During the Victorian Era, photography became a new tool for crime scenes. In the setting of that era, they are almost lovely in their sad repose.
There seems to be something more sinister and gothic about people in Victorian Era garb sprawled out in an alleyway or posing for their mugshots.
Some of the most sinister crimes in that era included -
This Massachusetts girl was reported to have axed her father and stepmother to death. It was so out of the blue and so hard to comprehend, that putting her to trial was a difficult task. Even though she was acquitted, her life was as an outsider.
Jack the Ripper
This British serial killer of the Victorian Era struck one of the poorest districts, Whitechapel, where he prayed upon women, killing them in dark alleyways by surgical means. His identity was never discovered and many speculate from royal family members to local doctors.
Believed to have killed somewhere between 20 and 200 people, this serial killer in Chicago was a real piece of work. He had a three-story building constructed that became his "murder castle" where he tortured those staying in the rooms and killed them in heinous ways.
Mary Ann Cotton
This woman was the first female convicted serial killer in Britain. She filled her tea pot with arsenic and killed 21 people. She took the lives of her mother, eight of her children, seven stepchildren, three husbands, a lover, and a friend.
The truly amazing thing I found in looking into Victorian Era killers is how many women acted out as serial killers of crimes of passion. This era that suppressed women and desires likely created a steaming pot with a tight lid.