An itinerant watchmaker in his native Germany, Seefeld was also a student of scripture, able to quote long Bible passages from memory. He preferred to sleep in the open, regardless of weather, and sometimes passed himself off as a witch to gullible peasants, professing ability to cast evil spells on their livestock. First charged with the murder of a young boy in 1908, Seefeld escaped conviction through lack of evidence , but spent nearly a quarter-century in prison on various convictions for child molestation. Committed to a mental home near Potsdam, he remained in custody for two years without speaking a word to attendants. Seefeld did not always choose to murder his victims , once traveling with a kidnapped boy for three months and sparing his life. When he killed, the drifter's favorite weapon was a homemade poison , concocted from wild plants and fungi, that left his chosen targets in an attitude of peace, as if they were relaxing for a nap. Ironically, authorities recorded that his murder victims showed no signs of sexual abuse, while children he molested were allowed to live. In custody, Seefeld confessed to a total of twelve murders. In some cases, names were unknown or forgotten, but Adolf remembered most of his children - or, at least, the ones he had dispatched in recent years. Eleven-year-old Kurz Gnirk was slain on April 16, 1933, followed by ten-year-old Ernest Tesdorf, on November 2. A bare five days later, Seefeld had murdered Wolfgang Metzdorf, age seven, rebounding on November 22 with the killing of ten-year-old Alfred Praetorius. Hans Korn, age 11, was killed on January 16, 1934, while two victims - six-year-old Edgar Diettrich and four-year-old Arthur Dinn - were found together at New Ruppin, on October 16. Seefeld's arrest followed the murder of a boy named Zimmerman, on February 23, 1935, and he was convicted at trial a year later, executed on May 23, 1936.