The Illustrated Police News, November 17, 1888

How Crime Stories Foiled Reform in Victorian Britain

Harsh punishments were declining in the nineteenth century. Then came sensationalist news coverage of a reputed crime wave.

How to Summon Spirits

The Spiritualist, a newspaper published from 1869-1882, is filled with tales of supernatural phenomena and tips for communicating with the dead.

Five of the Best R. Cobb Drawings in the Underground Press

The artist turned a critical eye toward American society, but he didn't want to be called a political cartoonist.

Smoking Banana Peels to Get High Was Briefly a Thing

But it didn't work. The rumor, spread by the underground press in 1967, probably led to many disappointed hippies.
Volume 4, Issue 1 of Berkeley Barb from January 6th, 1967

Remembering the Human Be-In

More than 20,000 participants in the counterculture gathered in San Francisco’s Golden Gate park to do little more than simply “be” together.
From the cover of Volume 12, Issue 7 of Muhammad Speaks

Muhammad Speaks for Freedom, Justice, and Equality

The official newspaper of the Nation of Islam—published from 1960-1975—combined investigative journalism and Black Nationalist views on racial uplift.
17th century British newsletters

The Newsletter Boom, 300 Years before Substack

Some journalists are turning to newsletters to get their work out. But they're not hand-copying them onto folded paper, like people did in the 1600s.
Cover of The Seed

The Campus Underground Press

The 1960s and 70s were a time of activism in the U.S., and therefore a fertile time for campus newspapers and the alternative press.
Double Indemnity

History’s Most Notorious True Crime Story

How New York City's tabloids sensationalized the murder case that inspired the classic film noir Double Indemnity.
Hogarth crime

The First Moral Panic: London, 1744

The late summer crime wave of 1744 London sparked an intense moral panic about crime that burnt itself out by the new year. But not before heads rolled.