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Report of the trial of Prof. John W. Webster, indicted for the murder of Dr. George Parkman before the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts, holden at Boston, on Tuesday, March 19, 1850. Phonographic report, by Dr. James W. Stone.
Boston: Phillips Sampson & Company 1850 - 8vo., vi + (3) - 314 + (2) + 2pp., including both the advertisement leaf and the final errata leaf (with extensive errata), original printed wrappers, entirely uncut, very minor wear and edge fraying. Overall a fine, crisp, copy. First edition. John White Webster (1793-1850) was a professor of chemistry and geology at Harvard Medical College. 'On November 23, 1849, Dr. George Parkman was murdered. After an investigation, Dr. John White Webster was accused of the murder on January 26, 1850. The Webster-Parkman Murder trial was the 19th century equivalent of the 'Case of the Century' and has been widely cited as one of the earliest uses of forensic evidence to identify a body. As the remains of Dr. Parkman had been partially cremated, dental evidence and bone fragments were used to verify that they were Dr. Parkman. The case was widely publicized in newspapers, particularly as Webster was also a professor at Harvard University. After a lengthy trial, where under current Massachusetts law Webster could not testify in his own defense, the jury was instructed by the principal judge, and close relative of the victim, that they 'Must come back with a guilty verdict.' The most important factor about the Webster case is that a great body of documentary testimony was either not used by Webster's lawyers or was denied admission into Webster's defense.' [Wikipedia]. The verdict, and Webster's execution a few months later, were widely criticised. [Attributes: First Edition; Soft Cover]
      [Bookseller: John Drury Rare Books ABA ILAB]
Last Found On: 2017-08-22           Check availability:      AbeBooks    


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