GOVERNOR PARDONS TWO NOTORIOUS MURDERERS

The Iowa Recorder  -  2 Nov. 1904  -  Greene, Iowa

 

 Two self confessed murderers whose crimes were the sensation of the hour years ago have been pardoned from the Iowa State Penitentiary, their sentence only partially expired, through pardons issued by Governor Cummins.  His action was the result of preponderant public sympathy with the accused.  Charles Cackley, who was sentenced to fifteen years imprisonment less than a year ago, is again a free man.  Cackley brutally killed Rueben Fenzenmaker, a constable, when the latter attempted to place him under arrest at Bonaparte thirty-seven years ago.  He had just returned from honorable service throughout the Civil War;  & had stolen a horse for temporary use.  After the murder he was recaptured, & kept in chains until physicians ordered more humane treatment.  He had almost escaped several times, having demonstrated that he could slip his hands through handcuffs, could wiggle through straight-jackets, & pick any lock with one hand.  No sooner than the chain was removed from his leg than he escaped from jail through a water pipe.  Despite vigorous search, he was never heard of again until last winter, when he applied for pension under an assumed name.  He had married & settled down in Washington County, Missouri, less than fifty miles from the scene of his crime.  He had lived uprightly, & was highly respected.  Disclosure of his identity was followed by a prompt confession & sentence.  At the age of 27, pretty Delilah Fails, about whose murder of Jerome Kern column after column was printed a few years ago, has walked forth from Anamosa prison a free woman.  Her original sentence was for twenty years.  Her sweetheart & self-confessed accomplice, Will Kern, son of the murdered man will be released next March by expiration of sentence, & they will be married at once.