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Broadside entitled 'Execution'


This execution notice begins: 'Dennis Doolan and Patrick Redding were executed yesterday morning at Crosshill, about three miles north of Glasgow, in pursuance of the sentence of the Justiciary Circuit Court'. This sheet was published by Menzies.

There are other reports of this case held in the National Library of Scotland's collection, which suggests that the case was of some public interest at the time. Very little information about the crime is given here, although it is known from other sheets that the subjects were convicted of murdering the railwayman John Green, was working on the building of the Edinburgh to Glasgow railway. This narrative mainly relates the particulars of their hanging, which was attended by a crowd of 50,000 people.

Reports recounting dark and salacious deeds were popular with the public, and, like today's sensationalist tabloids, sold in large numbers. Crimes could generate sequences of sheets covering descriptive accounts, court proceedings, last words, lamentations and executions as they occurred. As competition was fierce, immediacy was paramount, and these occasions provided an opportunity for printers and patterers to maximise sales.

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Date of publication: 1840   shelfmark: L.C.Fol.74(359a)
Broadside entitled 'Execution'
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