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by Christine Maccabee 

Where Have All the Large Moths Gone?

I will begin this article by asking a question: Have you seen many large moths, such as the luna, cecropia or polyphemus, these days? I am starting to research moth populations in upper Frederick County, and I would appreciate knowing of your sitings of these beautiful, large moths, as well as the slightly smaller ones, such as the gorgeous sphinx in the family of hawk moths.

I guess you might say my research started in high school in my back yard, south of Baltimore. It was there that I discovered a few fascinating green caterpillars of large moths. I put them in gallon jars with appropriate leaves, resupplying with fresh ones as needed. I watched the awesome green caterpillars grow to full size until they spun their cocoons, and I was rewarded for my efforts by seeing them emerge from their large cocoons in the spring. Of course, the best part was freeing them to fly away, back into my yard and sky beyond.

Since then, my personal sitings have been quite rare. Smaller moths of many species—some with colorful patterns, others quite plain—have found sanctuary on my property, yet, no large moths. When I say large, I mean with wingspans up to six inches. Just this past summer, I did see evidence of the luna moth up here in the mountains, but it looked like it had been shredded by either a predator or a mower. Where there is one dead luna moth, there will hopefully be a few more live ones!
Last month, I read an article in the National Wildlife magazine about the importance of litter (meaning dried leaves), dried stem of plants, and general yard debris, for the ongoing cycles of a host of wildlife species. In her article, “Life in the Litter,” Emma Johnson confirmed my understanding by writing about the importance of leaving litter in our gardens, where many insects (including moth pupae) go into a hibernation-like state called diapause, lying dormant until the ground warms. “ I will add that it is likely a death sentence to heap up thick mulch around our plants and trees, possibly inhibiting the emergence of these moths.

Fortunate to own property way off the track, I don’t care if my gardens portray a littered look. Unfortunately, in a suburban or city environment, people feel they must rake up all the leaves and dead stems around their azaleas, trees, and so forth, to have a kept appearance, little knowing that they are likely bagging up more than leaves. I shudder to think of all the moth larvae that are bagged up as well. Doug Tallamy, an entomologist at the University of Delaware, says that 94 percent of moth larvae drop off the tree (or host plant) and immediately dig into the litter and soft soil to pupate.

I also have to wonder if the occasional spraying of the hills and ridges near my property, to control gypsy moths, has killed off other harmless moths as well. Even though I was reassured that the spray was specific for the gypsy moth, I am still suspicious. Did the spraying affect other moths and insects as well? 
    So, I continue to observe and to allow ample habitat on my 11-plus acres, no matter how scruffy it may look to critical eyes. My little offering to the health of ecosystems and endangered species may ultimately count for nothing, or it may serve as a tiny Noah’s Ark for the little-understood and unappreciated creatures under our feet and all around us in Natures litter. By this spring, I hope to see more moths of many species—that is, if I stay up all night with the porch light on!

If you have seen any of these large moths or have any other questions or thoughts about habitat, I welcome you to write to me at songbirdschant@gmail.com.

Polyphemus moth is a North American member of the family Saturniidae, the giant silk moths. This moth is tan-colored, with an average wingspan of 15 cm; its most notable feature being its large, purplish eyespots on its two hindwings.

by Christine Maccabee 

I listen to C-SPAN on the radio, though some people watch it on TV. It is a great station that invites all sides of issues to be discussed, and even though I do not agree with every opinion expressed, I try to keep an open mind.

However, one issue I am passionate about is climate change, or disruption as I prefer to define it. I believe, after all the information I have read and heard, that many of the problems we see devastating the Arctic ice—and, yes, now the Amazon rainforest—are man-made. You may disagree, or not even want to think about it. However, I believe the vast majority of people do care and want to make changes that will improve quality of life on our planet.

Back in the 1970s when I lived and worked in Baltimore, my parents were actively advocating for improved air quality in that polluted city. The Better Air Coalition held hearings in order to let the peoples’ voices be heard, and they came by the hundreds to speak and to listen. I had just written a song called “Nature, I Apologize,” one of my first songs ever. My heart was thumping wildly as I went up to the mic with my guitar and boldly sang that song instead of speaking. The result was a standing ovation and an invitation to come back in two weeks and sing it again so it could be aired on national news, which it was. Those were the days, my friend…

Now, these days may be worse. From what I am learning, large corporate interests are, and have been for decades, expanding their profit-making interests into the rainforests of the world, not just the Amazon. Most consumers do not know that 80 percent of the Malaysian rainforests have been decimated, slashed and burned, in order to grow palm oil plantations. Going through a local grocery store with a friend, we made a survey of products with palm oil in them, and easily half of the products use palm oil, palmitate, or palm kernels. Palm oil is a huge business, and sadly all the rainforest animals and plants are being killed in the worst possible way, by fire and bulldozers. In addition, indigenous people are being driven off their land and some are being used as poorly paid workers, basically slaves. The icing on this cake is horribly polluted air and water.

So, now that the planet is losing precious habitat for a wide diversity of animals, plants, insects, and birds, and depleting Earth’s essential oxygen output, what are we to do? Many folks are following the lead of the well-spoken 17-year-old from Sweden, Greta Thunberg, who practices what she preaches, traveling to America on a sailboat in order to speak before the UN and rally others who care. Then there is Pope Francis, who has been a long-time advocate of taking care of our precious planet Earth (God’s Creation, not ours), our “only home.” Millions of children and adults around the earth are speaking out in large and small ways by changing their consumer habits. Some are advocating for real political change, for maintaining and improving pollution regulations, which sadly are presently under attack.    

The issues of clean air and water, and preservation of ecosystems, is a consumer issue, is it not? We all eat, drive, use paper products, etc. So, in late 1900s-style, here is a short list of things we all can do to make a difference:

•    Plant trees and native plants on your property or in your yard, creating habitat and oxygen for all of us.

•    Try to eat lower on the food chain since methane from beef and pork is a potent greenhouse gas. Also, holding ponds of excrement overflow into creeks and rivers that is toxic to aquatic creatures.

•    Buy recycled paper products, which are rare in local stores, so let managers know of your interest. A good source is the Common Market in Frederick.

•    Use less gasoline by combining shopping trips to various stores, and going 55 mph on open road.

•    Use less electricity by turning off unneeded lights and your computer and TV when not in use.

•    Use your consumer power by checking ingredients in food you buy, boycotting anything using palm oil. Write to companies explaining your stance and share information with a neighbor.

•    Discontinue use of pollinator killing herbicides and pesticides.

•    Practice regenerative and permaculture gardening techniques (contact me for more information).

•    Take more time to be quiet in nature, cultivating a deeper relationship with the natural world. As you do, you will be more inclined to care for it.

I heard a fellow on C-SPAN expressing his feelings of helplessness about the fires burning out of control in the Amazon. I believe doing nothing is not an option, for helping to preserve the goodness of the Earth for future generations is all our job, every day. Be glad that you are doing something, and know that you are not alone in your efforts. We are all in this together!

On Saturday, May 20, 2017, family and friends gathered to help Eugene Zacharias (pictured right) celebrate his 100th birthday. “Zach” was born on May 18, 1917, just outside of Emmitsburg, and lived there until he joined the U.S. Marine Corps in early 1935. He served in the Marine Corps for over twenty years, rising to the rank of Master Sergeant. After he retired from the Marines, he went on to have a successful career with RCA. He has been married to Anna Kugler Zaracharias since 1949, and has two daughters, two grandchildren, and one great-granddaughter.

He is an around-the-world traveler and is still an avid reader. He also enjoys jigsaw puzzles. For years, he was a collector of antique and children’s sewing machines and was considered so knowledgeable that he was invited to give talks on the subject.

Zach is a Life Member of VFW Post 6658 of Emmitsburg, and his wife, Genevieve, is a Charter and Life Member of 6658 Post Auxiliary.

Zach’s party was held at Oakcrest Village, the retirement center just outside of Baltimore, where he has lived since late 2015. In addition to the well wishes of friends and family, Zach was remembered with a card or letter from Maryland’s Governor Hogan; Senator Cardin; Senator Ruppersberger; the Commandant of the USMC; and Brooks Robinson, the great Oriole third baseman who shares a birthday with him. A third-year midshipman from the U.S. Naval Academy was also on hand to congratulate Zach and thank him for his service.

Attending the party were Post 6658 Life Member, Tom Hoke, and his daughter, Becky, Auxiliary Post 6658 Member and Gloria Bauerline, Charter and Life Member Post 6658 Auxiliary.

Stephen K. Heine has joined Woodsboro Bank as president and CEO, effective immediately, following the announcement of the retirement of C. Richard Miller, Jr. late last year. Mr. Heine has thirty-five years of banking experience, most recently as a group vice president for M&T Bank, where he was responsible for ninety-six branches in Central and Western Maryland, Washington D.C., and Virginia. Prior to M&T, he held various management positions that included executive vice-president of Farmers and Mechanics Bank in Frederick, and executive vice president of Consumer and Business Banking, Provident Bank, Baltimore.

Mr. Heine, who resides in Frederick with his wife, Carole, and four children, is active in the Frederick community, where he serves as the YMCA of Frederick County, chair-elect; St. Katherine Drexel Catholic Church, Corporator; and the Rotary Club of Carroll Creek. He is on the Alfred University Board of Trustees. His past board affiliations include Frederick County Chamber of Commerce; American Red Cross of Frederick County; and The Maryland Science Center, Baltimore.

He holds a Masters of Business Administration from the University of Albany and a Bachelor of Science from Alfred University. He is a graduate of Leadership Frederick in Frederick, and Leadership Capital District, Albany, New York.

Natalie McSherry, chair of the Board of Directors of Woodsboro Bank, said that the Board was pleased with the number of highly qualified candidates who had indicated an interest in the position, and that the Bank was extremely pleased that Mr. Heine would be leading the Bank going forward.

View their advertisement on page 29.

Young Boy Rescues Friend from Runaway Rail

Emmitsburg-RR-005-JAKJoseph Flautt Frizell was walking along the tracks of the Emmitsburg Railroad one evening in May 1922 with some friends. They were goofing around, as teenage boys are known to do, as they approached the station located on South Seton Avenue.

The Emmitsburg Railroad had been incorporated on March 28, 1868. It connected Emmitsburg to Thurmont by rail, and from there to other communities via the Western Maryland Railway. Besides making it easier for townspeople to travel to places like Baltimore, it also provided a convenient way for students to arrive at St. Joseph’s College and Mount Saint Mary’s College. The railroad was more than seven miles long and opened for passenger service on November 22, 1875.

Frizell and his friends saw a baggage car approaching them. Then they noticed another local youth, Paul Humerick, on the front of the baggage car. He had apparently jumped aboard hoping to catch a free ride, probably destined to the station in downtown Emmitsburg, which marked the end of the line.

What Humerick hadn’t noticed was that the baggage car had detached itself from the rest of the train and was coasting down the incline in the tracks. The boys on the ground called for Humerick to get off the car, but he ignored them, apparently not recognizing the danger.

“Quick as a flash young Frizell realized the danger and ran after the car, which was moving slowly, jumping it and at the same time pulling Master Humerick down to the earth,” the Catoctin Clarion reported.

The boys hit the ground, rolled, and climbed to their feet unharmed. Meanwhile, the baggage car continued just a short distance before it hit an embankment. They watched the baggage car “smash over the embankment into a tree. The large tree hit in just the place where Humerick was standing on the car and eyewitnesses say that had the young boy held his place he would have been badly mangled if not killed outright,” published the Catoctin Clarion.

Frizell spent the week afterwards being praised by his friends as a hero. The newspaper said the praise was rightly deserved because “it was not only a brave deed but showed that his mind was working fast to take in the situation.

The incident was investigated and it was found that after the train had stopped at St. Joseph’s College Station without incident on its way to the end of the line at the Emmitsburg station, it was believed that while the conductor was helping passengers off the train at St. Joseph’s College, someone had uncoupled the cars. The train had left the station heading for Emmitsburg, but the baggage car had separated from the rest of the train on an incline.

The car suffered some damage in the accident, but it was expected to be repaired and put back in service. None of the baggage in the car was lost or damaged.

The Emmitsburg Railroad stopped its service in 1940 due to more attractive business options, such as car travel.

by James Rada, Jr.

1915 — David Firor’s Missing Days

On March 2, 1915, David Firor kissed his wife goodbye and told her that he would be back on the evening train from Baltimore. Then he headed into the city to buy Easter items for his store on East Main Street in Thurmont.

That evening, “The train came, but Dave did not come home, and it was taken for granted that he did not get to finish his shopping and remained until next day as he had done on future occasions,” the Catoctin Clarion reported.

When he failed to come home the next day, Firor’s wife and mother began to worry. They began to make inquiries at the places where he typically went, but no one could help them with any information.

Rumors began to run rampant. He had met with foul play in the streets of Baltimore. He was running from creditors because his business was about to go bankrupt. Both of these rumors proved false.

Firor’s brother, J. W. Firor, was a professor at the University of Athens in Georgia. He took a leave of absence from his teaching to join his family in Thurmont. Then he set off for Baltimore to search for his brother in hospitals and other institutions.

Firor was thirty-one years old and had a medium build. He stood five feet, six inches tall and had black hair and dark eyes. He wasn’t particularly distinguishable from among hundreds of men in the city. J. W. made his inquiries, though, and walked through the hospital wards and looked at John Does in the morgue.

No sign of him could be found.

Ten days later, Grace Firor received a telegram from her husband. He was in Jacksonville, Florida.

“Losing all trace of his identity, knowing nothing whatever of his whereabouts until he was put ashore, penniless from a dredge boat at Jacksonville, Florida, and cared for by a family of Italians, David Firor, of Thurmont, last Tuesday for the first time in a week realized who he was,” The Gettysburg Times reported.

The cause of the problem was what Firor called “sleepy-headedness,” and the doctors called aphasia. In recent months, he had started sleeping a great deal of the time, and when he slept, he was nearly impossible to wake. His mother even said that he could fall asleep talking or standing up.

Even after being found in Jacksonsville, he had an attack where he slept for eighteen hours straight.

When asked about what had happened to him, Firor said that he couldn’t remember how he came to be on the boat. The last thing he remembered was speaking with Helen Rouzer, formerly of Thurmont, in a Baltimore department Store.

He also had taken sixty dollars with him to Baltimore when he left Thurmont. It was all missing when he reached Jacksonville. He didn’t remember what had happened to it, but since no orders were delivered to the store, he apparently didn’t spend the money on what he had intended.

Some people suggested that he may have been robbed. While this is a possibility, Firor still had his gold pocket watch on him when he was found. It seems unlikely that a robber wouldn’t have taken it as well.

Firor apparently never solved the mystery of what had happened to him during the missing days. He didn’t even know whether he had been conscious for most of them.

Christine Schoenemann (Maccabee)

turtle christine macabeeSome things never change, and my love affair with turtles is one of them. This essay is about how a young girl looking for turtles in the woods grew into an eighteen-year-old carrying water turtles in a bucket on the Greyhound bus between home and college, to the me that I am now, in my sixties, still transporting them back and forth between their aquarium habitat and their outdoor pools.

As a child I was drawn like a magnet to the woods. Despite all my mother’s efforts to keep me from going there, I went anyway. At the time, I did not know that she was trying to protect me from any potential dangers lurking there. I only knew the woods to be a friendly place, full of wonder and mystery and turtles!

Before too long, my mother, Rose, a nature lover herself, gave up trying to stop me. She even permitted me to build a nice turtle town out of cinder blocks in our small backyard, south of Baltimore. Many years later, I was told by a neighbor boy that all the fellas didn’t know what to make of me, that I was a different sort of girl, but that they admired me. I wish I had known it then, as all they ever did was tease me!

So, at a very early age, I learned the joy of going off into the woods—with my dog as my sole companion—and digging in rich dirt under the leaves for worms as food for my turtles. I learned to love the healing smell of the woods in all seasons, and gave myself lessons in transplanting such things as the big-leaved, deep rooted, burdock to provide shade in the turtle pen. In short, I taught myself lessons in caring for creatures that no book could have taught me. I was learning by doing, and pretty much still am, though books can be a great source of information. I guess I was a hands-on person before the term was invented. Most importantly, since I had no computer or TV to distract me, my relationship with the natural world grew strong and, well, naturally. I count my blessings every day that I had such opportunities to explore and to learn, and feel sad that millions of children are not so fortunate.

I was about nine when I made my first Turtle Town. The most turtles I had at any one time was ten—eight box and two mud (they had their own private mud hole)—with only one male box turtle at a time. I learned the hard way not to have more than one male in my Turtle Town harem, for to see the flash of red eyes and the frothing at the mouth when two males fight over a female is enough to scare the pants off of anybody, especially a ten year old.

You might say I first learned about sex from my turtles, and I knew never to interfere with turtles when mating. Even then the males red eyes would flash fiercely and his mouth would froth. I always felt sorry for him as the hard shells made mating difficult, but usually successful, as I found several batches of eggs buried from a few of those awkward unions. One hot summer night, I watched as a female, ready to lay her eggs, laboriously dug her hole for hours, deep into the night. Fearing my flashlight was interfering with her progress, I reluctantly went inside the house by 11:00 p.m., having sacrificed watching the Miss America Pageant and having gained innumerable mosquito bites. In the morning, I excitedly ran outside to see if the eggs were laid, and sure enough, the ground was covered up as if it had never been touched.

There is nothing quite like holding a newly hatched baby turtle in your hand. It is so perfectly formed, it takes your breath away. A neighbor of mine a few houses over told me that she discovered eggs in her compost pile last spring, and when they hatched, she put one in the palm of her hand. It was only the size of a quarter and, “You could even feel its sharp little toenails against your skin!” she exclaimed. Such an amazing miracle of life, and so wonderful to know turtles are surviving and thriving in our little mountain valley, north of Thurmont.

I suppose lots of folks have their own turtle tales to tell. I just happen to have many—enough to write a book, actually. To end this particular chapter, however, I will tell you that one summer between college years, I freed all my box turtles, knowing I would not always be around to care for them. I remember the fear I had that some kid might find one and keep it in a cardboard box, confining it to a much worse prison than my own, and neglecting it until it sickened. But then again, this same kid might learn as I did how to care for turtles successfully and grow in respect for them as I had. These were my thoughts as I released my beloved turtle friends back into their home, back into the deep and friendly woods. I still had water turtles, which patiently endured trips in a bucket on the Greyhound; I only went about one year since then without a turtle. I have great respect for all turtles around the world, and so now comes the question Gloria Steinem suggests we ask: “What are we humans to ask the turtle?”

In my opinion, if turtles could speak, they would say: “Life on this planet is precious, a miracle, and not to be neglected. Take care of it for us.” This is the lesson my turtles taught me, and one I shall never forget.

James Rada, Jr.

Frederick County Sheriff’s Deputy Tony Ruopoli is used to seeing accidents after the damage is done, and then reconstructing what happened. However, that all changed in August, when Ruopoli was driving home to Emmitsburg with his family and he witnessed a van and car collide on U.S. 15 North.

“The car cut across the road, hit the embankment, and went up in the air and came down on its roof,” Ruopoli said.

Ruopoli stopped his car and rushed over to the accident scene, while his wife dialed 911. The female passenger had her legs wedged between the seat and door. He managed to open the door and free her legs. He said that she was mumbling, but alive.

Then he saw the driver. The man was hanging upside down in his seat belt; his head was against the roof of the car in such a way that his weight was on his neck.

“He was blue,” Ruopoli said. “His hands, his face, his feet were blue. He wasn’t breathing.”

Ruopoli rushed around to the driver’s door and opened it. A woman who had gotten out of her car to help told Ruopoli that she had emergency dispatch on the line, and they were telling her to leave the man alone in case moving him made his injuries worse.

Ruopoli told her, “He’s not breathing. If I don’t do something, he’s going to be dead.”

Ruopoli’s son began to tell the gathering crowd that Ruopoli was a deputy, which is something that Ruopoli realized that he hadn’t done.

He reached into the car and felt for the man’s pulse. It was there, but something needed to be done to get the man breathing again.

Ruopoli freed the man’s trapped legs and then was able to roll him around gently, relieving the pressure on his neck and lay him out in the car. He then cleared the man’s airway and began chest compressions.

After a while, the injured man spit up a little and began breathing. The color came back into his body, and his eyes began moving.

Trooper 3 landed in the southbound lanes of U.S. 15, and the paramedics placed the man on a back board to transport him to the R Adams Cowley Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore.

The woman passenger and woman van driver were taken to Frederick Memorial Hospital for treatment. Ruopoli later contacted the female passenger and found out that the man had been released from Shock Trauma and was in a rehabilitation hospital. He had to have neck surgery, but he is expected to recover.

If not for Ruopoli’s actions, the man might have died before emergency services personnel could have reached him.

 

by James Rada, Jr.

Bessie Darling’s Murder Haunts Us Still

Bessie Darling House 07-09-1941 001 JAK (2)When the mail train from Baltimore stopped in Thurmont on Halloween, more than the mail was delivered. George F. Schultz, a sixty-two-year-old employee with Maryland Health Department, left the train. Schultz hired Clarence Lidie and his taxi to give him a ride to the Valley View Hotel, which was ten minutes away on the side of Catoctin Mountain.

As Schultz climbed into the car, Lidie noticed that he was carrying a .38-caliber revolver and remarked on it.

“Shultz laughed and remarked that ‘he didn’t know what he might run into,’” Edmund F. Wehrle wrote in a study about the history of Catoctin Mountain Park.

The Valley View Hotel was actually a summer boarding house, which had been run by Bessie Darling, a forty-eight-year-old divorcee, since 1917. It was a large house built in 1907 that sat on a steep tract of land near Deerfield.

Darling, a Baltimore resident, had purchased the property from Mary E. Lent after Darling’s divorce in 1917.

“She generally managed the hotel in the summer and returned to Baltimore in winter, where she used her considerable social contacts to drum up summer business for her hotel,” Wehrle wrote. “Her skill at cooking and baking, as well as the scenic site, helped build her a solid clientele.”

In the early twentieth century, people took the Western Maryland Railroad from Baltimore to Pen Mar Park to enjoy the cooler mountain temperatures and to get away from the stresses of the city. Such was the appeal of the Catoctin Mountain area as a summer retreat that visitors always needed a place to stay.

“These such boarding houses offered the women of the area a rare opportunity to operate businesses,” Wehrle wrote.

Schultz had known Darling since 1926. They had become so close that Schultz had even spent Christmas 1930 with Darling’s family. Newspaper accounts at the time said they were romantically linked, and he often spent weekends at the hotel while Darling was there.

Darling, who was fourteen years younger than Schultz, met a lot people, both men and women in her work. In the summer of 1933, Schultz had become convinced that Darling was seeing Charles Wolfe, a sixty-three-year-old man who had lost his wife a year earlier. He also lived in Foxville, much closer to the boarding house than Baltimore. (Wolfe later told the Hagerstown Daily Mail that he and Darling had been little more than acquaintances.)

The thought of Darling with another man made Schultz angry, and he was known for his displays of temper.

“One Thurmont resident remembered that Schultz frequently drank, and, on one occasion, assaulted Darling during an argument in front of the Lantz post office,” Wehrle wrote.

While Darling forgave him that time, she was not so forgiving in this instance. Schultz and Darling got into a loud argument apparently over Wolfe, which ended when Darling left the hotel. She went to a neighbor’s home to spend the night, and told the neighbor that Schultz was no longer welcome in her home, according to newspaper accounts.

Darling didn’t return to the hotel until Schultz left for Baltimore, and Darling didn’t return to Baltimore at the end of the tourist season. She decided that she would spend the winter in the hotel rather than having to deal with Schultz and his jealousy.

Around 7:00 a.m. on Halloween morning, Schultz came up to the rear entrance of the hotel as Maizie Williams, the eighteen-year-old maid, was coming out for firewood. Schultz demanded to see Darling. Williams said Darling was in her room and tried to close the door on the man.

Schultz forced his way inside. Williams hurried upstairs to Darling’s bedroom to warn Darling, with Schultz following. Williams entered the bedroom and locked the door behind her.

This didn’t stop Schultz for long. He forced the lock and opened the door. Then he entered the bedroom and shot Darling who fell to the floor dead.

Schultz then calmly told Williams to make him coffee. She did, and when he finally let her leave the house to get help for Darling, he told her, “When you come back, you’ll find two of us dead.”

Williams rushed out of the hotel to the nearest home with a phone. She called Frederick County Sheriff Charles Crum who drove to the hotel with a deputy around 9:30 a.m.

They entered through the basement door, because Schultz had locked all of the doors and windows. When they entered the Darling’s bedroom, they found her lying dead at the foot of the bed.

They also found Schultz nearly dead from a self-inflicted gunshot to his chest. Crum brought Dr. Morris Bireley up from Thurmont to treat Schultz, who was then taken to the hospital in Frederick.

Once Schultz recovered from the wound, he was tried for murder on March 13, 1934. The prosecution called twenty-six witnesses in their case of first-degree murder. Schultz claimed that Darling had also had a pistol, and his killing her had been an act of self-defense. The jury deliberated an hour and found him guilty of second-degree murder; Schultz was sentenced to eighteen years in the Maryland State Penitentiary in Baltimore.

Wehrle recounted the story of Charles Anders, who had been in the courtroom when Schultz was sentenced and, sixty-six years later, still remembered watching Schultz sob as the verdict was read.

The drama of the murder fed into the tabloid-style journalism of the day, and people followed the case with interest.

“Even today, the murder stirs an unusual amount of residual interest,” Wehrle wrote.

Most recently, the Thurmont Thespians performed an original musical based on the murder case.