Harry Powers Was One of the Most Notorious Serial Killers from Quiet Dell, West Virginia

**** Quiet Dell, West Virginia – Harry Powers was executed on the morning of March 18, 1932, plummeting through the gallows at the West Virginia Penitentiary and being pronounced dead after 11 minutes. His legacy as one of the first modern-day labeled serial killers has inspired books, movies, and podcasts, notably the 1953 novel “Night of the Hunter” and its 1955 film adaptation. The case was reimagined in 2013 by Jayne Anne Phillips in her novel “Quiet Dell.”****

**** Born Herman Drenth in the Netherlands in 1892, Powers emigrated with his family to Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and eventually settled in Quiet Dell, West Virginia, under the alias Harry Powers in 1924. Using various aliases, Powers engaged in lonely-heart correspondence, marrying Luella Strother, and luring other women through personal ads, leading to horrific crimes in the area.****

**** The investigation into Powers unfolded with the disappearance of Asta Eicher and her children, as well as Dorothy Lemke of Massachusetts, who became entangled in his web of deception and violence. Police uncovered the gruesome reality behind Powers’ fa├žade when they found secret rooms beneath his garage in Quiet Dell, in which they discovered the remains of his victims.****

**** Powers’ arrest sparked hysteria and public outrage, leading to his trial and execution, where thousands gathered to witness the event. Although only five victims were identified, some experts believe that Powers may have been responsible for more deaths. Despite his confession to only the five murders, it is widely speculated that his actual body count was much higher.****