Who Cares About Addie?

Addie’s story sure has people stirred up. I’ve been a writer for 20 years, and I’ve never been the recipient of so many negative and ugly emails in my entire life.

On September 14th, I wrote a long and detailed blog explaining why I care  about Addie and her mysterious death.

One of first comments on that blog came from Bobbi, who said, “I think that the criticism comes from people who do not take the time to find out the whole story…”

I was gratified to see Bobbi’s comment, and she is right. The people with the least information are the very ones who like to criticize the most.

This morning, I logged onto my website and found this new comment from “S”:

Actually, Bobbi, the criticism comes from those who DO know the whole story, and find a total lack of evidence to support the legend.

So below is my reply for “S” and all his ilk.


WOW, “S,” if you knew “the whole story,” why haven’t you spoken up before now? Why have you remained silent when you have the power to shed some truth on this 110-year-old murder mystery?

It’s taken me and a handful of amazing and interested friends untold hours of research to dig up old death certificates, marriage certificates, city records, census records, newspaper articles, obituary notices and more. It has been an exhaustive, time-consuming and untiring effort! So here – all along – you knew “the whole story”?

Wow, oh wow.

SO, where is your evidence?

Have you not noticed that when I post information, I include the supporting documentation? That’s what research look like. I am sharing what I’ve learned and providing the references and  accompanying documents, so that others can follow-up on my findings.

By the way, I’ve been a researcher and professional writer for 20 years. I’ve written for newspapers, magazines and trade publications. I’ve written eight books and have been interviewed by 500 publications (or more).  And, my name is Rosemary Thornton and I stand behind every word I’ve written and every claim I’ve made on this website.

What’s your name? Who are you? Where do you live?

Please – share your credentials. Please, tell us what you know. What is your evidence? Do you have letters written by Enoch Fargo or  William Oatway squirreled away in your attic? I’d love to see them. How did you learn what you know? What are your sources?  Why have you remained silent for the last 11 decades?  Do you also have photos of Addie? Have you spent a couple grand of your own hard-earned dollars striving to learn what happened at the Fargo Mansion Wednesday morning at 2:00 am on June 19th 1901?

I’m guessing you have not.

I’m so weary of people jumping in the fray, who know nothing or next to nothing and could not care less about a 29-year-old woman who died  110 years ago in a tiny town in Wisconsin.

And yet – these people who don’t care and don’t care to learn – are the very ones adamantly declaring that I am wrong, wrong, wrong.

Despite their declarations, they offer no proof, no paperwork, no documents and not even any intelligent counter-argument to my research.

They just know that I am wrong.

Or as my mother used to say, “If you don’t have something useful to add to the discussion, it’s better to remain quiet.”

To see a video of a talk I gave last weekend in Lake Mills, click here.

To read about the falsified death certificate, click here.

To read Part IX, click here.

To read Part VIII, click here.

To read Part VII, click here.

To read Part VI, click here.

To read Part V, click here.

To read Part IV, click here.

To read Part III, click here.

To read Part II, click here.

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Happier days at the Fargo Mansion: Addie stands  amongst a bower of flowers.

Happier days at the Fargo Mansion: Addie stands amongst a "bower of flowers."


Is this Addie? I think so. Nice bike, too!


Addie in a hot dress. Hot, as in, unbearably warm on a summer's day.

Close-up of the Fargo Mansion

Close-up of the Fargo Mansion

View of the Lake

View of the Lake


Close-up of the person by the lake.

Addie on the front porch, playing poker

Addie on the front porch, playing poker

Addies sister, my great-grandmother Anna Hoyt Whitmore

Addie's sister, my great-grandmother Anna Hoyt Whitmore



Addie's obituary as it appeared in the local paper, soon after her death.


This obituary attempted to explain her fast death from a slow disease process.

I bet Addie was "very much shocked" too.

To learn more about Addie, click here.

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  1. Debbie

    For years, I have been told a particular thing about my family history, yet these relatives have never shown me documentation. I don’t think it’s true. One of these days I suppose I’ll be the one to do the digging. I also wrote about something in my family history that another relative doesn’t believe. She was told something different by a different relative. I did the research – photos and documents. Other relatives gave me information years ago and then I went looking for records. Since the research takes so much time and money, a lot of people don’t bother. If this person who posted or any others who were nasty or negative have evidence, I would like to see it too.