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Caroline Luetgert (nee Roepke)
Adolph Luetgert's first wife.
Born: 1849, in Chicago.
Variations of name: Rutke, Rabker, Rabe.
It is unclear whether she was related to the family of Wilhelm Rabe and his daughter, Louise, who married Diedrich Bicknese.
Married: April 13, 1872, to Adolph Luetgert, in Cook County.
Died: November 17, 1877.
Address at time of death: 725 Clybourn Ave., Chicago.
Burial: She was buried Nov. 19, 1877, in Waldheim Cemetery (now Forest Home) in Forest Park, Illinois, next to a Maria Roepke, who died November 24, 1874, at the age of 37.
Although some news articles at the time of Adolph Luetgert's trial raised rumors that he might have killed his first wife as well, her burial record at Waldheim Cemetery appears to refute that. The following writing from the cemetery ledger lists her cause of death for Caroline Luetgert.
The writing is difficult to make out, but it appears to be the German word Unterleibsentzündung, which meant "peritonitis due to intestinal bacteria released into the abdominal cavity." A request to the Cook County Clerk's Office for Caroline Luetgert's death certificate did not turn up any document for her. See the rest of the document concerning Caroline's burial.
View the Luetgert-Bicknese family tree.