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Diary of a Murderer

Detail of Illustration from The Diary Murderer of Lynn Boston Evening American and Boston Sunday Advertiser, [1936?]. Wood Detective Agency Records, 1865-1945: Box 5-30

A Tale of True Crime

Harvard Law School Library
Caspersen Room
January 3 – May 5, 2013
Monday – Sunday, 9:00am – 5:00pm

Crime fascinates us and the public consumption of crime narratives has existed for centuries, from the dissemination of crime broadsides in the eighteenth century to today’s true crime television shows such as 48 Hours. Featuring materials from the Harvard Law School Library’s Historical & Special Collections, this exhibit examines a short chapter in the United States’ history of true crime narratives. Topics include: serialized true crime literature, crime photography in newspapers, and the representation of family life in the media’s coverage of the Sacco and Vanzetti case.

Highlights from the exhibit include an early example of an Associated Press Wirephoto, a photograph album compiled by an expert witness in the Lindbergh kidnapping case, and materials from our collection of Wood Detective Agency Records, the first private detective agency in New England.

This exhibit was curated by Lesley Schoenfeld, Historical & Special Collections, Harvard Law School Library, with contributions from Michele Fazio, Assistant Professor of English, University of North Carolina at Pembroke.