Thursday, September 22, 2011

Hannah Hanson Kinney, Suspected Massachusetts Black Widow Serial Killer - 1840

FULL TEXT: A coincidence has occurred, which, as Pepys would have said, “it is pretty to observe,” while Madame Laffarge in France, and Mrs. Cutts in England, have been charged with poisoning their husbands, we learn by the American papers that a similar accusation is preferred against a Mrs. Kinney, at Boston. Mrs. Kinney, whose maiden name was Hannah Hanson, was first married to a Mr. Witham; from whom, after having given birth to four children, she was divorced, and married to Mr. Freeman, a clergyman. Mr. Kinney, it is said, assisted in procuring the divorce; and after the second marriage, he was in the habit of visiting Mrs. Freeman’s house. During one of his visits, Mr. Freeman was taken ill, and died; and his symptoms have since been supposed to indicate that he had been poisoned. Mrs. Freeman was thus free to marry a third time. It is observed as a suspicious circumstance, that soon after she married Mr. Freeman, her husband’s father died suddenly, while the newly-married couple were on a visit at his house. Freeman's body was exhumed in August; and it was found to be in a remarkable state of preservation. Mrs. Kinney is in custody; and an investigation, to which she is said to have opposed no obstacle, is shortly to take place.

[Untitled (under “United States” header), The Colonial Gazette (London, England), Oct. 7, 1840, p. 671]



For links to other cases of woman who murdered 2 or more husbands (or paramours), see Black Widow Serial Killers.


For more cases of this category, see: Female Serial Killers of 19th Century America (as of January 20, 2014, the collection contains 61 cases)


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