What follows here is a narrative pulled from the Victoria Times newspaper regarding the arrest of Dr. H. Crippen, an American citizen working in London, on the suspicion of murdering his wife, Belle Elmore. Belle's friends notified the police of her disappearance. They discovered her mutilated body interred within a shallow grave in the basement of Crippen's London house.
He fled Britain, bound for Quebec (Canada) with Mlle Leneve, his disguised girlfriend. The British authorities put the word out to all the steamship ports hoping to head him off. Never-the-less they slipped through the net to the Netherlands and bought passage to Canada on the SS Montrose.
Within a couple of days the captain of the getaway steamer became suspicious of two passengers, one with definite feminine mannerisms but dressed as a man, suspected who they were, and notified the British authorities via wireless. British detectives were dispatched on a faster steamer and planned to arrive in Quebec a day or two before the fugitives. By this time the press had got onto the story and the ‘chase’ was on, with daily newspaper coverage on both sides of the Atlantic. Readers were enthralled.
Of course the two fugitives on the vessel were oblivious to the radio messages pulsing around them and felt they had escaped.
The story brought wireless into the popular realm; if you didn't know what wireless was and could do before July 1910, you certainly did by the end August. Newspapers were the only source of news in those days.
Read the transcribed clippings from the Victoria Times (July & August 1910) and get a taste of the chase.
Dr. H. Crippen and Ethel LeNeve on board the SS Montrose.