I believe Holmes may have replaced his own body in an insurance scam
But seriously, Its more likely that it ended up an exhibit in a freak show.
No, that was the body of one David E. George, a drink addled drug addict who died in Enid, Oklahoma, a suicide, in 1903, but who (supposedly) confessed on his death bed he was really John Wilkes Booth. A lawyer named Finis Bates had the corpse embalmed and exhibited it around the country as Booth's corpse. At one point Henry Ford showed an interest in purchasing this macabre exhibit for Dearborn Village, but was talked out of it.
The latest episode of "American Ripper: H. H. Holmes" offers some background to why Mudgett reasons his ancestor could have escaped dying by the noose. Apparently Holmes researchers have discovered something called "the Holmes curse" in which many people connected to the death and burial of H. H. Holmes suffered mysterious deaths of their own, often ruled an unsolved murder or strange death by accident.
Mudgett theorizes his ancestor wasn't really hanged with a hood over his head, but managed to enlist people to help him escape by substituting a dead body into the noose from under the gallows.
He then killed off the people involved in the plot and went his merry way, perhaps committing several additional murders that were claimed to be "Ripper-like".
The exhumation will be covered in the next episode.
--------------- Von Konigswald: Jack the Ripper plays shuffleboard. -- Happy Birthday, Wanda June by Kurt Vonnegut, c.1970.
Huh! That's a weird story, Jerryd. Any idea if the authorities ever had to make a decision about Pickett's status?
In 1900 the Texas millionaire William Marsh Rice was poisoned in New York City by his secretary guided by a crooked lawyer named Albert Patrick. Patrick was eventually tried for the murder and convicted for murder in the first degree, but using money from his in-laws he got the sentence delayed and delayed (eventually he would get it reduced, and then probably bribed Governor John Dix to pardon him around 1910). But at one point Patrick noted that his delaying technique had left a small gap in which, he should have been executed. He actually had the brass cahones to suggest due to his gap, he was technically executed and dead, and should be released as he was "legally dead". The state naturally rejected this idiocy.
Later, the crime historian Edmund Pearson wrote of the case, and suggested that the state could have shown a sense of justice and a sense of humor, ordering the burial alive of Patrick (as he was "legally dead".
Too bad they could not have done that with Holmes.
By the way, William Marsh Rice was the man, whose millions, founded Rice University in Texas.
The only way that body isn't H.H. Holmes is if it was stolen.
I don't think that Georgia case from 1889 is him either. H.H Holmes usually killed for profit of some sort, or I should say made some financial profit from his Killings. I guess he wanted to be paid for his work.