Clara Lovering, the Monster’s Wife

Hard to tell really, except for that gut feeling which screams out all wives know, deep down, their men. Was she already aware he was a monster? Who knows? Neither Herman Mudgett nor Clara Lovering Mudgett ever disclosed the moment of their separation. Oh sure, it’s been widely speculated about by countless authors. What was the killer Herman Mudgett thinking, and what was Clara Lovering fearing? I’ve my own ideas, largely because of the type of woman she was, the type of woman our family talked quite a bit about. They called her ‘Grandma Peverly’, the name she took marrying a fine gentleman after she believed Herman Mudgett had been put to death in Pennsylvania. And with that, she moved out to Vallejo, California, coincidentally enough, the place I went to college.       The beautiful picture next to the blog is I believe Herman Mudgett’s wife, Clara. I’m not sure, but the picture was given to me as Clara by one of the most dependable women in the world. Therefore, I’m inclined to believe it so. The woman in the picture also looks like the family pictures we have of Grandma Peverly. So be it.     Yesterday, my father and I talked about Clara and the day my father was privileged enough to have met her. It was in 1940, or there abouts, and he was eight years old. She would have been close to eighty. Even at that age, he remembered her presence and beauty, the way she held the entire room in awe as she talked of her life stories… not one about the killer. It was obvious, listening to him, my father still loved her despite having only met her once. Amazing.     Then his story grew sad, for the next time was when he and his father went to retrieve her body and to return her to our Lord. I write about that moment in BLOODSTAINS and also when I introduced myself to her at the Martinez Cemetery. My favorite part of the book.  The moment my life changed for the good. Clara Lovering Peverly, not Herman Mudgett’s wife, the most amazing woman I have ever known.

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