The Nicknames of Ed Gein, The American Serial Killer

This post contains all the famous Ed Gein Nicknames and the origins of these nicknames.

If the mention of the name “Ed Gein” causes you to shudder, you’re very much in good company. For those who have never heard of him, Gein, whose name rhymes with “keen,” was a necrophilic serial killer and body snatcher. His full name was Edward Theodore Gein, and he was born in La Crosse County, Wisconsin, on August 27, 1906.

Gein was raised in a dysfunctional home with an alcoholic father and a domineering Lutheran mother, who imbued in him distorted teachings such as that all women, save herself, were naturally promiscuous and instruments of the devil. To make matters worse, Gein had schizophrenia, a condition he had from childhood that was left untreated. All these ingredients combined to create a real-life monster who went on a killing spree until he was eventually apprehended by the authorities on 18 November 1957.

Famous Ed Gein Nicknames

Here are the nicknames Ed Gein was known by and the origin of those names.

1. Ed/Eddie

While he was born Edward, Gein was simply known as “Ed” or “Eddie” by his few friends and family. Growing up on a troubled and isolated 155-acre farm in the middle of rural Plainfield, Gein didn’t earn affectionate nicknames due to his infamous acts, as you will soon see. This was the nicest it ever got.

2. Butcher of Plainfield

Most of Gein’s crimes were committed around his hometown of Plainfield in Wisconsin. The notorious nickname he earned as the “Butcher of Plainfield” was because of the way he dismembered his victims. Gein was said to have made curtain strings out of human lips and used human skulls as soup bowls.

3. Ghoul of Plainfield

To his unfortunate victims, he was the butcher. Up until he was apprehended and even after, Gein was also known as the “Ghoul of Plainfield” for the murders and the other heinous activities he committed on his farm situated seven miles outside Plainfield.

4. Leatherface

Fans of horror flicks may have heard the name “Leatherface,” a grotesque-looking monster in the film, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. Leatherface is a member of the cannibalistic Sawyer family and wears a leather face made from human skin. The use of human skin to make objects might seem fictitious, but it did happen with Gein as the mastermind by using human skin and bones to fashion souvenirs for his home. Gein inspired a couple of similar tropes in crime movies, most notably with Buffalo Bill in the Oscar-winning film, The Silence of the Lambs.

5. El asesino máscara de piel

Gein’s infamy extends beyond the English-speaking world. He is known as “El asesino máscara de piel” in Spain, which translates to “The human skin mask killer.”

6. The Grandfather of Gore

While the Internet did not exist in the fifties, Gein’s legendary crimes have caught on in today’s world, seeing him earn monikers such as “The Grandfather of Gore.” A comprehensive collection of some of his goriest crimes can be found here. Brace yourself.

There you have it. Have we missed out on any Ed Gein nicknames? Let us know in the comments below.

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Stephen Agwaibor is a writer, editor and journalist with an academic background in economics. His writing interests cover various topics, including science, politics, business and social commentary.
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