Carl Panzram was an America serial killer, often referred to as the “World’s worst murderer”, Panzram was hanged on September 5, 1930 at thirty-nine years old. Panzram admitted to killing twenty-one people, sodomizing thousands of men, and burning down many buildings and farms. Panzram went by several aliases including: Jeff Davis, Carl Baldwin, Jack Allen, Jefferson Baldwin, Jeff Rhodes, John King, and John O’Leary.
Carl Panzram’s story is public because of his friendship with prison guard Henry Lesser, whom befriended the inmate after other guards tortured him. Lesser later became a college professor and helped publish Panzram’s autobiography, the Journal of Murder.
Carl’s upbringing was horrid and claims molded him into the sadistic killer he became. Carl was the youngest of several siblings of German immigrants who were, “hardworking, ignorant and poor”. Carl’s father John was tall and violent, sporting a walrus mustache, a popular style in his native East Prussia. John and his wife escaped to the United States hoping to chase the “American Dream”, but soon fell into abject poverty, much like most of the citizens. Carl was first arrested at eight years old for intoxication and spent his first night in jail at age eleven.
“I have been a human animal ever since I was born.” Carl Panzram
Panzram spent most his life inside a prison cell, but lived a life of adventure during the months he was a free man. After stealing liberty bonds from W.H. Taft, the twenty-seventh US president, Carl bought a yacht he named the “Akista”. This boat would be the where Panzram murdered his first and majority of his victims. According to him, he would hire New York sailors, get them drunk, sodomize them, shoot them, and then dump them into the river.
Carl Panzram was hanged on September 5, 1930 at Fort Leavenworth in Kansas. His last words were “Hurry it up you Hoosier bastard! I could hang a dozen men while you’re fooling around!”.