Because of its political significance, Washington, D.C., although not a huge population center, is home to an international news corps rivaling that of London or New York. The sniper story thus gained unusually broad media coverage. These events also coincided with the rise of cable network news, meaning that the story would be delivered through a greatly accelerated news cycle. Continuous coverage on television meant a more intense race for scoops; when a major development wasn’t available, lesser incidents were sometimes played up in an attempt to maintain the sense of an always unfolding story.
Jack Censer looks at the atmosphere of heightened anxiety in which this killing spree occurred—coming only a year after the 9/11 attacks, as well as the unsolved anthrax scare centered in the D.C. area—and asks if the press, by intensifying its focus, also intensified the sense of fear.To bring in another perspective, Censer looks closely at the elementary and secondary schools in the area, comparing their experience of the threat with the press’s perception, and presentation, of it. In most cases, school officials chose a course of precaution in which life could carry on, rather than one of hypervigilance and lockdowns.
Although it is widely thought that journalists have strong political and commercial biases, Censer reveals that in this case the press was motivated, above all, by the creation of a gripping story to evoke emotion from its audience. One of the most detailed studies yet published of how the press follows a story in the twenty-four-hour news era, this book provides a window on post-9/11 anxiety and the relationship between those fears, public events, and the news media.
A silent, simmering killer terrorized New England in1911. As a terrible heat wave killed more than 2,000 people, another silent killer began her own murderous spree. That year a reporter for the Hartford Courant noticed a sharp rise in the number of obituaries for residents of a rooming house in Windsor, Connecticut, and began to suspect who was responsible: Amy Archer-Gilligan, who’d opened the Archer Home for Elderly People and Chronic Invalids four years earlier. “Sister Amy” would be accused of murdering both of her husbands and up to sixty-six of her patients with cocktails of lemonade and arsenic; her story inspired the Broadway hit Arsenic and Old Lace.
The Devil’s Rooming House is the first book about the life, times, and crimes of America’s most prolific female serial killer. In telling this fascinating story, M. William Phelps also paints a vivid portrait of early-twentieth-century New England.
A wilderness clearing along the Mud River...a few miles northeast of Russellville, a small town in the vast, nearly unbroken frontier of western Kentucky.
A pioneer family has stopped to rest.
Two men. Three women. Three babies. A string of pack horses.
It has been an exhausting journey, a dangerous one at times.
The men are about thirty, the women some five to ten years younger. Each woman has a baby, her own child. The children, two girls and a boy, range from four to six months in age.
The day is hot. The shallow river is cool. Shade trees provide a measure of relief from the sticky humidity, the baking heat. The men stretch out along the banks of the river. The women tend to their children's needs, then place them down and stretch out themselves. Everyone drinks from the stream.
They have been traveling forever. Or, at least, it seems that way. They're tired. They just want to rest before they must move out again, always pushing on, always in search of their destination in an unforgivingly harsh wilderness, battling tremendous odds against their very survival. They carry all their worldly possessions with them. True pioneers, they live off the land, taking from it what they need to eke out another day of life in the new American world of democracy and free enterprise.
Suddenly, one of the babies cries. It is one of the girls, this one only four months old.
One of the men rouses himself from his rest. He makes his way to the crying infant. The man is both a husband and a father, and he is with his family.
A touching scene seems about to ensue. A father lovingly tending his irritable child all alone in the wilderness. A loving man doting on his daughter's needs.
He picks the child up.
But this is no ordinary family. And this is no ordinary man.
The man is Micajah Harp, and he is wanted by the law. Even at this moment, there is a price on his head, and posses are after him. They might hear the wail of the infant and swoop down on the family and arrest them.
Micajah must do something. He must silence the baby.
He picks the child up by her feet and swings her against the side of the tree. Her head smashes against the unrelenting wood. The breath of life leaves her instantly. He then tosses the lifeless body into the woods.
He signals the rest of the family to rise to their feet.
They do so, and the family moves deeper into the wilderness.
They are the Harps. America's first and most brutal serial killers.
God help anyone who gets in their way.
They were "the most brutal monsters of the human race" to those who knew them...ruthless and indiscriminate barbarians terrorizing an innocent America...unconscionable brutes inflicting savagery upon anyone they encountered.
They sought little in life save the very survival necessary to maintain their bloodlust. It mattered little where or with whom they lived. They cheated and tormented at will and killed for the sake of killing. Their adult lives became a continual exercise in abject, unrepentant evil. During a reign of horror engulfing Kentucky, Tennessee, and Illinois, they became the scourge of the late 18th-century American frontier. They killed anywhere from two dozen to four dozen men, women, and children before justice caught up with them. They were the historical prototypes of later killers - Billy the Kid, Bonnie and Clyde, and Jeffrey Dahmer - but they far exceeded them in brutality and criminal enormity.
They were the Harps...Micajah, the older and bigger; Wiley, the younger and smaller...Big Harp and Little Harp, as they were commonly called. And they were America's first serial killers.
This is their story.
"Blood in the Wilderness: The Story of the Harps, America's First Serial Killers" includes a bibliography of seventy-five sources. It results from years of research and visits to all the sites associated with t
May 1942: Melbourne was torn between fearing Japanese invasion and revelling in the carnival atmosphere brought by the influx of 15,000 cashed-up American servicemen. But those US forces didn't guarantee safety. Not long after their arrival, the city would be gripped by panic when the body of a woman was found strangled, partially naked and brutally beaten. Six days later another woman was found dead and her body told the same horrific story. A murderer was stalking the streets.
As women were warned not to travel alone, an intense manhunt ensued. Not long after a third woman was murdered, American soldier Eddie Leonski was arrested. A calculating psychopath, he had a twisted fascination with female voices, especially when they were singing . . . Acclaimed author Ian W. Shaw brings World War II Melbourne to life, and takes us into the mind of the Brownout Strangler, and a very different kind of terror.
'enthralling . . . makes for a fascinating read.' Canberra Times on Ian W. Shaw's The Rag Tag Fleet
Whitechapel, 1888: a spate of brutal murders becomes the most notorious criminal episode in London's history. The killer, chillingly nicknamed 'The Whitechapel Murderer', 'Leather Apron' and, most famously, 'Jack the Ripper', is never brought to justice for the slaughter and mutilation of at least five women in the slums of East London. But the mystery is deepened by a letter sent "From Hell" to Scotland Yard, accompanied by half of a preserved human kidney...
In this comprehensive account of London's most infamous killer, the foremost authorities on the case explore the facts behind the most grisly episode of the Victorian era. Setting the scene in the impoverished East End, the authors' meticulous research offers detailed accounts of the lives of the victims and an examination of the police investigation. The Complete Jack the Ripper is the definitive book by Paul Begg and John Bennett, exploring both the myth and reality behind the allusive killer.
Paul Begg and John Bennett are researchers and authors, widely recognized as authorities on Jack the Ripper. Paul Begg's books include Jack the Ripper: The Facts, Jack the Ripper: The Definitive History, and he is a co-author of The Jack the Ripper A to Z.
John Bennett has written numerous articles and lectured frequently on Jack the Ripper and the East End of London. He has acted as adviser to and participated in documentaries made by television channels worldwide and was the co-writer for the successful Channel 5 programme Jack the Ripper: The Definitive Story. He is author of E1: A Journey Through Whitechapel and Spitalfields and co-author of Jack the Ripper: CSI Whitechapel.
Featuring 87 rare, historical illustrations and Holmes’ birth and death certificates. Holmes’ Own includes:
-HH Holmes 1895 memoir written by the killer while he awaited trial
-Moyamensing Prison diary
-Holmes’ confession of murders of twenty-seven men, women, and children (1896)
-Judgement day with Holmes' death by hanging at Moyamensing Prison
-Unusual concrete burial at historic Holy Cross Cemetery in Yeadon, Pennsylvania
-Holmes planned reincarnation
-Philadelphia Detective Frank P. Geyer interview about Holmes’ plan to murder Georgiana Yoke, his third wife
-Mrs. Benjamin Pitezel interview after Holmes' execution
-Sources, Illustration Credits, Bibliography, Notes, and INDEX
Table of Contents:
List of Illustrations
To the Reader
PART ONE: HOLMES' OWN STORY
Holmes’ Own Story
Moyamensing Prison Diary Appendix
PART TWO: CONFESSED 27 MURDERS
The Tale of the Greatest Criminal in History
Murder 1: Dr. Robert Leacock
Murder 2: Dr. Russell
Murders 3, 4: Mrs. Julia L. Connor, Daughter, Pearl
Murder 5: Rogers
Murder 6: Charles Cole
Murder 7: Lizzie
Murders 8, 9, 10: Mrs. Sarah Cook, Baby, Niece
Murder 11: Miss Emeline Cigrand
Three Unsuccessful Attempts of Triple Murder
Murder 12: Miss Rosine Van Jassand
Murder 13: Robert Latimer
Murder 14: Miss Anna Betts
Murder 15: Miss Gertrude Conner
Murder 16: Miss Kate Durkee
Murder 17: Mr. Warner
Murder 18: Rogers, A Young Englishman
Murder 19: A Female Boarder
Murders 20, 21: Minnie and Nannie Williams
Murder 22: Unknown Chicago Man
Murder 23: Baldwin Williams
Murder 24: Benjamin F. Pitezel
Murder 25: Howard Pitezel
Murders 26, 27: Alice and Nellie Pitezel
Attempted Murder of Mrs. Pitezel, Two Children
Conclusion of Confession
Statement from Detective Geyer
PART THREE: LIED THEN DIED
Judgment Day - Thursday, May 7, 1896
Concrete Burial - Friday, May 8, 1896
Available in eBook, Paperback, Large Print Paperback, and Hardcover
Don’t miss out on this historical book. Add Holmes’ Own Story: Confessed 27 Murders, Lied Then Died to your library today!
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The idea of the wandering murderer, leaving a trail of mutilated bodies in his wake, has long fascinated followers of true crime. By charting the geography of the killer's actions, Mapping the Trail of a Serial Killer takes an innovative geographical approach to exploring the killing sprees of twenty-five notorious murderers from the early-twentieth century right up to the present day. With specially commissioned maps pinpointing each killer's actions, and archival photographs, this book reveals patterns of behavior and provides fascinating insight into the minds behind some of the world's most shocking crimes. Most of the cases examined are from recent decades, and include the Beltway sniper attacks in Washington, D.C., as well as those of:
Ted Bundy—Murdered and sexually assaulted at least thirty-five young women across America beginning in 1973. Executed in 1989.
David Berkowitz “Son of Sam”—Confessed to killing six people and wounding seven in the course of eight shootings that held New York City in terror between 1976 and 1977.
Peter Sutcliffe—Dubbed the Yorkshire Ripper, this English killer was convicted in 1981 for murdering thirteen women.
Andrei Chikatilo—Convicted of the murders of fifty-two women and children, mostly in southern Russia, between 1978 and 1990.
The salacious and scandalous murders of a series of couples on Texarkana's "lovers lanes" in seemingly idyllic post-WWII America created a media maelstrom and cast a pall of fear over an entire region. What is even more surprising is that the case has remained cold for decades. Combining archival research and investigative journalism, Pulitzer Prize nominated historian James Presley reveals evidence that provides crucial keys to unlocking this decades-old puzzle.
Dubbed "the Phantom murders" by the press, these grisly crimes took place in an America before dial telephones, DNA science, and criminal profiling. Even pre-television, print and radio media stirred emotions to a fever pitch. The Phantom Killer, exhaustively researched, is the only definitive nonfiction book on the case, and includes details from an unpublished account by a survivor, and rare, never-before-published photographs.
Although the case lives on today on television, the Internet, a revived fictional movie and even an off-Broadway play, with so much of the investigation shrouded in mystery since 1946, rumors and fractured facts have distorted the reality. Now, for the first time, a careful examination of the archival record, personal interviews, and stubborn fact checking come together to produce new insights and revelations on the old slayings.
But what if there was never really any mystery at all? What if the Ripper was always hiding in plain sight, deliberately leaving a trail of clues to his identity for anyone who cared to look, while cynically mocking those who were supposedly attempting to bring him to justice?
In They All Love Jack, the award-winning film director and screenwriter Bruce Robinson exposes the cover-up that enabled one of history's most notorious serial killers to remain at large. More than twelve years in the writing, this is no mere radical reinterpretation of the Jack the Ripper legend and an enthralling hunt for the killer. A literary high-wire act reminiscent of Tom Wolfe or Hunter S. Thompson, it is an expressionistic journey through the cesspools of late-Victorian society, a phantasmagoria of highly placed villains, hypocrites, and institutionalized corruption.
Polemic forensic investigation and panoramic portrait of an age, underpinned by deep scholarship and delivered in Robinson's inimitably vivid and scabrous prose, They All Love Jack is an absolutely riveting and unique book, demolishing the theories of generations of self-appointed experts—the so-called Ripperologists—to make clear, at last, who really did it; and, more important, how he managed to get away with it for so long.
In the early 1870s, local children begin disappearing from the working-class neighborhoods of Boston. Several return home bloody and bruised after being tortured, while others never come back.
With the city on edge, authorities believe the abductions are the handiwork of a psychopath, until they discover that their killer—fourteen-year-old Jesse Pomeroy—is barely older than his victims. The criminal investigation that follows sparks a debate among the world’s most revered medical minds, and will have a decades-long impact on the judicial system and medical consciousness.
The Wilderness of Ruin is a riveting tale of gruesome murder and depravity. At its heart is a great American city divided by class—a chasm that widens in the aftermath of the Great Fire of 1872. Roseanne Montillo brings Gilded Age Boston to glorious life—from the genteel cobblestone streets of Beacon Hill to the squalid, overcrowded tenements of Southie. Here, too, is the writer Herman Melville. Enthralled by the child killer’s case, he enlists physician Oliver Wendell Holmes to help him understand how it might relate to his own mental instability.
With verve and historical detail, Roseanne Montillo explores this case that reverberated through all of Boston society in order to help us understand our modern hunger for the prurient and sensational.
The Wilderness of Ruin features more than a dozen black-and-white photographs.
In the late 1800s, the city of Austin, Texas was on the cusp of emerging from an isolated western outpost into a truly cosmopolitan metropolis. But beginning in December 1884, Austin was terrorized by someone equally as vicious and, in some ways, far more diabolical than London's infamous Jack the Ripper. For almost exactly one year, the Midnight Assassin crisscrossed the entire city, striking on moonlit nights, using axes, knives, and long steel rods to rip apart women from every race and class. At the time the concept of a serial killer was unthinkable, but the murders continued, the killer became more brazen, and the citizens' panic reached a fever pitch.
Before it was all over, at least a dozen men would be arrested in connection with the murders, and the crimes would expose what a newspaper described as "the most extensive and profound scandal ever known in Austin." And yes, when Jack the Ripper began his attacks in 1888, London police investigators did wonder if the killer from Austin had crossed the ocean to terrorize their own city.
With vivid historical detail and novelistic flair, Texas Monthly journalist Skip Hollandsworth brings this terrifying saga to life.