Middletown, Conn. Charles H. Pelton, printer, 1844. , 40 pp, with one folded plate. Stitched, original printed brown wrappers [front wrapper detached along the inner margin, and outer blank corner chipping]. Scattered light foxing. Else Very Good. Folding map frontis, with the map's legend on verso of title page; diagram of the Bacon house, where the murder occurred; an "exact representation of the RIGHT HAND of HALL, as it appeared after it was cut and when he was arrested"; facsimiles of the signatures of Hall, the State's Attorney, and Hall's counsel.
"Mrs. Lavinia Bacon was beaten and stabbed to death in her home in Middletown, Connecticut... Hall, Bell, and Roberts were suspected; Hall from his previous record and suspicious actions, Bell and Roberts from the same plus damaging admissions... Near the end of the trial Hall confessed and exonerated Bell and Roberts, who were completely innocent [McDade].
In an excellent reminder of the importance of the right to counsel in all cases, the pamphlet's author writes [page 9]: "The peculiar circumstances of this case, furnish another rebuke to those thoughtless and unreasonable persons who assume upon themselves to reproach the legal profession for undertaking the defence of those whom the public has already judged guilty. They teach the salutary lesson that the popular judgment is not always infallible-- that plausibility is not always truth-- that innocence sometimes needs a vindicator, and that all stories have two sides."
McDade 430. Cohen 12660. Item #34578