Los Angeles Herald, Volume 45, Number 11, 22 October 1895
SHE ATE HER FATHER'S BODY
The Ghastly Cannibal Crime of Anna Jungnitsch
A SAXONY PEASANT MONSTER
Her Case Now Being Studied by Lombroso
One of the Most Extraordinary Cases of Human Depravity on Record—The Details of a Revolting Crime
European criminologists have learned of a most extraordinary case of human depravity, the; details of which will surpass in horror anything ever recorded in the annals of cannibalism. At Langwaltersdorf, a village belonging to the possessions of the Prince of Schoenburg Waldenburg, in the kingdom of Saxony, a young peasant woman, who lived in a cottage with her father, a robust old man 70. killed her parent and cut up the body after the manner the carcasses of pigs are treated. Her name is Anna Jungnitsch, and she is now in custody. Her trial will be attended by the eminent criminologist, Lombroso, and other experts. One of the remarkable features of the case was the finding in Anna's room of a German translation of Swift s notorious treatise on unhappy Ireland, styled "a Modest Proposal for Preventing the Children of the Poor From Being a Burden to Their Pa rents and for Making Then Beneficial to the Public” In this infamous essay, printed in pamphlet form in 1721). and since then quoted in thousands of volumes as the last effort Swift’s genius and despair," the author in all seriousness "advocates "that of the bundred and twenty thous -
and children horn annually to Irish beggars, twenty thousand my be preserved for breed, and that the remaining hundred thousand may at a year old be offered in sale to the persons of quality and fortune throughout the kingdom; always advising the mother to let them suck plentifully in the last months, so as to render them plump and fat for a good table.''
Swift explains "how many dishes a child will make at an entertainment for friends, and when the family dines alone; he tells of the uses of the fore and hind quarters, which will be very good boiled on the fourth day," etc., etc. The copy of this treatise, found in the murderess' room, hidden behind a book of selected readings; its pages stowed many linger marks, and those passages relating to the butchery were underlined with colored pencil. It appears, therefore, that Anna was incited lo the terrible crime by reading one of the classics, a fact that singularly contradicts the notion that all evil information is permeated by penny-dreadfuls. Anna Jungnitsch, as the investigation has proved, murdered her father during the night from Monday to Tuesday in their cottage, which they alone inhabited. On Tuesday and Wednesday she was seen to carry an extraordinary number of palls of water into the house; but, as she was known to be a very cleanly woman, that attracted but passing attention. When old man Jungnitsch ban not been seen for some days, inquiries were made of the daughter, who said he had gone away to a near-by village and she did not know when he would return.
On Friday, for some unexplained reason, it was rumored that Anna had killed her father, and witnesses came rofward to inform the police that on Monday afternoon she had threatened him for da stroying some of her plants in the garden. When the officers came to search the cottage they found the place srupulously clean. Apparently all the rooms had been freshly scrubbed. The old man's bag of tools was in its place—an ax, a saw and several hammers. They, too, were scrupulously clean. The officers found Anna engaged in sausage making. She appeared unconcerned, offering the men some of the tasty-looking sausages that were finished. They refused, because policemen cannot partake of refreshments or food in the house of a suspected person. Langwaltersdorf is a very small place; there is no butcher in the village, the inhabitants buying their meat either in the next town or procuring it by killing some of their own live stock. The report that Anna was making sausages and that the meat vat in her cottage seemed to be well tilled with pickled pork, therefore created talk. The woman had not been to the town of late, and the Jungnitsches did not keep pigs. Where did the meat she had boastingly exhibited to the officers come from? The city judge hail all the butchers of the town interviewed. .None of them had sold meat to the Jungnitsches for months. The judge then caused the woman's arrest. She was not taken to the station, however, but placed under guard in a room in her own cottage, the judge hoping tint he might he mistaken in his awful surmise. He personally led another searching party through the house. They found a bloodstained shirt and socks behind the rafters of the roof. These articles, it was evident, bad belonged to the old man. The judge, placing the ghastly proofs before him on a table, sent for the suspected woman, who, catching sight of them, had a maniacal fit and began at once to assault the persons who were guarding her She is an undersized woman, very thin, almost emaciated looking. She has been in ill health for many years, yet she fought with the prowess of a professional rowdy. When she was finally subdued and placed in a straight-jacket she made the astonishing statement: "I have killed father and he made excellent eating " During the fracas a number of villagers had collected before the house, and one by one they bad penetrated Into the impromptu court room. When they heard Anna's statement they could harldly be restrained from assaulting the woman. The judge cleared the room and began a judicial examination. It appeared that the ithuman daughter killed her father before midnight Monday with an ax. "Did he not offer tiny reaistance?" I asked the judge. "How could be?" grinned the woman. "1 waited until he was asleep.'' She removed the body from the bed to the kitchen, which has a stone floor, and caught the blood in a vessel, "for making black pudding." Anna had frequently tided her father in cutting up pigs, and the knowledge thus gained she employed in curving the unhappy old man's body. The terms she used In describing the act were those employed by pork I butchers. I cut the chine (backbone) with the saw; also the head, but did not open the head, she explained, in a business-like way. Then I cut off the legs, which I desire to salt und cure, and removed the heart. kidney and liver. The liver I ate boiled with "turnips on Tuesday, and it was as good as kirmess" (feast). The Inner fat what there was of it, (this in a disgusted tone of voice) I have melted down for lard. The rest I cut in pieces j and it is now in the vat, packed in layers with salt and spices. "On Tuesday I baked three loaves of bread boiled a lot of sage and minced finely some of the fat and lean meat from the loins and arms, not forgetting pepper, salt and all spice. Those sausages are beautiful, the finest I have ever tasted. The judge had heard enough. He ordered that the woman be loaded with chains, according to the German police I regulations affecting murderers, and taken to prison in town, one more question he put to her, however. Why did you cut up your, father's body after killing him. Was it to hide the evidence of your crime? “Well, said the woman with a grin, "if you had allowed me a few week"' time, your worship would have searched in vain for proof, would you have not? I had also read in a book that human ; flesh makes good eating, and I meant to have all these good things."
A renewed search of the premises proved that Anna had spoken the terrible truth. It seems that she scalded the body after the murder, and after collecting the blood in a vessel. The blood had been used for pudding. The top of the vat was found to be covered with salt, and under it were discovered layers of the flesh in a sauce of salt and spices. Seven sausages made of the fathers flesh were also found. Anna had eaten at least twenty pounds of her father’s flesh.
California Digital Newspaper Collection, Center for Bibliographic Studies and Research, University of California, Riverside, <http://cdnc.ucr.edu>.