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Monday Mystery (on a Tuesday): A Drop of Schnapps

Posted by on January 29, 2019

Jersey Shore

Note: Last week Jay, Colorado Joe, and Opope chose an easy mystery.


The date was May 6, 1937. Dietrich Von Schnapps was traveling to Lakehurst, New Jersey, on the Hindenburg. While in the U.S., Dietrich planned to sell stolen U-boat plans to the American government.

His traveling companion, Hans Gundlach, had discovered Deitrich’s treachery, and di what he considered to be his patriotic duty. First he stole Dietrich’s wallet so that he could not be identified. Then, shortly before the men reached their destination, Hans pushed Dietrich out the window the airship. Dietrich fell into the Atlantic and drowned.

Minutes later the Hindenburg exploded, and both men were listed as dying in the disaster. No one ever knew that the spy in the sky had been murdered.

The Case:

A man’s body floats ashore on a New Jersey beach. No one ever identifies it.

The Mystery:

How and why did he die?

(The winning solution MUST contain all of these elements, please don’t assume information from a previous question.)

Hint #1: The man was German

Hint #2: The victim’s demise occurred just before World War II


You’re free to ask anything, (please keep it to one question a post for simplicity’s sake,) but Jurd can only answer your questions with:

  • Yes
  • No
  • Yes and No
  • Irrelevant
  • I don’t know
  • Rephrase your question
  • Define what you mean by…

Disclaimer: Monday Mysteries are culled from the 1993 Milton Bradley game, Crack the Case – but don’t go peeking.

Skinner Co. makes no claim to the intellectual property presented here, we’re just a number of friends playing a board game in a digital living room.

106 Responses to Monday Mystery (on a Tuesday): A Drop of Schnapps

  1. Colorado Joe

    Was the body missing a head?

  2. Colorado Joe

    Was the body missing fingers, hence no fingerprints?

  3. Colorado Joe

    Is it safe to assume this is pre-DNA identification?

  4. Colorado Joe

    Was an autopsy performed on the body?

  5. Colorado Joe

    Did the autopsy reveal any toxins in the deceased body’s blood?

  6. Colorado Joe

    Basing this off of the title, “A Drop of Schnapps”, was alcohol found in the blood?

  7. Colorado Joe

    Seems too easy, but did the autopsy find that the person died of drowning?

  8. Jay

    Was the body ever a fisherman?

  9. Jeffry V.

    Oh! I saw this one on tv!!! Was it Zombies?

  10. Mencheck

    Was the body bloated?

  11. Jay

    Was the bodyโ€™s name Schnapps?

  12. Melissa La Porte

    Was the man the victim of a sinking ship?

  13. Jay

    Was the body conscious when it entered the water?

  14. Opope

    Was the body in such a state as to still be recognizable?

  15. Colorado Joe

    Beyond signs of drowning, did the autopsy reveal anything else relevant to why he was in the water, e.g., a blow to the head, sings of physical altercation?

  16. Colorado Joe

    Was the boy wearing a sailor’s uniform?

  17. Jay

    Was Schnapps pushed into the water?

  18. Pat Toner

    Was he the last person to die after a nuclear apocalypse with no other survivors?

  19. Jay

    Was Schnapps pushed by a friend?

  20. Jay

    Was Schnapps on the boat under his own will?

  21. Pat Toner

    Was the man murdered?

  22. Tom

    Was it a boat schnapps was pushed out of?

  23. Colorado Joe

    Was Schnapp’s pushed off of a pier?

  24. Colorado Joe

    Did Schnapps know the person who pushed him into the water?

  25. Colorado Joe

    Is the crime related to a mob/organized crime?

  26. Jay

    Did schnapps fall out of a plane?

  27. Jay

    Was the murder a crime of opportunity?

  28. Jay

    Was the murder for profit?

  29. Melissa La Porte

    Was Schnapps a former Nazi hiding out in the States who was then pushed off a boat (maybe even from Ellis Island) by a a concentration camp survivor?

  30. Jeffery

    Did Dr. Jones throw him out of a blimp?

  31. Hugh

    Was the man dropped in the ocean carrying fake in order to release false military plans, a la Operation Mincemeat?

  32. Jay Langejans

    Did Schnapps fall in off a cliff?

  33. Jay Langejans

    Did schnapps enter the water head first?

  34. Jay Langejans

    Did schnapps enter the water feet first?

  35. Jay Langejans

    Was schnapps part of the military?

  36. Colorado Joe

    Did Schnapps happen to be flying through the air at the time he was pushed, say in a zeppelin?

  37. Colorado Joe

    Was he pushed off one of NYC’s famous bridges?

  38. Colorado Joe

    Was he a member of the Nazi Party?

  39. Colorado Joe

    Was he a spy for the Germans?

  40. jrdskinner


  41. Colorado Joe

    Summarizing what we know…

    Out victim’s name is Schnapps, who is a Nazi spy. He died just before WWII started by drowning after being pushed into the water by someone he knew. He was conscious when he entered the water.

    The body, while bloated, was intact. An autopsy revealed nothing other than drowning as a cause of death.

    We still do not know the specifics of why he was killed (unless being a Nazi is enough?). Nor do we know where he was when he was pushed.

    He was not on a sinking ship. In fact, not on a boat at all.

    He was not on a pier.
    He was not in a plane.
    He was not on a bridge.
    He was not in a blimp.
    He was not on a cliff.

    The crime was not mob related.
    The crime was not for profit.
    The crime was and was not a crime of opportunity.

    Please respond to this if I missed anything or you disagree with an part of the summary. As Jay noted, the important thing to figure out now is where he was pushed from.

    • jrdskinner

      To clarify, because I think something has been misinterpreted: He WAS ‘in a blimp’

      (He was not, however, killed by Henry Jones Jr. )

  42. Opope

    Did he drown at the beach? (was he dead by the time he reached the beach?)

  43. Jay

    Did the autopsy reveal sea water in his lungs?

  44. Jay

    Was schnapps a double agent?

  45. Jay

    Did schnappโ€™s death prevent important intelegence from being passed on to the high command?

  46. jrdskinner

    How and why did he die?

  47. Colorado Joe

    Was Schnapps killed by the German military when they found out he was a double agent?

  48. jrdskinner

    Just a reminder:

    How and why did he die?

    (The winning solution MUST contain all of these elements, please donโ€™t assume information from a previous question.)

  49. Colorado Joe

    Colonel Schnapps, of the German Air Patrol, had become increasingly disenchanted with the Nazi administration in his homeland. It was obvious a war was coming and in his opinion, both his country and the world would be the worse for it, regardless of the outcome. With this in mind, he began passing intelligence on to the Americans at every opportunity. When his spying was discovered, unfortunately before he could pass along critical information on plans to invade Poland, he was unceremoniously pushed from the blimp he commanded into the cold waters of the Hudson, from where, he drowned and washed ashore in New Jersey, some might say a fate worse than death.

    • jrdskinner

      Ha! I’m going to call this close enough – there is a detail that’s been missed, but I don’t know that it’s fair to spend further effort trying to fish it out. Solution up shortly – easy, medium, or hard for next Monday?


  50. MPAT

    Darn it! That blimp no threw us off!

    • jrdskinner

      That’s why I’m always trying to convince people to keep the questions straightforward – Was it Dr. Jones who threw him off the blimp? No. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  51. Colorado Joe

    Was the missing piece the wallet or the fact that the blimp was the Hindenburg?

    Let’s try medium, please, haven’t done one of those.

    Also, I know you are SOOPER BUSY, so thanks for running these. MUCH FUN! SUCH CHALLENGE! WOW!*

    * I am grandpa to a Shiba Inu, so Doge Speak is allowed. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    • jrdskinner

      The fact that the blimp was the Hindenburg – but making you chase that would have had us back looking for Astorbilt’s assistant’s brother. ๐Ÿ˜‰

      – and no problem at all, I’m enjoying it as a sort of DMing lite. I’ll just have to remember to post something to the site if we’ve decided to sneak off to the pub while questions are out.

  52. Opope

    Great job guys!!!

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