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Broadside entitled 'Brutal Assault and Murder!'


This crime report begins: 'An Acoount of a most Brutal Assault, committed on a young woman, to the great effusion of her blood, in a field of the Glasgow Road, on Saturday evening last, May 22, 1830, and the Miscreant seized and lodged in the Police Office. Together, with further particulars of Murdoch Grant, Pedlar, at Assynt, and the apprehension of a young man named M'Leod, who was lodged in Jail, on strong suspicions of being concerned in this horrid transaction.' This report was sourced from the 'Observer' and published by the 'Inverness Courier'.

The first report on this page details an assault on a woman in the vicinity of Glasgow, while the second is a follow-up story about catching a murderer in the vicinity of Inverness. The first report although not of relevance to the local area, would have been sensational enough to generate interest and help sell the paper. The second story, a topical one for the area, would have ensured that customers were satisfied spending their money, having garnered information or gossip relevant to them. Broadside accounts, due to their style and content, were the forerunners of modern day newspapers.

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: 1830   shelfmark: Ry.III.a.2(96)
Broadside entitled 'Brutal Assault and Murder!'
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