Tag Archives: gazette

‘Hamilton Strangler’ Topic of New Book

Now Available from History Press:

The First Celebrity Serial Killer in Southwest Ohio: Confessions of the Strangler Alfred Knapp

“But I think my wife is dead and
I suppose I shall go to the chair for it.”
– Alfred Knapp while in jail

knapp front cover

knapp back coverJust before Christmas of 1902 Alfred Knapp strangled his wife in her sleep. He put her body in a box and sent the box floating down the Great Miami River, telling everyone that Hannah had left him. When the truth came out, Knapp confessed to four other murders. Newspapers across the Midwest sent reporters to interview the handsome strangler. Despite spending most of his adulthood in prison, he had a charming, boyish manner that made him an instant celebrity serial killer. True Crime Historian Richard O Jones examines the strangler’s alleged crimes, the family drama of covering up Knapp’s atrocities, and how a brain-damaged drifter became a media darling.


When Alfred Knapp signed a confession to the murder of five women and girls, Hamilton officials found themselves in the center of a media storm. They did not seem too sure how to handle it. Here Chief of Police Gus Kuemmerling and Mayor Charles Bosch posing for a photo with their hands on the strangler’s shoulder. Bosch lived next door to the strangler on South Fourth Street when his wife went missing and was the only one able to get Knapp to confess. The guy reading over his shoulder is Director of Police Charles Mason. Behind the mayor is Sheriff Peter Bisdorf, and in the back row Deputy Luke Brannon and Detective Thomas Lenehan, the man who arrested Knapp in Indianapolis in the middle of the night. Seems like the only person missing was Warren Gard, the boy prosecutor (he was 29 at the time).


The story of the Hamilton Strangler also features a soap opera of family drama, pitting two sisters against each other. Sadie Wenzel (above, although she looks about 15 in that picture but was in her mid-30s in 1903) stuck by her bother’s side and got into a public squabble with sister Mamie and her husband Edward King, who had told Hamilton police that Alfred had probably murdered his wife.

Related Stories about the Hamilton Stranger from True Crime Historian:

The Work of a Fiend: The Attempted Abduction of Hattie and Stella Motzer

Unsolved: Mary Eckert

Unsolved: Emma Littleman

Stories About Historical Hamilton Crimes:

Hamilton’s First Hanging: Wrongly Accused?

The Indignation over Tom McGehean

Officer Sponsel Slain; 3 Convicted

Photo Tour of the Proposed Champion Sports Complex

HEY! Hamilton! editor Richard O Jones visits with Frances Mennone, project director of the Champion Sports Complex, and takes a tour of the remains of the Champion Paper site on North B Street.

Download this episode (right click and save)

Below is the “fit plan” for the site. That is, it does not show what will be a part of the sports complex, but is a tool to show what could fit in the spaces available. The main stadium feature on the left, for instance, is actually the plan of a 5,000 seat minor league stadium in Florida placed there to illustrate that such a field can fit in the space available.

2015 0519 champion fit plan



CLICK HERE for larger view of the Champion Sports Site Plan


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This video podcast sponsored by http://www.truecrimehistorian.com



Explore “Fresh Paint… By Jenn!”

By day, Jenn Acus-Smith is the education coordinator for the Fitton Center for Creative Arts, but she is also an accomplished artist herself with a masters degree from Miami University. Until the end of June, she will be exhibiting new work through the end of  June at Miami Hamilton Downtown in the Robinson-Schwenn Building, High Street at Journal Square.

In this video podcast, Richard O Jones talks with Jenn about her work and what inspires her.

Download this episode (right click and save)

CLICK HERE to see more about Jenn Acus-Smith….

CLICK HERE to find out more about Miami Hamilton Downtown…


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This video podcast sponsored by http://www.truecrimehistorian.com

RiversEdge Concert Line-Up

Check out the line up for the 2015 RiversEdge Concert Series and share the Facebook event pages with all your friends:

May 30: Jess Lamb & The Magic Lightnin Boys

June 11: 90 Proof Twang & The Phillip Fox Band

June 18: Nightrain – The Guns N Roses Tribute Experience & After Midnight

June 25: The Floorwalkers & MoJoFlo

July 4: Lindi Ortega & 500 Miles to Memphis

July 9: Zoso: The Ultimate Led Zeppelin Experience & Kelly Richey

July 16: ZAPP & The Almighty Get Down

July 23: Scotty Bratcher & Miss Lissa and Company

August 13: Walker McGuire & Jim Burns Band

August 20: The Fortunate Sons – A Tribute to CCR


August 27: Scott Miller & The Commonwealth w/ The Okeanas


September 12: Signs of Life: The Essence of Pink Floyd