Lot 387: Trial & Execution of the Burkers for the Murder of an Italian Boy, printed by J. Catnach, [1831]

DominicWinter

2015-11-05 11:28:37

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Lot 386: London Burkers. Trial & Execution of the Burkers for the Murder of an Italian Boy, printed by J. Catnach, [1831], printed broadside with 7 woodcut vignettes beneath headline, 5 columns of text and imprint lower right, some toning, a few tears with a little loss of text near centre fold of first 3 columns of text, corners torn, the whole relaid on card, 49 x 35.5cm The London Burkers were a group of body snatchers operating in London, apparently modelling their activities on those of the notorious Burke and Hare. The 'Italian Boy' murder centred around the burkers trying to sell a suspiciously fresh body to Guy's Hospital. John Bishop, Thomas Williams and James May (all pictured on the broadside) were convicted of the boy's murder. Bishop and Williams were hanged at Newgate on 5 December 1831 while May was respited, as it was accepted that he had no knowledge of the murders. The boy turned out to be a Lincolnshire cattle drover that they had kidnapped, while on his way to Smithfield. (1) Dominic Winter's Travel & Natural History Maps, Prints & Sporting Art Early Printed Books Military History Wednesday, 11th November 2015 Estimate: £100-150
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