Midnight Assassin: A Murder in America's Heartland
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The Hossack Case

William Conrad

William Conrad and his wife lived on a farm just east of the Hossack property. On several occasions, Conrad had conversations with Margaret Hossack, who told him about arguments between her and her husband, saying that she was afraid. According to Conrad, the conversations were “more frequent than we wanted them,” but he often made an effort to calm her.

In the spring of 1894, Conrad was summoned by May, one of the Hossack daughters, and asked to intercede in a family quarrel between Johnnie Hossack and his father. Conrad rushed to the house and talked privately to John Hossack, who told Conrad that he wasn't respected or obeyed in the household. Several years later, in 1899, on a rainy Thanksgiving night, Conrad was awakened by Mrs. Hossack. She said that she had left home on foot after a quarrel with her husband; she asked Conrad to take her to Annie Henry's house, and he agreed to do so. Conrad recorded details of these incidents in a journal. He referred to these notes when he later spoke to the authorities after the murder.

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Midnight Assassin copyright © 2017; Patricia L. Bryan and Thomas Wolf