From the Justice & Police Museum in Sydney…
This one is Louisa Collins who was the last women executed in NSW, for killing her two husbands
The text on the panel says:
In 1869 Louisa Collins (1849-1889) was arrested on suspicion of poisoning two husbands. Details of the case were widely reported in the newspapers, with her drinking habits, lovers and family life mercilessly scrutinised by the public.
Louisa had married her first husband, Charles Andrews, in 1865 when she was 16 years old. Later, when the family moved to Botany, she allegedly began a series of adulterous romances with local men, including the family’s border Michael Collins. After an argument with Louisa about Collins, Andrews began to suffer terrible stomach pains. He died in 1886, apparently from gastroenteritis. A few months after collecting the life insurance money Louisa married Collins, shocking the neighbourhood.
The marriage was not a happy one, and perhaps unsurprisingly Collins soon became bedridden with debilitating stomach pain and died in July 1888. The suspicious doctor notified police and Louisa was charged with poisoning her husband with arsenic. She was tried for murder on three occasions but each time the jury was unable to agree on a verdict. finally, at the fourth trial, she was found guilty and sentenced to death. The sentence causes outrage in Sydney. Some people considered it uncivilised to hang a woman, others pointed to the multiple trials and said there was obviously room for doubt about her guilt. Despite the petitions, pleas and protests, Louisa was hanged on 8 January 1889. She was the last woman to be executed in NSW.
The Execution Of Louisa Collins, Sydney Morning Herald, 1889
Last woman hanged in NSW, but was Louisa Collins innocent? (Book), Sydney Morning Herald, 2014.
Canberra Law Review article looking at legal aspects of the case in some detail.