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.

Sudden Endings: The Tragic Tale of Singleton Gardiner

   Gertrude Woodard was only seventeen years old. Popular and well-liked by many, young Gertrude lived with her parents near Hale, Missouri.    She, just like most people that age, no doubt had her hopes and dreams, of what adventures would fill the years of life that stretched out in front of her. Gertrude might …

Sudden Endings: The Tragic Tale of Singleton Gardiner Read More »

Little Stone For a Big Man: The Giant of Scott County, Iowa

If you were to peruse a history of the small town of Long Grove, Iowa, you are very likely to find a very interesting black and white photograph. In it stands a huge man, looking at the camera with relative disinterest. The viewer can’t help but notice the man’s size. Yes, he’s very overweight, but …

Little Stone For a Big Man: The Giant of Scott County, Iowa Read More »

Unfinished Business: Walking the Rows of Iowa’s Haunted Cemeteries

Halloween is synonymous with ghosts. Every October, people from all over America break out their spooky holiday decorations to celebrate all things supernatural. Perhaps most iconic among them all are cemeteries. As a place were we bury out dead – both loved and no-so loved – the cemeteries conjure thoughts of the great beyond, serving …

Unfinished Business: Walking the Rows of Iowa’s Haunted Cemeteries Read More »

A Night on the Town: The Jerry Corcoran Murder of 1902

Halloween is a time that so many people wear masks. People get to step out of their normal roles and act a little different for a day or two. They get to step outside the box and play pretend, turning from soccer moms and construction workers into vampires, sexy nurses, and kung-fu nuns. It’s good …

A Night on the Town: The Jerry Corcoran Murder of 1902 Read More »

Midnight Tragedy: The Koenig Family Murder/Suicide of 1870

   The mid 1800’s was a time of intense migration from Western Europe to the United States. Millions of immigrants made their way across the Atlantic to settle anywhere and everywhere.    They came for many reasons, but ultimately, they all amounted to one thing – to make a better life for themselves and their …

Midnight Tragedy: The Koenig Family Murder/Suicide of 1870 Read More »

Hazel and Helen: Two Cases of Strong-Arm Robbery in 1920’s Moline, Illinois

I grew up watching movies from the 1930’s and 40’s with my mom. While I still enjoyed the newer films coming out, I loved to hear the banter between Nick and Nora Charles, or thrill to Errol Flynn’s daredevil heroics. As I grew older, I began to notice a common thread amongst them – the …

Hazel and Helen: Two Cases of Strong-Arm Robbery in 1920’s Moline, Illinois Read More »