PRESS RELEASE: Crime historian launches series of “Two-Dollar Terror” ebooks

July 15, 2014

CONTACT: Richard O Jones

Crime historian launches series of “Two-Dollar Terror” ebooks

HAMILTON, OHIO — In the spirit of the “penny dreadfuls” and “dime novels” of history, former daily journalist-turned-crime historian Richard O Jones has launched a series of true crime stories under the brand “A Two-Dollar Terror”.

“My ‘Two-Dollar Terror’ series will consist of short, novellette and novella length historic true crime tales culled from the archives of newspapers across America,” Jones said.

The first three volumes, which cost $1.99 each, detail murders from Jones’ hometown of Hamilton, Ohio, a small Midwestern city with a dark history of brutal crimes, dating back to its founding as a fort to supply troops during the Indian Wars.

“Most people still have a recollection of the infamous ‘Easter Massacre’ in 1975, when James Ruppert killed 11 members of his family while they were visiting his mother for the holiday,” Jones said. “But Ruppert was actually Hamilton’s third mass family murder. I don’t think any other American city the size of Hamilton would be able to boast such a gruesome feat. If they can, I’d like to know about it.”

One of those previous mass familicides is documented in A Two-Dollar Terror #2, “The Gas Fume Fugitive: The True Crime of Charlie King,” about the murder of three sons and a wife which took place in 1929. A future Two-Dollar Terror will explore “Lloyd Russell’s Rampage,” Hamilton’s first familicide, which resulted in the deaths of eight family members in 1925.

Titles in the series include:

  • “The Sleepwalking Slasher: The True Crime of Samuel J. Keelor”
  • “The Arsenic Affair: The True Crime of Belle Wardlow and Harry Cowdry”
  • “The Gas Fume Fugitive: The True Crime of Charlie King”

While these stories are all part of Jones’ hometown history, the next two volumes will detail “love triangle” murders in Waukesha, Wisconsin, and Muskogee, Oklahoma. But Jones promises that there still plenty of “good murders” in Greater Hamilton to explore, too.

The release coincides with a revamping of the author’s website,, which has been rebranded at True Crime Historian. The site includes sample chapters from these three titles as well a selection of other true crime narratives, including unsolved Cincinnati murders from the 19th century.

Richard O Jones spent 25 years as a writer, editor and columnist for the Hamilton Journal-News. He left the grind of daily journalism in the fall of 2013 to pursue his interest in history, especially true crime history.

Jones’ first full-length true crime book, “Cincinnati’s Savage Seamstress: The Shocking Edythe Klumpp Murder Scandal” is due September 16 from History Press.

“Oddly enough, I never covered a cops-and-courts beat in my career as a journalist,” he said. “Never had a desire to.”

Jones was an award-winning arts journalist and the Ohio Associated Press “Feature Writer of the Year” in 2011.

The “Two-Dollar Terrors” are now available as ebooks in a variety of formats, including Kindle, at Jones will make the titles available in chapbook and audiobook editions later this year.

Samples from current titles are available at

Review copies, cover art and author photos are available from the author. Please specify format.




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A Two-Dollar Terror #2
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