From the Cornell Law Library's InSITE website reviews: We learn that Harvard Law School Library digitized its collection of eighteenth- and nineteenth-century British crime broadsides, covering the years 1707 to 1891.
Broadside. A sheet of paper printed on one side only or containing one large page without columns. The term is applied to such works as copies of a "last dying speech" of some celebrated criminal, and other similar street literature. Walter Thomas Rogers. A Manual of Bibliography ... (1891), p. 188
Just as programs are sold at sporting events today, broadsides -- styled at the time as "Last Dying Speeches" or "Bloody Murders" -- were sold to the audiences that gathered to witness public executions in eighteenth- and nineteenth-century Britain.
An interesting collection to remind us that not all that long ago executions were popular public events. Dying Speeches & Bloody Murders: Crime Broadsides Collected by the Harvard Law School Library.
Ernster, the Virtual Library Cat
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