Bertha Gifford, Murderess?

Bertha was a matronly lady who devoted herself to her sick neighbors out of the goodness or her heart, or did she have another motive?  Listen carefully, because it’s more difficult than you think to distinguish between Fact or Fiction. 

This is the article I repeatedly referenced only by its date–sorry Bill Smith. Thanks for your excellent reporting!
Smith, Bill. “Poisonous Memories.” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 26 Oct. 1993.

This is a link to the well-written and carefully researched book Missouri’s Murderous Matrons. If you’re interested in Mrs. Gifford’s story and want to learn more details, please check out this book!
If you’re interested in hearing Bertha Gifford’s family tell their side of the story, this book is written by her granddaughter and is available on Amazon.


 “12 Female Poisoners Who Killed With Arsenic.” Mental Floss, 12 Dec. 2015, 

“Bertha Gifford.” Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, 26 Nov. 2019, 

“Bertha’s Ghost.” The Haunted Truth of Bertha Gifford, 16 Nov. 2012, 

Cosner, Victoria, and Lorelei Shannon. Missouri’s Murderous Matrons: Emma Heppermann and Bertha Gifford. The History Press, 2019. 

“Mrs. Gifford Goes to Trial for Poisoning.” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 19 Nov. 1928. 

PeoplePill. “Bertha Gifford: American Serial Killer (1872-1951) – Biography and Life.” PeoplePill, 2020, 

Popper, Joe. “A DARKNESS ‘ROUND THE BEND.” Bertha Gifford, 2011, 

Smith, Bill. “Poisonous Memories.” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 26 Oct. 1993. 

“Woman Confesses Giving Poison to Three Persons Who Died in Her Home.” St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 26 Aug. 1928. 

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