1865: John Yates Beall, well-connected Confederate 1939: Stanislav Kosior, Vlas Chubar and Pavel Postyshev

1922: Henri Landru, French Bluebeard

February 25th, 2010 Headsman

“Widower with two children, aged 43, with comfortable income, serious and moving in good society, desires to meet widow with a view to matrimony.”

The personal ads sections of the Parisian papers were the stalking-grounds of French Bluebeard Henri Désiré Landru, guillotined in Versailles this date in 1922.

A former soldier himself, Landru trawled the Craigslists of World War I for their ample population of ample war widows.

His M.O.: enchant one into letting him get his hands on her huge … fortune.

(No, really. Her fortune.)

Then, kill her and incinerate the body in his kitchen stove.

Repeat x10 (plus one teenage son of one the widows), and you’ve got yourself your basic Bluebeard.

Landru’s story inspired the 1947 Charlie Chaplain flick Monsieur Verdoux.

And that’s not the only thing of Landru’s that made it to Hollywood. His severed dome is on exhibit at the Museum of Death.

On this day..

Entry Filed under: 20th Century,Beheaded,Common Criminals,Confederates,Crime,Death Penalty,Execution,France,Guillotine,History,Murder,Pelf,Public Executions,Serial Killers,Sex,Theft

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