Monkey hanger” is an affectionate term by which Hartlepudlians are often known.[1][2]

According to local folklore, the term originates from an incident in which a monkey was hanged in Hartlepool. During the Napoleonic wars, a French ship of the type chasse marée was wrecked off the coast of Hartlepool. The only survivor was a monkey, wearing a French uniform (allegedly)-(presumably to provide amusement for those on board the ship). On finding the monkey, some locals decided to hold an impromptu trial on the beach; since the monkey was unable to answer their questions, and many locals were unaware of what a Frenchman may look like, they concluded that the monkey was in fact a French spy. Just to make sure, the animal was thus sentenced to death and hanged from the mast of a fishing boat on the Headland.

11 thoughts on “Monkeyhanger

      1. The poor monkey. Yes I know its funny, I just find it stange to find it here on your blog. I will lighten up Dave. As always I am happy to see your wonderful images.

  1. Hi Tobias. Probably the term, ‘affectionate’ should be replaced with ‘micky taking’. I have worked in quite a few countries around the world and it’s amazing that when informing people of my origin; just how many know about the Hartlepool Monkey Hanging.. Ah!, a monkey hanger, they will say. Inferring that my ancestors didn’t have a great deal of intelligence. It’s all given and taken in good spirit.

  2. Remember Bob and Terry in the “Likely Lad”. They were discussing a trip to Canada with Thelma and her mother; who remarked “Ah, Canada, Oh those vast frozen wastes”. To which Terry remarks “You ought to visit Hartlepool in November”.

  3. This is one of the greatest pieces of information I have ever learned.

    I wonder would it be less offensive if it was a French man that was hanged rather than a French Monkey! Crazy monkey spies…..

    1. Judging by our past and current mutual dislike/distrust of each other, I would have to say that less offensive would be the answer!. Thanks for dropping by.

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