By 1895, Britain’s Home Department was interested in using finger prints to identify criminals. Francis Galton soon realized that lifting prints was not the hard task. MATCHING was the problem. Thus, he began searching for a method to categorize prints so they could be readily matched to the print lifted (if it existed in their collection of prints).
While Galton was not the only one working on this problem, in 1895, his methodology was chosen to categorize the prints of the criminals in London.
First, known criminals were fingerprinted by going to the prisons.
The imprint of all ten digits were taken on paper or cardboard using common printer’s ink. These prints could then be examined with a magnifying glass, a microscope, or enlarged for greater detail by the use of photography.
Galton suspected that for each individual, their patterns remained through their entire life and appeared to be individually unique from all other and did not alter. (Galton would NOT state categorically they were unique, but he had not found a single case in which two people had identical prints. However, there was one case in a child’s print altered. A small bifurcation occurred somewhere between twelve and fifteen, thus altering his print.) Galton calculated the chances of two finger prints being exactly the same were 1 in 64,000,000,000. If three of the finger’s prints were taken and matched to a card on file, there was NO possibility they had identified the person incorrectly.
However, matching fingerprints to a stack of cards proved impossible until Galton created a method or classification that reduced the time searching for a match. Galton classified fingerprints in three categories: arches, loops, and whorls.
Galton then further classified the other print details to assist in finding the exact one needed. He likened it to a directory of home addresses. First, you locate the street, then you identify the block, and finally you identify the unique number of the house.
And while taking and later reading fingerprints was a skill that required training, Galton believed it to be a teachable skill. And thus, it was adopted by Scotland Yard to assist in finding criminals.
In my novel, The Darkest Days, the highly educated and well connected young officer, Barns, has read up on fingerprinting and wishes to use it when he becomes the Director of Scotland Yard. Xavier advises him to instead bring the matter to the current Director of Scotland Yard, since Barns has many years before he should be leading anything. Then Vic tells him that Argentina has been catching criminals with the use of finger prints for years, so if he waits until he’s in charge of Scotland Yard, he’ll be far behind.
So Barns follows Xavier’s advice and discovers Director Stone knows all about Galton’s finger printing, and has only been waiting for him to establish the sorting of the prints for quick identification.
Impressed by the young man’s knowledge of fingerprinting, Stone puts him in charge of the implementation into Scotland Yard.
When the pot has too many cooks a feast can be ruined, and that’s exactly what happens with Xavier and Vic’s new cases. Each proves more complicated than initially thought with criminals dropping out of the sky, wreaking havoc upon Xavier, Vic, and their excellent employees. By the end, Vic threatens to open a school that teaches criminals how to stay out of each other’s way.
Worse yet, a treasured member of the staff is shot in the heart while attempting to save Vic and the Queen’s cousin.
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Liza O’Connor was raised badly by feral cats, left the South/Midwest and wandered off to find nicer people on the east coast. There she worked for the meanest man on Wall Street, while her psychotic husband tried to kill her three times. (So much for finding nicer people.) Then one day she declared enough, got a better job, divorced her husband, and fell in love with her new life where people behaved nicely. But all those bad behaviors has given her lots of fodder for her humorous books. Please buy these books, because otherwise, she’ll become grumpy and write troubled novels instead. They will likely traumatize you.
You have been warned.
Mostly humorous books by Liza:
Ghost Lover—Two British brothers fall in love with the same young woman. Ancestral ghost is called in to fix the situation. And there’s a ghost cat that roams about the book as well. (Humorous Contemporary Romance)
Saving Casey— Cass wakes up in the body of a troubled teen who has burned every bridge imaginable. Her only choice is to turn this life around, but that’s much harder than she ever imagined.
Untamed & Unabashed—The youngest of the Bennet sisters, Lydia, tells her story. A faithful spinoff from Pride & Prejudice.
A Long Road to Love Series: (Humorous Contemporary odd Romance)
Worst Week Ever — Laugh out loud week of disasters of Epic proportions.
Oh Stupid Heart — The heart wants what it wants, even if it’s impossible.
Coming to Reason — There is a breaking point when even a saint comes to reason.
Climbing out of Hell — The reconstruction of a terrible man into a great one.
The Hardest Love — Is to love oneself. Sam’s story.
The Adventures of Xavier & Vic Sleuth series: (Late Victorian/Mystery/Romance)
The Troublesome Apprentice — The greatest sleuth in Victorian England hires a young man who turns out to be a young woman.
The Missing Partner — Opps! The greatest sleuth in Victorian England goes missing, leaving Vic to rescue him, a suffragette, and about 100 servants. Not to mention an eviscerating cat. Yes, let’s not mention the cat.
A Right to Love — A romantic detour for Jacko. Want to see how amply rewarded Jacko was when he & Vic save an old woman from Bedlam?
The Mesmerist — The Mesmerist can control people from afar and make them murder for her. Worse yet, Xavier Thorn has fallen under her spell.
Well Kept Secrets — The problems with secrets is that they always come to light, no matter how you wish to silence them.
Pack of Trouble — Changes are a part of life, but these changes almost kill Vic.
The Darkest Days — Muddled cases make Vic very grumpy.
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