No. 436
Crime, Eccentricity, and the Sporting Life in 19th Century America.
August 19, 2019

An Easy Winner.

Architect John M. Merrick of New York triumphantly finishes his thirtieth canvas-back duck on the th
May 1, 2017
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Photo of Cindy Weber in the "Red Deer Advocate," October 23, 1981, via Newspapers.com Every missing-persons story is tragic, of course. However, I know of few such cases that are both as heart-breakingly sad and utterly peculiar as the following disappearance. It reads like a psychological horror movie, with an almost Fortean ending. People inevitably called Cynthia "Cindy" Weber of
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Strange Company - 8/19/2019

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By Jo Anne Giovino with photography and research by Barbara Morrissey and Kristin Pepe *(All rights reserved, August 2019) Although …

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Lizzie Borden: Warps and Wefts - 7/31/2019

The hanging, and then posthumous beheading and head-spiking, of the Virginia slave Abram lacks any firmer primary date than the signature given this Richmond newspaper report that was later widely reprinted in the young United States. (Our text here hails from the Hartford, Conn. American Mercury, September 18, 1800.) A HORRID MURDER. Capt. John Patterson, […]
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Executed Today - 8/19/2019
Jeff and Joe Soapy Smith buries Joe Simmons The Illustrated Police News April 9, 1892 (Click image to enlarge) oe Simmons was a tall, slender gambler known to many as “Gambler Joe” Simmons, a member of the Soap Gang who managed Soapy Smith's Tivoli Club in Denver, 1890, and Soapy's Orleans Club in Creede, 1892. According to William Devere’s poem "Two Little Busted Shoes," Simmons
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Soapy Smith's Soap Box - 3/25/2019
(sic) Mary Catherine Anderson—Katie to her friends—was in good spirits when she went out the evening of Monday, February 7, 1887. 16-year-old Katie Anderson was a domestic servant living at the home of her employer, Stat Colkitt on his farm in Mount Holly, New Jersey. She said she was just going out for a walk, but Katie was not seen again until Tuesday morning when a neighboring farmer found
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Murder By Gaslight - 8/17/2019

The neighborhood surrounding St. Mark’s Church on Second Avenue and 10th Street owes its charm to the descendants of the Stuyvesant family. These were the great-great grandsons and granddaughters of Petrus Stuyvesant, the director-general of New Netherland from 1647-1664. In the late 1700s and early 1800s, these Stuyvesants lived in stately houses on land that […]
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Ephemeral New York - 8/19/2019
[Editor’s note: Guest writer, Peter Dickson, lives in West Sussex, England and has been working with microfilm copies of The Duncan Campbell Papers from the State Library of NSW, Sydney, Australia. The following are some of his analyses of what he has discovered from reading these papers. Dickson has contributed many transcriptions to the Jamaica Family […]
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Early American Crime - 2/7/2019
The Graces in a High Wind. | Chicago’s Latest Craze.

An Easy Winner.

An Easy Winner

Architect John M. Merrick of New York triumphantly finishes his thirtieth canvas-back duck on the thirtieth consecutive day. [more]

One of the best known gourmets of New York is Mr. John M. Merrick, a famous architect. He is considered the greatest authority in the metropolis on luxurious living, and his views were quoted with respect, even by such an apostle of the cousine as the late Wm. Stuart. In a recent conversation Mr. Merrick declared that to eat thirty quail in thirty days was a treat which owed its difficultly, not to the monotony of the dish, but the natural dryness and insipidity of the bird. This opinion be offered to back practically by undertaking to eat a very different kind of wild. fowl—the canvas-back duck—at the rate of one a day for a month. The canvas-back is a very large and rich bird, and considerable doubt was expressed by epicures as to the possibility of the feat. But with true Galway pluck, Mr. Merrick demolished his thirtieth consecutive bird on New Year's day amid the applause of all beholders at Cable's restaurant on Broadway.


Reprinted from National Police Gazette January 15, 1887.