This world has seen quite a number of evil people. Many of them were men and some were women. So evil were the deeds of these women that they would put any man to shame. Mary Ann Cotton was one such evil woman whose heinous acts will pass down the annals of history and will not be forgotten easily. What did she do? Why did she commit such heinous acts? What did she gain from that? What happened to her eventually? We are going to find the answers to all these questions in this list of 26 interesting Mary Ann Cotton facts.
Interesting Mary Ann Cotton Facts: 1-13
1. Mary Ann Cotton was born in England on October 31, 1832. Her original name was Mary Ann Robson. Her place of birth was Low Moorsley, County Durham.
2. Eight years after her birth, her parents moved to Murton village in County Durham. Her father was a mine worker. Shortly after the family moved into the Murton, Mary’s father met an accident and died. He actually fell off a mine shaft and died after a 150 feet fall.
3. Mary’s mother remarried in 1843 to a man named George Stott but Mary could not get along with her step father pretty well. So, at the age of 16 she moved out.
4. Mary went to South Hetton, a village close to Murton. She wanted to become a nurse at the popular Edward Potter’s home. She received nurse’s training and also became a dressmaker. 3 years later, at the age of 19, Mary moved back to her mother’s home.
5. When she was 20 years old, Mary married a man named William Mowbray. William was a coal mine labor. Soon after their wedding, Mary and William moved to Plymouth, Devon.
6. The couple had 5 children while staying at Plymouth but 4 of them died of gastric fever. The couple moved back to South Hetton and had another 3 children. Those three also died of gastric fever. The two had one more child.
7. William died in 1865. The cause of death was intestinal problem. By the time William died, he was employed as a steam vessel fireman and British and Prudential Insurance company insured his life. With his death Mary received £35.
8. After William’s death, Mary went to live at Seaham Harbour and met with Joseph Nattrass. Nattrass and Mary were in a relationship but Nattrass was engaged to someone else and after Nattrass married the other woman, Mary went to Sunderland and became employed at Sunderland Infirmary. During her relationship with Nattrass, her 3 1/2 years old daughter died too, leaving behind only the youngest. She sent her last child to her mother.
9. While working at the infirmary, she met an engineer named George Ward. Ward was actually a patient there. The two married on August 28, 1865 but in October next year he too died because of intestinal problems and paralysis. Once again, Mary collected the life insurance money of Ward.
10. In 1866, Mary met a man (a widower) named James Robinson who had three children. He was a shipwright at Sunderland and in November he hired Mary as housekeeper. Just a month later in December, Robinson’s one-month old child died. The reason was gastric fever. Broken Robinson turned to Mary for solace and ended up impregnating her.
11. It was during Mary’s stay with Robinson that her mother fell ill. Upon receiving the news, Mary visited her mother and 9 days after Mary’s visit, her mother died. Mary brought her last child (who was living with Mary’s mother) to Robinson household. Soon after that, Mary’s daughter (whose name was Isabella) died along with the two remaining children of Robinson. All three died in April.
12. Mary and Robinson married in August 1867 and the two had their first child in November 1867. The child died in March 1868 because of illness. The couple had their second child in June 1869.
13. It was during her stay with Robinson, Mary continued pestering Robinson about getting a life insurance policy for himself. This aroused suspicions in Robinson’s mind and he investigated the matter to find that Mary had £60 in debts and stole £50 from Robinson instead of putting the money in bank. Robinson threw her out of his house and retained custody of their second child.