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Execution of Joseph Schneider

The Columbus Dispatch
Friday, June 19, 1885
Transcribed by

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Particulars of the Murder and the Execution at Hamilton, O., To-day

Special to THE DISPATCH.:

HAMILTON, O., June 19.—George Schneider, convicted of killing his mother in October last was hanged this forenoon without any incident of note.

The execution of Schneider took place at 10:22 o'clock in the presence of about 100 spectators. The man died game. He ascended the scaffold with a firm step and took his place over the trap. He maintained that his confession as stated below was true and he had nothing more to say. There was no trouble, but everything connected with the hanging passed off without a hitch. The body was claimed by the friends and will be buried in this city. Life was extinct in 12¾ minutes. Physicians claim that from the time the trap was sprung Schneider never knew anything.

His crime, one of the most horrible that ever occurred in Ohio, is of peculiar interest. Mrs Margaret Schneider, aged 74 years, had two sons and one daughter living in this county. The old lady roomed in Hamilton, but spent her time for the most part in visiting her children. On the 31st of October, 1884, just before the Presidential election, the old lady started for George's house, riding part of the way  with  her daughter-in-law.  This was  the

last ever seen of her. For a few weeks nothing was thought of her absence, as she was supposed to be at George's. Her continued absence aroused suspicion, and the relatives began to look for her. George then, when pressed, told the following story:

On the same night she arrived, she wanted to be driven to the station to take a train to Hamilton. He hitched up and started down his lane towards the road. When hear the gate two robbers assaulted them, killing the old lady and allowing him to go free upon a pledge of secrecy. The men buried her body in a ravine and made their escape. The next morning he visited the spot and found one of her feet sticking out of the ground and covered it up. For five weeks the body remained in the ravine.

Schneider was arrested an upon strong circumstantial evidence, found guilty and sentenced to hang.

Last week the prisoner made a confession in which he said he had become involved, just before the crime was committed, in a wrangle with the old lady. As they started for the station on the night in question, she said that she wished George's wife was dead, having at divers times before, threatened to poison her. When they reached the end of the lane, the old lady alighted to open the gate, when, George says, he was so outraged by her remark and her previous conduct, that he hit her twice with a stone, killing her. How he removed the body to the ravine where it was buried, he never knew. He intended the next day to give himself up, but could not bear to tear himself away from his wife and family.

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