Auction Date: 1/03/2016 at 10:30 am
Crime and Punishment Dr Crippen’s prescription ledgers consisting of two tall folio ledgers both bearing red leather labels with the gilt legend ‘The preparations log books of Munyon Remedies London, removed by warrant reviewed in the murder trial of Dr H H Crippen found guilty and duly hanged Nov 23 1910’. Each ledger carries considerable ms prescriptions and many pages are blind embossed stamped with the logo of the Home Office, as well as numerous official rubber stamps, one reading ‘Restricted, Crippen H H DPP Pending’. Other rubber stamps record ‘Dr Wynter Blyt, Home Office’ and ‘Medico-Legal Filed DPP’. Each ledger has an alphabetical index with considerable number of patients listed. The ledgers cover the period 1893 to 1896. Both bear on the spine gilt labels reading: ‘Reviewed by Dr A Winter Blyt Home Office 1910’ H H Crippen Albion House Evidence 1910’ and ‘Wm Long Esq Collection, London’. As far as we can ascertain the reference to William Long would seem to be the same as the Dental Mechanic in the employ of Crippen who gave evidence at the trial. The inside covers both front and back of the ledgers bear a number of ephemeral items including two portrait photographs, both unidentified but one may be of Munyon, some press cuttings relating to the Crippen Case, some adverts taken from journals, a solicitor letter relating to chasing a debt (presumably this relates either to Munyon or Crippen), some American trade cards and a ms list of poisons. Crippen, one of the most notorious murderers of the 20th c mainly because he was the first to be apprehended through the use of transatlantic radio, had worked for James Monroe Munyon, who made a fortune out of selling his so-called homeopathic remedies. He opened offices in London and Liverpool and advertised his remedies heavily – though subsequent analysis proved they were worthless, being mainly sugar, alcohol and a few other harmless ingredients. Crippen became the London Office’s first Manager, impressing Munyon with his work ethic and ability to improve sales. He was however sacked in 1899 for spending too much time trying to manage his wife’s stage career. He met Ethel Le Neve in 1903 and the rest as they say, is history... It is rare to say the least that primary source evidence from such a spectacular and infamous trial should come on the market.