Ed Gein’s Human Masks


Infamous murderer Ed Gein took the faces (in addition to other body parts) both from his victims and from graves so that he could wear them as masks. Some masks appeared mummified, almost dried out, while others were more carefully preserved, perhaps as Gein grew more confident in his methods of procuration.

A few had lipstick applied and looked more lifelike, and four had been stuffed with paper and hung on the wall of his bedroom, almost like hunting trophies. The rest were put into plastic or paper bags, one of which was found by Deputy Arnie Fritz when he was investigating the house. It was nestled in a decaying robe thrown behind the kitchen door. When he opened the bag and saw hair, he reached in to pull the contents out. When he lifted the mask to the light, he realized it was the local tavern owner, Mary Hogan, who had gone missing three years previously.

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