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22 April 2012 @ 09:17 pm
The Illustrated Police News  
In the name of clearing out my "to post" backlog I thought I'd do a quick post about a talk we attended at Eastercon on the Illustrated Police News (its relevance to Eastercon is somewhat beyond me, but that is often the case with Eastercon talks, panels and activities). It was given by Linda Stratmann and based on her book Cruel Deeds and Dreadful Calamities: the Illustrated Police News 1864-1938 an illustrated history of the notorious newspaper, (British Library, March 2011). We are vaguely considering purchasing this as Christmas presents for misc relatives.

Linda gave an interesting overview of the nature of the publication, its interests and peculiarities and various recurring themes and motifs but the real stars were the illustrations themselves. I'm particularly fond of the captions! Anyway below the cut are some culled from Google's image search.

Sadly I couldn't find the truly splendid one of a female cuban revolutionary in the middle of a jailbreak, busting elegantly out of her corsets, legs braced apart, firing a gun with one hand and waving a flag with the other...

This entry was originally posted at http://purplecat.dreamwidth.org/66523.html.
daniel_saunders: Sherlock Holmesdaniel_saunders on April 22nd, 2012 09:55 pm (UTC)
Wonderful! How lucky we are that lurid, sensationalist newspapers are a thing of the past...
louisedennislouisedennis on April 23rd, 2012 08:39 am (UTC)
*g* It is odd that such things become charming at a distance of 100 years. Stratmann also made an interesting point that, until very recently with the advent of mobile phones-cum-cameras you didn't get these sorts of "as it happened" pictures in newspapers with photographs. Moreover their images are often deliberately fanciful with elements such as the souls of the dead watching on.
bunn: Elephant Boybunn on April 23rd, 2012 08:10 am (UTC)
I particularly like the burglar bitten by skeleton!

louisedennislouisedennis on April 23rd, 2012 08:40 am (UTC)
Apparently skeletons featured a lot in the Illustrated Police News - even when there weren't any in the actual story!
king_pellinorking_pellinor on April 23rd, 2012 12:17 pm (UTC)
The Fortean Times does a regular feature on things from the IPN, complete with pictures :-)
louisedennislouisedennis on April 23rd, 2012 01:31 pm (UTC)
I don't think I've ever even seen an issue of the Fortean Times. Does it feature any stuff from the IPN or just stories with some supernatural element?
king_pellinorking_pellinor on April 23rd, 2012 06:05 pm (UTC)
This month has a page on a mad Welsh hermit defended from the police by an army of rats that he had tamed and trained, complete with picture of said rats attacking someone.

The FT caption notes that the story is "probably true", but says nothing of the picture. No skeletons, though.