Edward Theodore Gein (August 27, 1906 - July 26, 1984) was one of the most notorious serial killers of the United States. Although he may have committed "only" two murders, what he did to his victims additionally shocked the world. His crimes included murder, mutilation and grave robbing.

Police investigating the disappearance of a store clerk named Bernice Worden in 1957 suspected Gein to be involved. When they entered his house, they found the body of the store clerk butchered in the summer kitchen like a recently killed deer. Searching the house, they found severed heads in the bedroom, skin used to make lampshades and chair seats, skulls made into soup bowls, a human heart in a brown paper bag near the stove (often mistakenly believed to have been found in the frying pan), a necklace of human lips, a waistcoat made up of a vagina and breasts which he used in rituals, and many more items fashioned from the parts of human bodies including a belt fashioned from nipples. Above all, Ed Gein's most infamous creation was an entire wardrobe fabricated of human skin consisting of: leggings, a gutted torso (including breasts) and an array of tanned, dead skin masks that looked leathery and almost mummified. All of these items were confirmed to be used as props for his late night rituals.

Under questioning, Gein freely admitted that he would dig up the graves of recently buried middle-aged women and take the bodies home where he tanned their skin to make his macabre possessions. During interrogation, Gein also admitted to the murder of Mary Hogan, a local tavern employee who had been missing since 1954. He was pronounced insane and spent the rest of his days in a mental institution where he died in 1984 of natural causes. He was buried in the graveyard he had spent much of his life desecrating. Vandalism to Ed's grave site was also reported.
The Shocking True Story of Ed Gein, the Original Psycho
By Harold Schechter

The author writes a cogent, factual account of the life of Ed Gein and the grisly crimes that shocked the nation at the time of their discovery. It details the hold that Ed's domineering mother had on him, a hold that would manifest itself in unimaginable ways. It is almost hard to believe that this small, inoffensive man could be such a madman, but who but a madman would do what he did? Ed Gein, it was discovered, had turned his small farmhouse into a gruesome charnel house, replete with furnishings adorned with human flesh and bones. Aficionados of true crime will find this book fascinating, as it is a well-written account of one of the most horrifying and bizarre series of crimes ever to be committed. Eight pages of photographs are included in the book and serve to provide the reader with a brief, visual glimpse into the life of Ed Gein, a man with a secret hobby so depraved that it would shock the entire nation when it came to light. Lovers of true crime accounts will be fascinated by this well researched foray into the life of a seemingly innocuous man from America's heartland who ended up being so deviant from the norm.
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