Belle Sorensen Gunness
killed OVER 40 PEOPLE
- Belle was born on November 22, 1859. Her birth name was Brynhild Paulsdatter Storset. She changed her name to Belle in 1881 when she came to the United States.
- No one has ever proven that the woman who died in the fire at the Gunness farmhouse was Belle. Many people still believe that Belle had escaped. One of the more popular theories about what happened to Belle Gunness is that in 1931 a woman named Esther Carlson was charged with murder. She had murdered a man named August Lindstrom to steal his money
- Her motive was collecting life insurance benefits… and also, the assets stolen or swindled from her suitors became her source of income
- On the record, her death is listed as April 1908, the last time she was seen alive.
- Belle Gunness is said to have died in a house fire in 1908, but many claimed she staged her death and fled the state with the money she had accumulated from the men she killed. A woman’s body was discovered in the cellar decapitated, but was too small in stature to have been her. It was never proven that the charred woman’s body was indeed Belle Gunness.
A Poem about Belle
Belle Gunness was a lady fair,
In Indiana State.
She weighed about three hundred pounds,
And that is quite some weight.
That she was stronger than a man
Her neighbors all did own;
She butchered hogs right easily,
And did it all alone.
But hogs were just a sideline
She indulged in now and then;
Her favorite occupation
Was a-butchering of men…
(Note: Poem about Belle Gunness, author unknown)