Collecting stamps and coins? That’s boring. Unless they’re old Nazi coins, and stamps that came from a serial killer’s letter. Wait, what? Serial killer’s letter? Tell me more! Murderabilia is the art of collecting macabre artifacts connected to serial killers, murderers, and crime scenes. Things evil has touched that you can now own. Why is this so fascinating? What is so intriguing about owning something like this? Maybe it’s a safe way to be close to such unspeakable evil.
So what kind of creepy and weird stuff is out there for sale? All kinds, my friends. All kinds.
Why collect just any old postcards when you can collect postcards from serial killers? Why would you even waste your time? I don’t even know. Murderers are kind of popular and receive a lot of fan mail. Why wait for a personal letter you may never get when you can just buy one? A killer’s response to a stranger’s letter that may or may not make any sense to you. Thrilling. Ink and paper handled by hands that snuffed out lives. Or how about a postcard sent from Jonestown by one of the victims? Oh man. That’s heavy.
Copies of things! Birth and death certificates, confessions, fingerprint charts, police reports, newspaper articles! Seriously. Copies. People are willing to pay actual money for copies of paperwork and photographs. So, you’re saying all I’d need to do is drop some cash on an authentic wanted poster or mugshots, run them through a photocopier and then I can start making bank? This business venture intrigues me. I mean, I know you buy posters of Van Gogh paintings because odds are you don’t own an original, but I don’t understand buying copies of paperwork. But I encourage you all to do so, and to please patronize my impending Photocopied Serial Killer Paperwork online store. Thanks in advance.
John Wayne Gacy fancied himself a bit of an artist. One of his favorite subjects was himself dressed as Pogo the Clown. There are numerous paintings and drawings out there of this Killer Clown that you can own and hang over your toilet. That’s how you welcome guests to your home.
Charlie Manson is quite a prolific artist as well. In addition to drawings and mixed media paintings, Charlie makes the most darling string creatures, like scorpions and spiders. They’re like life-sentence worry dolls, though I don’t see what Charlie has to worry about these days. He’s an inventive guy, I’m sure he’ll come up with something.
What could be more Night Stalker-ish than owning the Night Stalker’s personal copy of the Satanic Bible? Nothing. I’m gonna go with nothing. It also has a certificate of authenticity handwritten by the loon who married him. That’s a twofer.
How about a whole bundle of things owned by David Berkowitz, the Son of Sam? Handwritten notes and letters, newspaper clippings, and his well-worn and underlined copy of that seminal publication, Psychic Self-Defence. When you’re a nut-job it helps to know you’re a nut job. The first step is acceptance. Crawl inside that dog-lover’s mind and see if you can figure out what makes him tick. Make it a weekend thing.
What? That seems like a gross miscarriage of justice. But hey, if it’s for sale, buy it! You want the gun Jack Ruby used to kill Lee Harvey Oswald? Well you’ll have to make an offer to the current owner, but the point is you could do that! It’s not in some evidence locker or museum somewhere. You could scoop that up and wave it around at parties.
Or how about this hammer that John Robinson, the first internet serial killer, may or may not have used to kill people? The police aren’t sure because of the amount of bleach the hammer was cleaned with. That’s kind of a tip-off. I guess if the case is closed then it’s a free-for-all? No, that don’t seem right either. Less questions asked, the better. Move along.
Crime Scene Artifacts
Stuff that was there! “If these walls could talk.” Or this light switch cover, or dimmer, or chunk of crown molding. Some of the artifacts are ironically sinister, like this set of sewing needles salvaged from Ed Gein’s farm before it was burned down the night before the auction of its contents. Sewing needles that, while not used in the stitching together of human flesh into masks and/or bodysuits or accessories, were most likely intended for that use, and were most likely cluttered among those that were. That is creepsville, man. Rad.
Celebrities are in on artifacts, too. Trent Reznor not only lived in the Tate/Polanski Manson Family murder house and recorded Nine Inch Nail’s album The Downward Spiral there, but when he moved out, he took the front door with him. You know, the door with the word “pig” written on it in Sharon’s blood?
Yeah, that one. It’s currently installed at his Nothing Studios in New Orleans. The building was once a funeral home. Trent Reznor knows how to party.