Whilst looking at some old pictures I just came across this interesting blog. Looking at how the Victorians used photography to document criminals is a fascinating topic, especially seeing how it evolved over time. Good examples are those pioneering pictures taken by Alphonse Bertillon at the turn of the last century, or these 1920s police shots of criminals http://scan.net.au/scan/journal/display.php?journal_id=67 . So it’s lovely to see these pictures of some Victorian women offenders listed here, with some great background details.
So much of the history of crime focusses upon the interaction between the legal apparatus of the state – the police, the court room, the prison- and the behaviours of those acting outside of social and legal norms. For historians and enthusiasts of crime history alike, it can be refreshing and rewarding in equal measure to take a brief diversion and consider some of the extra-legal methods used to control and counteract offenders and deviants.
An intriguing collection recently released on the genealogy website ancestry.com The Holt Brewery Co. Ltd., Black List at the turn of the century shifts our focus briefly from the capital and ‘second city’ of Victorian England’s thriving empire, to another no less bustling but often historically neglected industrial hub of the country – Birmingham.
The 1902 amendment to the Licencing Act made it an offence for those identified as ‘habitual drunkards’ (those with three…
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