In the Corner Under a Blanket: Murder of George Sulzberger 1898

Murder Victim

George Sulzberger
73-year-old Farmer
Cause of Death: Bludgeoned
Motive: Robbery

Murder Scene and Date

Sulzberger Home
Seventy Six Township, Section 31
Rural Keota, Iowa
Keokuk County
March 7, 1898


By Nancy Bowers
Written December 2011

location of Keota, Iowa

location of Keota, Iowa

Seventy-three-year-old bachelor farmer George Sulzberger, described by newspapers as an “old man who lived alone,” was bludgeoned to death with a blunt instrument in his home near Keota in Keokuk County on March 7, 1898.

His body, covered with a blanket, was placed in a corner of the completely ransacked house.

Authorities believed the killer heard and believed local rumors that Sulzberger had large amounts of money hidden away.

photo by Ron Knopik

George Sulzberger was born December 17, 1824 in Rheinbischofsheim, Baden, Germany, to Margaretha Elizabeth Schafer and Johann Jacob Sulzberger.

He had eight siblings: Margaretha Elizabeth Sulzberger, Johann Jacob Sulzberger, Magdelena Sulzberger, Freidrich Sulzberger, Katherina Sulzberger, Martin Sulzberger, Solomea Sulzberger Wiederrecht, and Ludwig Sulzberger.

George and his brother Johann sailed from Le Havre, France, and landed in New York City on September 15, 1848. By 1850, George was a resident of Louisa County, Iowa.

George Sulzberger is buried under a large and impressive tombstone in the Harrison Cemetery in Wapello.

Please note: Use of information in this article should credit Nancy Bowers as the author and Iowa Unsolved Murders: Historic Cases as the source.



Please note that these articles incorrectly refer to the victim as “George Fhulzberer.”

  • ☛ “Found Murdered in His House,” Humeston New Era, March 16, 1898.
  • ☛ “Murder in Iowa,” Marble Rock Weekly, March 17, 1898.
  • ☛ “Murder in Iowa,” Postville Graphic, March 17, 1898.
  • ☛ “Murdered in His Home,” Davenport Daily Leader, March 10, 1898.
  • ☛ “The News in Iowa,” Blockton News, March 17, 1898

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