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Showing posts from July, 2016

The Lamb's Gap Murder Mystery: Unsolved 92 Years and Counting

The History of Pennsylvania's Most Perplexing Unsolved Mystery

One third of all murder cases go unsolved. This is true even today, with all of our advances in crime-solving technology and forensic science, and so we can only surmise how many murders must have gone unsolved a century ago. And yet, with so many unsolved crimes marring the pages of our commonwealth's history, only a select handful still haunt our collective memory. The Lamb's Gap Murders, which took place not far from Marysville in 1924, certainly fit that description. What you are about to read is the complete history of the crime, and how the relentless pursuit of justice has continued for nearly a century.

On the morning of May 17, 1924, a soft breeze rustled through the trees along a quiet road in Lamb's Gap. Birds flittered from branch to branch, breaking the early morning stillness with their cheerful chirping, oblivious to the parked automobile alongside the road and its gruesome cargo.

A man's…

Baby used as human pin cushion

The following bizarre story comes from the September 12, 1906 edition of the Tyrone Daily Herald

Mount Carmel's Night of Terror: The Strantz & Yorkavage Crime Spree of 1937

On the evening of April 9, 1937, two bandits with their guns blazing left a trail of carnage through the sooty streets of Mount Carmel and Shamokin. For one of the gunmen, the trail came to a bloody end in Diamondtown after a shootout with police. For the other gunman, the trail led to the electric chair at Rockview State Penitentiary, with 2,000 volts of electricity coursing through his body.

The Ballad of Joe Cabbage and Wild Wally

A reunion of sorts took place in January of 1937, after Joseph Yorkavage was paroled from the Northumberland County Prison in Sunbury. Known to his friends as "Joe Cabbage", the notorious ruffian was released on the 25th and, oddly enough, this was the very same day Yorkavage's best friend, Walter Strantz, was paroled from the infamous Eastern State penitentiary in Philadelphia.

Back in 1919, "Joe Cabbage" was one of three men who staged a failed train robbery in Centralia. The three men dynamited the tracks and then hid in the bus…

Donate today and help save the Millersburg Ferry

Pennsylvania is rich in historical gems, and the Millersburg Ferry is one fine example. Ferryboats have crossed the Susquehanna for hundreds of years, but wooden paddle boats have departed from Millersburg every year since 1817, making it one of the oldest ferries in continuous operation in all of the United States.

Unfortunately, low water levels have kept the boats at bay (no pun intended) and in order to keep the historic operation running, the Millersburg Ferry Association is asking for donations.

Donations are being accepted via the crowdfunding site,

(Note: This blog and its author are in no way affiliated with the Millersburg Ferry Association. I'm just a fan.)

Michael Billie goes out with a bang

An unusual, yet effective, method of committing suicide. From the Sept. 24, 1927 edition of the Pittston Gazette: