June 29, 1983: Marjorie Congdon Caldwell settles with her children

On this day in Duluth in 1983, St. Louis County probate court approved a settlement between Marjorie Congdon Caldwell and her children over the approximately $8 million Congdon estate inheritance. After Caldwell had been acquitted of conspiring to kill her adoptive mother, Elisabeth Congdon, five of her children—Peter, Andy, Suzanne, Heather, and Rebecca—filed a civil lawsuit against her in September 1982 in St. Louis County probate court in Duluth. In their petition, the children objected to the distribution of any funds to Marjorie from Elisabeth’s estate, her living trust, and the two trusts established by Chester Congdon. The children challenged their mother’s right to her inheritance under a state law that prohibited anyone from inheriting money from the deceased if shown to be involved in that person’s murder. The petition alleged a continuing murder investigation into Marjorie’s possible involvement with her mother’s murder. Stephen and Rick sided with their mother, proclaiming her innocence and questioning their siblings’ motives. Under the terms of the settlement, Marjorie would receive about $1.5 million from the larger of the two trusts set up by her grandfather. Marjorie would also receive the interest from one-third of her children’s share of that trust, which amounted to about $4.5 million. The remainder of the inheritance monies would go to Marjorie’s seven children, including a second trust amounting to approximately $2 million. Learn more about the killings at Glensheen here.

Marjorie Congdon’s mug shot from her 1991 arrest for arson in Ajo, Arizona. (Image: Pima County Sheriff’s Office)ll

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