By Mark Lemberger
This can be the tale of the homicide of little Annie Lemberger, essentially the most broadly publicized crimes of the 20th century.
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Extra info for Crime of Magnitude: The Murder of Little Annie
Martin and Magdeline, or Lena, as she was known to her friends, had both been born in Germany in 1877, he on August 12, she on November 10. Martin was four and Magdeline fourteen when their parents brought them to Madison. Both attended parochial schools through eighth grade and spoke German fluently. Magdeline never lost her accent; Martin would speak with an Irish brogue if he had been drinking, one of their sons recalled. He attributed this to Martin’s childhood in Madison’s “bloody fourth” ward, which was comprised of vocal, politically active, and bibulous Irish.
The screen was all tore and the girl was gone. Q: Didn’t the catch hold it [the window] down? A: No sir, it was not safe. Q: Did you know that this stick was the lath that you had inside? A: Yes sir. Coroner Lynch believed Johnson was the killer and asked Martin about his neighbor. LYNCH: Were any of your neighbors there, who you had had any trouble with? LEMBERGER: No one except Mr. Johnson. Q: What does he do for a living? A: [His] Woman makes the living for him. Q: When did you have the trouble with him?
Officer Fess found a long tree branch and snagged the young victim under the arm. By the time the body was retrieved, “crowds of people were lined along the shore. . Women and children cried aloud as the patrol wagon passed by with the lifeless form of the little girl,” reported the Democrat. Search party members gathering at Brittingham Park dispersed, anxious to share the gruesome news. Captain Davenport drove the six blocks to the Lemberger house. Martin identified Annie’s body and asked the captain to take it to the Hoeveler undertaking parlor.