Search America's historic newspaper pages from 1789-1963 or use the U.S. Newspaper Directory to find information about American newspapers published between 1690-present. Chronicling America is sponsored jointly by the
National Endowment for the Humanities and the Library of Congress. external link Learn more
Image provided by: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Library, Urbana, IL
Newspaper Page Text
' -'J."vJ .
murder them -until she ,h'ad ac
quired all their money.
Few of those whom the police
say, were poisoned by Mrs. Ver
milya possessed much worldly
Mrs. Vermilya profited finan
cially by the death of only three
of her victims, so far as the police
have been able to show.
Further, there is a great differ
ence between a woman who fiend
ishly and redly murdered strong
men with an axe, and a woman
who murders men by slow poison
ing with, arsenic
It is not by analogy with the
Gunness case that the police will
clear up the mystery of death that
s holding Louise Vermilya in
Again, Louise Vermilyas own
letters to Thomas Bruington, the
eoria photographer, now in the
hands of the police, are the best
defense of the woman against the
, These letters show time and
again, the abnormal desire of Mrs.
Vermilya to be with the dead, and
in the places of death.
In them she .talks blithely of
Vhaving a lot of business to do at
the morgue," of spending "busy
days at the cemetery," 'of visiting
But the letters show some
They breath forth a great love
that the woman bore toward her
dead husband, Charles Vermilya,
and to the son, whom the police
also say she murdered, Frank
Overtand over, thdre are refer
ences to-these two men in the let
ters, and each timenote of tend
erness and great love, is struck.
Take these excerpts i
"Tom, you ask about my late
husband lie was the best man I
ever knew. He was the kindest
husband a woman could have . .
"My boy came back to me,
stricken with typhoid fever, and
only to die. -vAnd there never was
a more dutiful son. He was a
source of happiness to me every;
minute God spared him to me.
"But my boy was taken and I
needed him so much."
The police say Mrs. Vermilya
wrote these lines of the.husband
and son she had done to death
by a hideous, slow and torturing
, Do they read like it?
If Mrs. Vermilya is the mon
ster the police say, would she
write thus of her victims?
Would she, in that case, write
of them at all?
All these things point to mania,
granting that the police are cor
rect in saymg that Mrs. Vermilya
slew nine persons.
And after all, the police have
proved nothing except that there
was poison in the body of Arthur
The strongest link in the case
of the police against the woman
is that last Saturday Mrs. Ver
milya attempted to commit sui
cide by herself taking arsenic.
This is a damning thing, that
Mrs. Vermillya will have much
trouble explaining to a jury. -
"TI she were innocent of all evil,
she would not have taken poison.