Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Woodrow J Cochran

A year ago a reader inquired about a man named Woodrow J Cochran, a known resident of
Wall mounted Kellogg
 phone, circa 1927 with dial--
have you seen it?
Lawrenceville, who was caught up in a double murder scandal while in Pendleton Reformatory in Indiana. He believed this gentleman might be his great-grandfather.

J King began the research and found the following article.

Alton Evening Telegraph June 19, 1933 Hammond Indiana
Authorities arranged to use a steam shovel today in an attempt to uncover the bodies of a man and woman Woodrow Cochran, 24-year-old reformatory prisoner says he buried near a cemetery after slaying them four years ago. A gravel pit 3 miles south of the city was the scene of the investigation.

Cochran, a prisoner in the Pendleton, Indiana, reformatory pointed to the spot where he said he buried the bodies, but efforts to find them yesterday were unsuccessful. He said he killed the man and the woman while hitchhiking from his home at Lawrenceville, Illinois.

Although skeptical of his story, investigators said it was partially corroborated by EA Wood, a Milford Illinois garage owner, who remembered towing an automobile similar to the car described by Cochran and which the latter said he took from the motorist he slew.

Further research shows that Woodrow J Cochran is buried at White House Cemetery. The stone states that his date of death was Feb 13, 1961. His obituary from the Daily Record February 23, 1964 states 
"Died Feb. 13, 1964. Woodrow J. Cochran, 54, of 1605 6th Street Lawrenceville, died at 7:45 a.m. today at the Lawrence Co. He was born Feb. 25, 1909 in Sumner, s/o Harley and Addie Dickerson Cochran. He had been a lifelong resident of Lawrence County and a resident of Lawrenceville for the past five years. He was married June 17, 1959 to Edith Bennett…” Then the survivors are listed. 

Was this the same man? 

(Editor’s comment: no explanation for why the man was buried three years before he died according to the date on the tombstone and the date the obituary was published.)