Women Serial and Mass Murderers

Profiles of 85 Killers Worldwide, 1580–1990


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About the Book

It is at 31.4 years of age that the average woman multiple murderer kills the first of her 17 victims, whom she usually knows or is related to. The preferred method is poison, usually arsenic. She is more likely to prey on the vulnerable—the very young or the very old—than is her male counterpart. Her killing spree lasts five years; when caught, she shows little remorse. This study of 85 women focuses on those who have killed at least three people, not including themselves in murder-suicide cases. Though the work is international, emphasis is on the United States during the late 19th and 20th centuries. Excluded are accomplices who, though legally guilty of multiple murders, were in fact passive participants.
The life of each killer is examined, as well as descriptions of the murders, the methods, and the trial.

About the Author(s)

Cultural historian Kerry Segrave is the author of dozens of books on such diverse topics as drive-in theaters, lie detectors, jukeboxes, smoking, shoplifting and ticket-scalping. He lives in British Columbia.

Bibliographic Details

Kerry Segrave
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 333
Bibliographic Info: notes, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2013 [1992]
pISBN: 978-0-7864-7617-6
eISBN: 978-1-4766-0606-4
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Introduction      1
Amy Archer-Gilligan      10
Johanna Healy Bacher      14
Velma Barfield      15
Elizabeth Bathory      20
Mrs. Leon Bearce      24
Martha Beck      26
Marie Becker      32
Kate Bender      35
Patricia Bolin      39
Harjit Kaur Bhuller Brar      42
Marie de Brinvilliers      44
Inez Campbell      51
Patty Cannon      52
Opal Juanita Collins      56
Patricia Columbo      59
Glenda Cooper      64
Mary Ann Cotton      66
Anna Cunningham      74
Lillie May Curtis      78
Rachal David      81
Nellie Dcyzheski      87
Catherine Deshayes      89
Nannie Doss      92
Amelia Dyer      98
Lillian Edwards      102
Christine Falling      105
Susanna Fazekas      112
Elizabeth Fiederer      118
Priscilla Ford      120
Lafonda Fay Foster and Tina Marie Hickey Powell      126
Edna Fuller      134
Janie Lou Gibbs      136
Sister Godfrida      138
Delfina Gonzales and Maria Gonzales      140
Gesina Gottfried      142
Gwendolyn Graham      147
Belle Gunness      155
Anna Hahn      162
Violet Hultberg      167
Mary Jane Jackson      169
Marie Jeanneret      172
HCl6ne Jegado      177
Annie Jones      182
Roxanne Jones      183
Charlotte Juenemann      186
Kathleen King      188
Tillie Klimek      192
Christa Lehmann      197
Anjette Lyles      199
Alma May McAninch      203
Carol MacDonald      206
Sarah Malcolm      208
Martha Marek      210
Rhonda Belle Martin      213
Daisy Louisa de Melker      218
Elsie Nollen      224
Maureen O’Donohue      226
Bonnie Parker      228
Marie Pasos      232
Popova      233
Dorothea Montalvo Puente      234
Florence Ransom      243
Vera Renczi      246
Martha Rendall      248
Sarah Jane Robinson      250
Amelia Sach and Annie Walters      254
Antoinette Scieri      257
Lydia Sherman      260
Mamie Shey Shoaf      264
Della Sorenson      265
Mariam Soulakiotis      270
Hieronyima Spara      273
Marybeth Tinning      275
La Toffania      282
Jane Toppan      284
Ruth Urdanivia      290
Sophie Ursinus      295
Waltraud Wagner      296
Marie Walkup      298
Margaret Waters      300
Jeanne Weber      303
Catherine Wilson      308
Martha Hasel Wise      313
Anna Zwanziger      318
Index      323

Book Reviews & Awards

“unique reference”—Booklist; “recommended”—ARBA.