No. 531
Crime, Eccentricity, and the Sporting Life in 19th Century America.
July 26, 2021

It Was a "She."

July 9, 2013
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32 Coxwell Road was not, even by the standards of council houses in 1950s Birmingham, England, anything special to look at.  But for the family of 31-year-old ex-paratrooper Frank Pell, it was a palace compared to their previous lodgings--a house so dilapidated it was officially condemned.  The three-bedroom home was newly decorated, on a quiet road close to all necessary services.  And the rent
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Strange Company - 7/26/2021

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Youth With Executioner by Nuremberg native Albrecht Dürer … although it’s dated to 1493, which was during a period of several years when Dürer worked abroad. November 13 [1617]. Burnt alive here a miller of Manberna, who however was lately engaged as a carrier of wine, because he and his brother, with the help of […]
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Executed Today - 11/13/2020

When painters depict the East River, it’s usually from the Manhattan side: a steel bridge, choppy waters, and a Brooklyn or Queens waterfront either thick with factories or quaint and almost rural. But when Richard Hayley Lever decided to paint the river in 1936, he did it from Astoria. What he captured in “Queensboro Bridge […]
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Ephemeral New York - 7/26/2021
[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
When Horatio Sherman took sick after returning home from a week-long drunken spree, he said it was just one of his “old spells.” His wife Lydia agreed, and dosed him with brandy as usual. But Horatio’s doctor, who had treated his alcohol induced “spells” before, was suspicious this time. Horatio died two days later, and the doctor ordered a post-mortem examination which revealed the cause of
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Murder By Gaslight - 7/24/2021

Harrison Ave.Leadville, ColoradoJuly 21, 1880Luke and Wheeler photographers(Click image to enlarge)  S THAT SOAPY'S PARTNER IN CRIME? Those who have read Alias Soapy Smith: The Life and Death of a Scoundrel, you may recall seeing the photograph (#6A) below, in the first photograph section of the book.  Soapy Smith and his partner in crimeHarrison Ave.Leadville, ColoradoJuly 21, 1880Luke and
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Soapy Smith's Soap Box - 7/21/2021
Gold from Seawater! | She Skipped.

It Was a "She."

It was a she

Charles Kelly, arrested for burglary near Princeton, Ind., turns out upon examination to be Clara King. [more]

A Horrible “Find.”

A correspondent at Princeton, Ind., writes: It will be remembered that about two months ago a burglary was committed at Ft. Branch, and that Sheriff McGary and his assistant, Wm. Wire, shortly afterward captured five men near Mt. Carmel who proved to be the guilty parties. After bringing them to the city they pled guilty, at the preliminary trial, to the charge of larceny, and were committee to jail in default of bail. The five burglars gave their names as John Kelly, “Charles Kelley,” John Murphy, Thomas O’Neil and James Gallagher. Charles Kelly seemed to be a very young boy, and gained considerable sympathy from several who saw him, thinking that he had probably been enticed into leaving a life of the Lord. The prisoner were placed in cells together and mingled together in jail, and nothing was supposed to be wrong. On several occasions Charles informed the sheriff that he was afraid of the roughs therein, and would rather be locked in a cell. The prisoner then said her name was Clara King, and that she hailed from Chicago, and had no home or relatives that she knew of, that she joined the gang of burglars in order to make a living. She was taken before the judge of court and proved that she was a female, when she was given three years in the State Female Penitentiary.


Reprinted from The National Police Gazette, October 15, 1887.