Thursday, Jan. 13, 1921: Married by hypnosis

Posted on February 20th, 2006 – 11:38 PM
By Ben Welter

For three cents at the newsstand, readers of the Minnesota Daily Star got a steady diet of cops, courts and human interest stories. Much of it was ripped from the wires; others, like this Page One story, were written by staffers toiling in anonymity. Long before rohypnol, there was … hypnosis:


Judge E.A. Montgomery today annulled the marriage of Marvel Lange Linnehan, 19 years old, and George E. Linnehan, 30 years old. They married April 5, 1920. The girl bride charged that she had been forced by hypnotic influence of her mother-in-law into the marriage against her will.

She testified that when taken before W.E. Bates, court commissioner, by Linnehan and his mother, she refused to answer the questions asked her during the marriage ceremony.

According to the story Mrs. Linnehan told Judge Montgomery, Linnehan besought her to marry him 30 days after she had made his acquaintance. She was clerk and he a driver for the L.A. Smith grocery, 403 E. Lake street. She said Linnehan introduced her to his mother, Mrs. L.A. Glasen, and at once the two began bringing pressure on her to become his bride.

Mrs. Glaser told her, she testified, that Linnehan would join the navy if she did not marry him. Pitying the mother, she finally consented to the marriage, she said. No date was fixed. She said Mrs. Glaser controlled her actions by hypnotic influence.

One day, she said, Linnehan telephoned her to come over to the home of his mother. When she arrived there, she testified, Linnehan and his mother took her by the arm and escorted her to the courthouse, where a license was obtained and the ceremony performed.

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