Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Murders at the "In Cold Blood" House

Clutter family farmhouse.

This year is the 60th anniversary of the brutal murders of the Clutter family in Kansas.

One of the best-selling crime books of all time is In Cold Blood by Truman Capote. This author spent six years researching this horrific crime.

Truman Capote at the Farmhouse.
A film, of the same name, was released in 1967, based upon Capote’s book. I saw this film when I was young. The scene at the end when the heartbeat stops, freaked me out--- not that I had or have any sympathy for the murderers.

Herb Clutter, his wife Bonnie and two of his four children, Nancy, 16 and Kenyon, 14 were asleep when two drifters broke into their farmhouse outside Holcomb, Kansas, in 1959, intending to rob the family.

Herb, Bonnie, Nancy and Kenyon Clutter.
These two thugs, Richard “Dick” Hickok, and Perry Edward, traveling across Kansas had heard a rumor that a wealthy wheat farmer had $10,000 stashed in his house.

But once inside the Clutter home they realized there was only fifty dollars.

The two murderers.
Enraged the two men then proceeded to shoot each family member with a shotgun. Bonnie and Nancy were killed in their beds, and Herb and Kenyon were bound and killed in the basement.

Each family member was shot point blank in the head. Mr. Clutter’s throat was slit as well.

Kansas State Prison gallows
where they were hanged.
Six weeks after these two murders, the two men were arrested when a “jailhouse snitch” told on them. They were tried and convicted, and after five years of appeals, they were both executed by hanging.

Since the Clutter family deaths, two other families have owned the farmhouse. In 2006, the house was put up for auction, but there were no takers.

Local witnesses claim the house is actively haunted. They believe the ghost present is Nancy, Herb’s youngest daughter. Her spirit is seen, after dark, wandering the home and property off Oak Avenue.

A short excerpt in Joanne Austin’s book, Weird Happenings, True Tales of Ghostly Places states something else odd happens at this farmhouse.

A bloodstain believed to be Herb Clutter’s blood remains on one basement wall. Over the years, regardless of how many times it has been scrubbed or painted over –it returns.

Photograph of the bloodstain.
The last family to own this house gave tours for a fee. But after being accused of making money off this tragedy, they stopped. The farm is private property, and trespassing is not allowed.

1 comment:

Unknown said...

The family that last owned the house was gracious enough to let us tour the home.