Fearless gangs of street fighters known as scuttlers waged war on the streets of Angel Meadow in the last quarter of the 19th century and struck terror in the hearts of slum dwellers. Wearing pointed, brass-tipped clogs and using knives, iron pokers and heavy belt buckles as weapons, they prowled the slum looking for a fight. They included Henry Burgess, the most feared man in Angel Meadow, who attacked his enemies with paraffin lanterns, and James Gallagher, known to his foes as the Red King.
Discover more about some of their most violent outrages with this clickable map (best viewed from a desktop) and read about these incidents and more in my book, which is out now and available to buy direct from the publisher, Pen and Sword. It is also available from Amazon, Waterstones, WHSmiths, the Guardian bookshop. Click on the book cover below to visit my author page on Amazon.
Published by angelmeadowbook
Step into the Victorian underworld of Angel Meadow, the vilest and most dangerous slum of the Industrial Revolution. In the shadow of the world's first cotton mill, 30,000 souls trapped by poverty are fighting for survival as the British Empire is built upon their backs.
Thieves and prostitutes keep company with rats in overcrowded lodging houses and deep cellars on the banks of a black river, the Irk. Gangs of 'scuttlers' stalk the streets in pointed, brass-tripped clogs. Those who evade their clutches are hunted down by cholera and tuberculosis. Lawless drinking dens and a cold slab in the dead house provide the only relief from this filthy and frightening world.
Journalist Dean Kirby takes readers on a hair-raising journey through the alleyways, gin palaces and underground vaults of the nineteenth century Manchester slum considered so diabolical it was re-christened 'hell upon earth' by Friedrich Engels in 1845.
Enter Angel Meadow if you dare...
Angel Meadow will be published by Pen and Sword on 28 February, 2016. See my website for details.
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