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Michael 5260
Hauptmann's dictionary
Sat Feb 24, 2018 16:57

During one of my many visits to the Lindbergh archives I asked Mark Falzini about Hauptmann's dictionary. The one that investigators found when they were searching Hauptmann's apartment.

Mark told me that he had not come across the dictionary. It may or may not be somewhere among all the other evidence at the archives.

If this dictionary is ever found there are a few things worth examining.

Taking the long or difficult words from the Lindbergh ransom notes we find:


Using Hauptmann's German-English dictionary you can look up each of the words and note what German synonyms are offered for the English word and list them.

Now take the German synonyms that were found and look them up to see what words are offered in English and list them.

A thorough study may reveal what words Hauptmann was thinking of, in German, when he was writing the ransom notes in English. There may be a pattern as to his selection of the first, second, or third synonym in English that he chose to use.

Wilentz said Hauptmann was a dictionary student. I don't know what the hell that is supposed to mean. He also said there were many underlings of words found in Hauptmann's dictionary. If so, they would be worth examining. I would also look for small writing "ticks" in front of words. Sometimes a writer will rest their writing instrument momentarily before a word when they find it.

Naturally, this study must be done with the exact German-English dictionary that was removed from Hauptmann's apartment. Nothing else will do.

    • DictionariesJack, Sat Mar 3 17:36
      I'm sure I have nine or ten dics around here. Little pocket ones and an old big Webster's thumb-notched college edition. Hope that doesn't make me a "Dictionary Freak" because they all have about the ... more
    • Re: Hauptmann's dictionaryJoe for Michael, Mon Feb 26 08:20
      Excellent post Michael, and I didn't realize Hauptmann's dictionary was missing. I've heard differing accounts on the subject of certain words being noted in the dictionary by investigators. A... more
      • Re: Hauptmann's dictionaryMichael 5260 for Joe, Mon Feb 26 10:12
        Wilentz mentioned that he would produce the dictionary at trial. As far as I know he didn't do it. This dictionary should have been turned over to Albert S. Osborn. He would have known how to work... more
        • Re: Hauptmann's dictionaryJoe for Michael, Mon Feb 26 14:25
          I know Hauptmann had a dictionary on death row for his letters, but I'm not sure if it was the one discovered at his house and which would have been taken into evidence. It seems unlikely he would... more
          • 9 German-English DictionariesSue for Joe and Michael, Tue Feb 27 19:43
            Newspapers, from roughly October 4-6, 1934, say that the police found nine German-English dictionaries in a trunk at Hauptmann's apartment in the Bronx. Below is a picture page from the Harrisburg... more
            • Re: 9 German-English DictionariesMichael 5260 for Sue, Joe, and Bob Mills, Wed Feb 28 10:45
              Great find Sue. Thank you. Nine dictionaries were found in Hauptmann's apartment.It certainly lends credence to the Wilentz statement that Hauptmann was a dictionary student or at least had a... more
              • nine dictionariesbob mills for michael and forum, Thu Mar 1 18:07
                I don't want to repeat myself. i agree that it makes little or no sense that the cops would plant extra bi-lingual dictionaries in Hauptmann's apartment. It makes even less sense (to me) that a man... more
                • Re: nine dictionariesJoe for Bob Mills, Fri Mar 2 08:21
                  Bob, now the that the dictionary dilemma has been put to bed, you're asking that we determine the state of Hauptmann's criminal mind? Good luck.. have you ever tried undoing a ball of hopelessly... more
                  • Condon?Jack, Mon Mar 5 05:25
                    There is much more evidentially against Condon, than about anyone before BRH was captured. Condon, with his known knowledge of the ongoing crime, was able to work his was into the inner workings of... more
              • dictionariesRichard E Sloan, Thu Mar 1 09:23
                I think it's funny how those 9 dictionaries has inspired such posts! It must have been a fetish, but that's not so strange. Too bad we can't tell when he bought ea. of them. It seems to me that he... more
              • Photo Includes 8 of the 9 DictionariesSue, Wed Feb 28 23:57
                Here is an Associated Press photo of the dictionaries...and maps. 8 of the 9 dictionaries are present here. Hauptmann Lindbergh 1934
                • Re: Photo Includes 8 of the 9 DictionariesMichael 5260 for Sue, Thu Mar 1 10:16
                  Another excellent find. Thank you again. Notice the covers of the eight dictionaries. They tell their own story. All eight of the dictionaries came from the same publisher. Their covers prove it. The ... more
                  • April 1932 Employment Time SheetSue for Michael 5260, Fri Mar 2 21:54
                    Hauptmann's time sheet for the week ending April 15, 1932 appears in the photo section of Scaduto's book between pages 320 and 321. Is that the one you are interested in?
                  • Re: Photo Includes 8 of the 9 DictionariesJoe for Michael, Thu Mar 1 11:42
                    Michael, I think it may be a set of dictionaries, as I said before each covering a range of 1000 words. In the top left-hand corner, there is a numbering system ranging from 6 HEPT. through 12 HEPT.... more
                • Re: Photo Includes 8 of the 9 DictionariesJoe for Sue, Thu Mar 1 09:52
                  Great find with that photo, Sue! It's interesting that each of the dictionaries seems to represent a thousand English words. Are they commonly used, more difficult words? And perhaps this is a set of ... more
                  • A Box SetSue for Joe, Fri Mar 2 05:46
                    From what I can gather from information online: The series of 12 dictionaries was sold in a box as one unit -- a box set! They were originally sold in Europe, and are credited to a Dr. Ernst... more
              • hauptmann and his friend noah websterbob mills for michael and forum, Wed Feb 28 18:40
                Michael, I confess I don't understand it either. But given the proclivity of the police for planting evidence (do you really believe the thumb guard was there all along?), it's easier for me to... more
            • Re: 9 German-English DictionariesJoe for Sue, Wed Feb 28 10:25
              Thanks Sue for posting that. I can't read the article but if true, it seems Hauptmann had more than a passing interest in confirming his German to English translation.
            • you can't have too many dictionaries, evidentlybob mills for sue and forum, Wed Feb 28 04:46
              In a case overflowing with planted evidence, this looks like a crude effort by someone to prove something against Hauptmann. NINE German-English dictionaries? NINE? Who needs that many dictionaries?
              • Re: you can't have too many dictionaries, evidentlyJoe for Bob Mills, Wed Feb 28 09:38
                Bob, are you implying authorities actually went out of their way to "augment" Hauptmann's German-English dictionary supply?? If the newspaper story is true, could it be that not unlike the average,... more
                • nine dictionaries for the same job?bob mills for joe, Wed Feb 28 14:31
                  I don't know, Joe. I'd be willing to wager that nobody outside a library has ever kept nine separate translation dictionaries in a single apartment before. It isn't provable one way or the other,... more
                  • Re: nine dictionaries for the same job?Joe for Bob, Thu Mar 1 10:00
                    I'm not sure Bob, but I'd wager the ransom note writer was using more than his basic knowledge of the English language here. It seems reasonable to me that the multiple versions for the spelling of... more
          • Re: Hauptmann's dictionaryMichael 5260 for Joe, Mon Feb 26 17:44
            If the dictionary used by Hauptmann on death row was the same dictionary that was found in his apartment it is most likely gone forever. The dictionary and other personal belongings were probably... more
    • Hauptmann DictonaryJack, Sun Feb 25 23:58
      Extremely good thinking Michael. Wish we had the Dic.
    • Hauptmann's erratic englishbob mills for forum, Sat Feb 24 17:55
      Hauptmann was a dictionary student? I don't know what that means, either (maybe Wilentz can tell us from the grave). He wouldn't bother if he were alive, I suspect. What i don't get is this. if... more
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