No. 556
Crime, Eccentricity, and the Sporting Life in 19th Century America.
January 22, 2022

A Sleep-Walker’s Act.

Miss Belle Collis, of Newark, N. J., surprises the neighbors by her want of thought.
March 26, 2016
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Soapy Smith leading the packArtifact #96-Front Page, Part 1National PopulistMarch 24, 1894Jeff Smith collection(Click image to enlarge)  amblers, Thugs, Murders and Rogues."The alliance of the gamblers and bunco men with the old Fire and Police Board is not a pleasant thing to contemplate. It has come to a pretty pass if the interests of the city and the lives and property of citizens can't
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Soapy Smith's Soap Box - 1/21/2022

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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

 "The Witches' Cove," Follower of Jan MandijnWinter has been here for one month now.And this is the current mood here at Strange Company HQ.A professor has an interesting side job.A board game from 4,000 years ago.Exploring the possibility that John Keats was a grave-robber.This week in Russian Weird looks at a vampire Baroness and her cursed tomb.In which we are confronted with way too much
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Strange Company - 1/21/2022
The Nicholsons of San Francisco owned some farmland near Watsonville in Monterey County, California. In 1873, Mrs. Sarah Nicholson spent all of her time there, working the farm while her husband traveled back and forth from San Francisco, where he had a carriage business.Two years earlier, they bought the land from Matt Tarpey, a wealthy landowner and a big man in Monterey County politics. Tarpey
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Murder By Gaslight - 1/22/2022

An article I recently wrote for the British online magazine, New Politic, is now available online. The article, “The Criminal Origins of the United States of America,” is about British convict transportation to America, which took place between the years 1718 and 1775, and is the subject of my book, Bound with an Iron Chain: […]
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Early American Crime - 12/17/2021
Killed by a Baseball. | A Square Meal.

A Sleep-Walker’s Act.

Sleepwalker

Miss Belle Collis, of Newark, N. J., surprises the neighbors by her want of thought. [more]

Early risers in Newark, N. J., were somewhat surprised one night recently at seeing what looked like a ghost. The ghost was dressed in the regulation white and was sitting on a stoop. None dared to venture near the ghost except a courageous milkman, who found the vision to be a young lady in a somnambulistic trance. The young lady proved to be Miss Belle Collis, one of Newark’s society belles. Her attire consisted of one thing garment, known in boudoir parlance as a nightdress. Miss Collis had, while in the trance, left her bedroom and walked several blocks, when she sat down to rest on the stoop where she was found by the milkman. When found she was in a half frozen condition. When aroused she went into hysterics. It was some time before she recovered sufficiently to tell where she live, she was then conducted home.


Reprinted from National Police Gazette, December 7. 1889.