The Devil in the White City

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The Devil in the White City
DWCity.jpg
Book cover of The Devil in the White City
Author Erik Larson
Country United States
Language English
Genre History, True crime
Publisher Crown Publishers
Publication date
2003
Media type Print (hardcover and paperback)
Pages 447
ISBN 0-609-60844-4
OCLC 54397544

The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair That Changed America (Crown Publishers, ISBN 0-609-60844-4) is a 2003 non-fiction book by Erik Larson presented in a novelistic style. The book is based on real characters and events. Leonardo DiCaprio purchased the film rights in 2010.[1]

The book is set in Chicago, circa 1893, intertwining the true tales of Daniel H. Burnham, the architect behind the 1893 World's Fair, and Dr. H. H. Holmes, the serial killer who lured his victims to their deaths in his elaborately constructed "Murder Castle."

Burnham and the architects[edit]

Holmes and associates[edit]

1895 newspaper image of Dr. Henry Howard Holmes
  • Herman Webster Mudgett (aka Dr. H. H. Holmes): a serial killer who used the fair to lure his victims to their deaths. Dr. Holmes had built his "World's Fair Hotel" complete with a gas chamber, dissection table, and a crematorium to dispose of the bodies. Holmes would remove the skeletons of his victims and sell them for medical and scientific study.
  • Clara A. Lovering: Holmes's first wife
  • Myrta Z. Belknap: Holmes's second wife
  • Lucy Holmes: Holmes's daughter with Myrta
  • Georgiana Yoke: Holmes's third wife
  • Julia Smythe: employee and lover of Holmes; wife of Ned Connor
  • Ned Connor: employee of Holmes; husband of Julia Smythe
  • Benjamin Pitezel: business associate (and murder victim) of Holmes
  • Howard Pitezel: son of Benjamin Pitezel, kidnapped and murdered by Holmes
  • Frank Geyer: detective in charge of finding Pitezel's children after Holmes was jailed for fraud
  • Thomas W. Barlow: assistant district attorney who prosecuted Holmes

Other figures[edit]

Film adaptation[edit]

Leonardo DiCaprio purchased the film rights to the book in 2010; the movie is to be produced by Warner Bros., Stacey Sher and Michael Shamberg's Double Feature Films, and DiCaprio's own production company Appian Way.[2][3] Writer Graham Moore is adapting the book into a screenplay.[4]

Honors[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]