This collection features newspaper articles about the murder of Marilyn Sheppard and the subsequent trial of Dr. Sam Sheppard. The articles appearing here are taken from scrapbooks kept by Coroner Samuel Gerber.

The media coverage of Sam Sheppard’s trial was questioned for bias and whether or not the media impacted Sam’s right to receive a fair trial. Ultimately, Sam was awarded a retrial via the Sheppard v. Maxwell decision in the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court ruled that Sam had not received a fair trial in 1954 for a number of reasons including the State of Ohio’s failure of “duty to protect Sheppard from the inherently prejudicial publicity which saturated the community.”

The newspaper articles in this collection come from the Cleveland Press, the Cleveland News, and The Plain Dealer. The Cleveland Press went out of business in 1982 but was a major player in local news around the time Marilyn was murdered. The Cleveland News was purchased by the Cleveland Press in 1960. Cleveland State University has a copyright agreement with The Plain Dealer to post articles related to the Sheppard case.

(Cleveland State University was donated the archives of the Cleveland Press in 1984. Details about the donation and how to access articles and photos from the Cleveland Press can be found here.)


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Articles cited in Sheppard v. Maxwell

Sensational News Treatment of the Sam Sheppard Case