Beginning to Research

Discussion in 'General Information & Discussion' started by kristin_hawthorn, Jan 11, 2021.

  1. kristin_hawthorn

    kristin_hawthorn New Member

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    I hope this is an appropriate place to ask this question. There are so many components of this forum!

    I'm researching 2 cases from the 1910s in Lackawanna County, PA. One involved 2 murderers (1 confessed, the other didn't but his story was never consistent). In this instance, the confessed killer made a plea deal and served 5 years for 2nd degree murder; the other man involved was let go and never prosecuted. From my general research, it appears that he went on to live a long life, with his wife and many children.

    The second case, also in the same county, involved potentially one murderer and 2 murdered. It was connected possibly to the Mafia's "Black Hand". The man suspected of the killing was, to the best of my research using newspapers and ancestry, never caught. I suspect that he fled the country quite quickly and easily.

    I am trying to locate any information that the County might have on these cases, but the fact that they are over 100 years old, it's unlikely. I have reached out to both the coroner's office as well as the District Attorney. Neither case ever went to trial. Does anyone have suggestions on other offices to try? I've tried to see how long records/evidence are required to be kept, and I haven't found any definitive answer. I'm not assuming to solve the second case, but I would like to be able to see what information is available, to the extent it still exists,

    Any help is greatly appreciated!
     


  2. Laughing

    Laughing Rarely Speechless

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    Old genealogist here. If you've tried these, sorry for the repeat, but if you've tried here -- you are well past the beginning!

    Find newspaper articles about your cases:

    Pennsylvania Newspaper Archive

    Newspapers

    State Library of Pennsylvania - Pennsylvania Historical Newspapers

    Find out everything you can about the town at that time:

    Welcome to The Lackawanna Historical Society

    And about the people involved:

    Lackawanna Co., PAGenWeb Genealogy

    For archived court records, try here:

    State Archives

    Court records are generally kept -- forever. A fire or flood can wipe out the records room, of course, but a great deal is microfilmed or scanned & stored somewhere.

    Be personable, send thank-you notes, sooner or later you'll hook a researcher to work with!

    Might be material for an article in a newsletter or journal???


    jmho ymmv lrr
     
  3. kristin_hawthorn

    kristin_hawthorn New Member

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    Thank you! I've been digging through newspaper articles. So many rabbit holes. It started with a small case, but has now grown into the depths of early mafia NYC.
     
    Laughing likes this.

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