Lyman Elledge Courtesy photo David Elledge
Lyman Samuel Elledge

Lyman Samuel Elledge


Lyman Samuel Elledge
65 YOA
Colesburg, IA
Delaware County
September 28, 1951
Case summary compiled by Jody Ewing
Delaware County in Iowa
Delaware County in Iowa
Colesburg in Delaware CountyColesburg in Delaware County

Lyman Elledge, 65, was found bludgeoned to death on the front lawn of the Barney Wiskus home in Colesburg, Iowa, at about 7 a.m. on Friday, September 28, 1951.

Delaware County Coroner Dr. Paul G. Meyer said autopsy results showed Elledge died from a skull fracture wound to the back of his head.

In a Dubuque Telegraph-Herald article dated October 7, 1951, Sheriff Arthur Longseth of the Delaware County Sheriff’s Office said various theories were being investigated, but robbery was not being considered a motive.

State agents and Deputy Dorrance Fowler were also assisting in the investigation.

Elledge’s glasses were found a block from where his body was discovered, and his shoes had been removed.

Lyman ElledgeCourtesy photo David Elledge
Lyman Samuel Elledge

According to a published report in the Cedar Rapids Gazette dated September 30, 1951, people passing by on the way to work at about 6 a.m. had seen Elledge alive at the spot where he later was found dead.

About Lyman Elledge

Lyman S. Elledge was born in Delaware, Iowa, on May 18, 1886 to Jasper V. Elledge and Ida Belle (Lewis) Elledge.

Lyman was one of 11 siblings: brothers Jerrett, Joel, Daniel, James, Jasper, Bert and Russell, and sisters Gertrude, Violet and Ida.

Lyman married Frances Irene Feidt on June 13, 1910, and the couple had three children, including Viola Mae and Marie Geneva.

Services were held Monday, October 1 at 2 p.m. at the Rhines funeral home in Edgewood.

Lyman Elledge gravestoneCourtesy photo P2-ABQ,
Lyman Elledge is buried at Asbury Cemetery in Elkport, Iowa.

Lyman was preceded in death by his parents, his brothers Jerrett and Joel, and sisters Gertrude and Violet.

He was buried at Asbury Cemetery in Elkport, Clayton County, Iowa.

Information Needed

If you have any information about Lyman Elledge’s unsolved murder please contact the Delaware County Sheriff’s Office at (563) 927-3135.



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3 Responses to Lyman Elledge

  1. Patrick Kerrigan says:

    Mr. Elledge, thanks for the follow up on this case. It was nice of your father to make the effort to solve this case. Especially, since the victim, was his uncle, and he provided the answers for the family.

    Although, no one went to prison, all the parties involved have gone to their graves. A higher power most likely has dealt with the parties involved. I would consider this case closed. No further police action necessary.

  2. David Elledge says:

    My father Bert Elledge Jr. nephew of Lyman Elledge, reopened the case when Bert was
    Sheriff of Delaware County, Iowa in the 1980’s. Bert is now deceased. Dad told me before his death, that Lyman was estranged from his wife and they were living apart.
    Lyman was seeing another woman, and another Colesburg man was also seeing her.
    Some time before his murder, Lyman came home and found a fire burning in the staircase that went up to his bedroom, in the house he was renting. He thought someone
    believed he was in bed, and tried to burn the house with him in it, or that the fire was set
    to claim insurance fraud by arson.
    Lyman’s body was found without shoes, and his glasses found a block away. The info
    my father, Sheriff Elledge, related to me was that Lyman was at his girlfriend’s residence
    when the woman’s other boyfriend burst in and caught them together. Lyman ran from the house not even putting his shoes on. As he ran the other man chases him and hit Lyman in the head (probably where his glasses were found) by what the coroner thought
    may have been a 2X4 or similar club. Lyman suffered a skull fracture, but staggered to
    the lawn of Mr. Wiskus, collapsing there. People saw him moving in the prone position
    at dawn, but he succumbed and died. My father told me who killed him, and the man is long deceased. Lyman is dead. The killer is dead, and Sheriff Longseth, Sheriff Barr, and
    Sheriff Bert Elledge Jr. Is also deceased.

  3. Patrick Kerrigan says:

    Not a lot of details in this case, but it took place a couple of months before I was born. It would be a nice case for cold case investgation training. I wonder if the Delaware County Sheriff’s office even has any records or evidence from the case.

    It mentions that he was found on the front lawn of the Barney Wiskus Home. I wonder what kind of place. Also, if it was not his residence, then why was he there. Did he wrk or live there. It would be nice to know.

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