No. 543
Crime, Eccentricity, and the Sporting Life in 19th Century America.
October 18, 2021

Shooting at the Elevated.

May 7, 2013
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The "Memoirs" of Sir John Reresby (1634-1689) contain a reference to a minor witch trial which somehow morphed into one of the oddest "ghost" sightings on record: Leaving the public affairs for a while, at this untoward pass, I would venture to take notice of a private occurrence which made some noise at York. The assizes being there held on the 7th of March, 1686-7, an old woman was
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Strange Company - 10/18/2021
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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
Sometimes a painting has so much rich detail, it just knocks you out. That was my reaction to this magnificent scene of the Third Avenue Railroad Depot between 65th and 66th Streets, painted two years after the depot opened in 1857. Amazingly, the painter of this “precise representation” of the depot, William H. Schenck, was […]
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Ephemeral New York - 10/18/2021
[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
A very anxious and excited man arrived at the jail in Ann Arbor, Michigan, around midnight, October 22, 1871. He told the jailer he was unwell and wanted to sleep in the jail that night. The jailor decided it was in everyone’s best interest to give him what he wanted. As he locked the cell door, the man burst out crying but would not say why. The following morning the jailor released him. The man
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Murder By Gaslight - 10/16/2021
First response from the Sourdough Associationto Jefferson R. Smith from Clara JohnsonJeff Smith collection(Click image to enlarge)     lease try to attend and thus forward the spirit of the Sourdough." Soapy Smith's son contacts the Sourdough Reunion, 1951      Seventy years ago, at some date previous to February 15, 1951, Soapy Smith's son, sixty-five year old Jefferson Randolph Smith III
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Soapy Smith's Soap Box - 9/17/2021
Baseball Animals. | Philanthropist or “Moral Leper?”

Shooting at the Elevated.

Shooting at the Elevated

A party of New York girls enjoy a little after-dinner pistol practice at the trains that rush by windows of their hotel. [more]

Popping at the Elevated.

How a Certain Reckless Party of Fast Young Men and Women Added to the Dangers of Travel.

The luxuries of metropolitan life are many and novel, but we think the rag has been taken off the bush completely by late developments of the methods of enjoyment that have become popular among a certain class of reckless young bloods and the equally reckless young women who are assisting them in running through their fortunes. The dear creatures have been in the habit, when full of wine after the little suppers given in a certain famous off color hostelry on the line of one of the elevated railroads, to get up shooting matches, the mark being the elevated trains as thy fly by the second-story windows of the hotel. This practice became so common a few weeks ago that the entire detective force was set to work to ferret out the marksmen. One of these companies of female sharpshooters was caught by the officers but the male friends of the women proved to be related to some high officials and they were let go with a reprimand, and the mystery of the shooting at the trains has never been revealed to the indignant public until now, when the Police Gazette takes the ditty on itself in its usually bold form of description and illustration.


Reprinted from The National Police Gazette, Deember 23, 1882.