Death at the Needle: The Tragedy of Victorian Seamstress Mary Walkley – Mimi Matthews

The Seamstress by Josef Gisela, 1897

“Sir,—I am a dressmaker, living in a large West-end house of business. I work in a crowded room with twenty-eight others. This morning one of my companions was found dead in her bed, and we all of …

Source: Death at the Needle: The Tragedy of Victorian Seamstress Mary Walkley – Mimi Matthews

The Tale of the Forty Thieves: Alice Diamond and the All-Girl Gang that Terrorized London

In the 1920s, an organized crime ring of female bandits, extortionists, and blackmailers, terrorized London’s West End. The Forty Elephants was affiliated with the male Elephant and Castle Gang, and had existed from about 1865 as a shoplifting outfit.

The Forty Elephants (also known as the Forty Thieves) specialized in robbery, blackmail, shoplifting, and break-ins. The gang’s blackmailing outfit frequented West End hotels and night clubs searching for aristocrats to blackmail. But shoplifting was the gang’s bread and butter.

They made headlines in the tabloids. One newspaper described the Forty Elephants as “amazons.” Others declared that thirty of the Forty Elephants were “big handsome women about six feet tall” of “giant physique” while the others – scouts and lookouts – were…

Source:  The Tale of the Forty Thieves: Alice Diamond and the All-Girl Gang that Terrorized London