The Kitchen Table Historian

I am an author and historian who writes about long-forgotten and out of the way events and places. I love the bizarre, the unusual, and the downright weird. I write a regular blog at my website, www.johnbrassardjrcom.wordpress.com, and also manage a facebook page about things of historical interest called The Kitchen Table Historian.

Episode 78: Suicide and Steam: A Family Tragedy

During an almost ten-year period, the Botkin family faced two awful tragedies. Today, we take a look at the horrific consequences of suicide and steam.   Sources Mysterious Suicide of a Servant Girl. The Lima Times-Democrat, 6/13/1907 Young Woman Died by Her Own Hand. The Allen County Republican-Gazette, 6/14/1907 Mrs. Agnes Botkin. Dayton Daily News, …

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Episode 77: The Perfect Crime: The Trial of Frank Loomis

In this continuation, we find that Dr. Frank Loomis has been freed, apparently innocent of murdering his wife, Grace. But with the discovery of new evidence, Frank would stand trial for first-degree murder. Was he innocent, or would he be found guilty of committing the perfect crime?   Sources   Loomis Freed; Posts Reward. Lansing …

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Episode 76: The Perfect Crime: The Murder of Grace Loomis

In 1927, Detroit police were convinced that Dr. Frank Loomis had murdered his wife. Was he innocent, or had he committed what everyone began to call the perfect crime?     Sources Clubber Kills Doctor’s Wife.  Lansing State Journal, 2/23/1927 Detroit Physician Held on the Suspicion of Having Slain Wife. Battle Creek Enquirer, 2/24/1927 2 …

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The House on the Hill: The Haunted History of the W.P. Bettendorf Mansion

The mansion was a secret hidden in plain sight. Situated on the river bluff overlooking the Mississippi River valley in Bettendorf, Iowa, the mansion was a place that could be seen by everyone, and yet only a very few were allowed to go there. But for those privileged enough to enter, they sometimes discovered that …

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