How to Murder a Millionaire

What’s a gal to do when her loaded lover is getting to be a nuisance? Why, just murder him and take all his money, of course. If you want to be fabulously single with tons of cash, just keep reading to follow the lead of the beautiful and conniving Minnie Wallace Walkup Ketcham. 

I don’t usually offer advice, after all why reveal secrets to your competitors? However, since I’ve been so successful at, ahem, getting away with murder, I thought I’d offer a few tips for any ladies who may want to get ahead in this world.     

Your choices are obvious.

If you want to be fabulously single with tons of cash, you can get a job, work extremely hard, and probably never end up as rich as me. Besides, by then your looks will be gone, and what fun is that?

Or, you can follow my example starting with a mantra. For, as my mom always said, it’s just as easy to fall in love with a rich man as a poor one, not that I ever really fall in love, but you get my meaning.

First of all, start young (I was 15), and pick out some old rich fool. Pretend to be sweet and innocent, look at him with your big brown eyes, play coy and get him to marry you. Then, put a little arsenic in his drink, and voila. You’re a free woman with millions to burn.

Unfortunately, in a business like mine, there are always interfering relatives who are angry they’ve been cut out of the will. Make sure you befriend a lawyer—a male one of course—and he’ll be there to help you out by forging signatures and faking documents. After all, what else is an attorney for?

Of course, I made a mistake or two with my first husband. I was 16, and he was 52. When I bought a lot of arsenic at local drugstores those pesky pharmacists noticed. Not to worry, though. The all-male jury found me not guilty. It was 1885 back then, and women weren’t allowed to vote or serve on a jury—lucky me. The foreman said they believed I’d done it, but I was too beautiful to hang. Got to love those stupid, silly old men.

Easy come easy go. Soon I’d spent all my millions and had to start again. Fortunately, one old man bought me a mansion in Chicago, and another elderly goat fell in love with me as soon as he saw me across the room. He did have an encumbrance—a wife. Not too worry. Soon they were divorced, and she moved away to do good works—how boring is that?.

Life has its challenges, though. After the divorce, he decided he liked being single, but I took care of that. Oh sure, there were stories of a substitute groom, a faked will, and a second murder, but relatives are always complaining about something. In the end, I walked away with his money and my freedom, and I was on to the next.

I’d tell you more if I didn’t I have an appointment with my dressmaker, but you can read all about it in this book about me: 'How to Murder Your Wealthy Lovers and Get Away With It: Murder & Mayhem in the Gilded Age' by Jane Simon Ammeson.

And remember, my life is proof that murder pays.

- Minnie 

How to Murder Your Three Wealthy Lovers and Get Away: Money & Mayhem in the Gilded Age


Guest Author:​ Jane Simon Ammeson​, author of How to Murder Your Wealthy Lovers and Get Away with It: Money & Mayhem in the Gilded Age​Jane Simon Ammeson is the author of 13 books including Hauntings of the Underground RailroadMurders That Made Headlinesand A Jazz Age Murder in Northwest Indiana

Learn more about Minnie Wallace Walkup Ketcham in Jane Simon Ammeson's new book How to Murder Your Wealthy Lovers and Get Away With It: Money & Mayhem in the Gilded Age available online and wherever books are sold.​