Starting Backwards

Did you ever think you discovered something only later to find that your “original” idea is not original at all? It happens all the time: I call it “independent thinking shared”.

I started researching these prison photos and was looking for a story, maybe something no one had heard of before. I found Roy Gardner. I looked in newspaperarchive.com and found he was a notorious train robber from the early 1900s and a tricky escape artist. I started reading and downloading articles. There was a connection between him and some of the other photos that I had seen. Hmmmm, a very interesting thread was forming.

Little did I know that if I had only googled him in the first place that I would have come up with a lot of information, all condensed, without having to have spent hours reading old papers. Oh, I am not complaining, mind you, I really love doing all that research. Also, it gave me a chance to see how the American press was covering other stories, like Irish Independence in the 1920s.

I decided that some of the info I found was worth repeating. So here is my Escape Artist web addendum, through a montage of film stills, book pages and their actual portraits painted by me, of the connection between a counterfeiter, a train robber and two rapists: Norris H. Pyron, Roy Gardner, Lawardius Borgart and Evert Impyn, respectively, McNeil Island prisoners numbered 3800, 3806, 3824 and 3825.

~ Patricia Sahertian

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