Musée des confluences

Albert PEL, Serial Poisoner

Saturday September 23 | 3:00 pm

Lecture in French

The case of Pel the watchmaker is considered to be one of the most characteristic of the 19th century.

On June 11, 1885, before the Court of Assizes of the Seine, Félix-Albert Pel, thirty-six years old, a watchmaker at Montreuil, was accused of two murders committed with a four-year interval: one of his wife Lucie Buffeteau, the other of his mistress Elise Boehmer, whose body was never found. Both victims showed identical symptoms, caused, it seemed, by poisoning. However, the evidence was missing, but the prosecution against Pel gathered a number of troubling testimonies that brought to light from his past a whole series of suspicious deaths, which were overwhelming. The Court sentenced him to the death penalty for the murder of Elise Boehmer but not for the murder of his wife. This case shows how several alleged crimes were used to convict a man and in the end, only one charge was laid against him, for which further evidence was not provided.

With Frédéric Chauvaud, Professor of Contemporary History, University of Poitiers. Member of the Scientific Committee for the Venenum Exhibition.

Book signing session at the museum bookshop at 5:00 pm