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  • Another Bury Portrait

    I havent seen this one before so I put up here. Not sure how accurate impression.
    Illustrated Police News - Saturday 23 February 1889

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  • #2
    Nice find. As you say, how accurate is this, although it's clear the artist was more than competent, so it could be fairly life like I think. I think it's odd that there are no photos of anything to do with Bury in Dundee, crime scene, body, Bury himself- are they out there somewhere?

    Is it just me or is there something about that portrait that could be mistake as 'foreign', similar to some of the witness statements?

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Aethelwulf View Post
      Nice find. As you say, how accurate is this, although it's clear the artist was more than competent, so it could be fairly life like I think. I think it's odd that there are no photos of anything to do with Bury in Dundee, crime scene, body, Bury himself- are they out there somewhere?

      Is it just me or is there something about that portrait that could be mistake as 'foreign', similar to some of the witness statements?
      I assume police crime scene photography in the regions was a decade or two behind those in London. The local newspaper, the Dundee Courier, has a fine, long standing reputation. However, even in my lifetime it was known as a rather old fashioned publication. I suspect new fangled technology was probably not its thing and certainly not to produce 'sensationalist' or 'shocking' images.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by jason_c View Post

        I assume police crime scene photography in the regions was a decade or two behind those in London. The local newspaper, the Dundee Courier, has a fine, long standing reputation. However, even in my lifetime it was known as a rather old fashioned publication. I suspect new fangled technology was probably not its thing and certainly not to produce 'sensationalist' or 'shocking' images.
        Yes I was actually thinking of official police photography, not the newspaper. Not sure it is necessary to assume Scotland was two decades behind in terms of photography though?

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        • #5
          Yeah I thought that, no crime scene photography. But they have retained the detailed medical reports Very high standard difficult to compare withondon as these were lost
          ​​​

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          • #6
            whats with the skull cap? is that a jewish thing? prison garb?

            and his face looks long and gaunt-not something you would expect for someone who is short and stout.
            "Is all that we see or seem
            but a dream within a dream?"

            -Edgar Allan Poe


            "...the man and the peaked cap he is said to have worn
            quite tallies with the descriptions I got of him."

            -Frederick G. Abberline

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Abby Normal View Post
              whats with the skull cap? is that a jewish thing? prison garb?

              and his face looks long and gaunt-not something you would expect for someone who is short and stout.
              Good observation - I've copied the text below direct from Mr Earp's most recent article on Bury (link on the Bury's Drinking habits thread):

              'Also of note are the reports that Bury’s physical appearance improved after he was taken into custody and presumably no longer able to drink. A day after his arrest, Bury was described as having “a haggard countenance” (27), but after a little more than a month in prison, the Dundee Courier reported that Bury had “considerably improved in appearance since he was brought before the Sheriff on the day that he was remitted…he appeared to be somewhat fuller and rounder in the face than on the occasion of his last public appearance in the Police Court” (28).'

              (26) “Tragedy in Dundee.” Dundee Advertiser (12 Feb. 1889).

              (27) Ibid.

              (28) “Dundee Circuit Course Cases.” Dundee Courier (19 Mar. 1889).

              Comment


              • #8
                Brilliant find! It's nice to see there are further things out there to be discovered. I hope, one day, some photographs will turn up.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Aethelwulf View Post

                  Good observation - I've copied the text below direct from Mr Earp's most recent article on Bury (link on the Bury's Drinking habits thread):

                  'Also of note are the reports that Bury’s physical appearance improved after he was taken into custody and presumably no longer able to drink. A day after his arrest, Bury was described as having “a haggard countenance” (27), but after a little more than a month in prison, the Dundee Courier reported that Bury had “considerably improved in appearance since he was brought before the Sheriff on the day that he was remitted…he appeared to be somewhat fuller and rounder in the face than on the occasion of his last public appearance in the Police Court” (28).'

                  (26) “Tragedy in Dundee.” Dundee Advertiser (12 Feb. 1889).

                  (27) Ibid.

                  (28) “Dundee Circuit Course Cases.” Dundee Courier (19 Mar. 1889).
                  This is just a general observation, not one specific to Bury. I have worked in healthcare for many years and had a tremendous amount of emergency room or casualty centre experience several decades ago. Nutrition for an actively drinking alcoholic is frequently a secondary concern to the process of procuring and drinking alcohol. I would not be terribly surprised that an actively drinking alcoholic who has just been taken into custody is going to look rather awful, especially if they are experiencing delirium tremens (alcohol withdrawal). On several occassions, I have seen these folks in the immediate moment, only to see them days or weeks later on television, and each time, it was like looking at an entirely different person.

                  The difference between earlier descriptions of a stout person, and the gaunt individual portrayed in the artist's sketch don't surprise me. The general demeanor and medical condition at the time the artist captured Bury, may have substantially informed his drawing.

                  Cheers

                  P.S. That is a wonderful find! Great work.
                  Last edited by RManny; 02-25-2022, 06:19 PM. Reason: Added a P.S.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    He definitely has a "foreign" look to me, unless all portraits of murderers in the act tended to look like this. They captured the "fiend" the papers talked about, at any rate.
                    Pat D. https://forum.casebook.org/core/imag...rt/reading.gif
                    ---------------
                    Von Konigswald: Jack the Ripper plays shuffleboard. -- Happy Birthday, Wanda June by Kurt Vonnegut, c.1970.
                    ---------------

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                    • #11
                      Is that "Scene of the Tragedy" sketch meant to portray the back door entrance? If so, it's interesting that the chalk writing is absent, as it seems it would be a big part of the sensationalism IPN loved to portray.

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