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 • Forest Hill Cemetery
 • Madison
 • Dane County
 • Wisconsin
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Joseph Bardenheier
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Birth: 1864, Germany
Death: Jul. 23, 1906
Dane County
Wisconsin, USA

Joseph Bardenheier was an area jeweler. On 7/21/1906, a stranger came into Bardenheier's shop, and told him he was a farmer on the East side of Madison, and that he needed Bardenheier to come look at a clock of his, that needed to be repaired. Bardenheier set an appointment to meet the man, at his farm, on 7/23/1906. When Bardenheier left for the farm that morning, he was never seen alive again. The stranger showed up at Bardenheier's Shop, twice that day, and spoke with Mrs. Bardenheier, each time. The stranger's bizzarre excuses as to why Bardenheier hadn't arrived back at the shop, and his questioning whether Mrs. Bardenheier was afraid to be alone in the shop "spooked" Mrs. Bardenheier into notifying the police. On 7/30/1906, Joseph Bardenheier's body was found in a wooded area near the intersection of Dempsey & Cottage Grove Roads (in Madison).

Bardenheier had been robbed of his silver watch, and $3.00 of silver. Police weren't sure of the true motive of the crime. One theory, was that the murder was part of a plan to rob Bardenheier's Shop of merchandise which was valued at over $7,000.00. Another theory (given more credence), was that the murder was a "revenge killing", for Bardenheier testifying against two men (which led to their conviction), when he lived in Chicago.

One other strange twist in the case, was when a young boy had arrived in Bardenheier's store, on the morning he disappeared. Mrs. Bardenheier had recognized the boy as a former neighbor of theirs, from Chicago. The boy told Mrs. Bardenheier, that Mr. Bardenheier had been robbed. She fed the boy, and sent him away with $2.50 (this is why the Chicago connection to the murder is given more thought, than the robbery theory).

The killer(s) were never caught. 
Forest Hill Cemetery
Dane County
Wisconsin, USA
Plot: Section 23, Lot 157
Created by: RavenHawk
Record added: Sep 10, 2009
Find A Grave Memorial# 41816610
Joseph Bardenheier
Added by: RavenHawk
Joseph Bardenheier
Cemetery Photo
Added by: David G. Stuart
Photos may be scaled.
Click on image for full size.

Rest In Peace.
- RavenHawk
 Added: Sep. 12, 2009

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