William Herbert Wallace was Inspector Gold’s insurance agent. Therefore in all objective fairness Inspector Gold should not have been allowed to work on or be attached to this case. With that said, it appears that in this instance he was able to remain impartial judging by his actions and statements. Gold was the one to make the arrest of Wallace.
Photographs of statements provided by John Gannon.
Herbert GOLD says:-
I am a Detective Inspector of the Liverpool City Police.
At 10.30p.m. on Tuesday the 20th January 1931, I went to 29, Wolverton Street, where I saw the body of Julia Wallace lying on the parlour floor. Supt. Moore, Det.Sergt.Bailey and Dr.McFall were there and I agree with them with regard to the condition of the premises and body.
With Supt.Moore I examined the front door and lock with the aid of a strong lamp, accused was present. The lock and door appeared to be in order. Supt. Moore asked accused for his key and he tried it in the lock.
The key slipped in the lock after being partly turned round.
Supt. Moore tried the key from the outside and opened the door. Supt. Moore said, “The lock is slightly defective”. Accused said, “It was not like that this morning”.
A mackintosh was lying by the side of the body and Supt. Moore asked Mr. Wallace if it was his, but no answer was given. Supt.Moore said, “Had mrs.Wallace a mackintosh like this”. No answer was given. Sergt.Bailey then picked the mackintosh up and Supt.Moore, after examining it said, “It is a gent’s”. Wallace then examined it and said, “If there are two patches on it it is mine. It is mine, I wore it this morning, but the day turned out fine and I wore my fawn coat this afternoon. It was not burnt like that when I had it on”. Supt. Moore asked him where he had left it and Wallace said, “Hanging up in the hall at about half past one”.
I then accompanied Wallace to Anfield Road Police Station where he made the statement (produced). I examined his clothing but found no bloodstains on it.
I then said to accused “Did ou see anybody suspicious about when you left the house”. He said “I saw no suspicious persons about when I left the house to go to Allerton”.
I said “Which way exactly did you go to the tram, and which way did you return”. He said “I left by the backdoor and up the entry to Richmond Park and across and up the entry by the new Institute to Sedley Street and then to Newcombe Street and Castlewood Road to Belmont Road and to Sr Margarets Church, when I got on a tram to Allerton[.] and back, I got off the tram at West Derby Road and Sheil Road and sent (sic) home by the same route except that I went to the front door first.”
I said “Did you see or speak to anyone on your return”. He said “I saw no-one about the entries or streets near home and the first people I spoke to were the Johnsons (sic)”.
I said “Do you think anyone was in the house when you got back”. He said “I think someone was in the house when I went to the front door because I couldn’t open it and I couldn’t open the backdoor”.
I said “Did you hear any noise”.
He said “No, I heard no noise in the house”.
I said “Was the yard door bolted”. He said “It was bolted but not closed”.
I said “Was anyone likely to call when you were away”.
He said “Only the paper boy from Cabbage Hall”. [not milk boy/girl?]
I said “What time does he deliver the paper”.
He said “I am not sure whether he had delivered the paper or not before I left”.
I said “Can you tell me exactly what has been stolen from the cash box”.
He said “There was a pound note, three 10/- notes, 30/- to 40/- in silver, a Postal Order for 4/6 from W.L.Springer, 41 New Road, and four penny stamps, a cheque on the Midland Bank, Dale Street, for £5-17-0 payable to me and crossed, in the cash box, and that is missing, except the four penny stamps, I have them”.
I said “Did your wife have any money about”.
He said “I think she had some but I don’t know where she keeps it”. (inside corset pocket?)
I said “Do you know anyone named Qualthrop (sic)”
He said “No, I know no-one of that name”.
I said “Do you know anyone likely to have sent the message”.
He said “No, I cannot think of anyone”.
I said “Would your wife let anyone in on business while you were away”.
He said “No, she would not admit anyone unless she knew them personally, if anyone did call, she would shew them into the parlour”.
I said “Do you know anyone besides the paper boy likely to call”. He said “I cannot call to mind anyone likely to call and I don’t know that she had any friends unknown to me”.
I said “Who gave you the message at the Chess Club”.
He said “Captain Beattie”.
I said “Did anyone know you were going there, or had you told anyone”.
He said “No, I had told no-one I was going and I can’t think of anybody who knew I was going”.
On Wednesday the 21st of January I took possession of the following property from 29 Wolverton Street.
Violin and Case
Cash Box containing Dollar Bill.
Handbag containing £-5-10½ and one halfcrown
One halfcrown and two shillings
Piece of Carpet
From Middle Bedroom:
Four £1 Notes
Postal Order for 2/4
Lock and key from front door.
Lock and key from back-door.
On the same day witness Sgt Bailey handed me the skirt produced and I also saw witness Draper and examined 29 Wolverton Street with her.
On Thursday the 22nd January I took the statement produced from accused.
On Friday the 23rd January I visited 29 Wolverton Street, with the accused and examined the house. He took possession of his wife’s jewellery frrom the drawer in the middle bedroom and said it was correct. I found his wife’s Post Office Savings Bank Book (produced) under some papers lying in a drawer in the front bedroom. I told Wallace that I had seen Mrs.Draper and that she said that a small poker was missing from the kitchen and a piece of iron bar from the parlour fireplace. He said “Perhaps she has thrown the poker away with the ashes and I don’t know anything about a bar of iron in the parlour”. I also saw there an Insurance Policy for £20-0-0 for Mrs Julia Wallace. [TAKEN OUT WHEN? To-do: Contact Prudential for information.] I asked Wallace if there were any others on her and he said “No, that’s the only one”.
At 6.30p.m. on that day I was present when Supt Moore saw Wallace at his office. he said to him “You saw Mr. Beattie of the Chess Club light (sic) night”. He said “Yes, while I was waiting for a tramcar in Lord Street”. He said “You asked him about the telephone message, and what time he received it”. Wallace said “Yes”. He said “You told him the time was important”. Wallace said “Yes”. He asked him “In what way was it important”, and he replied “I had some ideas of my own. We all have ideas. It was indiscreet of me”.
Wallace later daid (sic) “I cannot say why I asked him. I admit it was an indiscretion on my part. I cannot say anything further”.
On the 26th January I handed the four one pound notes, Postal Order for 2/4, and the halfcrown (produced) to the City Analyst, also two pieces of plaster and a hammer.
On Monday the 26th January accompanied by Mr.Bishop I left the backdoor of 29 Wolverton Street at 6.45pm an walked to St. Margaret Church by the route which Wallace said he took on the evening of Tuesday the 20th January when he went to Allerton. We boarded a tram at St Margarets Church and I saw Sgts. Bailey and Fothergill on the tram. We alighted at the junction of Tunnel Road and Smithdown Road and walked across the road to the sstopping place for the tramsgoing (sic) down Smithdown Road. It was then 7.4pm.
On the same day I handed the front door lock to C.I.Roberts.
Evidence taken 3rd. March 1931.
HERBERT GOLD :-
I am a Detective Inspector of the Liverpool City Police.
At 10-30 p.m. on the 20th. January in consequence of what I had been told I went to the house 29 Wolverton Street. Witnesses Moore, Macfall, Bailey and other officers were there, also the accused. Witness Macfall was in the sitting room making notes. Lying on the floor of the sitting room I saw a body which I now know to have been that of Julia Wallace. I spoke to witness Moore who called the accused into the lobby from the kitchen.
We examined the front door and the lock on it inside and out but I could see no sign of any damage either to the lock or the door. Witness Moore asked the accused for the key of the front door and the accused handed it to him. Witness Moore tried it in the front door and it would open the door but when the key was turned more than half way round it seemed to slip and the lock would go back into position Witness Moore went outside and pulled the door to after him. He then opened the door with the key and came inside. He said to the accused “The lock is slightly defective”. The accused said “It was not like that this morning”. Witness Moore and the accused then went into (?) the lobby and I remained by the front door for a few minutes. I then went along the lobby to the parlour door and the accused and witness Moore were standing just inside the parlour near the parlour door. Witness Bailey was standing by the body. There was a blood stained mackintosh tucked in by the body ear the shoulder. Witness Moore then asked him if his wife had one like it. Accused did not reply to that. Witness Moore told witness Bailey to pick the mackintosh up and he did so. Witness Moore took hold of the sleeve and stretched it out and said “This is a gent’s”. Accused examined it and said “If there are patches on it, it’s mine”. He made a pause and looked at the mackintosh and said “It is mine. I wore it this morning but the day turned out fine and I wore my fawn overcoat this afternoon. It was not burnt like that when I wore it”. Witness Moore asked him where he had left it and the accused said “Hanging up in the hall at about 1-30”.
I then made an examination of the interior of the house starting with the parlour. Nothing there appeared to have been disturbed. Furniture and ornaments appeared to be in order. I went into the kitchen which appeared to be in order except that the cabinet W.H.W.1_ appeared to have been broken, part of the door lying on the floor. As I went into the kitchen I saw the handbag W.H.W.41 on a chair which was partly under a table, one corner of it __ __ than the other. I went upstairs into the middle bedroom which appeared to be in order. There was no sign of any disturbance there. I saw some Treasury Notes in the jar W.H.W.17 on a mantel-piece. I then went into the front bedroom and I saw that the bed and the clothing had been pushed up about half way from the side nearest the door and the mattress was exposed. There were two handbags and 2 or 4 lady’s hats on the bed. There were two pillows on the floor between the window and the fireplace. There was no sign of any disturbance in that room. The drawers in the dressing table were closed, the wardrobe door was closed, and two suit cases on a box ina corner had not been disturbed because there was a fairly thick layer of dust on them.
I then went into the bathroom and with the aid of my torch i saw what appeared to be a blood clot on the rim of the W.C. pan. Nothing in the bathroom appeared to have been disturbed or upset. I looked into the back bedroom which is used as a kind of workroom and as far as I could judge, that place appeared to be in order. I then examined the house on the outside, front and back. The window and doors were intact and I could see no sign of them having been forced or any attempt to force them. I examined the back yard walls and I could find no (?) indication of anyone having climbed over them.
Evidence continued 4th. March 1931
I then accompanied the accused with witness Bailey to Anfield Road Bridewell. It would then be about 11-45 p.m.
On the way to the office at the Bridewell the accused told me that he had got a message which had been left at the Chess Club in North John Street from someone named “Qualtrough” asking him to go to Menlove Gardens that evening and that was why he was away from home. When we got to the Detective Office witness Bailey commenced to take the statement W.H.W.42. after the statement was completed I read it and then I asked the accused if he had seen anyone loitering about when he left his house and he said “I saw no suspicious persons about when I left the house to go to Allerton”. I asked him to tell me exactly which way he went to the tram and back and he said “I left by the back door and up the entry to Richmond Park and across and up the entry by the new institute to Sedley Street and then to Newcombe Street to Castlewood Road and to Belmont Road and St. Margarets Church where I got on a tram to Allerton and back, I got off a tram at Shiel Road and West Derby Road and went home by the same route except that I went to the front door first”.
I then asked him if he saw or spoke to anyone on the way to the tram and back and he said “I saw no one about the entries or street near home and the first people I spoke to were the Johnstons”.
I asked him if he thought anyone was in the house when he got back and he said “I thinksomeone was in the house when I went to the front door because I could not open it and I could not open the back door”.
I asked him if he heard anyone moving about int he house and he said “No, I heard no noise in the house”.
I asked him if the yard door was bolted when he got back. He said “It was not bolted but closed”.
I asked him if anyone was likely to call while he was out. He said “Only the paper boy from Cabbage Hall”.
I asked him what time he was likely to call. He said “I am not sure whether he had delivered the paper before I left or not”.
I asked him to tell me exactly what was stolen from the cash box. he said “There was a £1 Note, three 10/- Notes, 30 to 40 shillings in silver, a Postal Order for a 4/6 from W.L. Springer, 41 New Road, and four penny stamps, a cheque on the Midland Bank, Dale Street, for £5-17-0, payable to me and crossed in the cash box and that is missing, except the four penny stamps, I have them”.
I asked him if his wife had any money. He said “I think she has some but I don’t know where she keeps it”.
I asked him if he knew anyone named Qualtrough. he said “No, I know no one of that name”.
I asked him if he knew of anyone who would be likely to send a message to the Chess Club. he said “No, I cannot think of anyone”.
I asked him if his wife would admit anyone who called on business while he was away. he said “No, she would not admit anyone unless she knew them personally. If anyone did call she would show them into the parlour”.
I asked him if he knew of anyone besides the paper boy who would be likely to call either to see him or his wife. he said “I cannot call to mind anyone likely to call and I don’t know that she had any friends unknown to me”.
I asked him who gave him the message at the Chess Club and he said “Captain Beattie”.
I asked him if he knew anyone who knew he was going to the Club or had he told anyone he was going. He said “No I hadn’t told anyone I was going and I can’t think of anyone who knew I was going”.
I examined his clothing and hands but I found no blood stains on them. I then left him.
On the 21st. January at about 11 a.m. I went to the house 29 Wolverton Street with witness Moore.I made a further examination of the premises. I took possession of the following articles :-
From the parlour:
[Some exhibit codes following and throughout the statement are guesses, very difficult to read]
Mackintosh – W.H.W.1_.
Piece of hair – W.H.W.25.
Two pictures – W.H.W.26.
Two photos – W.H.W.27.
Violin in case – W.H.W.28.
Piece of music – W.H.W.29.
Cushion – W.H.W.30.
Hearthrug – W.H.W.31.
From the kitchen:
Cash box – W.H.W.20.
Dollar bill – W.H.W.32.
Cabinet – W.H.W.1_
Handbag – W.H.W.41 (containing £-5-10½ and one halfcrown)
One half crown and 2 separate shillings – W.H.W.32.
From the bathroom:
W.C. pan and seat – W.H.W.23.
Piece of carpet – W.H.W.24
Nail brush – W.H.W.24.
From the middle bedroom:
Four £1 Notes, a Postal order (2/4) and a half crown – W.H.W.37.
Jam jar – W.H.W.17.
I also took possession fo the lock from the front door W.H.W.21 and from the back door W.H.W.22.
The same day the witness Bailey handed me the skirt W.H.W.36.
The same day I saw witness Draper and examined the house 29 Wolverton St. with her.
On the 22nd. January I saw the accused at the Detective Office, Dale Street, at about 10-45 a.m. He said to me “I think I have some important information for you”.
He then recited (?) to me a statement which I afterwards took down in writing. I now produce it marked W.H.W.__. The accused signed it.
On the 23rd January I went to 29 Wolverton Street with witness Bailey and the accused. The accused took possession fo some jewellery from a drawer in the middle bedroom and also found a Post Office Savings Book in his Wife’s name from a drawer in the front bedroom. He made a thorough examination of the house and said there was nothing else missing except that there was a small wood chopper from the back kitchen which he had not seen for about 12 months. I made a further search and I found the wood chopper in a basked under some old clothing under the stairs. I told the accused that Mrs. Draper had examined the house and said that a small poker about _” long was missing from the fireplace in the kitchen and that an iron bar about a foot lond was missing from the fireplace in the parlour. The accused said “Perhaps she has thrown the poker away with the ashes. I don’t know anything about a bar of iron in the parlour”.
I saw an Insurance policy in the name of Julia Wallace with the Prudential Assurance Co. for £20 and I asked the accused if there were any others. he said “No that’s the only one”.
At 6-30 p.m. that night I was present when witness Moore saw the accused at the Dale Street Detective Office. Witness Moore said to him “You saw Captain Beattie of the Chess Club last night”. The accused said “Yes, while I was waiting for a tram in Lord Street”. Witness Moore said “You asked him about the telephone message and the time you get it (sic)”. The accused said “Yes”. Witness Moore said “You told him the time was important”. The accused said “Yes”. Witness Moore said “In what way was it important?” The accused said “I had some ideas of my own. We all have ideas. It was indiscreet of me. I can’t say why I asked him. I admit it was an indiscretion on my part. I cannot say anything further”.
The same day I took possession fo the suit of clothes W.H.W.32(?) and the towel(?) W.H.W.3_. I obtained the suit from the middle bedroom and the towel from the bathroom of the house 29 Wolverton Street. The suit was being worn by the accused when I first saw him on the night of the 20th. January.
The same day I took a further statement from the accused at the Dale Street Detective Office. it is now produced marked W.H.W.45.
On the 24th. January I handed the exhibits W.H.W. 1_, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 20(?), _2, 33, 34, 35, _2, 36, to witness William Henry Roberts.
On the 26th January I handed to him the exhibit W.H.W.37. [the four £1 Notes, postal order (2/4) and a half crown from the middle bedroom jam jar]
At 6-45 p.m. on the 26th. January I left the back door of 29 Wolverton Street and walked to the tram stop at St. Margarets Church, Belmont Road, by the route shown in red on plan W.H.W.15. I boarded a car going towards Lodge Lane. Witnesses Bailey and Fothergill were on the car when I got on. We alighted at the junction of Tunnel Road and Smithdown Road and walked to the tram stop at the corner of Smithdown Lane where the Smithdown Road cars stop. It was then 7-4 p.m.
That day I handed the lock W.H.W.21 to witness Alfrdd (sic – Henry?) William Roberts.
On the 29th January I took a further statement from the accused at 82 Ullet Rd. It is produced marked W.H.W.46. The accused signed it.
O the 2nd. February at 7 p.m. I went to 82 Ullet Road with witness Moore and Superintendent Thomas. I saw the accused there and I cautioned him and told him I was going to arrest him for the wilful murder of his wife Julia Wallace at 29 Wolverton St. on the 20th. January. He said “What can I say in answer to this charge of which I am absolutely innocent”.
I took him to the Main Bridewell where I formally cautioned and charged him. He made no reply. When searched he had in his possession the diary produced W.H.W.47. The entry in the spaces for the __th and 27th. January is in the handwriting of the accused except the word “east”. I cannot say whether or not that word is his handwriting it is in block letters.
I have made enquiries regarding the persons referred to by the accused in the statement W.H.W.44. I have taken statements regarding some of the matters (?) referred to. I am prepared if necessary to give the result of my enquiries.
By Mr. SCHOLEFIELD ALLEN, Counsel for accused:-
At the time when witness Bailey held up the mackintosh I did not know the accused had already identified the mackintosh. I was very much surprised when I did learn that it had been previously identified by him because in the position it was when I first saw it by the body it seemed to me that it would be almost impossible for anyone to identify it as a particular mackintosh or as a mackintosh at all because it was in such a crumpled condition. It might have been a piece of mackintosh material, a cycling cape, or an old Army ground sheet. I did not know he had identified it to witnesses Constable Williams and Mrs. Johnston and to Police Sergeant Breslin. I do not know anything of what happened before I got there. Looking at the photograph W.H.W.7. I am unable to say whether the mackintosh is there shown in the position in which I saw it, nor can I say that what appears in it is a mackintosh or an Army ground sheet. It might be anything.
The piece of hair W.H.W.__ _ I saw it was lying near the head of the deceased on the floor, and apparently was a piece of false hair such as worn by a lady.
On the 21st. January I removed from the kitchen at the house on Wolverton Street some books, [13?] in all. They related to business matters and some of them were diaries. Diaries for 1928, 1929, 1930, and some of 1931 were amongst them. The diaries are now produced W.H.W.46(?). I have read the diaries. I also took possession of the two business diaries W.H.W.47. The diaries seem to be very well kept. They are diaries of daily (measurements?) and there __ be __ on various scientific subjects and entries relating to domestic affairs. There is an entry relating to a falling out with his wife on 7th. January 1928. There are records of visits to the Calderstones district [Destroyed] many entries relating to the illnesses of himself and h(is wife?) [Destroyed] entry relating to a falling out with (his wife?) [Destroyed] of the many (newspapers by his?) wife [Is this referencing the “falling out over Julia buying too many newspapers” story?]. There is [Destroyed] ____.
(December 15th?) an [Destroyed] it appears his wife had been to Southpoirt and she had been (very late in?) getting back because there had been an accident on the railway and he went ^the entry refers to the fact that having gone to the Police Station to inquire at 1 a.m. he returned home ^to find his wife had returned arrived, and that it was ^such a relief to him to find that she was safe and sound as he ^had feared she might have been run into by some motor of something. The following entry also appears on the
7th January 1931:-
“A night of keen frost. The heavy fog caused a wonderful appearance on all the plants and trees. Every twig and leaf was most beautifully bordered and outlined with a white rim of frost. Holly leaves, owing to their wavy edges, presented a most charming appearance, and I cannot recollect an occasion on which the hoar had produced such wonderful effects. After dinner I persuaded Julia to go into Stanley Park, and she was equally charmed.”
There are many entries scattered through the diaries of their happy family life together.
On the 25th March 1930 there is an entry as follows :-
“Julia reminds me today it was fifteen years ago yesterday since we were married. Well, I don’t think either of us regrets the step. We seem to have pulled well together, and I think we both get as much pleasure and contentment out of life as most people. Our only trouble is that of millions more, shortage of £ s d.”
I first observed the blood in the bathroom at about 11-30 p.m. on the 20th January. Except as to the size which was about that of half a small split pea, I cannot say anything about it.
Extract from evidence taken 3rd March 1931.
I am a Detective Inspector of the Liverpool City Police.
….I then went into the bathroom and with the aid of my torch I saw what appeared to be a blood clot on the rim of the W.C. pan. Nothing in the bathroom appeared to have been disturbed or upset.
Extract from evidence continued 4th March 1931.
….I first observed the blood in the bathroom at about 11.30 p.m. on the 20th January. Except as to size which was about that of half a small split pea, I cannot say anything about it.