Manitoba Historical Society
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Memorable Manitobans: Emily Hilda Blake (1877-1899)

Murderer.

Born in England, she was sent to Manitoba by an English benevolent society. She became a domestic servant to the Lane family of Brandon and in 1899 shot Mrs. Lane with a pistol, claiming she was jealous of the mother’s relationship with her children. Tried for murder, she was convicted in five minutes and sentenced to be hanged. Amelia Yeomans began a movement for clemency, which insisted Blake was “morally degenerate” and suffered from “moral insanity.” Blake was hanged on 27 December 1899, the last woman executed in Manitoba.

More information:

Walk Towards the Gallows: The Tragedy of Hilda Blake, Hanged 1899 by Reinhold Kramer and Tom Mitchell, University of Toronto Press, 2007.

Hilda Blake, RearView Manitoba, Archives of Manitoba

Sources:

Dictionary of Manitoba Biography by John M. “Jack” Bumsted, Winnipeg: University of Manitoba Press, 1999.

Page revised: 10 February 2010

Memorable Manitobans

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