Carl Panzram

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Carl Panzram
Carl Panzram under the alias "Jefferson Baldwin" in 1915
Background information
Birth nameCharles Panzram
Also known asCarl Baldwin
Jeff Davis
Jefferson Davis
Jefferson Rhodes
Jeff Rhodes
Jack Allen
Jefferson Baldwin
John King
John O'Leary
Cooper John
Teddy Bedard
Born(1891-06-28)June 28, 1891
East Grand Forks, Minnesota
DiedSeptember 5, 1930(1930-09-05) (aged 39)
Leavenworth, Kansas
SentenceDeath by Hanging
Number of victims5–22
Span of killings1910 {alleged but unconfirmed}
1915 (as accessory),
1920–June 20, 1929
CountryUnited States
State(s)Oregon, New York, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Kansas
Date apprehended1928
Arrests/prison terms:
1899;1903–1905, 1906–1907,
1908–1910,1911,1915–1917, 1918, 1923,1923–1928,

Carl Panzram (1891 -1930) was an American serial killer who was hanged for murder. He served time under his own name and various aliases in Fresno, California; Rusk, Texas; The Dalles, Oregon; Harrison, Idaho; Butte, Montana; Montana State Reform School in Miles City; Montana State Prison (as "Jeff Davis" #4194 #3194 and "Jefferson Rhodes" #4396); Oregon State Prison ("Jefferson Baldwin" #7390); Bridgeport, Connecticut ("John O'Leary"); Sing Sing Correctional Facility, New York ("John O'Leary" #75182[1]); Clinton Correctional Facility, New York ("John O'Leary" #75182[1]); and Washington, D.C (Carl Panzram #33379) and Leavenworth, Kansas (Carl Panzram #31614). While incarcerated, Panzram frequently attacked guards and refused to follow their orders. The guards retaliated, subjecting him to beatings and other punishments.[2]

Early life[change | change source]

Panzram was born on June 28, 1891, in Minnesota

Crime Spree[change | change source]

1899 Panzram in Juvenile Court for being drunk and disorderly

1903 Panzram in County Jail for being drunk and incorrigible;[3]

October 11, 1903 Panzram sent to Minnesota State Training School, Red Wing Minnesota for incorrigibility[4]

July 7, 1905 Panzram burned down the State Training School warehouse[5]

1905 Panzram tried to shoot a teacher; plot miscarried and he was thrown out of school.

January 1906 "Henry Panzram" reported to be paroled from Red Wing after stealing money from his mothers pocketbook[6]

Fled his mothers Minnesota farm to become a hobo on the rails

1906 Panzram claimed to have been gang raped by hobos on a train; that spring he is arrested in Butte, Montana for burglary and sentenced to one year Montana State Reform School, Miles City Montana

1907 Panzram escapes from Montana State Reform School and assumes alias of Jefferson Baldwin. Robbing and committing arsons in towns of Glendive; Crane; Sidney Montana

December 1907 while getting drunk in a Helena Montana saloon Panzram joined the US Army Co A 6th US Infantry Regiment. Totally rebellious against any authority, he was court-martialed in April 1908 for larceny of US Government property and sentenced to US Military Leavenworth Prison Kansas for 3 years at hard labor-sentence confirmed by Secretary of War, William Howard Taft. Panzram later claims that while before his imprisonment he had been a pretty rotten yegg, the only result of his sentence was to drive any goodness out of him. Released in August 1910 and dishonorable discharged, Panzram resumed his career as a thief, stealing anything from bicycles to yachts, and was caught and imprisoned multiple times.

Minnesota Correctional Facility ̪
A view of the old United States Disciplinary Barracks dubbed "The Castle" or "Little Top" before it was torn down. Leavenworth Kansas
1912 Cellblock from Main Street Montana State Prison
Oregon State Penitentiary in 1892
Clinton Correctional Facility in Dannemora, New York.
Leavenworth Prison Kansas

Winter, 1910 Panzram alleged in his 1929 autobiography that after serving a short sentence at Rusk Texas, he claimed to have gone to Juarez, Mexico to try to enlist in the Federal Mexican Army; he then left on a train for Del Rio, Texas and got off in a small town 50 to 100 miles east of El Paso, Texas where about a mile south of that town he alleged to have abducted, assaulted, kicked and strangled a man and then stole $35.00 from the victim.[7]

Summer 1911 Panzram aka "Jefferson Davis" arrested Fresno California for stealing a bicycle; sentenced to 6 months in county jail. Escaped after 30 days[8]

1913 Panzram aka "Jack Allen" arrested The Dalles, Oregon for highway robbery, assault and sodomy; broke out of jail after 2–3 months; on the run aka "Jeff Davis" is arrested Harrison, Idaho; escapes from County jail. Aka "Jefferson Davis" arrested Chinook, Montana; sentenced to Montana State Prison for 1 year for burglary.

April 27, 1913 Panzram aka "Jefferson Davis" admitted to State Prison, Deer Lodge Montana; escapes November 13, 1913. Within a week arrested as "Jeff Rhoades" in Three Forks, Montana for burglary and returned to Deer Lodge for an additional year.

March 3, 1915 Panzram released from Montana State Prison

June 1, 1915, Panzram aka "Jefferson Baldwin" arrested Astoria, Oregon for burglary; sentenced to Oregon State Prison, Salem Oregon Inmate # 7390 for seven years

September 27, 1915, Panzram was an accessory in the killing of Oregon State Penitentiary Warden Harry Minto.

September 18, 1917, Panzram escaped from Prison but recaptured

May 12, 1918, Panzram escapes from prison and assumes alias of "John O' Leary" . $50.00 was offered for his recapture.[9]

August 1920 Panzram burglarized the home of William Howard Taft home in New Haven, Connecticut. He stole a large amount of jewellery[10] and bonds, as well as Taft's Colt M1911 .45 caliber handgun. He then began a murder spree that spanned eight years and multiple countries.

Summer 1920: With the money stolen from Taft he bought a yacht, the Akiska. He lured sailors away from New York City bars, got them drunk, raped and shot them with Taft's pistol, then dumped their bodies near Execution Rocks Light in Long Island Sound. He claimed to have killed ten in all.[11] He was stopped only when he was shipwrecked in a storm near Atlantic City, New Jersey; his last two almost victims escaped to parts unknown.

October 26, 1920 Panzram aka "John O' Leary" arrested Stamford CT for burglary and possession of a loaded handgun;[12]

1921 Panzram serves 6 months in jail in Bridgeport CT.[13]

1921 Panzram is foreman of an Oil rig in Angola, Africa [he later burned the rig down out of shear meaness]. In the village of Luanda Panzram raped and killed a young boy; he also claims in village of Lobito to have hired 6 men as rowers in a boat; he then sadistly killed them with a German Luger pistol and threw their bodies to the crocodiles.

Summer 1922 After returning to the U.S., Panzram asserted that he raped and killed two small boys,[14] beating George Henry McMahon to death with a rock on July 18, 1922 in Salem, Massachusetts[15][16] and strangling the other in either the summer of 1922 or summer of 1923 near New Haven. {Police of New London CT announced they were unable to confirm Panzrams confession of a murder near there,[17] but in August 1923 a "John Doe" murder victium was found near New Haven CT.[18] The Connecticut Bridgeport Telegram published reports on the decomposed unknown victim remains being found on August 10 (p. 1) and August 11, 1923 (p. 10).[19] Another report of the murdered man appeared in the CT Newspaper "The Day"[20] Allegedly the Connecticut victim was aged 16,[21] and was the son or nephew of a New York policeman.[22]

Panzram later wrote that he had also contemplated mass killings and other acts of mayhem, such as poisoning a city's water supply with arsenic, or scuttling a British warship in New York Harbor to provoke a war between the U.S. and Great Britain.[23]

June 27, 1923 on the river near Kingston, New York, Panzram claimed to have used a .38 calibre pistol to killed a man who tried to rob him while on a yacht Panzram had stolen from the Police Chief of New Rochelle, New York.[8]

June 29, 1923, Panzram aka "John O'Leary" arrested Nyak, New York

July 9, 1923, Panzram tired to escape from jail; later conned his lawyer by giving him ownership of a stolen boat in return for bail money; Panzram skips bail and the boat is confiscated by the police

August 26, 1923, Panzram aka "John O' Leary" arrested Larchmont, New York after breaking into train depot, sentenced to 5 years imprisonment. While in County jail confessed to being "Jeff Baldwin" wanted In Oregon

October 1923 Panzram imprisoned at Clinton Prison, Dannemora New York

July 1928 Panzram discharged from Clinton Prison

Summer 1928 alleged to have committed a murder in Baltimore, Maryland

July 26, 1928 Panzram kills Alexander Uszacke[? or [Lusszzock[?][24][25] age 14 in Philadelphia,Pa.

August 12, 1928 Panzram arrested Washington D.C.

September 2, 1928 Panzram Inmate #33379 mugshot Washington DC

November 3, 1928 Panzram starts his autobiography[3]

November 12, 1928, Panzram tried for burglary found guilty and sentenced to a total of 25 years in Prison

February 1, 1929, Panzram Inmate # 31614 to serve his sentence at Leavenworth Prison Kansas

June 20, 1929, Panzram kills Leavenworth Prison employee Robert Warnke with an iron bar.

Executed[change | change source]

After being sentenced to death for killing Warnke,in response to offers from death penalty opponents and human rights activists to intervene, Panzram wrote, "The only thanks you and your kind will ever get from me for your efforts on my behalf is that I wish you all had one neck and that I had my hands on it."[26] On September 5, 1930, Panzram was hanged for murder at Leavenworth prison. When asked if had any last words, he snapped back "Hurry It up you Hoosier Bastard. I could kill ten men while you're fooling around!". He was buried in the prison graveyard marked only by his prison number.

Autobiography[change | change source]

During his last imprisonment a prison guard Henry Lesser gave Panzram a dollar to buy cigarettes; Panzram was so surprised by this one act of kindness that in return he wrote his autobiography—making it quite clear that he did not repent at all of the robberies, murders, arsons, and rapes which he had committed-writing a detailed summary of his crimes and nihilistic philosophy.[27] It began with a straightforward statement:

In my lifetime I have murdered 21 human beings, I have committed thousands of burglaries, robberies, larcenies, arsons and, last but not least, I have committed sodomy on more than 1,000 male human beings. For all these things I am not in the least bit sorry.

In 1938, Karl Menninger wrote Man Against Himself, including writing about Panzram using the pen name of "John Smith", with Panzram Prison Number # 31614. Lesser preserved Panzram's letters and autobiographical manuscript, then spent the next four decades in search of a publisher willing to print the material. Finally, in 1970, it was released under the title Killer: A Journal of Murder. In 1996, the book formed the basis of a film of the same name, starring James Woods as Panzram and Robert Sean Leonard as Lesser. In 1980, Lesser donated Panzram's material to San Diego State University, where they are housed, as the "Carl Panzram papers", in the Malcolm A. Love Library.[28] In 2012 filmmaker John Borowski released a documentary entitled Carl Panzram: The Spirit of Hatred and Vengeance.

References[change | change source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 "Carl Panzram Autobiography - Bing images". Retrieved August 15, 2017.
  2. Gaddis,, Thomas (1970). Killer A Journal of Murder. McMillian.
  3. 3.0 3.1 "Carl panzram letter". Retrieved August 27, 2017.
  4. James Gilks, Nicolas Claux. "CARL PANZRAM BIO IN THE SERIAL KILLER CALENDAR". Retrieved August 27, 2017.
  5. Annals of Crime
  6. "The evening times., January 26, 1906, Image 5 Grand Forks N.D." The evening times., January 26, 1906,. Check date values in: |date= (help)
  7. "El Paso Evening Post Jan 2, 1929".p.9. Officials could not confirm Panzram claim.
  8. 8.0 8.1 True Crime XL: Carl Panzram
  9. "Carl panzram wanted poster - Bing images". Retrieved August 27, 2017.
  10. Panzram claimed the jewellery was worth $400,000.00; Taft reported that his wife's jewellery was only worth a few thousand dollars."Tells Police He Killed 2, Robbed Homes". The Republican-Journal. October 6, 1928. p. 1.
  11. Possible Confirmation[?] On August 20, 1920 the body of a unknown man was found in New York Bay off St Georges, Staten Island See "Found Man drowned in Bay". Staten Island Advance. , August 20, 1920,. p. 9. Retrieved August 20, 1920. Check date values in: |access-date=, |date= (help)
  12. "Carl Panzram mugshot - Bing images". Retrieved August 15, 2017.
  13. True Crime XL; Carl Panzram
  14. Gaddis, Thomas E.; Long, James O. (1970). ^ Killer: A Journal of Murder. Macmillan.CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)
  15. "Man is Arrested as Slayer-Fiend". The Norwalk Hour. October 27, 1928. p. 1.
  16. "Women Identify Seamen in Death". The Pittsburgh Press. November 2, 1928. p. 28.
  17. "The Montreal Gazette - Google News Archive Search". October 27, 1928. Retrieved August 8, 2017.
  18. "Reading Eagle - Google News Archive Search". Retrieved August 8, 2017.
  19. "Message Boards". Retrieved August 8, 2017.
  20. "The Day - Google News Archive Search". Retrieved August 8, 2017.
  21. "The Lewiston Daily Sun - Google News Archive Search". Retrieved August 8, 2017.
  22. "Lewiston Evening Journal - Google News Archive Search". Retrieved August 8, 2017.
  23. Gaddis, Thomas (1970). Journal. McMillian.
  24. "The Norwalk Hour Oct 27, 1928 - Google News Archive Search". Retrieved August 8, 2017.
  25. [Panzram's confession to killing a boy at Pier 28 on League island near Philadelphia in August 1928 was confirmed ["Burglar at Taft's Admits Two Murders". Stevens Point Journal. October 8, 1928.]; but Boston police were unable to corroborate his other confession, the murder of a boy in Charlestown, MA.["Jump up ^ Syracuse New York Journal, October 6, 1928"]
  26. "Carl Panzram". Serial Killer Calendar.
  27. Gaddis, Thomas E.; Long, James O. (2002). Panzram: A Journal of Murder. Amok Press. ISBN 978-1-878923-14-1.
  28. Carl Panzram papers, 1928-1982 in libraries (WorldCat catalog)