The Medderses and Their Creditors

It was ten years ago, in February, 1967, that the fairy tale world of Ernest and Margaret Medders collapsed. They were forced into bankruptcy by 800 panicky creditors who had discovered that Medders’ supposed oil inheritance was really $3,000,000 in borrowed money, with no collateral.

Now Margaret Medders has apparently gone on another spending spree, allegedly leaving behind unpaid bills in a number of places, including the Fairmont Hotel, which claims she owes them more than $7,000. Recently Mrs. Medders was indicted for theft because of the Fairmont bill.

There is one other bill which has gone unpaid since Ernest Medders died in November, 1975. It is the bill for his gravestone, which was never delivered. Ernest Medders easily is the most famous person buried in Muenster’s Sacred Heart Cemetery, but his grave is very difficult to find. It is identified only by a temporary marker, a tiny hand-engraved piece of metal, staked just above the ground. It was left behind by the funeral home.

Margaret Medders ordered an $850 blue granite memorial stone from the Richards Monument Company of Gainesville. Recently owner John Richards explained that Mrs. Medders paid him $350 cash and wrote a check for $500. The check bounced, so Richards never engraved the stone. “I’ve still got her check,” he said. “I kept thinking that one day she’d come back and make it good, but she never has.”


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