April 2021: The Unabomber’s Cabin

Theodore “Ted” Kaczynski—also known as the Unabomber—was arrested at his cabin near Lincoln, Montana, on April 3, 1996. This time-lapse video shows the cabin being reconstructed at FBI Headquarters in 2020.

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On April 3, 1996, FBI agents arrested Theodore “Ted” Kaczynski, also known as the Unabomber, at his cabin in Montana. For 17 years, Kaczynski had delivered and mailed bombs to his targets throughout the country. 

The FBI’s April Artifact of the Month is Kaczynski’s cabin. It contained a trove of evidence that helped prosecutors build a case against him. 

Terry Turchie served as the assistant special agent in charge of the task force that investigated the case. He described the cabin as a dark and gloomy place. It had one dirty window that only let in a few rays of sunlight.

As agents searched the cabin, they discovered shelves filled with bottles and jars. 

Most of the cartons contained compounds used to make bombs. The shelves also housed pieces of metal and plastic pipes, electrical wire, and other bomb components. 

FBI agents stopped searching the cabin after about 24 hours because they discovered a bomb wrapped under a bed in the cabin. 

Kaczynski received a life sentence for his crimes.