The Denville 13; Murder, Redemption & Forgiveness in Small-town New Jersey

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Denville in the 1950's was an idyllic place to live, yet a dark chapter in the era's history has remained uncovered.  During the summer of 1953, a wealthy traveler with a secret rap sheet as a convicted sex offender arrived in town to continue his misdeeds.  A group of thirteen local boys ranging in age from fourteen to twenty-two took it upon themselves to teach the man a lesson and drive him out of town.  What resulted was his brutal death and the largest number of people ever indicted for murder in the nation at the time.  The harrowing trial and its aftermath revealed a town forced to grapple with how to protect its youth and come to terms with how to protect its youth and come to terms with the gruesome incident.  Local historian Peter Zablocki covers the crime and a small town's path to redemption.


Peter Zablocki, The History Press, 2021. 95 p.