For my new Lincoln and Speed mystery, I knew I wanted to follow Lincoln out onto “the circuit,” where he and his fellow lawyers and a judge would ride from town to town in a horse-drawn carriage, bringing justice to frontier Illinois.
In researching the towns of the circuit, I stumbled upon a spectacular real-life murder — one of the most infamous and consequential murders of the 19th century, although it is little remembered today. This real-life murder became the centerpiece of Perish from the Earth…
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