The Mysterious Case of Julia Wallace

Just less than two years after America was shocked by a closed-room murder, where a man who owned a laundry named Isador Fink was found dead in his apartment, in England, a similar closed-room murder case occurred again.

L. Small
5 min readApr 2


Left: Julia Wallace. Right: William Herbert Wallace. Source.

The murder that happened in England in 1931 is one of the most mysterious “impossible murders” that has never been solved. This murder that took place in a closed room is one of the most interesting “cold cases”. Even the famous detective novelist Dorothy L. Sayers took a keen interest in the case.

On January 21, 1931, there was the murder of a housewife named Julia Wallace in Liverpool, England. She was found dead alone in the living room of her house. Surprisingly, the house was tightly closed and locked from the inside.

Julia’s husband, William Herbert Wallace, 52, was a Prudential insurance salesman. Together with his wife, they lived in a house at 29 Wolverton Street, Liverpool. William was also a member of the popular chess club, Liverpool Central Chess Club.

The husband was later accused of being the mastermind of the murder. The husband denied the allegation that he had killed his own wife. According to his testimony, there are odd things that seem to deliberately place him as a suspected murderer. The odd thing started two days earlier.


On the evening of January 19, 1931, at the local cafe next door to the chess club William used to go to, there was an incoming phone call addressed to him. At that time, William had not yet arrived, so the cafe staff took the call.

It wasn’t long before William arrived. The employee also delivered a message from the caller, who claimed to be R.M. Qualtrough. The caller told William to come see him to discuss the insurance policy. William was asked to come to his home at 25 Menlove Gardens East the following evening.

William had never heard of the address before, and neither had the caller, R.M. Qualtrough. William had also never received a…



L. Small

"One arrow alone can be easily broken but many arrows are indestructible" ~Genghis Khan~