1936
Bruno Hauptmann
Bruno Hauptmann
AP
Hauptmann was executed in the electric chair in New Jersey's Trenton State Prison on April 3, 1936.

An illegal German immigrant with a criminal record, Hauptmann was tried and found guilty in the 1932 kidnapping and death of the infant son of venerated American aviator Charles Lindbergh.

Followed by everyone in the United States and a large part of the world, the proceedings called the "trial of the century" devolved into a media circus and ended with a controversial guilty verdict. The suspect already had been convicted of breaking into a mayor's office in Germany. Despite Hauptmann's repeated professions of innocence and questionable testimony from several witnesses, including Lindbergh, he was convicted of first-degree murder.

The execution also sated an American public thirsty for vengeance and angered by immigration that many perceived responsible for the nation's economic woes.