One of the searchers identified the body of his brother, with the back of his skull smashed in and his throat slit. At her hearing, Mrs. Monroe denied any knowledge of Shearer or the manslaughter charge and remained incarcerated with her daughter. "Kate proclaimed herself responsible to no one save herself." Bloody Benders Home Location Bad photo shooting into the sun, but this is the location of where the old bender house set in the 1870's, I will get a better one soon..... STOREY. John was prone to laughing aimlessly, which led many to consider him a "half-wit". ", according to the Kansas Historical Society (KHS), Miniature murders: Unsolved crimes recreated in dollhouses. While there is no definitive number, estimates report that the Benders killed at least a dozen travelers before their crimes were discovered and the family fled, with their fate uncertain.  A Roman Catholic prayer book was found in the house with notes inside written in German, which were later translated. In this episode, we head to Kansas and explore the Wichita Troll, the Sallie House, and the Bloody Benders. With the Benders gone, neighbors searched their property. Several groups of vigilantes were formed to search for the Benders. Law enforcement officials in Maine have notifiedresidents that there have been reports of people receiving text messages indicating the recipient has been in contact with a person who has tested positive for coronavirus. Coordinates: 37°20′56″N 95°29′10″W / 37.349°N 95.486°W / The Bloody Benders were an alleged family of serial killers who owned a small general store and inn in Osage township, Labette County, Kansas from 1871 to The inn was a simple one room house divided into living quarters and the kitchen and store area. "Their story is unresolved and remains one of the great unsolved mysteries of the old West. Before York left, Kate asked him to return alone the following Friday night, and she would use her clairvoyant abilities to help him find his brother. Elvira Bender, who also allegedly spoke very little English, was 55 years of age and was so unfriendly that her neighbors took to calling her a "she-devil". RouteYou » Places of interest » Bloody Benders » Overview of all cycle routes Positive Pest | Race cycle route | 2437 mi | EN. Deputy Sheriff Dick, along with Mrs. McCann, escorted the pair to Oswego, Kansas, where seven members of a 13-member panel confirmed the identification and committed them for trial. She maintained carnal relations with her brother, and boldly proclaimed her right to do so, in the following words found in her lecture manuscript: "Shall we confine ourselves to a single love, and deny our natures their proper sway?...Even though it be a brother's passion for his own sister, I say it should not be smothered. From there, they traveled to an outlaw colony thought to be in the border region between Texas and New Mexico. The Bloody Benders were an alleged family of serial killers who owned a small general store and inn in Osage township, Labette County, Kansas from 1871 to 1873. Try this feature for free with a MyRouteYou Plus trial subscription. , Testimony from people who had stayed at the Benders' inn and had managed to escape before they could be killed appeared to support the presumed execution method of the Benders. In October 1870, five families of spiritualists homesteaded in and around the township of Osage in northwestern Labette County, approximately 7 mi (11 km) northeast of where Cherryvale would be established seven months later. In this episode, we head to Kansas and explore the Wichita Troll, the Sallie House, and the Bloody Benders. Now that land is going up for auction. Later, she married William Stephen Griffith. The Bender cabin was destroyed by souvenir hunters who took everything, including the bricks that lined the cellar and the stones lining the well.. ?," "big slaughter day, Jan eighth", and "hell departed. All but one had had their heads bashed with a hammer and their throats cut, and it was reported in newspapers that all had been "indecently mutilated". Wilder says, “while Pa watered the horses and brought us all a drink from the well near the door of the house. Kate soon gained notoriety as a self-proclaimed healer and spiritualist. America’s first serial killer family—committed as many as 21 murders on their Kansas property in the 1870s. See more ideas about bloody benders, bender, bloody. It is conjectured[by whom?] $38 (2021: $811) and a wagon with a team of horses missing. In the winter of 1872, George Newton Longcor and his infant daughter, Mary Ann, left Independence, Kansas, to resettle in Iowa and were never seen again. 6) December 1872: Henry McKenzie. "Prior to their ownership, which took place in the 1950s, there could have been an excavation that I'm not aware of.". At this point, the customers began to feel uneasy and decided to leave, a move that almost certainly saved their lives. of murdering several husbands, but none of these rumors were ever proven. There’s a storm gate in Wichita, Kansas that has no plaque or indication, only a troll sculpture that waits for the unaware – it is the Wichita Troll. , Detectives following wagon tracks discovered the Benders' wagon, abandoned with a starving team of horses with one of the mares lame, just outside the city limits of Thayer, 12 mi (19 km) north of the inn. 10) December 1872: John Greary. Its floor was covered in pools of blood. With the exception of McKenzie and York, who were buried in Independence; the Longcors, who were buried in Montgomery County; and McCrotty, who was buried in Parsons, Kansas, none of the other bodies were claimed, and they were reburied at the base of a small hill 1 mile (1.6 km) southeast of the Benders' orchard, one of several at the location now known as "The Benders Mounds". ", In May 1871, the body of a man named Jones, who had his skull crushed and his throat cut, was discovered in Drum Creek. It was confirmed that in Thayer the family had bought tickets on the Leavenworth, Lawrence & Galveston Railroad for Humboldt. Property Belonging to the 'Bloody Benders', America's First Family of Serial Killers, Up for Sale this link is to an external site that may or may not meet accessibility guidelines. Located at the rest area at the junction of US Hwy 169 and 400 in NE Labette County, Kansas. Body found in Drum Creek with a crushed skull and throat cut. On this episode, TJ and I research Americas first serial killer family from the 1870's. , A Kansas newspaper reported that the crowd was so incensed after finding the bodies that a friend of the Benders named Brockman, who was among the onlookers, was hanged from a beam in the inn until unconscious, revived and interrogated as to what he knew, then hanged again. 6 The Bloody Benders’ House. (CNN)Ever wanted to own a gruesome piece of American history? Kate was believed[by whom?] Eyewitness testimony was given that Mrs. Monroe was Ma Bender. Vol. The Bloody Benders were a family of serial killers who owned an inn and small general store in Labette County of southeastern Kansas from 1871 to 1873. But in the spring of 1873, on the frontier prairie where the field is now, the Benders lived in a little wood-sided house that doubled as a general store near the Osage Trail. Kate then became abusive toward them, and a short while later the two Bender men emerged from behind the cloth. Co D 123rd Ill Infantry. "Old Mrs. Bender was a dirty old Dutch crone. Many stories say that one vigilante group actually caught the Benders and shot all of them but Kate, whom they burned alive. State Senator Alexander York offered a $1,000 ($21,342 as of 2021) reward for the Bender family's arrest. The family consisted of John Bender, his wife Elvira Bender, son John, Jr., and daughter Kate. The Bloody Benders were a family of serial killers who lived and operated in Labette County, Kansas, from May 1871 to December 1872. In 1923 it was donated to the Kansas Museum of History by York's wife but is not on display; still bearing reddish-brown stains on the blade, it can be seen upon request. By the time a deputy from Cherryvale arrived, identification was impossible due to decomposition. The parts did not belong to any of the other victims found and are believed to belong to at least three additional victims. Relocating to Independence from, 7) December 1872: Johnny Boyle. When attempts were made to relocate the museum it became a point of controversy, some locals objecting to the town being known for the Bender murders. They slayed at least 11 people and buried their bodies in the 1870s before going on … Dr. York had two brothers: Colonel Ed York living in Fort Scott, and Alexander M. York, a member of the Kansas State Senate from Independence who, in November 1872, had been instrumental in exposing U.S. Several weeks after the discovery of the bodies, Addison Roach and his son-in-law, William Buxton, were arrested as accessories.  A knife with a four-inch tapered blade was reportedly found hidden in a mantel clock in the Bender house by Colonel York. From those who knew them and have written about them, we gather the following: The Bender Family—Some New Light on Their Mysterious Disappearance. Another of Mrs. Monroe's daughters, Mary Gardei, later provided an affidavit claiming that her mother (then Almira Shearer), under the name of Almira Marks, was actually serving two years in the Detroit House of Corrections in 1872 for the manslaughter of her daughter-in-law, Emily Mark. The group is believed to be one of the first serial killer families in America. The Bloody Benders were a family of serial killers who owned an inn and small general store in Labette County of southeastern Kansas from 1871 to 1873. $10 (2021: $213), a, 8-9) December 1872: George Newton Longcor and his 18-month-old daughter, Mary Ann. A historical marker erected near the site says, "Although stories abound, the ultimate fate of the murderous Bender family is uncertain. The "Bloody Benders" were made up of John Bender Sr., his wife and two children. They admitted Dr. York had stayed with them and suggested the possibility that he had run into trouble with Indians. The St. Joseph Weekly Gazette (St. Joseph, Missouri). Last Meal: Based on the True Story of the Bloody Benders. Originally scheduled for February 1890, the trial was held over to May. Mrs. Monroe now admitted she had married a Mr. Shearer in 1872 and claimed she had previously denied it, as she did not want the court to know that her name was Shearer at that time and that she had a conviction for manslaughter. Both knew of William's travel plans and, when he failed to return home, an all-out search began for the missing doctor. This is the story of the Bloody Benders, America’s first family of serial killers. The probing continued until midnight, with another nine suspected grave sites marked before the men were satisfied they had found them all and retired for the night. The Benders used the smaller room at the rear for living quarters, while the front room was converted into a "general store" where a few dry goods were sold. The affidavits and other papers are missing from the file in LaBette County, so further examination is impossible. Digging resumed the following morning; another eight bodies were found in seven of the nine suspected graves, while one was found in the well, along with a number of body parts. Secretly, the four made a living through murder and robbery. The men then physically lifted the cabin and moved it to the side so they could dig under it, but no bodies were found. 20) May 1873: Dr William York.  Despite York's strong suspicions regarding the Benders since his visit several weeks earlier, no one had watched them, and it was not noticed for several days that they had fled. The "Bloody Benders" Kansas Historical Marker. Contemporary newspapers reported his name as either "George W. Longcor" or "George Loncher", while Mary Ann is similarly reported as being either eight years old or 18 months old. ISBN 978-1-5368-9341-0. "To my knowledge, there have been no efforts to excavate the property during the time my clients have owned the farm," Brent Wellings, auction manager for Schrader Real Estate and Auction Co., told CNN. Well, you're in luck. John Bender, Sr. was from either Germany or the Netherlands and is thought by some[by whom?] Approximately 152 acres of land that once belonged to the "Bloody Benders". After opening the trap, the empty room beneath, 6 feet (1.8 m) deep and 7 feet (2.1 m) square at the top by 3 feet (0.9 m) square at the bottom, was found to have clotted blood on the floor. All had been involved in disposing of the victims' stolen goods with Mit Cherry, a member of the vigilance committee, implicated for forging a letter from one of the victims, informing the man's wife that he had arrived safely at his destination in Illinois. With the victim's back to the curtain Kate would distract the guest, while John Bender or his son would come from behind the curtain and strike the guest on the right side of the skull with a hammer. Mrs. Almira Griffith) and Mrs. Sarah Eliza Davis had been arrested in Niles, Michigan (often misreported as Detroit) several weeks earlier for larceny. Despite the lack of identification, the man's skull was displayed as that of "Pa Bender" in a Salmon saloon until Prohibition forced its closure in 1920 and the skull disappeared. , The area was already widely known for "horse thieves and villains", and vigilance committees often "arrested" some for the disappearances, only for them to be later released by the authorities. Elvira and Kate Bender also planted a 2-acre (0.81 ha) vegetable garden and apple orchard north of the cabin.. When the party arrived at the inn they found the cabin empty of food, clothing, and personal possessions. The Sally House was built in Atchison,… The Bender family home was a one-room house that was divided in half by a curtain. " Some have cast doubt on the story, saying that Laura would have been only 4 when her family moved away from the area, and that the Benders were exposed in 1873, two years after the Ingalls left. CS1 maint: ref=harv ; Gibson, Dirk C. (19 November 2009). Some say that they escaped, others that they were executed by a vengeful posse.  Ma and Pa Bender did not leave the train at Humboldt but instead continued north to Kansas City, where it is believed they purchased tickets for St. Louis, Missouri.. Inscription. It was suspected that the Benders sat travelers near the curtain and used some sort of hammer to hit them in the back of the head, before they dropped their victim through the trap door and into the cellar below. to be Elvira's fifth daughter. The search of the cabin resulted in the recovery of three hammers: a shoe hammer, a claw hammer, and a sledgehammer that appeared to match indentations in some of the skulls. The family consisted of John Bender, Mrs. Bender, son John Jr. and daughter Kate. In 1884, it was reported that John Flickinger had committed suicide in Lake Michigan. Tole reported the fact to the township trustee, but because of inclement weather, several days lapsed before the abandonment could be investigated. Stein and Day. John Bender, Sr. was around 60 years old and spoke very little English. It is the first and only comprehensive story of the Bloody Benders; a terrible chapter in the annuals of crime on this lonely prairie Inn in the southeast Kansas. She also conducted séances and gave lectures on spiritualism, for which she gained notoriety for advocating free love. , The Ingalls family, made famous in the books and television series Little House on the Prairie, lived near Independence, and Laura Ingalls Wilder mentioned the Bender family in her writing and speeches. This is a direct reference to the Benders. In 1992, Fern Morrow Wood, a Cherryvale teacher, wrote The Benders, Keepers of the Devil's Inn. John Bender Jr. was around 25 years old, handsome with auburn hair and a mustache, and spoke English fluently but with a German accent. Located on a main road, the Benders sold meals and supplies to travelers.  The hammers were displayed at the Bender Museum in Cherryvale, Kansas from 1967 to 1978, when the site was acquired for a fire station. Yet another claimed to have killed the Benders during a gunfight and buried their bodies on the prairie. It is unknown if the Bender family committed any other murders there. On May 17, Kansas Governor Thomas A. Osborn offered a $2,000 ($42,683 as of 2021) reward for the apprehension of all four. After the gruesome murders, it's believed that the Benders had fled the area and were never found, according to the KHS. The former property of the "Bloody Benders" is up for sale. XLIV, No. The victim's throat was cut by one of the women to ensure death. Kate's popularity became a large attraction for the Benders' inn.  Also in 1884, an elderly man matching Pa Bender's description was arrested in Montana for a murder committed near Salmon, Idaho, where the victim had been killed by a hammer blow to the head. The search revealed a single-room timber cabin that had been divided into two by a curtain. Buried in the apple orchard. The approximately 152 acres of land that was once the property of the "Bloody Benders," who may be the first serial killer family in America, is up for auction. The Benders’ story begins, like many from this time period, thanks to the Homestead Act of 1862. The Bloody Benders—a.k.a. The serial killer’s former rooming house has since been destroyed, leaving only a scatter of bricks. One might have been Jack Bogart, whose horse was purchased from a friend of the Benders after he went missing in 1872. $2,000 (2021: $42,683) missing. Dr. York reached Fort Scott, and on March 9 began the return journey to Independence but never arrived home. • 1) May 1871: Mr. Jones. Their murders were carried out by use of a canvas curtain that divided the house into two rooms. The media speculated that some of the victims had attempted to fight back after being hit with the hammer. While the two women were certainly criminals and liars, as their own defense attorney admitted, the charges were weak and many people doubted their identification as the Benders. 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