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Serial killers. Gangsters. Gunslingers. Victorian-era murderers. And that's just the tip of the iceberg. Each week, the Most Notorious podcast features true-life tales of crime, criminals, tragedies and disasters throughout history. Host Erik Rivenes interviews authors and historians who have studied their subjects for years. Their stories are offered with unique insight, detail, and historical accuracy.
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Erik Rivenes, host of the Most Notorious Podcast (and creator of Saint Paul's original Gangster Tours) has for years been fascinated with long-ago tales of crime, tragedy and disaster from his home state of Minnesota. In this podcast Erik interviews authors who have written some sensational historical stories centered in the Land of 10,000 Lakes, and researches and shares a few himself.
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This week we revisit one of my favorite Most Notorious episodes. In the small town of Isadore Michigan in 1907, a young nun named Janina disappeared. Ten years later, her body is discovered by a priest intent on building a new church on the foundation of the old one. Mardi Link, author of "Isadore's Secret", chats with me about the terrible circums…
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On a warm August day in 1910, Sheriff Jake Houpt and his deputies attempted to arrest brothers George and Oscar Chitwood outside the Garland County Courthouse in Hot Springs, Arkansas. A gunfight soon erupted, leaving both the sheriff and George dead. And when Oscar himself was killed in December under the protection of deputies, a mob of mysteriou…
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Six months after losing a world title fight that remains infamous as one of the last mob fixes in boxing, Tyrone “The Butterfly” Everett—a flashy, handsome lightweight southpaw on the verge of stardom—was dead. Only twenty-four years old, he was shot in the head by his girlfriend, Carolyn McKendrick, who claimed that Everett had abused her througho…
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Today we have special back-to-back episodes from the History Daily podcast. The first shares the story of the capture of one of the UK's most notorious serial killers, the Yorkshire Ripper, and the second is about the tumultuous life of Russian tsar Ivan the Terrible. Visit the History Daily website for more information about the show. https://hist…
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On September 30, 1955, 24-year-old James Dean became immortal. While his young life ended in a car crash, James Dean passed into the realm of American folklore, where his memory remains today. What exactly happened on that fateful day 60 years ago? What events led to the tragic accident that cost Dean his life? What became of the people and vehicle…
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There were few experienced swimmers among over 1,300 Lower East Side residents who boarded the General Slocum on June 15, 1904. It shouldn’t have mattered, since the steamship was chartered only for a languid excursion from Manhattan to Long Island Sound. But a fire erupted minutes into the trip, forcing hundreds of terrified passengers into the wa…
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On June 2, 1916, forty mostly immigrant mineworkers at the St. James Mine in Aurora, Minnesota, walked off the job. This seemingly small labor disturbance would mushroom into one of the region’s, if not the nation’s, most contentious and significant battles between organized labor and management in the early twentieth century. My guest, Gary Kaunoe…
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Phebe Wise was believed to be a witch by many locals in late 19th and early 20th century Mansfield, Ohio. Bucking societal norms, she lived alone on a large piece of property and would often march into town wearing her deceased mother's antique Civil War gowns. She also had her share of adversity, which included being the target of violent robbers …
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William J. Flynn, nicknamed "The Bulldog Detective", had a fascinating and accomplished career in law enforcement. While in the Secret Service he not only battled the Mafia in New York City, but also uncovered a sophisticated German spy ring on the cusp of America's entry into World War I. As Director of the Bureau of Investigation, he devised the …
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My guest is prolific author Larry Millett. His knowledge of Twin Cities architecture and history is unequalled in Minnesota, and he has used his knowledge to write some of the best local history books in the last thirty years. We initially discuss downtown Minneapolis' lost crown jewel, the spectacular Northwestern Guaranty Loan Building (which wou…
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My guest this week is bestselling author Lou Ferrante. He was an associate in the Gambino crime family before going to prison, where he studied history and began writing books. He joins us to talk about the origins of the Sicilian Mafia and how they followed Italian immigrants to the United States, initially establishing themselves in crime-ridden …
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Lana Turner's meteoric rise to fame after being discovered at a soda fountain by a talent scout in 1936 is a legendary Hollywood story. From that point forward, the starlet's life had been a series of exhilarating highs - including award-worthy performances in critically acclaimed films, and terrifying lows - as she suffered abuse by multiple men o…
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Vivian Gordon went out before midnight in a velvet dress and mink coat. Her body turned up the next morning in a desolate Bronx park, a dirty clothesline wrapped around her neck. At her stylish Manhattan apartment, detectives discovered notebooks full of names—businessmen, socialites, gangsters. And something else: a letter from an anti-corruption …
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On August 17th, 1849, London police officers made a grisly discovery at the home of George and Maria (born Marie de Roux) Manning. Her former beau, Patrick O'Connor, had been buried under the floor. A nationwide hunt for the couple would follow, and after that a trial and executions. The murder case would grip London so fervently that Madame Tussau…
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Gille de Rais is a complicated historical figure. On one hand he was a French military hero - a man who fought side by side with Joan of Arc - and revered for his service to church and state. On the other he was an accused heretic, an occultist, and the self-confessed serial killer of hundreds of children. My guest is Margot K. Juby, author of "The…
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When a well-to-do couple named Charles and Lois Hitchcock are discovered hacked to death on their fruit farm in Garden Grove, California in January of 1888, suspicions quickly turn to an itinerant German, who has been looking to buy a property in the area. This is a special "this day in true crime history" episode of Most Notorious, narrated by Eri…
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The Creek War is one of the most tragic episodes in American history, leading to the greatest loss of Native American life on what is now U.S. soil. What began as a vicious internal conflict among the Creek Indians metastasized like a cancer. The ensuing Creek War of 1813-1814 shattered Native American control of the Deep South and led to the infam…
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Prolific Australian crime writer Roy Maloy is my guest this week. He gives us the scoop on the complex and violent legacy of Melbourne gangster Squizzy Taylor. Highlights include Squizzy's marriage to notorious madam Dolly Gray, the infamous 1919 Fitzroy Vendetta, and his own bloody death at the hands of his rivals. His book is called "Squizzy - Th…
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