Illinois

Unrequited love ends in murder

August 26, 1890
Decatur, Illinois
Lina Culver Mathis is murdered by William H. Crawford whose love was unrequited

Mathis’ husband had been away on “lightning rod business” the night of the murder. Mathis was found a few blocks from her house, her throat slit from ear to ear. A pool of blood 15 inches from her head and the absence of it on her clothing suggested her murderer had held her until she died then gently laid her head down away from the blood.

Crawford (pictured) was the first suspect in the murder as he had made open threats to the Mathis family before. He attempted to take his own life in prison, leaving a note claiming his unrequited love of Mathis was the reasoning behind the murder, and that he wished to meet her in Heaven. Though he failed his suicide attempt, he was able to join Mathis in death after being found guilty of murder and executed by hanging.

Clipping: Decatur Weekly Republican (Decatur, IL) March 19, 1891

Horrific history from today:
1346: The blind king’s final battle (2017)
2000: Doctor kills parents after psychotic episode (2017)
2015: Disgruntled reporter kills former coworkers (2017)
2012: Woman flags down motorist and names attackers after choked, beaten, set on fire (2018)

Horror-related anniversary
Today in Horror History: August 26

National holidays:
Happy National Dog Day! (U.S.)

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