The profits of love: early 1900’s

Robert St. Estephe–Gonzo Historian–is dedicated to uncovering the forgotten past of marginalizing men. “Gonzo journalism” is characterized as tending “to favor style over fact to achieve accuracy.” Yet history – especially “social history” – is written by ideologues who distort and bury facts in order to achieve an agenda. “Gonzo” writing is seen as unorthodox and surprising. Yet, in the 21st century subjectivity, distortion and outright lying in non-fiction writing is the norm. Fraud is the new orthodoxy. Consequently, integrity is the new “transgressive.”

Welcome to the disruptive world of facts, the world of Gonzo History.•?•


Serial bride from Hell – 1906

If only the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) had been in place in the early 1900s then Allie Patterson’s serial marrying career might have brought her increased emotional satisfaction and better profits.


FULL TEXT: The journal entry was made in the probate court case [in Mansfield, Ohio] of Allie Patterson vs. William G. Patterson, which came on for hearing yesterday before Judge Bricker, who granted the defendant a divorce on his answer and cross petition. The plaintiff failed to appear. It was learned from the defendant’s attorney, C. H. Workman, that this is the fourth husband who has secured a divorce from her. At the hearing yesterday Henry Boader, her first husband, was present and testified that she tried to shoot him a couple of times, besides trying to poison him before he got a divorce. Plaintiff and Mr. Patterson were married only last December and it appears that she told him that her first husband died 18 years ago and that she had never been married except once before. July 14 last Mrs. Patterson brought action against Mr. Patterson for divorce, alleging various things against him, which the court by the testimony of the witness found to be untrue. She is debarred from an interest in defendant’s property.

 [“In the Courts,” Mansfield Daily Shield (Oh.), Sep. 21, 1906, p. 6]



The “Badger Game” – 1922

Badger game – “Badger game” is slang for a deception whereby a woman lures a male victim into a compromising position whereupon they are caught by her accomplice who pretends to be the husband. The couple then blackmail or demand money from the victim. [The Probert Encyclopedia]

The Badger Game is a term no longer in use, but once it was in the vocabulary of everyone who had some inkling of the operations of the female predator. It describes a specific racket perpetrated by gold-diggers and was in the 19th and 20th centuries widely practiced by female predators upon men (as were The Heart Balm Racket, paternity fraud, The Alimony Racket and, military service allotment check bigamy rackets, and Black Widow insurance murders). Following is a newspaper article from 1922 which discusses a specialized variety of the badger game.



FULL TEXT: London – blackmail has ousted card-sharping from its place at the top of the list of indoor sports arranged by the versatile crooks on the great trans-Atlantic liners for their moneyed victims.

Still hardy despite its old age, the “badger gamer” is the most popular and most profitable.

“We know the ‘badger game’ is being worked on every great liner,” said a steamship official. “Often it is worked half a dozen times a trip on one ship. But no passenger has ever complained. We know most of the card-sharpers. We know many of the blackmailers but we have no proof as to their activities aboard ship.”

“Many women, easily recognized as too smartly gowned, a little too well-complexioned at night and a little too frequent in their journeys across the Atlantic – are known to us. Their ‘husbands’ – most of them carry them, though a few work alone along simple holdup lines – are of their own type, expensively dressed and superficially polished but always lacking the something that would make them gentlemen.

~ She Works Alone ~

The women who work alone permit themselves to be made love to by ardent young men – or men who feel young, anyway – with too much money, and after they have succumbed to their lovers’ persuasion, merely threaten to call for help or to sue for breach of promise.

It is the couples who work the badger game, however, who have the best of it. They usually pick a man to whom exposure would be serious, preferably a rich business man, with a family. The victim meets the wife; the husband is introduced and faithfully plays the role of colorless uninteresting spouse.

The wife complains that he does not treat her well; she detests him. If the victim falls – and he usually gallops to it – he is seen about with the wife frequently. She is always afraid her husband will suspect something. The victim believes himself a Lothario and probably starts wearing flowers in his buttonhole.


~ Then, One Night ~

Then, one night, he sweeps the wife off her feet. The husband finds them together. The horrified recoil towards the door; the look of pained amazement; the outraged husband’s just anger; the clenched hands reaching out for the housewrecker’s throat; the tearful, terrified wife; the penitent “mug,” pop-eyed with fright and thoughts of home and Alice and the three children, the wife’s plea for forgiveness; the husband’s frenzied “No! not for $10,000!” The “mug’s” sudden thought: “Twenty thousand dollars maybe?”

So far there has not been a case in which the wronged husband has not consented to try to plaster his wounds with a few thousand-dollar bills.

[“’Badger Game’ Again Popular,” Journal (Milwaukee, W.), Sep. 11, 1922, p. 1]




“The Great Woman’s Industry”: Alimony – 1931

The censorship of historical knowledge of the huge and long-lived national scandal surrounding The Alimony Racket during the 1920s and 1930s in the United States is one of the most pernicious violations of historical truth that has been perpetrated by the university-based “gender studies” industry. Women writers in great numbers were among the racket’s most vociferous critics. It is no wonder that students are not permitted to know about this history when such historical voices of women as Ruth Brown Reed’s might, if allowed to be heard, undermine the false (and now orthodox) narrative that is “herstory.”


Following is the full text of a brief newspaper article from 1931 that quotes from a longer magazine article on alimony by Ruth Brown Reed.



Quoted from an article by Ruth Brown Reed in the Outlook:



“The alimony racket has become the great woman’s industry. A sobbing pretty woman before the court — and what chance has the husband? In many cases the amount of alimony is so large in proportion to the man’s earnings that it completely nullifies any chance of happiness or of another marriage. And why—one cannot help but ask—should a divorced man be denied the right to a normal family life?

“Under the present system the man must keep his nose the grindstone for the rest of his life, so that a woman who “no longer” contributes one iota to his comfort and well-being can lead a soft and unharassed life. Where there are children or where the woman is old or physically incapacitated for work, there is no question of the man’s ‘obligation.’”


So here is a new matrimonial problem, and a new note in the gospel of feminism. If there is anything in the principle of eternal rights between the sexes, they seem patently violated in many cases. The best assurance of ultimate justice to men is that women themselves are beginning to plead for men’s rights, as men formerly did for women’s rights.

[“Men’s Rights.” The Titusville Herald (Pa.), Jun. 4, 1931, p. 4]


NOTE: The Outlook and The Independent were major New York weekly magazines founded in the 19th century which eventually consolidated.

Source of this Titusville Herald article: Ruth Brown Reed, “Alimony for Men!” The Outlook and The Independent, Vol. 158, No. 1, May 6, 1931, p. 14]


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