Bobby Franks

Birth Name:
Robert Emanuel Franks
Birth Date:
September 19, 1909
Birth Place:
Chicago, Illinois
Death Date:
May 21, 1924
Place of Death:
South Ellis Avenue on 50th Street, Chicago, Illinois
Cause of Death:
Homicide - beaten and asphyxiated
Cemetery Name:
Rosehill Cemetery and Mausoleum
Claim to Fame:
Crime and their Victims
Bobby Franks was the son of the very wealthy Chicago real estate speculator and developer Jacob Franks. On May 22, 1924, the body of 14-year-old Robert "Bobby" Franks was found murdered on Chicago’s South Side. The murder would launch the infamous Leopold and Loeb trial. The criminal trial that followed — “the trial of the century” — would go on to captivate the nation and catapult defense attorney Clarence Darrow to fame.

Up until modern times the same descriptors are thrown around Leopold and Loeb – “brilliant”, “smart”, “genius” – in their intellectual pursuit of what they called, “The Perfect Crime.” In fact, it was anything but the “perfect” crime but rather a brutal, sadistic murder perpetrated by two white, wealthly, self-entitled Chicago rich kids who killed Bobby Franks for thrills. The fact of the matter is that Leopold and Loeb were two bored, self-centered narcissistic psychopaths who had an inflated sense of their own importance, a deep need for excessive attention and admiration coupled with a total lack of empathy for others.

As far as brilliant let’s just quickly take a look at Nathan Leopold. After spending decades in prison he took up Spanish as he had a promise of a job in Puerto Rico if he was ever released. Reports often cite his knowledge of 7 to 24 foreign languages as evidence of his superior intellect. Yet when he was finally release and working in Puerto Rico, it took him nearly two years to learn how to communicate despite his having years of free time in his cell to study.

Cemetery Information:

Final Resting Place:

Rosehill Cemetery and Mausoleum

5800 N. Ravenswood

Chicago, Illinois, 60660


North America


Grave Location:

Section T

Grave Location Description

In the Jewish section in the Southwest area of Section T on the road. His mother, father, brother and sister are all buried together.

Interesting to note that all photography is forbidden and the staff refuses, even after almost a century, the divulge the location of the Jacob Franks Mausoleum (psst … it’s Section T on the road).

In another interesting tidbit, both the Loeb family plot and Leopold Family plot are close by the Jacob Franks Mausoleum. Sadly all three fathers in this horrible affair died within 5 years after the trial – all broken men. But don’t look for their murderous sons within these cemetery grounds. Richard was cremated and, rumor has it, was secretly buried in an unmarked grave south of Chicago while Nathan donated his body to science.

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