The Murder of Francis E. Staley: Part Four

This is a continuation of an ongoing thread; please refer back to the first, second, and third parts of this ‘investigation’ before proceeding.

Let’s talk about guns.

My grandfather was a gunsmith; my father, uncle, brother, and cousins all competed in trap competitions, and I know my way around guns, as does my husband.

32 calibre

At first I thought that this had to be a mistake. I don’t know why, but I was convinced that there wasn’t a .32 calibre around at this time. I was wrong.  The Winchester model 73 was manufactured starting in 1873, and it was a 32-20.  The .32 calibre was actually designed by Smith and Wesson in 1860 for their rimfire revolvers and it’s likely the gun used to murder Staley was a handgun of some kind. Why? Because suspicious old Francis Staley, who always said he’d be murdered (which is pretty creepy when you think about it) had loaded guns near his door, and if the murderer had needed to pause and reload, he would have been done for, too.

1947 error shooter

There’s also quite a strange alteration in the story: The original article talks about three shots, quite in depth, and that Staley seemed to have tried to close his door against his attacker. The third article talks about only one bullet (it does not say where it hit) and that Staley’s body was dug back up to remove it.


That’s not true. I think that the coroner had to have removed the bullets to know precisely how they went in. (At least, generally, he would have.) I see no reason why they’d need to dig his body back up.

Unless there was some other reason, or unless it wasn’t a legal exhumation. (dun-dun-dun) I don’t know. There’s not much information on this, but it seems very strange to me. What do you think?


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