Criminal Women (Kindle)
Famous London Cases
Women have sometimes been seen as less criminally inclined than men. But, as John Eddleston shows in this revealing anthology of female crimes in London, this image is hard to mesh with reality, for the city's history is crowded with cases of women who broke the law.
In vivid detail he reconstructs a series of dramatic, often harrowing cases in which women were involved and puts their acts in the context of their times. Taking episodes from the eighteenth century to near the present day, he looks at criminal women of all types, from all walks of life. The work of the London police, the courts and the prisons is an essential element in his study, and each chapter reveals much about how attitudes to crime and punishment have changed over the centuries.
Fascinating portraits of these criminal women as individuals emerge from their stories - their cases come to life - as does the London in which they lived. They include Catherine Hayes who was burnt alive for murdering her husband, three women hanged on the same day for highway robbery, two women executed for rioting, Anne Hurle and Charlotte Newman who were both hanged for forgery, Florence Bravo who was sensationally acquitted of murder and, perhaps most famous of all, Ruth Ellis whose execution in 1955 provoked an outcry against capital punishment.
John J. Eddleston is an authority on British criminal history and a prolific writer on the subject. His many books include Murderous Sussex, Murderous Manchester, Blind Justice, Jack the Ripper: An Encyclopedia, The Encyclopedia of Executions, A Century of Welsh Murders and Executions, Manx Killers, Foul Deeds and Suspicious Deaths in Southampton and Miscarriages of Justice: Famous London Cases.
At least 10 of the 29 infamous females profiled here were executed for crimes that wound not end in a prison sentence today. From Catherine Hayes in 1726 to Ruth Ellish in 1955, their crimes included murder (often of husbands), highway robbery, rioting, and forgery. Each chapter describes the woman's background, gives details of the crime, and recounts the actions of the police, the courts, and the prisons. The chronological progression of their stories reveals how attitudes to crime and punishment have changed over the centuries. The book is illustrated with b&w photographs and historical illustrations of criminals, victims, crime scenes and documents. An appendix lists female executions in London, 1800-1955. Source references from the National Archives are also listened. Eddleston has written many books on British criminal history.Book News