Crime Life

Ludwig Tessnow

German Ludwig Tessnow's first known killings occurred in 1895 in Lechtingen when he abducted and killed two young girls, leaving their bodies dismembered and butchered in some nearby woods. Tessnow was identified as having been in the vicinity of the murder scene but when questioned about the stains on his clothing Tessnow claimed the spots were from wood dye. Not unusual for a man who's trade was carpentry. Tessnow was let go.

Tessnow was also quickly retained and questioned in 1901 concerning the murders of two brothers, aged six and eight,who were found in the woods of Rugen Island. The two youngsters, who were dismebowelled and gruesomly dismembered, were last seen talking to Tessnow the day they disappeared. As with the earlier case authorities noted large stains on Tessnow's clothes but were rebuffed with the slayer's now-standard explanation that the stains were the result of wood dye he used in his work.

The police were not so easily fooled this time, however. Tessnow had also been recently identified as the man caught hacking a local farmer's sheep to death. It was all too obvious and they had the stains tested to see if they were in fact blood, a very knew scientific procedure at the time. When the results came back positive for both human and sheep blood, Tessnow was arrested. He was convicted and executed in 1904.