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

A Wild Girl in a Connecticut Swamp.

She resides in a swamp near Branford, Conn, and fills the rustics with terror.
June 28, 2016
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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
She Stole Her Lover’s Clothes. | Done Up by Dizzy Blondes.

A Wild Girl in a Connecticut Swamp.

She resides in a swamp near Branford, Conn, and fills the rustics with terror.

Wild Girl A special from New Haven, Oct. 28 says: For several weeks past sportsmen who have been hunting in the woods in the vicinity of Branford have from time to time seen a young woman darting about among the trees. She is apparently about sixteen years of age, wears no hat or shoes, and her clothing hangs in tatters about her, barley covering her form. Who she is, where she lives or where she came from is unknown. On several occasions when addressed she replied in incoherent language and ended her sentence with wild, hysterical laughter. Any attempt to approach her is fruitless. She runs like a dear and leaps stone walls and fences in a single bound. Her retreat is believed to be in Towner’s swamp, about two miles from Branford Center, as she seeks refuge there when pursued. It is supposed that the girl has been the inmate of some asylum from which she escaped. The authorities and citizens of Branford are to organize and if possible capture her and place her in some one of the State institutions.

Reprinted from National Police Gazette, November 19. 1887.