No. 583
Crime, Eccentricity, and the Sporting Life in 19th Century America.
November 30, 2022

A Human Vampire.

April 28, 2014
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Fifteen-year-old Jody Randall of Long Beach, California, was in most ways a typical suburban teenager.  The one thing that set her apart was a passion for antiques which was unusual for someone of her youth.  As a result of spending all her available free time (and her parents’ money) on her hobby, she eventually amassed some impressive pieces, including a doll collection noteworthy enough to
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Strange Company - 11/28/2022
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Shell and Pea Game on the Trail"Sketched from life by M. W. Newberry"San Francisco ChronicleApril 10, 1898(Click image to enlarge)    UNKO MEN AND THEIR TRICKS      A wonderfully detailed description of the modus operandi of Soapy Smith's three shell and pea manipulators along the Chilkoot and White Pass trails. Witnessed and reported by Joseph D. Barry, and published in the San Francisco
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Soapy Smith's Soap Box - 11/21/2022
Working as a domestic servant in 19th century New York City had plenty of challenges. Sure, servants received room and board in addition to their wages, and they usually had at least Sunday afternoon off. But living in another family’s home was isolating and lonely—particularly if you didn’t speak English or weren’t accustomed to urban […]
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Ephemeral New York - 11/28/2022
On this date in 2002, Pakistani Mir Aimal Kansi, Kasi, or Qazi was executed by lethal injection in Virginia, U.S.A. “Real angry with the policy of the U.S. government in the Middle East, particularly toward the Palestinian people,”* Qazi on January 25, 1993 revenged himself on Central Intelligence Agency commuters queued for a left turn […]
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Executed Today - 11/14/2022
Museum of the City of New YorkWilliam Howe and Abraham Hummel were the most successful criminal lawyers in Gilded Age New York. With a combination of skill, showmanship, and unethical practices, they defended most of the city’s significant criminals and many of its murderers. Whether they won or lost, Howe and Hummel made every trial sensational. Here are a few of the many accused murderers
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Murder By Gaslight - 11/26/2022
Wishing you a happy and bountiful Thanksgiving Day! Lizzie is thankful for turkey and all the trimmings – and no mutton broth in sight!
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Lizzie Borden: Warps and Wefts - 11/22/2022
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
A Pointer. | Clubbed by a Wronged Wife.

A Human Vampire.

Human Vampire

A Woman’s Fiendish Assault upon a Neighbor, Which May Result in Murder, in Columbus, O. [more]

A frightful assault, which may develop into a murder was committed by a woman in the southeastern part of Columbus, Ohio, recently. Living at No. 459 Parsons avenue is Frank Richter, a contracting teamster, with his wife and several children.

Among their nearest neighbors are James Claprood and wife. Claprood is a laborer and lives just across from the Richter home. On Monday Mrs. Richter heard that Mrs. Claprood had been slandering her and, accompanied by several other women of the neighborhood, went to Mrs. Claprood’s home for the purpose of demanding a retraction. Mrs. Claprood, armed with a large pair of tailor’s sheers, drove them from her house. Following them into the street she sprang upon Mrs. Richter like a tigress, and imbedded her teeth in Mrs. Richter’s face. She chewed Mrs. Richter’s left cheek into a jelly and then grabbing the poor woman’s right cheek mutilated it in a similar manner. Not satisfied with this barbarous treatment, Mrs. Claprood sucked the blood of her victim from first one cheek and then the other, as voraciously as a wild beast of the field.

The poor victim’s screams were heart-rending, but so ravenously did Mrs. Claprood in her frenzied rage bite and tear the flesh and suck the blood of her victim that the other women seemed paralyzed by the horrible spectacle and were powerless to rescue her.

Mrs. Richter finally made a desperate effort to escape, and, grabbing her assailant by the throat, tried to force her off. Mrs. Claprood then loosened her teeth from Mrs. Richter’s blood besmirched cheek and sank them into the screaming woman’s hands. In the meantime she grabbed a handful of Mrs. Richter’s hair and tor it out by the roots. Finally Mrs. Richter, exhausted form loss of blood, sank into unconsciousness.

Mrs. Claprrod arrived home at this juncture, and with difficulty tore his wife from her prey. Mrs. Richter is in a critical condition, and it is feared where will die. Mrs. Claprood is under arrest.


Reprinted from the National Police Gazette, December 9, 1893