This is a tough one to share, not only is it an unsolved case, but there just simply isn’t much available online about it. The case of Barbara Blackstone is set in tiny Lyndon Station, WI, and is less than 2 square miles in size, the population is less than 500.
Barbara Blackstone was a well-liked teacher in the New Lisbon, WI, school district. She taught Business Ed and Computers. She was employed with the school for 3 years and she and her husband Tom had a house out in a more rural area.
At 1:40pm on Thursday July 9, 1987, Barbara had filled up her car with gas and also a gas can as she and her husband were mowing an area of their property for a family picnic. This would be the last time that anyone would see Barbara alive. Except her killer. Tom would return home from work around 6pm to find her car with the keys inside parked by a shed but Barbara was nowhere to be found.
Tom started to call the neighbors to find Barbara when there wasn’t a note in the house. When he still wasn’t able to locate her, he called the sheriff’s department at about 9:30pm.
Volunteers searched for Barbara for a week on foot, horseback, and four-wheel drive vehicles. Eventually the National Guard helicopter was used along with bloodhounds, but Barbara had vanished.
Investigators theorized that someone followed Barbara home from the gas station. The police believe that she did not know her attacker but there were no signs of struggle, and they suggest that if she was at gunpoint she would have gone along with her abductor.
There was a witness who passed the property around 2:30pm that day and saw Barbara’s car but didn’t see her. There is a 45-minute window for when she was abducted.
Almost a month later, a hunter scouting some woods south of Blanchardville, came upon a decomposing body. It was identified as Barbara Blackstone by dental records. She had been dead 25-30 days and she was 75 miles away from where she was taken.
A cause of death was never determined because Barbara had been exposed to the elements, 90-degree heat, and various animals for almost a month. There wasn’t much left of her remains.
Investigators did not miss that Barbara had been found near Argyle, WI, where Barbara was originally raised. Was this a simple coincidence?
Initially it was considered a coincidence that she was found less than 10 miles from where she was raised, but Barbara’s father speculated that she may have told her killer that she had a savings account in Argyle, hoping it would save her life.
Barbara Blackstone was a popular teacher who apparently had no enemies. There were no suspects, no witnesses, and almost no evidence in the case. The trail was cold.
The case was reopened in 2009, and still remains unsolved. No suspects have come forward or have been named. There is hope that someone may come forward with information but it’s just as reasonable to believe that the killer is also now dead and took the secrets of Barbara’s death with them.
While three decades have passed, Blackstone’s case has not been forgotten. The popular computer and business teacher left an impact on her students, including Marc Andreessen, the creator of the Netscape web browser. In 2009, the case was reopened, and Andreessen offered a $25,000 reward for information in the case.
Stay Weird Wisconsin