No. 583
Crime, Eccentricity, and the Sporting Life in 19th Century America.
November 29, 2022

Shooting at the Elevated.

May 7, 2013
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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
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.