The long-beloved series Unsolved Mysteries was recently rebooted by streaming giant Netflix and WE ARE HOOKED! The show debuted on NBC January 20, 1987, as a series of stand-alone specials before its popularity landed it a promotion to full-fledged series. The original cold-case docuseries ran for 12 seasons before ending in June 1999. Previous revivals on Lifetime and Spike TV attempted to fill the void left in audiences whenever the show went off the air, and our inner detectives were thrilled when Netflix took on the challenge this time around.
Unsolved Mysteries does something far more important than just thrilling us amateur sleuths: it shares the details of cases with wider audiences in hopes of bringing about justice. Thanks to the show, hundreds of cases have been solved with fugitives found, wrongly convicted individuals exonerated, and families reunited after years of separation.
With only six episodes covering cases ranging from missing persons to murders to alien abductions, you are bound to want more. Take a look at the books below to learn more about America’s unsolved mysteries.
The Moonlight Mill Murders of Steubenville, Ohio by Susan M. Guy
On January 30, 1934, in the mill yards of Steubenville’s Wheeling Steel Plant, the Phantom Killer ambushed a rail worker, shooting him five times. As the investigation wore on, Steubenville was thrust into the national spotlight as the Phantom’s reign of terror continued. Local historian Susan M. Guy delves into one of the city’s most infamous crimes. Read more here!
The Atlanta Ripper: The Unsolved Case of the Gate City’s Most Infamous Murders by Jeffery Wells
Beginning in 1911, a killer whose methods mimicked the famed Jack the Ripper murdered at least twenty black women, from prostitutes to working-class women and mothers. Each murder attributed to the killer occurred on a Saturday night, and for one terrifying spring in 1911, a fresh body turned up every Sunday morning. Amid a stifling investigation, the slayings continued until 1915. Investigators never discovered the identity of the killer, or killers, despite arresting as many as six men for the crimes. Read more here!
Unsolved Murders and Disappearances in Northeast Ohio by Jane Ann Turzillo
Cold case files litter the desks of authorities all across Northeast Ohio. Two Parma teachers were on their way to school one winter morning when a maniac sprang from the bushes and bludgeoned them to death. Young Melvin Horst went missing on his way home from playing with friends in 1928. Charles Collins’s death looked like suicide but was proved otherwise and has remained a mystery for more than one hundred years. Author Jane Ann Turzillo recounts eight unsolved murders and two chilling disappearances. Read more here!
Unsolved Arizona: A Puzzling History of Murder, Mayhem & Mystery by Jane Eppinga
Are inscriptions on lead crosses found on the banks of the Santa Cruz River remnants of Freemasons or a hoax? Did the Lost Dutchman’s treasure spell the end for Adolph Ruth, whose skull was found nearly a mile away from his body in the Superstition Mountains? Author Jane Eppinga details thirteen stories of disappearances, murders, and unsolved cases from Arizona. Read more here!
Long Island’s Vanished Heiress: The Unsolved Alice Parsons Kidnapping by Steven C. Drielak
Alice McDonell Parsons was the heir to a vast fortune among Long Island’s wealthy elite when she was kidnapped from Long Meadow Farm in Stony Brook in 1937. J. Edgar Hoover personally assigned his best FBI agents to the case. Botched ransom attempts, clashes between authorities, and romantic intrigue kept the investigation mired in drama. The crime remained unsolved and has captivated Long Island audiences ever since. Former Suffolk County detective Steven C. Drielak reveals previously classified FBI documents and pieces together the mystery of the Alice Parsons kidnapping. Read more here!
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