No. 423
Crime, Eccentricity, and the Sporting Life in 19th Century America.
April 23, 2019

A Rattling Main.

A desperate week-long challenge battle between Georgia and Arkansas cocks won by F. E. Grist's champ
October 20, 2015
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Hanged April 23, 1845 for poisoning her brother Charles Dimond — and commonly suspected to have offed several other family members by means of arsenic — the “Shapwick Murderess” Sarah Freeman insisted her innocence to her very last breath. “I am as innocent as a lamb,” she said to the hangman William Calcraft as he […]
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The Savoy bookstore in Westerly, R.I. was cram-packed with Borden case enthusiasts this evening as author Cara Robertson held forth …

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"Roses are red, Violets are blue, And my cat is, too." Cats and weird little stories from the past.  What could be more Strange Company than that?  For this reason, I'm delighted to temporarily pass the blog's steering wheel over to Peggy Gavan, whose upcoming book, "The Cat Men of Gotham: Tales of Feline Friendships in Old New York" (Rutgers University Press, May 3, 2019,) is now available
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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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Rosa Buckstahlen and Ida Bjornstad, servants in the Chicago mansion of Amos J. Snell, were awakened at 2:00 the morning of February 8, 1888, by the sound of a gunshot from the floor below. They heard someone shout “Get out! Get out of here!” followed by more gunshots, then silence. Thinking that all was well—or more likely, too frightened to do anything else—the girls went back to sleep.
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I count six transportation options Brooklynites had in 1915, according to this rich and detailed postcard of Flatbush Avenue. There’s the elevated train, of course, as well as a streetcar, automobile, bicycle, horse and wagon, and of course, getting around on foot, as most of the crowd seems to be doing—when they’re not mugging for […]
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Ephemeral New York - 4/21/2019
[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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A Hidden Skeleton. | The Cruelties of Fashion.

A Rattling Main.

A Rattling Main

A desperate week-long challenge battle between Georgia and Arkansas cocks won by F. E. Grist's champion, Richard K Fox. [more]

The great cocking main, $100 each battle and $2,000 the odd fight, between Siedge & Hanna’s Arkansas Travelers and F. E. Grist’s strain of Shawl Necks of Fort Gaines, Georgia, was decided in a tent recently at Fort Gaines. Twenty-one cocks were shown and nineteen matched. The Georgia fowls won by three battles. The most important battle was the eleventh. It was between the pick of the two divisions. Arkansas pitted a blue red, weighing five pounds three ounces, named John L. Sullivan, while Grist pitted a black red. The latter was Grist’s famous and favorite cock named Richard K. Fox, in honor of the editor and proprietor of the Police Gazette. Large sums were wagered. Richard K. Fox had decidedly the advantage, and won amid great rejoicing. John L. Sullivan’s wing was broken during the encounter. The tournament lasted one week, and over three hundred back battles were fought.


Reprinted from National Police Gazette, January 22, 1887.