On this day in 1934...


Banker Edward G. Bremer, son of Alfred Bremer who owned Schmidt Beer Brewery, is kidnapped on the corner of Goodrich Avenue and Lexington Parkway in St. Paul.

Bremer would be held on $200,000 ransom by the Barker-Karpis gang, a sum they would receive from Bremer's family the following month.

While the kidnapping was successful in getting the gang the large amount of money, it attracted national attention, partially because Bremer's father was a personal friend of President Franklin Roosevelt, who took interest in the case and mentioned it during his national radio series.

The FBI would descend on the Barker-Karpis gang in the following years, and by 1936, all of the clan had either been killed in shootouts, or caught and imprisoned.

St. Paul Police Chief Thomas Brown was later implicated as a conspirator in the kidnapping, and fired from his post, though no federal action was taken.

The group of criminals would be mentioned in the same breath with the Dillingers and Barrows as some of the most ruthless of the Depression Era, and just six months before kidnapping Bremer, the Barker-Karpis gang netted $100,000 ransom for returning William Hamm of Hamm's Brewing.

Their reign lasted nearly four years, not to mention their activities before forming the infamous group that would terrorize Minnesota.

The FBI has an online archive of the Bremer kidnapping, a collection that totals 459 files.

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