Notorious Chrimes: The Blackmail Pills

In 1890s London, the ‘Lady Montrose Pills’ blackmail scheme efficiently and heartlessly targeted more than 8,000 victims. In this comprehensive account of the case, Dick...

Victorian asthma cigarettes: who was Dr Batty?

While browsing your local newspaper in the 1890s, an asthma-cure advertisement might distract you from tales of the latest sensational crimes. ‘Agreeable to use, certain...

A breath of maggoty air

No one likes to be the hapless person who wanders into the garage and finds a forgotten turkey carcase humming with maggots and surrounded in...

Beyond the asylum: a review of the Wellcome Collection’s Bedlam

A review of the Wellcome Collection’s exhibition, Bedlam: The Asylum and Beyond, which runs from 15 September 2016 – 15 January 2017. I’ve never spoken here about...

Forthcoming events

Join me for some quack-filled talks in London this summer! I’ve been invited by the London Fortean Society and Antique Beat to share my stories...
Unearthing the stories behind patent medicine advertising, health fraud and medical oddities of the past.

The blackmail pills

The blackmail pills
In 1890s London, the Chrimes brothers carried out an audacious crime.

Smoking out fakes

Smoking out fakes
Medicated cigarettes were a popular 19thC treatment for asthma - but not all those vintage advertisements are genuine!

Maggot cure

Maggot cure
Maggots have long been used in wound treatment, but in 1911 people started breathing in their stinky gases too.

100 Facts

100 Facts
Caroline Rance presents a concise introduction to the history of medicine.

Twitter

Twitter
Follow us on Twitter for more vintage ads, history of medicine links and weird things.