This story comes from the book Celebrated Criminal Cases of America by Thomas Duke. It is a work in the public domain. Some of the stories featured will be bonus episodes on Okie Investigations. This story is void of a lot of information but is a great jumping point for anyone wanting to research a case. Alexander claims that he killed Mamie Kelly because she would not leave him alone, but evidence shows that not to be true. Tell me what you think about this case with your own research down below!


During the year of 1886 Alexander Goldenson, a nine teen-year-old youth, lived with his folks at 24 1/2 Hayes street. In the adjoining house lived a thirteen-year-old girl named Mamie Kelly, who attended the John Swett Grammar School. She had a childish infatuation for Goldenson, which she concealed from her mother. About November 9, 1886, the girl wrote a note to Goldenson in which she complained of his indifference toward her.*

On November 11, 1886, Goldenson waited at Ash avenue and Polk street, which place the girl usually passed on her way home from school. On this day she was accompanied by a classmate who continued on her way when Mamie Kelly stopped to talk to Goldenson. They conversed for a few moments when Goldenson whipped out a revolver and shot her over the right eye. She immediately sank to the ground and expired.

McAllister and Larkin streets and surrendered, throwing his pistol into the grass plat as he passed into the building. He was immediately transferred to the city prison in the old hall at Kearny and Washington streets, but the news of his atrocious crime spread through the city like wildfire and the feeling toward the murderer became so bitter that it was deemed advisable to secretly transfer him to the Broadway jail, which was more secure. Early in the evening a mob began to assemble in front of the Broadway jail and people were coming from all directions.

Cries of “lynch him” were frequent. By 9 p. m. a crowd of several thousand people had gathered and they were becoming more desperate every minute.

Chief Crowley and Captain Douglass had sent in a riot call and every available policeman in the city was present. Finally a man on a balcony threw a brick at an officer. The officer made a rush for the balcony, got hold of the post which was supporting the part of the balcony where he was perched, and pulled the post away, which caused him to drop to the ground with the balcony. After a little rough usage he was taken into custody and then a general charge on the mob with clubs was ordered. The officers went at them like tigers and in five minutes policemen were very much in the majority in that neighborhood, and those of the mob who remained were in the custody of officers en route to the Receiving Hospital.

Goldenson was immediately indicted by the Grand Jury and on April 14, 1887, was sentenced to be hanged. The case was appealed to the Supreme Court, which affirmed the decision of the lower Court, and on September 14, 1888, he was executed.

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