Thursday, June 16, 2016

Honor Killing to Save Daughter From Her Shame, 1915

“Mother Strangles Child to Save Her From Shame,” from The Day Book, Chicago, Dec. 23, 1915
Cincinnati, Dec. 23.—Mrs. Minnie Schmitz killed her 17-year-old daughter Gertrude yesterday to save her from life of shame.
“She was better off dead than alive, so I strangled her with a necktie,” she told police.
“All night long I brooded about Gertie. She had threatened to leave home. Last week she remained away all one night.
“It was 4 o’clock this morning when I finally decided she would be better dead than alive. I went to her bedroom. She was asleep. I slipped the tie under her neck. I had made a slip knot.
“I was pulling it tight when Gertie awoke.
“’What are you doing to me, mother’ she said.
“I told her I was going to do what I said I would do if she didn’t mend her ways.
“She begged me not to kill her. I pulled the tie tight. She struggled for awhile.
“When she didn’t struggle any more and the blood began running from her mouth I left her and went back to my husband.
“Yes, I did it. That’s all. I did it. It had to be done.”
Mrs. Schmitz said she had been taking whiskey because of worry. Schmitz said his wife failed to understand why the young girl desired company of those her age and that she had overestimated her daughter’s waywardness.

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