Massacre at Erland’s Point

The cast of characters read like an old version of Clue and the mystery of Who Done It? was just as intriguing.

Not just one, but six people murdered in a waterfront cottage on the tip of Erland’s Point in the spring of 1934.  The wealthy community was just about six miles outside Bremerton, but it was a world apart.

While the port town of Bremerton was always busy and bustling with ships and cargo constantly churning in and out of the harbor and people coming and going all hours of the day and night.

The hamlet of Erland’s Point was a haven from the noise, An easy getaway where the well-to-do could just do nothing. A place where the well-heeled could kick off their shoes and not worry about who might be watching.

It was both close to home and out of the way.  The perfect place for murder.

The Scene of the Crime was laid out like a game board.

The bodies were strewn all around the cottage: at a card table in the game room, by the fireplace in the entryway, in repose in a bedroom. Violence had erupted in nearly every room in the house.

And the victims seemed just as random.

A wealthy grocer and the older woman he married.

A vaudeville actress and her prize-fighter husband.

A retired Navy machinist and a Bremerton bartender.

As for the murder weapon, was it the revolver?  Or the hammer?  Or the rope found at the scene?

And who was behind this massacre?

It was more than the local police could handle. More than even the county sheriff could take on. So, they called in the man who would come to be known as America’s Sherlock Holmes.

And that’s just the tip of the iceberg in this case of life imitating art, history repeating itself, and a bizarre love triangle driving it all.

In the end, one killer would walk and one would get the noose.

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This Post Has 3 Comments

  1. Regan

    Love the podcast. This fall – just before you did this episode, actually – we bought the house where these murders happened. The house was moved in the 70’s from Erland’s Point to South Colby. It was only by random chance that the previous owner mentioned that a neighbor across the street was a descendent of the coroner that involved with the case and told them about the house. Sure enough! Pictures of the murder scene correspond to distinctive features inside and outside the house. Thankfully, no negative energy or ghosts (also noted by another owner in your podcast). However, during a house blessing before we moved in, there was some spirit energy outside the house tied to the people who had paid to see the crime scene and were traumatized by the experience and what they saw.

  2. Shannon

    So happy to see stories from home! Read about this back in high-school and it’s just not something you think about happening there.

    Curious, have you looked into the Bremerton murders of the 90s that seemed to happen when certain boats were in port?

    1. Kim Shepard

      Hi Shannon! I hadn’t heard of that, but might have to look into it. Thanks for listening!

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