Murder on the Blackboard (1934)

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Reviews: 18 user | 3 critic

A pretty young music teacher is bludgeoned to death in Hildegarde's school, where she's reunited with Oscar, but the autopsy report says she was dying from poison too.



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Complete credited cast:
Addison 'Ad' Stevens
Gertrude Michael ...
Jane Davis
Detective Smiley North
Edgar Kennedy ...
Detective Donahue
Mr. MacFarland
Jackie Searl ...
Leland Stanford Jones
Frederick Vogeding ...
Otto Schweitzer, the Janitor (as Fredrik Vogeding)
Barbara Fritchie ...
Louise Halloran
Gustav von Seyffertitz ...
Dr. Max Von Immen
Tom Herbert ...
Detective McTeague
Jed Prouty ...
Dr. Levine


There are plenty of guilty secrets at the school where Hildegarde Withers teaches. When she finds the body of the pretty music teacher, she calls in her old friend Inspector Piper, who promptly arrests the obvious suspect. Clues multiply and everyone looks suspicious as Piper and Miss Withers continue their battle of the sexes. Written by Rod Crawford <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Drama | Mystery





Release Date:

15 June 1934 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Det mystiske Tegn  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(RCA Victor System)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Edgar Kennedy returns as the slow-thinking Donovan although he seems to have been promoted to Detective Sergeant. In both films he is knocked unconscious. In "The Penguin Pool Murders" in a bathroom and here in a cellar. Kennedy's iconic bald pate is visible although in the first film his head was shaved. See more »


Two wide-mouthed bottles appear out of nowhere on Miss Halloran's desk as Miss Withers searches it. See more »


Hildegarde Withers: [to Stevens] Unfortunately the police, although they may be fools, they're not sentimental fools.
See more »


References She Done Him Wrong (1933) See more »


The Sidewalks of New York
Music by Charles Lawlor (1894)
Played after the credits
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User Reviews

Pure fun for fans of Edna May Oliver...
25 November 2003 | by (U.S.A.) – See all my reviews

MURDER ON THE BLACKBOARD is good old-fashioned fun with Edna May Oliver, my favorite character actress of the '30s, sleuthing in Nancy Drew manner with James Gleason at her side as a crusty detective.

This time the amateur sleuth helps solve a case involving a murdered music teacher and gets herself into deep trouble with the killer who means business when he tries to throw an axe at her in a dark basement cellar. Edna May's brisk, no nonsense manner fits the character of Hildegarde Withers to perfection and she's never at a loss for a quick retort when Gleason becomes a bit overbearing. Their game of one-up-man-ship is what keeps the story moving briskly to a satisfying conclusion.

The fact that it's terribly dated in dialogue and situations is what gives this little mystery a quaint sort of charm. One of the better in a series of Hildegarde Withers murder mysteries.

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