Thursday, December 11, 2014

Mollie Foxwater, Black Widow Serial Killer – Oklahoma, 1900


Note: This story was reprinted in many different newspapers in 1901 and 1902 as a current event report. Thus the story must be considered problematic. Further research may perhaps confirm or deny the veracity of this account.

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FULL TEXT: This is a story of a lost gold mine. A few days ago, an Osage Indian woman named Foxwater was arrested at Tulsa a few days ago on the charge of having murdered four white men who had been her husbands within the past ten years. The bleached bones of three men were lately found by a prospecting party – and later the woman confessed that they were. She confessed that she killed these men because they tried to wring from her the secret of a lost gold mine, the whereabouts of which she has knowledge.

She refused to tell them and thew went in search of it, and with the knowledge they had from time to time picked up from her, were likely to locate it. Then, she said, she was compelled to kill them, as she would any one else who would carry away the gold of her forefathers.

Molly Foxwater is not an ugly, coarsefeatured woman, as many squaws are, but she posseses many of the refined features of her white sisters. She has been well educated and has also traveled much. Ten years ago she was married to a young man named Mercer. He came from Illinois to Indian country. There had always been more ore less romance surrounding the maiden, and the fact that she possessed a secret of a gold mine was enough to cause any young man with romantic tendencies to seek her out. Mercer did so to his sorrow.

He was married to the young half-breed squaw, and she furnished the money to take an extended wedding trip. He was given plenty of money to spend and did not have to work, but all the time he sought to know whence the gold came. One day he was missed by his companions. She said he was tired of living with her, and that was all there was to it. People supposed he had returned to his home in Illinois.

~ Husbands Came Fast. ~

Three years later she was married again. This time A. F. Grimes, a farm hand, was charmed into thinking he could worm from her the secret of her wealth and hidden treasure. But it was not long until he disappeared as mysteriously as did his predecessor. She was suspected of murdering him, but no one could enter sufficient proof to hold her, and the man ever had any relatives who cared enough to attempt to secure proof against her.

Four years ago she was married again, this time it a man named Smith. He was taken on a long trip, wined and dined by this Indian maiden. In less than six months his curiosity got the better of him, and he was put out of the way, for trying to make his wife tell where she got her gold. This summer she was married, for the fourth time, to William Winters. He died three weeks ago and his body was found by the roadside. The doctors found he had been given slow poison and it killed him while en route home. Her calculations had failed her and he dropped from his horse dead and his body was found and carried to a physician before she knew any thing about it.

A warrant was sworn out for the arrest of the woman an she was placed in Jail at Tusla, Yesterday she gave out the following confession:

“When my father died he told me a secret of a mine supposed to be lost. This mine he took from a party of Spaniards, whom he killed. He told me how to go to find the mine. I have always lived off the gold found in this mine and I do not care who knows it. I am sure that no one will ever find it. I have been married four times, if is true, and in each case I always did well by my husband. But they all wanted me to tell them where the mine was and some of them even attempted to follow me when I would go to visit it to get gold to buy food for their mouths. None of them ever had to work a stroke after they married me, and I could not and yet cannot see why they wanted to know where this mine is located. I admit that I killed all four of them but I say it was done in self-defense. Did they not follow me and try to get me to tell them where the mine was? Some of them even threatened to kill me if I did not tell. I think I have good grounds for self-defense and I will fight the case to the bitter end.”

~ Legend of Mine. ~

There is a legend regarding this mine. It is known as the Louisiana mine and is said to located somewhere in the Grand River hills in the Cherokee nation, Indian territory. In early days the Osage Indians had this country for their hunting grounds, and white men who visited them returned east with stories of how they used gold for bullets and shod their horses’ hoofs with it instead of steel because the gold was more plentiful. At that time the Indians told these white people that they were in possession of vast gold mines in their domain, which they had caused the Spaniards to give up.

Efforts to learn where these mines were proved futile. At different times many men have made the trip through the Grand River hills with the hope of finding the mines or some trace of them. It is very dangerous even at this time for a white man to traverse this country, from the fact that it is populated only by full blooded Indians who hate the sight of a white man in what they term their sacred domain.

It was near the Grand River hills that Mobile Foxwater always lived and she often made long trips into the hills alone at night. Her husbands used to come into Tulsa many times and tell the inhabitants about their wife being away in search of lost mine.

She owns a fine stone house and has a number of servants to wait on her. She dresses well and always goes heavily armed, or did until she was arrested. She had her house furnished with goods from the eastern markets and she reads all the books of the day.

[“Kept Mine Secret. Indian Woman Killed Many Husbands. – Furnished Them Money, - But Murdered Them When They Tried to Find – Source of Her Wealth.” [Wichita Kan., Telegram to the Chicago Record.], Nov. 12, 1900, p. 4]

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Source of image: [Edward Julian, “Love and Business. – Women Nowadays Engage in Both of These Occupations. – Story of an Indiasn Girl Who Disposed of Four Husbands – A Texas Romance – Yankee Gowns in Europe.” The Crittendon Press (Marion, Ky.), Oct. 30, 1902, p. 11?]

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

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