Bio: Ringquist, Charles (Death Investigation - 1922)

Contact: Stan  

Surnames: Ringquist, Schroeder, Hebert, Prahn, Prehn, Schjoneman

----Source: Marshfield Daily News (Marshfield, Wood County, Wis.) 13 June 1922


Marathon County Officials Start Probe Into Death of Charles Ringquist Body Found Under Bed

Unity Wis. - Investigation to determine whether Charles Ringquist, wealthy bachelor-farmer, was slain and his home near here set on fire to conceal the crime, was under way Thursday in preparation for a coroner's inquest to be held here next Wednesday. Marathon County officials from Wausau are seeking clues in the ruins of the Ringquist farm home, in which the charred body was found pinned beneath the iron framework of his bed. The body is to be examined to determine whether the man was attacked before the fire razed the house. Ringquist, who was 43, was said to have no enemies and was well liked in the community. Relatives said reports of his wealth were exaggerated and that his deposits in the Unity Bank, of which he was an official, would not exceed $35,000.00.

Sheriff Fred Schroeder, Wausau, admitted that several persons were under suspicion and that a murder theory had been strengthened by the investigation. Officials attach importance to the fact that Ringquist had slept at the farm home of a brother, Gust, a mile from his home, for the last three weeks. Sheriff Schroeder was asked if Ringquist had abandoned his own home because his life had been threatened. "I would rather not answer that now", he replied. "How does it happen that he was sleeping in his house on the night of the fire after being at his house on the night of the fire after being at his brother's for three weeks?", the sheriff was asked. "That is a question our investigation is endeavoring to clear up", was the answer.

When the fire was discovered by neighbors early Tuesday, it was believed that Rinquist was safely slumbering at the home of his brother and no attempt was made to enter the house. The body, when found, was in a position that indicated Ringquist had been in the bedroom he usually occupied on the 2nd floor. It is not believed robbery was the motive for an attack, as Ringquist had little money in the house. He had deposited $20. 00 in the Unity Bank on June 2nd.

Many neighbors of Ringquist believe that he chose to end his life in the burning farmhouse, it is said. The Ringquist farm is in the Town of Brighton, south of Unity and 4 miles north of the Village of Spencer.

Seeks a Missing Brother

Charles Hebert, a farmer of Spencer, Marathon County, is in Milwaukee searching for Anton Ringquist, who, he says, is a brother of Charles Ringquist. The fire occurred four hours after Anton Ringquist left Spencer to come to Milwaukee according to Mr. Hebert. Mr. Hebert said that he learned that Anton Ringquist had obtained a position through the government employment office in Milwaukee, but that he did not show up at the job. No word has been received there, from Marathon Co. officials concerning the missing brother.

Murdered By Blackmailers?

The possibility of blackmail entered today into the mystery. Marathon County officials uncovered clues indicating that extortion of a portion of Ringquist's wealth had been attempted by blackmailers and that the victim had been threatened shortly before the early morning blaze that leveled his home and buried in it's smoldering timbers the body of the owner. District Attorney, Arthur W. Prahn, of Wausau, convinced that Ringquist was murdered, is seeking full information of the dead man's past life. Prahn is proceeding in his inquiry upon assumption that a woman was involved in the events that culminated in Ringquist's death. It became known that Ringquist had confided to a relative that he had been "pushed for money" by someone and that he feared further developments.

----Source: Marshfield Daily News (Marshfield, Wood County, Wis.) 19 June 1922

District Attorney Prahn Believes Ringquist Murdered.

Plans To Question Former Fiancee.

Inquest Resumed Wednesday.

Unity - No new developments in the mystery surrounding the death of Charles Rinquist of Unity whose charred body was found in the ruins of his home, destroyed by fire on the night of June 13th.

The body, when removed from the ruins, had been almost totally destroyed. The arms and legs had practically disappeared. The skull was so thoroughly burned that it fell to ashes when touched and one of the mysterious features was that the teeth could not be found in the debris.

As officers proceed with their investigations, they become more firmly convinced that Ringquist was murdered, but at this time they have no proven facts upon which to base suspicion. The inquest is to be resumed next Wednesday when it is possible some developments of importance will occur.

It has been developed that since about the 1st of May Ringquist had worried about his money and property and seemed to fear that someone was conspiring to get both away from him. It was also learned that he was indiscreet in his relations with a neighbor and that he had another unhappy love affair.

----Source: Marshfield Daily News (Marshfield, Wood County, Wis.) 21 June 1922


District Attorney Prahn Asks Continuance to Investigate Suspicious Circumstance of Case.

(By Associated Press)

Unity, Wis. - Inquest into the death of Charles Ringquist has been postponed for one week to await the findings of the corner's jury which convened here today. District Attorney A. W. Prehn, Wausau, asked for more time to investigate. Officials are making attempts to connect blackmailer with the man's death.

Ringquist's charred body was found beneath the remains of a bed in his burned home last week and evidence uncovered at the time of the fire did not make officials entirely sure the fire was purely accidental.

----Source: Marshfield Daily News (Marshfield, Wood County, Wis.) 30 June 1922


Officials Believe He Set Fire To Residence And Then Blew Himself To Pieces With Dynamite.

Unity - After listening to the testimony of 12 witnesses, the coroner's jury, at the inquest to inquire into the cause and death of Charles Ringquist, of Unity, brought in a verdict saying, "That the said Charles Ringquist came to his death on June 13th by dynamite with suicidal intent".

The testimony was given by neighbors and relatives of the deceased, all of whom freely admitted that the deceased had melancholy spells when he labored under the delusion that "The bunch is going to get me", etc.

Relatives testified that his business affairs were well kept and had been given into the care of a sister, Mrs. John Schjoneman of the Town of Brighton, in case, Ringquist stated, "anything should happen".

Testimony was given that the deceased had had a little dynamite, fuses and caps in this shack and the officials are inclined to believe that he used that to end his life, after he had set fire to his residence.

It was also testified that he would not let anyone else live in his home after he was dead, he stated.



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