Chilling Facts About History's Creepiest People

November 17, 2023 | Miles Brucker

Chilling Facts About History's Creepiest People

Mass murderers, mad scientists, cannibals. There are a lot of creeps out there, and the creepiest thing about them is they can seem just like you and me. Let's take a look at them—but please, be careful: some of these people are still out there.

1. Demon Summoner

Gilles des Rais was a 15th century French nobleman and a lieutenant of Joan of Arc. He also abused, inflicted fatal harm, and mutilated as many as 150 children, and was even said to participate in a demon summoning.

history's creepiest people

2. Cannibal King

In France in 1981, Issei Sagawa inflicted a fatal act on, and then subsequently consumed, his classmate from the Sorbonne, Renée Hartevelt.Sagawa claimed he wanted to absorb her energy, and had been suffering from cannibalistic fantasies since he was a child. In 1986, Sagawa checked himself out of the hospital where he had been committed. He became a minor celebrity in his native Japan, and even wrote restaurant reviews after his release.

History's Creepiest People factsShutterstock

3. Male Seeking Male

In 2001, Bernd Brandes placed an online ad looking for someone to cook and eat him. As one does. Over the course of two days, Armin Meiwes, who responded to the ad, cut off and cooked parts of Brandes’ body for the two men to eat. Meiwes then took Brandes' life. According to Meiwes, the "Master Butcher," the flesh "taste[d] like pork but stronger".

History's Creepiest People factsPixabay

4. The Angel Of The End

Josef Mengele is infamous for the appalling experiments he conducted as the prominent scientist at Auschwitz concentration camp during the era of WWII. Following the WWII, Mengele fled to Argentina where, under an assumed name, he occasionally practiced medicine without a license.

Auschwitz - gas chamber - 2013Jason M Ramos, CC BY 2.0, Wikimedia Commons

5. Discomfort Food

Nathaniel Bar-Jonah had spent most of his adult life in and out of incarceration for his assaults on young boys. Bar-Jonah was living in Montana when 10-year-old Zachary Ramsay went missing.The law enforcement began scrutinizing Bar-Jonah and discovered notebooks packed with recipes labeled “Little Boy Pot Pie” and “French Fried Kid".Authorities are concerned that Ramsay's flesh might have even been served to unknowing neighbors at a barbecue.

History's Creepiest People factsPixabay

6. The Devil In The White City

Frequently labeled as "the Beast of Chicago," H.H. Holmes was a deceptive individual who constructed a hotel in the city during the period of the World's Fair in 1893. He used a variety of contractors to fill the hotel with secret passageways and false doors. In this menacing "Castle of Despair", Holmes would eliminate his visitors. Erik Larson's book The Devil in the White City focuses on the malicious deeds committed by Holmes.

History's Creepiest People facts Wikimedia Commons

7. False Imprisonment

For 24 years, Josef Fritzl imprisoned his own daughter, Elisabeth, in a dungeon beneath his house. Over the years, he fathered more than a half-dozen children with her. It was only after one of the children fell ill, and Fritzl allowed her to go to the hospital, that the imprisonment finally came to light.

History's Creepiest People facts Getty Images

8. Eternal Love

Carl Tanzler, a radiologist, was infatuated with his patient, Maria Elena Milagro de Hoyos. There was just one problem: Elena was dying of tuberculosis. Two years following Elena's passing, Carl Tanzler exhumed her remains, and using wax, wires, and glass eyes, revived the extensively decayed state of Elena's body. It was seven years before anyone discovered Tanzler’s ghoulish act, during which time he periodically did some cosmetic upkeep and covered the stench with a myriad of oils and perfumes. That's true love.

History's Creepiest People facts Wikipedia

9. The Monster Of The Andes

After a deeply distressing childhood of neglect and eventual incarceration, Pedro Alonso Lopez spent his adult years trying to inflict a similar level of hurt on others. For more than ten years, Lopez targeted young girls, occasionally eliminating up to three a week. As of 2017, his exact location remains undetermined, although it is probable that he is incarcerated.

History's Creepiest People factsPixabay

10. You're So Vain

Luka Magnotta seemed desperate to be famous: he had acted in adult films, and auditioned for several reality shows. Fame ultimately arrived for Magnotta following his role in the dismemberment of Lin Jun, in which he sent the victim's hands and feet to both elementary schools and political parties. In June 2012, he was nabbed at an Internet cafe—he had been reading news about himself.

History's Creepiest People factsGetty Images

11. Dr. Kitty

Jingyi Wang performed plastic surgery out of her Toronto basement under the name “Dr. Kitty". Needless to say, the 19-year-old was in no way qualified or licensed to perform these operations. She was taken into custody following a complaint by a "patient" of Dr. Kitty; the patient's mishandled surgery had led to a massive infection.

These Nurses Dared To Correct The Doctor Pexels

12. Big Ed

At 6’9” and weighing over 250 pounds, Ed Kemper seemed like a gentle giant. He was friendly, self-effacing, intelligent, and well-spoken. Inside, however, lurked a violent misogynist. Kemper took the lives of 10 people, including his own mother and grandparents. Kemper has been frank about the murders, and has declined opportunities for parole. He even requested for the life-ending sentence at his trial.

History's Creepiest People facts Wikimedia Commons, Santa Cruz County Sheriff

13. The Silent Twins

Jennifer and June Gibbons were unusually close, even for twins: they spoke in a secret language, mirrored each other’s movements, and after an arson spree, the two were incarcerated at England’s Broadmoor Psychiatric Hospital. It was here that the twins explained to a psychiatrist that they agreed one of them would have to die so the other could live a more normal life. Not long after, Jennifer succumbed to perfectly natural causes.

Twins FactsShutterstock

14. You Think Norman Bates Is Scary

Raised by an alcoholic father and a religious zealot mother on an isolated farm in Wisconsin, murderer/graverobber (great credentials) Ed Gein embodies a standard horror movie-trope. Indeed, his terrible acts of wrongdoing served as inspiration for Norman Bates, Leatherface, and dozens of other movie monsters since.

Steve Harvey factsPixabay

15. Cat Killer

Since 2015, someone has mutilated more than 250 cats and foxes in and around London’s Croydon neighbourhood. There were so many that the local RSPCA ran out of money trying to autopsy them all. The killings have only spread, and evidence suggests the Croydon Cat Killer has been active as far away as Manchester and the Isle of Wight.

History's Creepiest People facts Pixabay

16. The Watcher

Shortly after Derek and Maria Broaddus bought their home in Westfield, New Jersey, they received a strange letter. It was from the Watcher, who explained his father had watched the house, and his grandfather before him, and now he would be watching them. Soon other letters followed, remarking on changes in the house and on the Broaddus children. The family is desperate to sell the house, and they have even sued the previous owners.

History's Creepiest People factsShutterstock

17. El Comegente

Over a span of two years, Dorangel Vargas was responsible for the deaths of, and subsequently consumed, at least 10 men in Venezuela. Upon his arrest, he was unnervingly casual about his diet, saying that men taste better than women and that he didn't eat overweight men because “they have too much cholesterol". Gotta watch that waistline.

Terrible Customer ServiceShutterstock

18. Lee Harvey And Oswald

Just before US president Jimmy Carter was to give a speech, Secret Service agents picked up a suspicious looking man. Raymond Lee Harvey was in possession of a .22 and several pieces of firearm projectiles, revealing that he and three other men, including a man named Osvaldo Ortiz, were assigned to take out Carter. Others have noted the names Raymond Lee Harvey and Osvaldo Ortiz are eerily similar to Kennedy assassin Lee Harvey Oswald.

President Jimmy Carter  looking at, Flickr

19. The Toy Box Killer

David Parker Ray, also known as the Toy Box Killer, would take women against their will and subject them to severe, inhumane treatment. He was also likely a repeat offender, but was never legally proven to be at fault. Ray allocated over $100,000 on a custom-built containment area, and it is believed he was linked to up to 60 fatal incidents.

History's Creepiest People factsShutterstock

20. The Iceman

Richard Kuklinski ended the life of his first victim, an intimidating figure from his local area, during his high school years and swiftly realized his aptitude and preference for such dark actions. His readiness to eliminate anybody for arbitrary reasons secured him consistent employment with several mafia families, while he still maintained a regular family life. Kuklinski got the name "Iceman" since he used freezing to hide the timing of his victims' demise.

History's Creepiest People factsThe Iceman (2012), Millennium Films

21. The Macedonian

Alexander Solonik was dismissed from the Soviet law enforcement for his extreme aggression and later found himself in a correctional facility due to serious misconduct. While there, he caught the attention of Russian gangsters by fighting up to 12 inmates at a time. Upon his release, he began a career as one of the world’s most prolific hitmen. He was called not only "The Macedonian" but "Superkiller". Don't really want to know what that Marvel movie would be about.

grayscale photo of prison cell hallway with windowJimmy Chan, Pexels

22. Southern Hospitality

Madame LaLaurie's lavish parties were the toast of antebellum New Orleans. Like many affluent southerners of her era, her generosity was a result of slave labor; however, it was impossible to conceive the harshness she exhibited towards her slaves. When a fire erupted at the LaLaurie mansion, firefighters stumbled upon a horrifying sight: individuals were shackled and brutally disfigured in Madame LaLaurie's attic, some perilously close to their lives' end. Even in an era of widespread discrimination and injustice, her brutality was so astonishing that a mob formed and drove her out of town.

History's Creepiest People facts Flickr, Reading Tom


Sources: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23

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