Charles Manson
On Saturday, August ninth, nineteen sixty-nine, all hell broke loose with
more than six dozen plunges of a carving fork and knife, and the peaceful dyll
was shattered. Out of the chaos caused by the senseless, horrific murderers,

Charles Manson emerged as one of the most feared notorious criminals of all
time. In the twenty-nine years since the so-called "Tate-La Bianca"
murders, many people have speculated about what caused Charles Manson to become
the monster he turned to be. To be able to fully comprehend what could cause an
innocent child to evolve into a ruthless calculating cold- blooded killer, one
must completely examine the events of his life. Charles Manson was born Charles

Milles Maddox, the son of an unwed mother, in Cincinnati Ohio on November
twelfth, nineteen thirty-four. His father, he stated in his autobiography, was a
"young drugstore cowboy", a transient laborer who abandoned Charles'
mother when he learned that she was pregnant. Shortly after Charles' birth,

Kathleen Maddox lived with a man named William Manson, and they eventually got
married. William Manson gave his new stepson his name, although the marriage
dissolved shortly thereafter. Raised in a strict, religious home, Kathleen

Maddox- Manson rebelled after the breakup of her marriage. She reveled in her
newfound freedom by drinking a lot and loving freely. Like many young mothers,

Kathleen was not yet ready for the responsibilities that go along with the
raising of a child. She had fled a stifling home life and rushed into marriage,
and she had a lot of living to do before she settled down. Charles was passed
from relative to relative to baby-sitter, and was soon sold to a waitress in a
restaurant in exchange for a pitcher of beer. An uncle tracked him down and took
him home several days later. When Charles was five years old, his mother and a
man were convicted of robbing a service station in Charlestown, West Virginia.

They'd used a Coke bottle to knock the attendant unconscious. Caught and
sentenced to five years in Moundsville Prison, her work assignment was near
death row. West Virginia was a hanging state at that time, and part of

Kathleen's job was to clean the area that included the scaffold. One day as she
was cleaning, she saw a man being escorted to the scaffold. Normally on hanging
days, nobody except the person to be executed and the prison officials were
allowed near the hanging area, but on that day, by accident or oversight, the
prison officials neglected to inform Kathleen of the day's plans. Afraid she
might be in trouble for being in the vicinity, she hid in a nearby broom closet.

When the trap sprung, the inmate's weight and sheer velocity caused the rope to
sever his head, and as Kathleen opened the door to get a glimpse of the hanging,
it promptly rolled to kathleen's hiding place. She told Charles years later that
mans eyes were still wide open and death literally stared her in the face.

Twenty-seven years after that incident, Charles Milles Manson was placed on

Death Row. In his autobiography, "Manson: In His Own Words", he
explained a sobering moment."I looked at the gas chamber. The rooms two
viewing windows looked like two huge eyes of death. Instantly my mind flashed to
my mother, and I had a vision of her looking into the eyes of death. During that
moment, I understood more about my mom than any other time in my life".

Charles' mother was released from prison when he was eight years old, and again
he was either being passed from relative to relative, or they moved around a
lot. Eventually, when Charles was twelve years old, his mother found a steady
boyfriend. He soon tired of having Charles around and gave Kathleen an
ultimatum: him or Charles. Charles was placed in the Gibault Home for Boys in

Tierre Haute, Indiana. It was a strict Catholic religious-oriented school, and
the punishment for even the tiniest infraction was either a wooden paddle, or a
leather strap. Eventually, living at Gibault got to be too much for Charles, and
he ran away. He slept in the woods, under bridges, and wherever else he could
find a place. He finally reached Indianapolis where he burglarized a grocery
store for something to eat. He found the cash register change in a cigar box
under the counter. It was slightly over a hundred dollars, and the first thing
he did was rent a room in Skid Row, and eat as much as he could possibly