Children of the Streets of Richmond, 1865–1920

$29.95

In stock

Add to Wishlist
Add to Wishlist

About the Book

Richmond in the late 19th century was not the genteel peaceful community historians have made it. Virginia’s capital was cosmopolitan, boisterous and crime-ridden. From 1905 to 1915 there was an official red light district. The police had their hands full with drunks and riffraff, and a variety of street urchins and waifs—most of whom were very poor—found themselves on the wrong side of the law.
The juvenile delinquents of Richmond—some barely out of infancy—were held accountable in the Police Court. A juvenile court system was not established until 1916. Presiding over the Police Court for 32 years was Justice John Jeter Crutchfield who, though unlearned in the law, functioned like a biblical Solomon but with great showmanship. The Police Court attracted many tourists and some of Virginia’s literary figures cut their teeth writing newspaper coverage of the proceedings, vying with each other for the most hilarious slant. What emerges from the public record is an amusing and touching picture of what life was really like in the post–Reconstruction urban South.

About the Author(s)

The late Harry M. Ward was William Binford Vest Professor of History Emeritus at University of Richmond. He was the author of 21 books, including college-level textbooks on Colonial America and the American Revolution, military biographies and studies of social aspects of the Revolution.

Bibliographic Details

Harry M. Ward
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 256
Bibliographic Info: 25 photos and illustrations, glossary, notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2015
pISBN: 978-0-7864-9853-6
eISBN: 978-1-4766-1996-5
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Table of Contents


Preface  1

1. The Setting  5

2. Police Court  13

3. The Great Dispenser  18

4. Boy Gangs  25

5. Rockers  34

6. Girls Astray  41

7. Prostitutes  49

8. Newsies  59

9. Vagrants  67

10. Tramps  73

11. Castaways  81

12. Runaways  88

13. Kidnapped  95

14. Players  100

15. Gamblers  108

16. Swimmers  117

17. Suspicious Characters  123

18. Joy Riders  132

19. Dopers and Boozers  138

20. Streetfighters  143

21. Rowdies  150

22. Rioters  154

23. Burglars and Footpads  161

24. Snatch Thieves  169

25. Killers  174

26. Jailbirds  182

27. Corporal Punishment  188

28. “Outside Poor”  193

29. Reformatory  198

30. Juvenile Protective Movement  204

Glossary  213

Chapter Notes  217

Bibliography  234

Index  239

Book Reviews & Awards

“Recommended”—Choice.