Nisha Rathode (Editor)

Levi Weeks

Updated on
Share on FacebookTweet on TwitterShare on LinkedInShare on Reddit
Name  Levi Weeks
Siblings  Ezra Weeks
Structures  Auburn, Gloucester

Levi Weeks 3bpblogspotcomRHk5fP6iA9wTQUnExO7dVIAAAAAAA
Died  1819, Natchez, Mississippi, United States

Levi Weeks (1776–1819) was the accused in the infamous Manhattan Well Murder trial of 1800, the first murder trial in the United States for which there is a recorded transcript. At the time of the murder, Weeks was a young carpenter in New York City. He was the brother of Ezra Weeks, one of New York's most successful builders of the time.


Levi Weeks The Trial of Levi Weeks for the Murder of Elma Sands Historical

Early life

Levi Weeks Aaron Burr counsel to Levi Weeks may have had additional motive to

Levi Weeks was born in 1776 in Greenwich, Massachusetts. He moved to New York City in 1798 to work for his older brother Ezra.

Murder trial

Weeks was accused of murdering Gulielma "Elma" Sands, a young woman whom he had been courting. Elma disappeared on the evening of December 22, 1799. Some of her possessions were found two days later near the recently created Manhattan Well in Lispenard Meadows, located in today's SoHo near the intersection of Greene and Spring Streets. Her body was recovered from the well on January 2, 1800. Before leaving her boarding house on the 22nd, Elma told her cousin Catherine Sands that she and Levi were to be secretly married that night.

Levi Weeks The story of Manhattans first major murder mystery starring

The trial, which took place on March 31 and April 1, 1800, was sensational. Through his brother's connections and wealth, Weeks retained three of New York's most prominent attorneys, Henry Brockholst Livingston, Aaron Burr, and Alexander Hamilton. Chief Justice John Lansing, Jr. presided on the bench, and future Mayor of New York Cadwallader David Colden was the prosecutor.

Although Elma was seen leaving with Weeks and a witness claimed to have seen Weeks making measurements at the well the Sunday before the murder, Weeks was acquitted after only 5 minutes of jury deliberation.

Post-trial life

The public strongly disagreed with the verdict, and Weeks was ostracized by the citizens of the city, forcing him to leave New York. He eventually settled in Natchez, Mississippi, where he became a well-respected architect and builder. He married Ann Greenleaf in Natchez and they had four children. Weeks died in Natchez in 1819, at the age of 43. His Natchez residence, Auburn Mansion, is a National Historic Landmark.

In popular culture

In the musical Hamilton by Lin-Manuel Miranda, the song "Non-Stop" references the trial. However, Henry Brockholst was not mentioned in the song. Additionally, the trial's date is changed, taking place at some unspecified point before the Constitutional Convention of 1787, during the government of the Articles of Confederation.

The CBS Radio Mystery Theater episode of March 28, 1978, The Ghost In The Well, is about the trial and aqcuittal of Levi Weeks, as told by the ghost of Elma Sands.


Levi Weeks Wikipedia

Similar Topics
Escapade romaine
Antonella Serra Zanetti
Guy Reschenthaler