret' door/room to where the hanging takes place.
Yes, it's been many years since I read Pierrepoint's book but I was left a bit uneasy about the account, if I recall correctly, that the prison chaplain played in the proceedings.
It seems it was his job to position the prisoner so that he was kneeling with his back to the secret door under the guise of giving him a blessing or whatever, and then give the nod to Pierrepoint who was observing through a spyhole, when the priest had finished his words, Then P. would rush in through the door and pinion the condemned prisoner's arms.
I can see the presence of a Man of the Cloth being in order to give spiritual comfort to the prisoner but I felt that this, if true, exceeded his clerical duties somewhat.
 

4(T)

LE
Yes, it's been many years since I read Pierrepoint's book but I was left a bit uneasy about the account, if I recall correctly, that the prison chaplain played in the proceedings.
It seems it was his job to position the prisoner so that he was kneeling with his back to the secret door under the guise of giving him a blessing or whatever, and then give the nod to Pierrepoint who was observing through a spyhole, when the priest had finished his words, Then P. would rush in through the door and pinion the condemned prisoner's arms.
I can see the presence of a Man of the Cloth being in order to give spiritual comfort to the prisoner but I felt that this, if true, exceeded his clerical duties somewhat.

I don't see why. It was in everyone's interest to make the distasteful business as quick and as unemotional as possible. By not cooperating with the rest of the prison team, the chaplain would only be prolonging the process or introducing an element of confusion.
 
That's quite a range, I would expected the firing party to be closer to get a better chance of hitting something vital. At that range the condemned could have seriously wounded but not killed outright.

Each one of the targets had at least 4 rifles pointing at them, and those rifles had an effective range of 500 yards, M1 Garand .30 caliber. ;)


Twelve hand-picked soldiers from the 109th Regiment were detailed for the firing squad. The weapons used were standard-issue M1 Garand rifles, eleven of them loaded with just one round and one rifle loaded with a blank round.[6] On the command of "Fire", Slovik was hit by eleven bullets, at least four of them being fatal. The wounds ranged from high in the neck region out to the left shoulder, over the left chest, and under the heart. One bullet was in the left upper arm. An Army physician quickly determined Slovik had not been immediately killed. As the firing squad's rifles were being reloaded to fire another volley, Slovik died. He was 24 years old. The entire execution took 15 minutes.
 

Chef

LE

Twelve hand-picked soldiers from the 109th Regiment were detailed for the firing squad. The weapons used were standard-issue M1 Garand rifles, eleven of them loaded with just one round and one rifle loaded with a blank round.[6] On the command of "Fire", Slovik was hit by eleven bullets, at least four of them being fatal. The wounds ranged from high in the neck region out to the left shoulder, over the left chest, and under the heart. One bullet was in the left upper arm. An Army physician quickly determined Slovik had not been immediately killed. As the firing squad's rifles were being reloaded to fire another volley, Slovik died. He was 24 years old. The entire execution took 15 minutes.
I've often wondered about loading a random rifle with a blank.

Is it to ensure that the firing squad aim true on the chance that they'll have the blank round? Once the guns had fired the blank firer would know at once he'd got the blank and the rest would know they'd fired live.
 

Cold_Collation

LE
Book Reviewer
I've often wondered about loading a random rifle with a blank.

Is it to ensure that the firing squad aim true on the chance that they'll have the blank round? Once the guns had fired the blank firer would know at once he'd got the blank and the rest would know they'd fired live.
Quite. Blanks have a distinctive sound.
 

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