The Halls-Mills Murder
New Brunswick is one of the most popular college towns in the state of New Jersey, and even was popular back in the 1920s. In September of 1922, two teenage love birds were walking down the city’s streets when they discovered two dead bodies.
The bodies were of Reverend Edward Halls and an older woman by the name of Mrs. Eleanor Mills. Hall was shot once, Mills three times. Mills also had her tongue torn out of her mouth. Their bodies were posed like a loving couple, with both feet pointed towards a nearby apple tree.
More alarmingly, the scene of the crime had quite a bit of written evidence lying around. The reverend’s card was propped against his foot, and torn love letters were scattered around them. It was clear that the murder was a crime of passion.
The love letters were clearly to one another, and not their spouses. It appears that an affair was the root of the problem. Two main suspects quickly came to light: the reverend’s wife, Frances Halls, and Mr. Mills, Eleanor’s husband and the church janitor.
Though investigators looked into both suspects, but didn’t have enough evidence to book either of them for the killings…until a woman called “the Pig Woman” decided to come forth. The Pig Woman, also known as Jane Gibson, was a local hog farmer who overheard something alarming around the time of the murders.
She heard a woman shout, “Explain these letters!” followed by a series of gunshots, finally punctuated with a woman screaming, “Henry!” An investigation ensued once again, but all charges were dropped.
Years later, a maid for the wealthy widow Halls confessed that the reverend wanted to divorce his elderly wife to elope with Mrs. Mills. The Pig Woman was asked to come testify again. However, Gibson’s own mother claimed that she was lying. The testimony was deemed inaccurate and no one ever found out who killed the two lovers.