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The Face of a Monster: America's Frankenstein

The Face of a Monster: America's Frankenstein

by Patricia Earnest Suter
The Face of a Monster: America's Frankenstein

The Face of a Monster: America's Frankenstein

by Patricia Earnest Suter


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The year 2018 will herald the 200th anniversary of Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley's Frankenstein, or The Modern Prometheus. The timing seems right for the story of a real monster. German-born immigrant Anton Probst arrived in New York in 1863. Within two hours of his arrival he enlisted in the Union Army. During the American Civil War, Probst bore witness to mankind's brutality. Afterwards, he became an inmate at the disreputable Blockley Almshouse in Philadelphia.

Frankenstein was first conceived by Shelley in 1816. Her monster was an embodiment of abandonment and loneliness, feelings Shelley shared. In despair, the creature resorted to violence. Fifty years after Frankenstein's conception, Anton Probst adopted characteristics of Shelley's monstrous creation. He became Philadelphia's first mass-murderer when he slaughtered members of the Christopher Dearing family.

After his death, Probst's story continued. The creature that he had become left a deep impression on the people of Philadelphia and New York. Researchers used Anton Probst's body to show the effects of galvanization, the same means by which Frankenstein's monster stirred to life. Incredibly, similarities surface between Shelley and her circle, her monster, and events that transpired when the blood of innocents was shed an ocean away. One defining difference is present. Unlike Shelley's creature, the story of America's monster is very real.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780692965191
Publisher: Russell D. Earnest Associates
Publication date: 03/11/2018
Pages: 260
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.55(d)

About the Author

Patricia Earnest Suter is a graduate of the University of New Mexico. She currently resides with her family, both two and four-footed, in Delaware. Suter maintains the Earnest Archives and Library, a collection geared towards the printed works of Pennsylvania Germans. In addition to the exploration of Pennsylvania German imprints, much of her work analyzes the early overlap of early American cultures.

Table of Contents




I: I Was Benevolent

II: Beloved Cottagers

III: The Dissecting Room and the Slaughterhouse

IV: The Vices of Mankind

V: April 7

VI: The Cottagers did not Appear

VII: Agony and Terror

VIII: Are You French?

IX: Barred Windows

X: Horrible Pilgrimage

XI: Mother's Tender Caresses

XII: I am Solitary and Abhorred

XIII: The Trial Began

XIV: I Knew the Destroyer of My Family

XV: My Crimes are Consummated

XVI: Villain!

XVII: Learn From Me

XVIII: On My Lips

XIX: Threshold of Real Knowledge

XX: Men of Genius

XXI: Perished on the Scaffold

XXII: Infusing Life into an Inanimate Body

XXIII: Bound Close by the Ties of Mutual Misfortune

XXIV: Mine Has Been a Tale of Horrors

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