By Dr Jonathan Oates
The dual fascinations of loss of life and villainy will regularly carry us of their grim yet exciting grip. In Foul Deeds and Suspicious Deaths in Lewisham and Deptford the coolness is introduced with reference to domestic as every one bankruptcy investigates the darker aspect of humanity in instances of homicide, deceit and natural malice devoted over the centuries during this quarter of London. From crimes of ardour to opportunistic killings and coldly premeditated acts of homicide, the whole spectrum of criminal activity is mentioned, bringing to existence the extra sinister historical past of Lewisham and Deptford from the 16th century onwards. For this trip into the bloody, missed previous, Jonathan Oates has chosen over 20 infamous episodes that supply a desirable perception into legal acts and the felony brain. the tale of 1 of the main recognized unsolved murders in historical past, of the nice playwright Christopher Marlowe in Deptford in 1593. is by way of a list of heinous crimes of each description - political conspiracies, gang...
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Additional info for Foul Deeds and Suspicious Deaths in Lewisham & Deptford
Blee was taken to Greenwich to be questioned. It was here that Cox learnt the whole truth of the matter. Blee, it seems, was all too willing to talk. McDaniel and Berry were the ringleaders of a gang of London criminals. Over perhaps twenty years, they had ‘earned’ over £1,720 from turning in others to the law, which had resulted in over 100 people being convicted. On each occasion, they had engineered a fraudulent conviction of a man known to be innocent and had duly claimed the reward money for his apprehension.
However, as the years passed, this antipathy among the law abiding towards the police force gradually subsided and the latter were seen as a useful and respectable method of detecting and preventing crime. Catford Police Station, c. 1850. London Borough of Lewisham Yet they were not always successful in detection. Of the crimes chronicled here, there were four for which no one was convicted (though, as we shall see, often the killer(s) were known to the police) –and all occurred after the introduction of the Metropolitan Police.
Over the next century, as a pool of skilled workmen was established, the East India Company and various private individuals also set up shipyards at Deptford. Provisioning contractors for the Navy established depots, and anchorsmiths and ropemakers moved in. By the middle of the seventeenth century Deptford was a bustling and noisy naval town, full of inns, taverns and brothels. The old parishes of Lewisham and Lee, which had been brought together by the London Government Act of 1899, were natural partners, as they shared a long boundary, and had a common history as farming communities turning slowly into dormitory suburbs.