These people were sentenced to death and were almost on their way to heaven or hell but got lucky and managed to live another day.
1. Elizabeth Proctor
Elizabeth Proctor was thought to be a witch in 1692 and was arrested. Even though her friends protested, she was sentenced to death. Elizabeth was pregnant at the time and gave birth to her baby in prison. The rope was placed around her neck and she fell through the trapdoor but did not die!
2. John Henry George Lee
John Henry George Lee was arrested because it was felt that he was involved in the murder of a woman named Emma Keyse. He was about to be hanged when the release on the trap door malfunctioned and he fell through it thrice but did not die.
3. William Duell
William Duell along with 4 other men was hanged after spending time in jail for raping and murdering a child in London. At the time, dead bodies of criminals were used for medical purposes. When William’s body was laid in the Surgeons’ Hall, a student realized that he was breathing!
4. Zoleykhah Kadkhoda
Zoleykhah Kadkhoda was arrested because she was having an affair even though she was married. It was declared that she was to be killed and that people were to throw stones at her till she died. However, the stoning was abruptly stopped and the woman was taken to the morgue where the officials realized that she was breathing.
5. Wenseslao Moguel
Wenseslao Moguel was arrested after getting caught during the Mexican revolution. The officials were supposed to open fire at him and continue till he died. He was shot at 9 times but somehow managed to escape and live for a long time after.
6. John Smith
John Smith was arrested after robbing several houses and banks. He fell through the trap door but crawled out and managed to live a full life for several years.
7. Anne Green
Anne Green got pregnant after she was seduced by her employer. She gave birth to a premature baby who unfortunately, died within a few minutes after his birth. She tried to hide the body and was accused of murder. She was sentenced to death and was pushed off a ladder with a rope around her neck. However, when her coffin was opened up later, she started breathing and was sent to the hospital.
8. Joseph Samuel
Joseph Samuel committed several robberies in 1801 and murdered several people. He was part of a gang which was sentenced to death. On the day of the execution, he got onto the cart but the rope snapped. The second time the rope slipped off and the third time the rope snapped open yet again! He was then sentenced to life imprisonment.
9. Maggie Dickson
Maggie Dickson became involved with an Innkeeper after her husband died. She gave birth to a baby who died soon after. She tried to throw the body into the river but couldn’t. However, the authorities found the baby and Maggie. She was sentenced to death and after her execution, the coffin with her body was being carried over to the burial ground. This journey game to a halt when knocking was heard from within the coffin. She was taken out and lived for 40 more years!
10. Willie Francis
Willie Francis killed a drugstore owner when he was 16 years old. He confessed and was sentenced to death. As he sat on the electric chair and the electricity started coursing through his body, he started screaming but did not die. After several hours, they removed him from the chair and he was executed again a year later.
(contributed by: Chetan Bhatt on 23.12.2012)