Prisoners Lancaster Castle 1779
Horrors of Transportation
Brutal attacks on Police Officers, 1868 and 1888
The burning of the Reformatory ship Clarence, 1884
Misc St Helens, crimes
Hangings Kirkdale Jail
Hangings and the Executioners
Most prolific offender in Liverpool.
From around 1899, up until 1954, aged 73, Mary Ellen McGregor had made over 500 appearance in court, mostly for being drunk and disorderly, the magistrate in May 1954, discharged her absolutely, in commemoration of her notorious record.
Perhaps knowing she was in declining health as she died not long after in the Liverpool Royal Infirmary on 5th August 1954 Related newspaper snippets
Western Daily Press 1st November 1929
Woman with 149 convictions
Mary Ellen McGregor, aged 48, a woman with 149 convictions was discharged with a caution at Liverpool on Wednesday appeared again yesterday, accused of being drunk and disorderly. She was sent to prison for a month.
Sunderland Daily Echo and Shipping Gazette 5th May 1933
Top of the league
When four women appeared at Liverpool Police Court it was disclosed that their convictions for drunkenness totalled 507.
Mary Ellen McGregor, aged 52, who it was stated was "Top of the league" with 171 convictions, pleaded for "Just one more chance" and she was discharged with a caution. The other three women, whose convictions were 159, 108, and 69 respectively, were sent to prison for a month each.
Gloucestershire Echo 2nd February 1944
Mrs Mary Ellen McGregor, aged 63, no settled address made her 236th appearance today at Liverpool Police Court accused of having been drunk. She had previously been convicted 235 times mostly for drunkenness, 12 times during the past year. She was sent back to prison for a month.
Nottingham Evening Post 5th January 1949
192 appearances in court
Shoulders draped in a dark grey shawl, tiny, grey haired and hatless, 67 year old Mary Ellen McGregor made her 192nd appearance in court at Liverpool City Magistrates Court, today, and as she turned from the dock, she murmured , "A happy New Year to you, I am past redemption."
She had been granted her wish to be sent to prison for a month. Homeless, she was bound over yesterday, and later, when rain fell on the snow covered streets, she was found drunk in the doorway of a club in Lime Street. On Saturday when she was bound over for being drunk, the records officer said she had been in court 172 times, but Mary Ellen claimed she had made many, many more appearances.
By today six ledgers weighing nearly 1cwt, and going back to 1899 had been examined and disclosed 191 appearances.
Mary Ellen said she got money to get drunk "by selling dream books"
Hull Daily Mail 6th December 1949
"No jail please its Aladdin again"
Mary Ellen McGregor aged 68, lodging in Canning Street, Liverpool, made her 367th appearance at Liverpool for being drunk.
She told magistrates that the pantomime this year at Stangeways Prison, Manchester, is to be "Aladdin and his lamp" and added, "I saw it last year and I do not want to see it again. Anyway, Mary Ellen and her bottle would be better"
Mary Ellen pleaded guilty and was fined one pound
"She kept her promise" commented Mr H. A. G. Langton, the clerk. "She was here on Saturday and promised the bench she would not appear on Monday"
Mary Ellen also had some views on prison. She told the court, "it was prison in the old days, it is not now it is a home."
Portsmouth Evening News 11th May 1954
Mary aged 73, 500 times in dock
Small, silver haired Mary Ellen McGregor aged 73, of no fixed address stood in the dock for the 500th time at Liverpool today for being drunk and disorderly. The Chairman told her sternly "We have no flags to put out here, we are going to discharge you absolutely, in commemoration of your notorious record."
The Times, Aug 6th, 1954
Mary Ellen McGregor of no fixed address, who in her lifetime had made more than 500 court appearances, mostly for being drunk and disorderly, died last night in the Royal Infirmary, Liverpool