|Phila.Inquirer 24 Nov 1937|
The Levittown Attacks
"…Mary O’Connor Mamon appeared to live a dual life in Levittown, Pennsylvania. She had divorced her husband in 1957 and lived with her four sons. She had a degree in chemistry and worked in that field for a Fortune 500 fruit and vegetable processor. There she was known both as “a dependable, conscientious, and capable” employee and a co-worker who “never seemed to be fond of anybody, didn’t seem to talk much to anyone.”
In her neighborhood, the 49-year-old Mary was as well-liked as any other neighbor.
“Mary’s been in my home several times and she’s always been quite pleasant,” one neighbor told the press. “She wrapped her whole life around her kids.”
She was, however, known for her “husky, mannish appearance” and her preference for “men’s clothes” (Bear in mind this was the 1960s where women were expected to dress “appropriately”).
“Some of women where we bowled did mention however that she’d probably look a lot better if she dressed in women’s clothes,” a bowling teammate recalled.
When Mary was arrested for the murder of Nancy Glenn, her uncle told the press that she “did such strange things as write letters to herself and sign other people’s names to them,” Judge Harry S. McDevitt said. “She also wrote about herself and mailed them to other people, signing some other name than her own.”
This odd and destructive behavior apparently continued while Mary lived in Levittown, and might have contributed to her breakdown.
Mary’s oldest son, Robert, was engaged to Mary Ann Martin, but their relationship soured when Mary Ann began receiving obscene phone calls and was dissuaded from marrying Robert by her aunt Ethel Markham.
“I told Mary Ann I can’t see him, he’s sissified,” Ethel said. “He was a momma’s boy and kept on his mother’s apron strings.”
Meanwhile, neighbors began receiving anonymous letters about Mary that police later theorized were written by Mary herself. The letters referred to Mary’s arrest and trial for Nancy Glenn’s murder and questioned how the “God-fearing people” of the neighborhood could allow such a person to live among them.
Mary would later testify that she was also receiving obscene and threatening phone calls which she blamed on Mary Ann.
Although Robert vented his frustration by harassing Mary Ann, Mary Mamon focused her rage about the canceled wedding on Ethel Markham and began withdrawing from society. She quit her bowling leagues and became increasingly unstable. Eventually, she was forced to take a medical leave of absence from work.
She hatched a bizarre revenge plot against Ethel that came to fruition on March 23, 1967 — four days before Easter Sunday. … "