Skip to main content Skip to search Skip to search

Social Science Criminology

Last Moments

Sentenced to Death in Canada

by (author) Dale Brawn

Quagmire Press
Initial publish date
Apr 2011
Criminology, Death & Dying
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Apr 2011
    List Price
    $21.95 USD

Add it to your shelf

Where to buy it


Before the final execution in 1962, more than 700 men and women were executed by hanging in Canada. Last Moments shines a light into a dark corner of a long and painful part of Canadian history that threatens to re-emerge. Here are dramatic stories of the characters whose finals moments and last words were tragic, unpredictable, poignant, eccentric and often bizarre: * The principal object of curiosity at executions, apart from the person about to die, was the executioner; before Confederation, these individuals were often recruited from among the condemned, and they were given two options -- kill or be killed * A Yukon execution was delayed because freezing spectators, tired of waiting in the cold, used the wooden trapdoor of the gallows to build a fire * George Dowie from PEI didn't believe in brief farewells; his final discourse was so long that officials brought an armchair onto the scaffold so he could sit while addressing the crowd * British Columbian Corky Vincent brawled with his executioner on the scaffold before onlookers leaped into the fray, overpowered him and held him on the trapdoor until he was dropped to his death * And so many more tantalizing and twisted tidbits…

About the author

Dale Brawn is a law professor at Laurentian University in Sudbury. His previous books include Last Moments: When the Penalty for Murder Was Death, Every Stone a Story II, and The Court of Queen's Bench of Manitoba 1870-1950.

Dale Brawn's profile page

Other titles by Dale Brawn