Main­tain­ing a mo­nop­oly

Who Do You Think You Are? Magazine - - GRAVE ROBBERS -

It was only when ri­val gangs of bodysnatchers started sup­ply­ing the med­i­cal schools that the pub­lic was alerted to their ac­tions. In 1828, ac­cord­ing to the po­lice: “The num­ber of per­sons who, in Lon­don, reg­u­larly live by rais­ing bod­ies [does not] ex­ceed 10; but the num­ber of per­sons, oc­ca­sion­ally em­ployed in the same oc­cu­pa­tion, is stated... to be nearly 200.” Th­ese men were “thieves of the low­est grade, and the most des­per­ate and aban­doned class of the com­mu­nity”.

Work­ing in gangs, they would “do any­thing to spoil the suc­cess of their op­po­nents in the busi­ness. If a body were bought by one of the teach­ers from an

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