Winter Lecture Series

It’s a Mystery!

Five Real Life Murder Cases

This winter, join us (virtually) as Professor Dan Breen dissects  five different murder mysteries. Each Sunday Professor Breen will discuss a different historical case.

The five session series begins on Sunday, February 14th at 2 pm via Zoom.   The lectures continue on Sundays into March.  (February 14th, 21st, 28th, March 7th, 14th).

Please click the following link to our calendar for the Zoom information to attend the program:  Winter Lecture Series

February 14th—“The Cock Lane Ghost”
Can disembodied spirits give evidence against their murderers?

A purported haunting that attracted mass public attention in 1762 on Cock Lane, a short road adjacent to London’s Smithfield market and a few minutes’ walk from St Paul’s Cathedral. The event centered on three people: William Kent, a usurer from Norfolk, Richard Parsons, a parish clerk, and Parsons’ daughter Elizabeth.

Video link: February 14th Lecture

February 21st—“The Infamous Burke and Hare”
Murder in the cause of Medicine?

A series of 16 killings committed over a period of about ten months in 1828 in Edinburgh, Scotland, undertaken by William Burke and William Hare, who sold the corpses to Robert Knox for dissection at his anatomy lectures.

Video link: February 21st Lecture

February 28th—“The Death of Harvey Burdell”
Homicide and Dentistry in Ante-Bellum New York

On January 31, 1857, a prominent dentist named Harvey Burdell was found brutally murdered — strangled, then stabbed 15 times — in his office and home on Bond Street with suspects who populated the rooms at 31 Bond St.
March 7th —“Florence Chandler Maybrick”
Fifteen Lost Years in Aylesbury Prison
An American woman convicted in the United Kingdom of murdering her husband, cotton merchant, James Maybrick.
Video link: March 7th Lecture
March 14 —“The Case of Hawley Crippen.” 
Murder enters the Age of Mass Communication
A mild-mannered physician who killed his wife, then for a time managed to elude capture, in one of the most notorious criminal cases of the 20th century.
Video link: March 14th Lecture
Dr. Daniel Breen is a professor of Legal Studies at Brandeis University. In the past fifteen years,   Dr. Breen has a BA from the University of Wisconsin,  a JD from the University of Georgia and a PhD in History from Boston College. He has taught at Framingham State University and Newbury College. 
Winter Lecture Series Programs:  (All with Professor Daniel Breen)
2006 World War I
2007 The Great Depression
2008 World War 2 Part 1
2009 World War 2 Part 2
2010 The Civil War Part 1
2011 The Civil War Part 2
2012 Prohibition
2013 Landmark Supreme Court Decisions
2014 Modern Chinese History
2015 Great Moments in Science: A Tale of Six Countries
2016 The Roosevelts:  An Intimate History
2017 Little Known Presidential Elections in American History
2018 Getting to the Moon: American Space Exploration 1945-1969
2019 The Hundred Years War: A Century of Native American Resistance 1790-1890
2020 History of the U.S. in Six Songs
2021 Famous Real Life Murder Mysteries

 Thanks to the Friends of the Bedford Free Public Library for sponsoring this program. Free and open to the public.

Author: rcallaghan