This is the handwritten Newgate Prison execution journal of the “Ordinary”, or Chaplain, of Newgate, the Rev. Horace Salusbury Cotton.
Cotton kept his macabre log throughout his tenure at Newgate, even though he was strictly forbidden from doing so.
Between 1814 and 1839 he noted not only the names and crimes of those being executed along with the date of their execution but also his personal observations on any execution that he found particularly interesting.
His journal also contains three very unusual prints including one unique new view of him at work within the prison.
Cotton died in 1846 and his library was sold off by Sotheby’s in 1848. For the next century and a half this remarkable journal has barely seen the light of day and has unbelievably, never been thoroughly recorded, photographed or transcribed.
Until now only four small images of it existed in the public realm and they were to be found in the Rare Books catalogue of Peter Harrington, in Fulham Road.
Peter Harrington are currently selling the book, the asking price is £5,000. But before the book is sold, possibly back into obscurity, they have very kindly allowed me to publish here the largest ever selection of high quality images from this very evocative and historically significant little volume.
Wow. Check this out now!