April 10, 1927
It was motorist S.H. Henry who saw it first, bobbing in the Grand Canal with slow, horrible motions. He leaned in and saw a middle aged woman’s body, fully clothed save for her hat, bound round with rope. He ran for the cops. When they hauled her out, they found there were no ropes, but long strands of seaweed that had caught round the body as it floated through the gentle waterways.
A bruise on the brow suggested violence, but ultimately it was determined that the victim, Mrs. Margaret Kelly of Chicago, had killed herself after long despondency over ill health. Perhaps she vainly hoped the balmy winds and lovely vistas of Venice-by-the-Sea would sooth her worries. She had $207 cash when found, more than enough for her passage first to Sharp & Nolan undertakers (beachside specialists in these messy water cases), thence to Chicago and the afterlife.