20 November 1888
Crimes Which Are Unavenged Make a Long List
New York, Nov 20.
Murder was done on Broadway just in front of the Herald building Sunday night between 6 and 7, and passed unchallenged and hardly noticed. The murderer was arrested by a passing policeman when trying to get away, dragged back and confronted with his victim, then kicked and let go.
The victim was Thomas F. Dunn, of this city. He had quarrelled with some strangers and had been knocked down and terribly kicked, but managed to reach his home, where he dies in a few hours.
Concerning murder mysteries, the Evening World said: "Hardly a paper in this country has failed to sharply criticize the London police for their failure to capture the Whitechapel fiend. Police officials in many cities have been free in their denunciation of the London methods.
"It has been repeatedly said that American detective methods were needed in London.
"Are we not living a in a glass house in this respect? Have we a right to throw stones at Whitechapel?
"In Austin, Tex., we have had an American predecessor of Jack the Ripper. He is still at large. "Connecticut soil is stained with the blood of victims unavenged by the law.
"New Jersey is rapidly becoming a land of dark mysteries.
"The police reports from other states are not more flattering to the boasted powers of the American detective.
"Aside from New York city's recent record under the able regime of Murray and Byrnes, there seems to be plenty of evidence that the Whitechapel criticisms are a serious case of throwing stones from a glass house."
The World then prints a number of dispatches from various parts of the country which bear on the suspect (sic).
Murders Which Are Still Unavenged - A Dreadful List
The World's Bridgeport correspondent says of the mysteries of Connecticut:
"A case noted even yet occurred twenty five years ago when Miss Leland, a beautiful Brooklyn girl, was murdered and thrown from the Washington Bridge.
Several years ago Mary Stannard was found murdered in a piece of woods near the residence of Rev. H. H. Hayden, in Haddam.
Her throat was cut. Pinkerton detectives found a bottle of poison in Hayden's barn, bought in Middletown, and the minister was brought to trial. The jury disagreed.
Two years ago a shoe box was found in the woods, near Wallingford, containing an unknown man chopped in pieces. It has never been discovered who the murdered man was or who did the deed.
A case that received great attention was the death of Capt. George M. Colvocoresses, a wealthy Greek. He was on his way to take the night boat for New York. He carried a handbag with a large quantity of bonds. While passing down Clinton street he was shot. Afterwards the bag was found near the boat minus the bonds. Colvocoresses' life was insured for $275,000.
Insurance companies tried to prove that he committed suicide, but compromised with heirs by paying a little over half of the policies.
About three years ago Baldwin Jesse, a sailor, confessed on his deathbed that he had murdered Colvcoresses and had secure the bonds, but being pursued had thrown them overboard.
The sailor was buried at sea, off Honolulu, and his confession repeated here by Capt. Donaldson. Jensen's confession received some recognition until promptly squelched by the insurance companies.
The case of Jennie Cramer, of New Haven, has never been cleared up. Jennie Cramer was very beautiful. Together with Blanche Douglas she visited the home of the Malley brothers. She was last seen alive in their company. The following day her dead body was found on the beach. The Malley brothers were tried for her murder and were acquitted.
Rose Ambler, of Orinoak, met her death in some mysterious manner. She was engaged to be married to William Lewis, of Stratford. The night she met her death she had been visiting Lewis and was walking back home alone. Her dead body was found beside a stone wall the next morning. She had been outraged. Lewis was tried and acquitted, he being clearly proven innocent.
Twelve years ago Nicholas Sanger, a saloonkeeper in East Bridgeport, was murdered by being struck with a chair. Hortan and Griffin, who were in the saloon at the time, were arrested, tried and acquitted. Detective Frank B. Taylor says: "the man that killed Sanger died two years ago."
A few years ago Mrs. Selleck was murdered in her own house in New Cassan (?), Conn. The throat was cut from ear to ear. The house was set on fire evidently with the intent of burning up the murdered woman. Henry Willis was arrested and locked up in Dunbury jail but was acquitted and this murder remains a mystery.
About ten years ago two aged maiden ladies were murdered in their home at Avon, hear Martford. Pinkerton's detectives worked on the case for a long time, but finally abandoned it. It has never been discovered who killed them.
Six years ago Phoebe Bruak (?), a colored woman, was found murdered in her home. She lived in the locality of Stratford. She was killed with an ax.
The proprietor of the Woodbury Hotel, in Woodbury, was murdered, also an Irish laborer, six years ago. Neither crime was ever punished.
It is Austin, Tex. - A Most Remarkable Series of Crimes
Among them is the following from Austin, Tex: The horrible series of murders which occurred about this town during the year 1885 are still mysteries. They were considered the most shocking in the annals of this country's crimes, and were the more so considering the advanced state of civilization of the region in which they occurred.
The first victim of the Austin was Mollie Smith, a colored servant, whose body was found Dec.25, 1884. Her body had been hacked and gashed from head to foot with an ax, and so cut to pieces that it would not hold together when it was put into a coffin. Her remains were found about one hundred yards away from her home, whither they had been dragged.
On the night of May 7, 1885, Lizzie Shelley, another colored domestic, was butchered in the same horrible manner. She was dragged from her bed into the open air. Both women had been killed on bright moonlight nights.
The people of Austin were shocked, but attributed the murders to freaks of jealousy of disappointed lovers. But more was to follow.
One day in the next June another colored servant, Irene Cross, was found cut to pieces. This crime was different from the two preceding, in that the body was not removed from the woman's room. There were evidences to show that the villain or maniac who did the deed had become frightened and fled hastily.
The colored population of Austin became frantic. They said the murders were the work of witches.
Rebecca Ramey and her 12 year old daughter Masy, both colored servants of Mr. V.O. Weed, were the next to suffer.
Every citizen now joined in a cry for a searching investigation. Bloodhounds were put on the scent and two negroes were thus trailed and captured, but were able to prove their innocence.
On the night of Sept. 29 Orange Washington and Mrs. Gracie Vance, colored, who lived together as man and wife, were killed, the former in his room, while the latter's brains were beaten out not far from the house. The woman was assaulted.
On the same night Lucinda Boddy and Patsey Gibson, mulatto girls, who lived a short distance from Washington's cabin, were beaten with sandbags and were assaulted. No ax was used this time.
Soon after Alice Davis was cut up. She was of the same class, and her death struck terror to the hearts of everyone, which was increased still more when, on Christmas night, 1885, two white women were dragged from their beds and killed with the deadly ax, one of them having been taken from the side of her husband, who was hit in the head.
It was a bright moonlight night, and there was no clew left. No outcry was raised, and the same cunning was shown in this midnight assassination as in all the others.
Bloodhounds were again brought into service, and every available means was quickly utilized to find the murderer, but with no satisfactory results.
Every theory active and imaginative minds could devise was well ventilated and discussed. The one generally believed and the most probable was that a maniac was at large - a maniac with the cunning of a devil and the cruelty of a hundred of them.
Men were arrested and charged with the crimes, but they were always able to clear themselves.
The Famous Railway Case - Other Murders Equally Strange
From Trenton. N.J., comes the following terrible story: Phoebe Paullin, a pretty young girl, while strolling down the Orange mountains outside Newark one day, was struck down by an unknown assassin.
Phoebe Paulling's murder is still enshrouded in mystery that there is no longer a hope of unveiling.
Then there is the Railway murder of more recent date. A woman found by the roadside brutally killed, but no clew to even establish her identity. Again the bloodhounds of the law were put upon the scent, and, as in the Phoebe Paulling case, many traces were followed up and several arrests made, but the murderer is still at large.
A case that did not achieve so much notoriety, but is involved in almost equal mystery, is the murder of Tommy Morgan, the Bordentown track walker, near four years.
Late one afternoon, in the fall of 1884, his dead body, with warm blood still pouring from a bullet wound in his neck, was discovered along the railroad two miles from the town. There was the evidence of a struggle on the earth near by, but no one had seen the crime done nor seen the murderer take flight, and the crime remains a mystery today.
If the murder of Ellen Quinn had taken place in Trenton this year, instead of last, there would have been more attention given to it in the newspapers, because of its similarity to the Whitechapel murders that now startle the whole civilized world.
She was found in the cellar of an unoccupied house alongside the New Jersey Central railroad in this city, beaten to death and frightfully hacked about the face and person. An inquest was held and several men were arrested, but guilt was not clearly traced to any of them, and the case was dropped.
Down in the Pines, about the time of the Katie Anderson murder, a young woman was found dead by the roadside, and the mystery has never been cleared.
The Matthew Ash murder, in Paterson, has puzzled the authorities within the past week or two, although there is a hope of clearing it up.
James P. Donnelly, who was hanged at Freehold in 1858 for the murder of Robert S. Moses, died declaring his innocence. This is one of the famous cases in New Jersey law books.
Many other supposed murders in New Jersey have gone unexplained, but those mentioned are probably the most notable of that character.
Murders Around Philadelphia Which have Gone Unavenged
The World's Philadelphia correspondent says:
Murder mysteries in which the culprit has never been so much as discovered are, in a degree, rare here, but cases of murder in which the culprit has escaped and never been traced are comparatively numerous.
Mrs. Gaistlich and her two children were found dead in their home June 9, 1878. A bottle of chloroform was on the mantel. It was at first thought to have been a case of suicide, so far as the woman was concerned, and the theory was that she first killed her little ones in the same manner; but the finding of the cork in the bottle did away with this theory and proved it to have been a triple murder.
Charles Gaistlich, the husband and father, disappeared and was never heard from. The decomposed body of a man was found in the pine forests of New Jersey some time afterwards was thought to be that of Gaistlich but there was no positive proof.
The Martin murder mystery was a mystery indeed. On April 6, 1879, the body of William C. Martin, horribly disfigured (?), was found in his real estate office on
On the night of Oct 8, 1858, Police Officer Johnson, who had followed a suspicious looking man from the Powalton avenue railroad station, in West Philadelphia, was shot dead by him on the street. The culprit has never been captured.
From Chicago there comes the description of five or six murder mysteries.
Massachusetts contributes the Lilla Hoyle case and about half a dozen more.
But New York has the most appalling record. No less than forty seven murders, with the murderer uncaught, are cited by The World. Among them are the famous Nathan murders and the Carleton house mystery.
The Baltimore Sun of today refers to the arrest of Dr. Francis Tumblety in London as the supposed Whitechapel murderer. That paper also refers to the fact that Tumblety at one time resided in Baltimore, San Francisco, Cal., and Washington. As usual The News man is always on the alert, and after a turn around the city gleaned the following facts: Dr. Francis Tumblety opened up an office in this city where Mr. Charles Kuesmaul now has his tobacco and cigar store, on Court street, about the close of the war for the purpose of curing blood diseases, pimples &c., arising from disorders of the blood. The doctor was a very eccentric man, having for a sign a skeleton head and whilst out riding always had a greyhound following him. He dressed in a very eccentric manner also, and answers the description of the man referred to in Baltimore and other places. The doctor whilst here also represented himself as an Indian Doctor from London.