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Books on 19th Century Crime

The books below each deal with crime in one of the Great Lakes States.

 

Murder Will Out. The First Step in Crime Leads to the Gallows. The Horrors of the Queen City

DeBeck, W L.
Cincinnati: 1867

Brings together brief accounts of dozens of murders occurring in the early 1800s in Cincinnati.

Criminal Reminiscences and Detective Sketches

Pinkerton, Allan
NY: Dillingham. 1878

A collection of autobiographical stories of investigations by Allan Pinkerton, a Scottish immigrant who became Chicago’s first detective.

The Fighting Finches: Tales of Freebooters of the Pioneer Countryside in Rock and Jefferson Counties

Brown, Dorothy Moulding
Madison: Works Progress Administration, Federal Writers’ Project, Folklore Section, 1937

A small booklet with many brief stories of the Finch family, who stole horses, rustled cattle and ruled their region of Wisconsin with fear for nearly three decades.

History of the Regulators of Northern Indiana

Mott, M.H.
Indianapolis: Indianapolis Journal 1859

This is about a criminal gang that operated freely from Noble and LaGrange counties in Indiana from the early settlement of those areas in the 1830s until the state government authorized the formation of the “Regulators” in the 1850s to hunt them down. The book provides the details of the gang’s activities, often in the form of courtroom confessions.

The Outlaws of Cave-in-Rock; historical accounts of the famous highwaymen and river pirates who operated in pioneer days upon the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers and over the old Natchez Trace

Rothert, Otto A.
Cleveland: Clark. 1924

This is about gangs of criminals that operated for decades from the cave located on the Illinois bank of the Ohio River. Some may remember a scene from the 1962 movie “How the West was Won”, which was partly shot in the cave.

 

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