Skull no. 2, photograph B, 1935
Superimposed outlines of Mrs. Ruxton and two skulls for comparison, 1935
Mrs. Ruxton's portrait with dress and tiara, 1935
Mrs. Isabella Ruxton, 1935
Dr. Buck Ruxton, 1935
Mary Rogers, 1935
The tips of the fingers of the victims were cut off to prevent fingerprint identification, 1935
Rex vs. Ruxton, Anatomical Report, University of Edinburgh, 1935
Mrs. Ruxton
Reconstructed body No. 2, 1935
Dr. John Glaister Junior (left) and two other men, at Moffat during the Ruxton murder investigation, about 1935
Dr. Buck Ruxton, 1935
Dr. Buck Ruxton, 1935
Neither Mrs. Ruxton nor Mary Rogerson had been seen after September 14, 1935. Dr. Buck Ruxton, Isabella Ruxton's husband and Mary Rogerson's employer, became the prime suspect. Prior to her disappearance, Dr. Ruxton had openly accused his wife of unfaithfulness and threatened her with violence. When first interviewed by the police, he had a gash on his hand, was agitated, and made inconsistent statements about where his wife and nursemaid had gone.
University of Glasgow
Image 5 of 10

The Buck Ruxton "Jigsaw Murders" case

On September 14, 1935, Buck Ruxton, an Indian-born physician who lived in Lancashire, near the English-Scottish border, murdered his wife Isabella and her maid Mary Rogerson, and then mutilated their bodies and scattered the parts, in an effort to make them unidentifiable.

After a passerby discovered some remains under a bridge in Scotland, a team of forensic experts was assembled. Using an array of scientific methods, the experts identified the victims and unmasked the perpetrator. The painstaking reconstruction of the bodies of Isabella Ruxton and Mary Rogerson by forensic pathologist John Glaister, Jr. and anatomist James Couper Brash—and pioneering use of photographic superimpositions—was the key evidence that led to Dr. Ruxton's conviction and execution. The success of the methods used in the Ruxton case, which was widely reported in the press, led to increased public and professional trust in the capabilities of forensic science. Dr. Ruxton's trial, which took place in March 1936, lasted 11 days. He was found guilty and sentenced to be hanged to death. Before his execution, he admitted his guilt.