The Ryan Case 1873 immerses participants in the rich historical world of nineteenth century New York City, before DNA testing and high tech forensics, when a copper's best tools were between his ears. The audience members are divided into groups of ten and briefed on the murder. Armed with a rookie's detective kit, the new recruits are dispatched to the very streets were this crime was committed. Along the way, participants encounter characters ranging from immigrants fresh off the boat, to coal sellers, ladies of ill repute and men-about-town, all who have key bits of information about the case. The audience confronts the suspects in a police line-up, presenting their theories on the case in the hope that justice will finally be served.