Minnesota Mysteries: True crime stories from around the state
Murder in Minnesota features some of the state’s most infamous criminals—a collection of fascinating and disagreeable characters usually ignored by historians. They live again in these pages as the conniving, clever, mad, or pitiful creatures they were. Fifteen chapters—involving both well-known and obscure practitioners of the deadly art—tell the stories of Ann Blansky, the only woman hanged in Minnesota; the famous Younger brothers, who with the James boys robbed the Northfield bank in 1876; the six Arbogast women of St. Paul, who kept a murderous secret that still remains undisclosed; and many more.
At 3:30 a.m. on April 11, 1933, neighbors and firefighters arrived at the farmhouse of Albin and Alvira Johnson to find a smoldering heap where a seemingly happy home once stood. Beneath the ruins, investigators found the bodies of Alvira and her seven children, but Albin’s remains were nowhere to be seen. The authorities determined that Alvira and the children were dead before the fire, and fingers immediately pointed to Albin. Hundreds of searchers, including the illustrious Pinkerton Agency, combed the area and even crossed into Canada in pursuit of Johnson, who was indicted in absentia for murder. But he was never found, dead or alive. What happened to the Johnson family and what part, if any, Albin played in the tragedy remain a mystery.
“On a winter night in 1894, a young woman’s body was found in the middle of a road near Lake Calhoun on the outskirts of Minneapolis. She had been shot through the head. The murder of Kittie Ging, a twenty-nine-year-old dressmaker, was the final act in a melodrama of seduction and betrayal, petty crimes and monstrous deeds that would obsess reporters and their readers across the nation when the man who likely arranged her killing came to trial the following spring. Shawn Francis Peters unravels that sordid, spellbinding story in his account of the trial of Harry Hayward, a serial seducer and schemer whom some deemed a “Svengali,” others a “Machiavelli,” and others a “lunatic” and “man without a soul.” Dubbed “one of the greatest criminals the world has ever seen” by the famed detective William Pinkerton, Harry Hayward was an inveterate and cunning plotter of crimes large and small, dabbling in arson, insurance fraud, counterfeiting, and illegal gambling. His life story, told in full for the first time here, takes us into shadowy corners of the nineteenth century, including mesmerism, psychopathy, spiritualism, yellow journalism, and capital punishment.
In the 1920s and 30s, Minneapolis was crime city. Gangsters and politicians were partners running the Twin Cities’ illegal gambling, prostitution, and liquor concerns. Stopping the Presses is a searing look at this corrupt time, told through the life of martyred journalist Walter W. Ligget by his daughter, who finally sets the record straight. Walter Ligget published The Midwest American, a newspaper that sought to expose machine politics and corruption in Minnesota. At times Ligget seemed alone in this endeavor — very few journalists joined his crusade to detail the links between the political establishment of populist Governor Floyd B. Olson and the crime syndicate in Minneapolis. For his efforts Ligget was threatened, offered bribes, beaten up, framed, and finally shot to death in the alley behind his home. His wife witnessed the assassination and was able to identify Liggett’s killer as mob leader Kid Cann. Though he was indicted by a grand jury, Cann was not convicted after what appears to a sloppy investigation and cursory trial.
Writing about murder mysteries for over twenty-five years, Bruce Rubenstein gives us a collection of Minnesota crimes in Greed, Rage, and Love Gone Wrong. Whether the killer is greedy and devoid of human compassion, desperate about money or love, or simply filled with bottled-up rage, this book puts the reader at the scene of the most notorious murders in the state.Bruce Rubenstein is a writer who specializes in true crime and legal stories.
What college is “Minnesota’s most legendary haunted place”? Where did a ghost reportedly murder two victims? How has a haunted hutch predicted several people’s deaths? This incomparable collection by Minnesota author Ryan Jacobson features only the state’s scariest, most surprising ghost stories. From the author’s own ghostly encounter to a family terrorized by a fiendish toy, the book’s 21 tales are reportedly true! Best of all, they were written with a campfire in mind, so they’re perfect for sharing aloud. Or read it alone… if you dare!
The stories in this collection were written as an attempt to provide scary tales to be shared by our family as we sit around the evening fire while camping in one on Minnesota’s wonderful State Parks. Because our children are in their 30s and 40s most of the stories reflect an intensity most suited to teenagers and adults. Should you intend to follow our practice of reading these stories aloud, keep in mind that “The Bear Rider” and, perhaps, “Sarah In The Water” are the only stories suitable to be shared when young children are present. Each of the stories in the collection has been written based on a special feature of that particular state park or a personal experience of my own while camping in that park. The intent of the stories is to encourage people’s interest in, and curiosity about, these, and the sixty-one other state parks in the State of Minnesota, each of which is worthy of a visit.
Where to go to possibly sleep in a haunted bed & breakfast, hear ghostly wails in a theatre, going roller skating with ghosts, encounter a haunted doll, hike a haunted trail, hear spirits playing music, have a drink in a haunted pub, and see gravestones move on their own.
See more parnormal reads and place your holds here.