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A Female Detective

A strange, not to say sinister, character has recently passed away from among the dark dens of crime, which she haunted with unflinching persistence. This extraordinary woman was as peculiar in her appearance as in the nature of her avocations. Short, thick-set, with the arms of a prize-fighter, and features which might perhaps be compared with those of a bulldog, but certainly bore no resemblance to the ordinary countenance of "gentle women," this creature could not fail to inspire a sense of repugnance to those even who were disposed to admire her courage and acknowledge the utility of the services she rendered. There are but few persons, however, who were ever acquainted with the secret of her life. In Blackfriars there lives an artisan, much respected by his neighbors, whose voice is not without influence at election times, but who is also notorious for his republican, not to say revolutionary, views. Some years ago his children and wife were seized with scarlet fever. Helpless and alone, with all his family dangerously ill, the father rushed wildly about for assistance, and when the woman, whose appearance has been but faintly described, came forward and offered her services as a sick-nurse, he at once accepted her help. She was known in the neighborhood as an experienced nurse, and had often been recommended to poor patients by the parish doctor. The nurse subsequently confessed her real character. In a word she was a police detective. Nursing was but a pretext; it was an excellent excuse for gaining admittance into suspected households, and doubtless the police had their eyes on this republican. The female detective in question was not, as a rule, employed on political missions. Her chief duty was to discover criminals, and those of the… Read More