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Last Public Guillotining in France

Hey Sparkles! Happy Monday! For today’s Monday Moment post, I am writing about the last public guillotining in France. It actually happened on this date in 1939.

As I’m sure you know, a guillotine is a beheading device most commonly used in France during the French Revolution. A total of 2,639 people were guillotined in the 9 months between autumn 1793 and summer 1794.

The name of the last person to get guillotined was Eugene Weidmann. He was a convicted murderer and kidnapper. Beginning with the botched kidnapping of an American tourist, the inspiring dancer Jean de Koven, Eugène Weidmann murdered two women and four men in the Paris area in 1937. His other victims included a woman lured by the false offer of a position as a governess; a chauffeur; a publicity agent; a real estate broker; and a man Weidmann had met as an inmate in a German prison. On the surface, his crimes seemed in most cases to have had a profit motive, but they generally brought him very small winnings.

Born in Frankfurt-am-Main in 1908, Weidmann early showed himself to be an incorrigible criminal. He had been sent to a juvenile detention facility and then served prison terms for theft and burglary in Canada and Germany prior to his arrival in Paris in 1937.

Thankfully, soon after he was killed, France outlawed capital punishment, and guillotining, for good.

Well, that’s all for today, Sparkles. Be sure to register for Setting the Stage Summer Theater Day Camp at https://form.jotform.com/91054485283157. Thanks for reading, and Sparkles away!

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