Sponseller Family Genealogy Collection
Notorious Sponsellers

Lizzie Sponseller, now Mrs. Darr was the next prisoner. The court told her she had been an anomaly to the court, that her career of a year or two had exceeded anything ever known in the memory of the court in this town. He warned her that now as Mrs. Darr she was in a different position than she had been as Lizzie Sponseller. That for the charge of fornication to which she had plead guilty he could give but a light sentence, but if she ever proved untrue to her husband and was brought to court, the charge would be more serious and she might expect a heavy sentence. She was sentenced to a fine of $10 and the costs.

The former Addie Sponseller made headlines coast to coast in 1924 when she allegedly threw herself into the furnace of her exclusive Columbus, Ohio, area home, closed the incinerator door behind her, and was burned alive. Addie was the wife of Reverend Clarence Sheatsley, the minister of the Christ Lutheran Church in Bexley. The coroner eventually ruled the death a suicide, bringing to an end official--and very public--speculation about her husband. For the record, the Sheatsleys' youngest son, 16-year-old Clarence, who discovered the charred remains of his mother, was particularly unemotional throughout the entire ordeal. As an aside, this story shared the front page with news of the death of Mrs. Warren G. Harding.

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