Reason First: Serial Killer Belle Gunness

This woman of death and destruction just wanted a suitor.

Reason First: Serial Killer Belle Gunness

If there is one overarching theme to these killer stories it’s insurance money. Not to blame the money as the motive to murder people, instead the money was just a conceptual scapegoat to go along with the treacherous deeds of these shady figures. Belle Gunness of La Porte, Indiana was one such figure.

After her sweets store caught fire, she collected insurance money. After her house caught fire, she collected funds. Her husband died and she (you guessed it) she took in more dollars.

In time Gunness would promote herself as a “comely widow” who sought young suitors. These men had to be with the money stuff, however. She wasn’t looking for any poor and threadbare peons to come to her serial killer castle.

In all, over ten bodies had been discovered on her property from a killing spree lasting from 1906-1908. A fall guy named Ray Lamphere was convicted of arson and died in prison.

As for Gunness, she became a still unsolved mystery. Some alleged sightings of her in Chicago came up but nothing materialized.

Her evil streak of murdering a string of people stemmed from her lack of purpose. Of course this has been discussed with male murderers but women should have a real purpose as well. Gunness was no different. As she collected checks based on mysterious fires, she had no sense of productiveness. All that she had going for her was destruction and mayhem. And the fact that she evaded the law and her whereabouts became a big question mark to authorities leads one to wonder about her disappearance.

Quicklime had been placed on the corpses. At least one of them had a missing a head that was believed to be Gunness. Later DNA tests proved to be inconclusive.

Had Gunness had been an upstanding, productive, and selfish individual she would have avoided the ugliness of her own soul. All that she had to do was to not just find a job or develop a career but find something of meaning. The significance of her inability to produce something of value in her life showed how she was a worthless human being. Because she killed so many people, it demonstrated that she was a bloodthirsty woman out to knock down people as much as she could.

The unearthed corpses told a tale of a woman who knew exactly what she was doing. Gunness brought hell to Indiana. Her disgust for humanity led her to commit atrocities. What she did to escape capture involved her fear of being caught like game in the forest. Her evil mind brought her to such a low that she had to make up in her mind to go on the lam—permanently.

How did she even begin to start killing? While it is unknown beyond the insurance money and the courting of suitors whether Gunness killed out of a psychological disorder or not. She exhibited a soul that was embedded in ideation. Her ideas to kill other human beings not in defense but to start force against them. She had to have had a sensibility for complete destruction. With all of the bodies that mounted up on her property, she might have gone insane with the weight of knowing that she ended all of those lives.

Because she was a women of poor scruples, to say the least, she probably couldn’t contend with existence and ran off and committed suicide. While all of this is conjecture, law enforcement may never find out about the true last days of Belle Gunness. There is enough room for her story to include the fact that her ability to get away with murder was not noble or ingenious or the work of a mastermind. Gunness was a cold-minded killer who didn’t care about anyone. Especially not herself.

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Read next: Chad Alan Lee

I am a forever young, ego-driven, radical hipster from Delaware. Investor. Objectivist for life. Instagram: @skylerized


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