Monday, May 14, 2012

Charlie Starkweather's grave, Lincoln, Nebraska

Yesterday, I managed to to see the grave of Charlie Starkweather, the notorious mass murderer who killed eleven people in Nebraska (one in Wyoming) in December 1957 and January 1958. Following his execution in 1959 he was buried in a downtown cemetery in Lincoln, Nebraska.

Two reasons he attracted so much attention at the time of his killing spree besides the crime itself:
1.) Charlie somewhat physically resembled Elvis Presley and James Dean, thus justifying beliefs among particularly older people that "these rock 'n' roll types are no good, just like we said".
2.) Television was really new in the Midwest.  I'm sure this was the first time Nebraskans had anything this scandalous in their hometown to see on their TV screens.  No doubt this had a big impact.

Just by a stroke of luck while in Lincoln, NE, I also managed to stumble across the Zoo Bar, Nebraska's best place to see and hear live performances of blues music.  Blues bands, especially from Chicago, have played there for decades.  And as well for Recycled Sounds, long-time used record and CD store.

Even though I live only three hours from Lincoln this is only the second time I have ever been there.  My wife and I attended a wedding.  Turns out the Zoo Bar was almost across the street from the wedding reception hall and Recycled Sounds is caddy corner from the downtown Holiday Inn where we spent the night.

More to see here: