FC 80 Jerks in Boston History with Paul Della Valle

This week on Fieldstone Common our featured guest is Paul Della Valle, author of the book Speaking Ill of the Dead: Jerks in Boston History.

Please note:

A few parts of the interview contain mature topics about serial killers which may not be appropriate for children.

 

Bio – Paul Della Valle

Paul Della Valle, father of three and grandfather of two, lives on five acres of an old farm in Jerks in Boston History with Paul Della Valle on Fieldstone CommonSterling, Massachusetts with his wife Karen, their dog, Yaz, and Boots Vanzetti, their anarchist cat. In 2009, he wrote Massachusetts Troublemakers: Rebels, Reformers, and Radicals from the Bay State (Globe Pequot Press).

Della Valle won dozens of writing and reporting awards in a thirty-year career as a journalist that began even before he graduated from Metropolitan State College in Denver in 1979. In 1996 he founded the Lancaster Times and Clinton Courier, which he published for 9 years. During that time, the combined newspapers were twice runner-up for New England Press Association Newspaper of the Year. He has taught writing at Worcester’s Clark University and journalism at Boston’s Northeastern University.

Book Summary

Speaking Ill of the Dead: Jerks in Boston History features eighteen short profiles of notorious bad guys, perpetrators of mischief, visionary if misunderstood thinkers, and other colorful antiheroes from the history of Beantown. It reveals the dark side of some well-known and even revered characters from Boston’s past – both part-time Jerks and others who were Jerks through and through.

Book InfoJerks in Boston History with Paul Della Valle on Fieldstone Common

Title: Speaking Ill of the Dead: Jerks in Boston History

Publisher: Globe Pequot Press (2014)

Trade Paperback; 219 pages; with bibliography, index and some BxW photos & illustrations.

Speaking Ill of the Dead: Jerks in Boston History is available for purchase from Amazon.com and other booksellers.

The Interview

Who are the truly bad guys from Boston history? That might be debatable but Paul Della Valle makes a pretty good case in his book Speaking Ill of the Dead: Jerks in Boston History. In this interview Paul and I debate the reputation of Bronson Alcott and Cotton Mather. Paul gives us the low-down on some of the worst characters from Boston history such as Boston Strangler Albert DeSalvo and serial killer Jane Toppan. We also take a look at Revolutionary War spy Dr. Benjamin Church. You will learn about a whole new group of decidedly bad folks.

Links mentioned during the interview:

Prize Winners

One copy of Speaking Ill of the Dead: Jerks in Boston Historywas given out to the Fieldstone Common audience courtesy of Globe Pequot Press.

The winner is:

  • Melanie Mueller of Texas

Congratulations to our winner and thanks to Globe Pequot Press for their generosity in donating the book!

Make sure you qualify to win the giveaway next week by signing up for the Bonus List! Once you sign up your are in the running each week!

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