The Chain Man was found guilty October 19,1922 for kidnapping and sentenced to life in prison. He stayed there three years.
The Chain Man earned his nickname for linking a few young women together in in a hole below his shack near Omaha, Nebraska. He had tricked them by offering a ride to a nearby amusement park. His victims were Jean Jenkins and Kathyryn McManaman. While his prisoners were chained to a cement block in the pit, Brown dug their graves nearby. When H. E. Boyd tried to rescue the women, Brown simply added him to the chains.
Chain Man was shot while being captured in Medicine Bow, Wyoming after a few days on the run. He survived to face trial.
Chain Man's trial was delayed while the court decided what to do with hoards of high school girls who came to enjoy the show. "We will continue the trial in the morning when the children are at their desks" decided the judge.
Brown didn't stay in prison long, unless you consider three years a long time. He carved this dummy gun and used it in an escape attempt, but he was killed while trying. So was a prison guard.
Several years later, the skeleton of his apparent partner in the crime, Gus Grimes, was found buried near the shack Brown had held his victims.
There is at least one other example of this real photo postcard surviving. There is no way to determine how many were developed, but the businessman who made them probably hoped to sell a few to the high school.
Fred Brown's Dummy Gun "Azo" Real Photo Postcard 1925 Collection Jim Linderman
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