In Cold Blood Multiple Choice Questions

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What were the main crops on Mr. Clutter's farm?

Wheat, milo seed, certified grass seed

How many acres did Mr. Clutter's domain consist of after a decade?

Over eight hundred acres owned outright and three thousand more worked on a rental basis

What animals were especially important on the farm?

Sheep and cattle

What was the family favorite animal on the farm?

Babe, the old fat workhorse

What is the local accent in Holcomb characterized by?

A prairie twang and a ranch-hand nasalness

What are the men in Holcomb often seen wearing?

Narrow frontier trousers, Stetsons, and high-heeled boots with pointed toes

What is the topography of the countryside like in Holcomb?

Flat with awesomely extensive views

What is the main-line track that divides the buildings in Holcomb?

Santa Fe Railroad

What was the resale value of Mr. Clutter's house built in 1948 for $40,000?

$60,000

Who were the primary cooks in the Clutter household?

Mr. Clutter and his daughter, Nancy

What was Mr. Clutter known for opposing within his family and employees at River Valley Farm?

Stimulants, such as alcohol

Which church was Mr. Clutter a member of?

Garden City’s First Methodist Church

What was the size of the congregation at Garden City’s First Methodist Church?

1,700

What was Mr. Clutter known for within his employees at River Valley Farm?

Paying good wages and distributing frequent bonuses

What did Mr. Clutter enjoy doing while examining the morning?

Eating an apple

What did River Valley Farm encompass in Finney County?

The Arkansas River’s presence

Why did Mr. Clutter resign from his position as county agent?

To create River Valley Farm

What expertise qualified Mr. Clutter to serve as a middleman between the government and despondent farm ranchers?

Streamlined agricultural practices

What was the initial reaction of Finney County conservatives to Mr. Clutter's endeavor of creating River Valley Farm?

Skepticism

What was the HOLCOMB BANK building converted into?

Apartments

What is the primary occupation of the majority of Holcomb's inhabitants?

Farming

What is the average annual precipitation in western Kansas?

Eighteen inches

What natural resource has contributed to the prosperity of farm ranchers in Finney County?

Natural gas

What was the occupation of Herbert William Clutter, the master of River Valley Farm?

Agriculturist

What was the name of the church for which Herbert William Clutter headed the building committee?

First Methodist Church

How many children did Herbert William Clutter have?

Four

What was the occupation of Bonnie Fox, Herbert William Clutter's wife?

Homemaker

Where did Herbert William Clutter's eldest daughter, Eveanna, live?

Northern Illinois

What was the primary source of income for the farm ranchers in Finney County?

Farming and natural gas resources

What was the primary source of income for the farm ranchers in Finney County?

Farming and natural gas resources

What was the primary source of income for the farm ranchers in Finney County?

Farming and natural gas resources

What was the former occupation of one of the two apartment houses in Holcomb?

Bank

How many filling stations are there in Holcomb?

Two

What was the occupation of Herbert William Clutter?

Prominent figure in agricultural circles

How many children did Mr. Clutter have?

Four

What was the impact of the Clutter family's murder on the town of Holcomb?

It led to a reevaluation of the relationships among its residents

What was the occupation of Mr. Clutter during the Eisenhower administration?

Federal Farm Credit Board

What was the majority of Holcomb’s homes like?

One-story frame affairs with front porches

What was the name of Mr. Clutter's daughter who lived in northern Illinois?

Eveanna

What was the size of the student population at the Holcomb School?

Around 360 students

What were the ranchers in Finney County known for?

Varied stock and success due to favorable weather conditions and natural gas resources

What was the former occupation of the other apartment house in Holcomb?

Mansion known as the Teacherage

What facilities does Holcomb have?

Post office, depot, and two filling stations

What is the local accent in Holcomb characterized by?

A prairie twang and a ranch-hand nasalness

What can be seen from great distances in the countryside?

Horses, herds of cattle, and grain elevators

What are the streets of Holcomb like after rain or snowfalls thaw?

They turn from the thickest dust into the direst mud

What is the condition of the old stucco structure in Holcomb?

The roof supports an electric sign for a dance, but the dancing has ceased and the advertisement has been dark for several years

Who is studying to be a nurse in Kansas City?

Beverly

Who is the town darling?

Nancy

Where does Mrs. Clutter occupy a room for occupancy?

Their daughter's former room

What is Mr. Clutter's concern about his wife's health?

Psychiatric issues

What caused Mr. Clutter to have a late start to his day on November 14, 1959?

Family dynamics and events

Who is engaged to a biology student?

Beverly

Where is Beverly studying to be a nurse?

Kansas City

Who is still living at home?

Kenyon and Nancy

Who returns home late after attending a 'Spook Show'?

Nancy

What is the reason for Mr. Clutter's delayed morning routine?

Tiring yet exhilarating evening

What is Mrs. Clutter's health issue related to?

A misplaced vertebrae

Where does Mrs. Clutter sleep?

In her daughter's former bedroom

What was the resale value of Mr. Clutter's house?

$60,000

Who were the primary cooks in Mr. Clutter's household?

Mr. Clutter and Nancy

What was Mr. Clutter known for opposing?

Stimulants

Which church was Mr. Clutter a member of?

First Methodist Church

What was the size of the congregation at Mr. Clutter's church?

1,700

What was Mr. Clutter known for as an employer?

Paying good wages and distributing frequent bonuses

What did Mr. Clutter enjoy doing while examining the morning?

Eating an apple

Where did Mr. Clutter create River Valley Farm?

Finney County

Why did Mr. Clutter resign from his position as county agent?

To create River Valley Farm

What was Mr. Clutter qualified to do due to his expertise?

Serve as a middleman between the government and despondent farm ranchers

What was the initial reaction to Mr. Clutter's endeavor of creating River Valley Farm?

Skepticism from Finney County conservatives

What was Nancy known for as a skilled individual?

Cooking, sewing, and music

What was the community's perception of Nancy's capabilities?

She's got character. Gets it from her old man.

What was the talent that gave support to all of Nancy's other traits?

A fine-honed sense of organization

What was Nancy's attitude towards teaching younger girls?

Willingly taught and felt it her duty to be available

What did the young mother experience after each confinement?

Feelings of unexplained sadness

When did the pattern of postnatal depression repeat itself for the young mother?

After the births of Nancy and Kenyon

What characterized the years between the births of Beverly and Nancy?

Sunday picnics and summer excursions to Colorado

What did the young mother experience even on the best of the good days?

A lingering mood of misery

What does Mrs. Clutter worry about in regards to Jolene's happiness?

Jolene's emotional well-being

What is Mrs. Clutter's main regret regarding her education?

Not completing her nursing course

What is the reason for Mrs. Clutter's loneliness?

Her husband's frequent travels

What does Mrs. Clutter share with Jolene about her childhood?

Her collection of miniature items

What does Jolene find in Mrs. Clutter that arouses protective compassion in her?

Mrs. Clutter's frail health

What is Mrs. Clutter's husband's stance on her coffee consumption?

He disapproves of her drinking coffee

What profession did Mrs. Clutter once aspire to?

Nurse

What is the primary activity that Nancy is busy with, leaving Jolene with Mrs. Clutter?

Practicing a trumpet solo

What does Jolene express her desire to do every day?

Bake a pie

What is the main reason for Jolene's protective feelings towards Mrs. Clutter?

Mrs. Clutter's frail health

What does Mrs. Clutter share with Jolene about her marriage?

Her husband's college friendship with her brother

What does Nancy do with her protegee, Jolene?

Bake a pie

What does Nancy seek her father's help for?

To take her place at the 4-H meeting

What does Nancy value among the following?

Gold watch

Who questions Nancy about holding hands with Jerry Roth?

Susan

Where does Nancy plan to attend as an art student and roommates with Susan?

Kansas State University

What does Nancy feel tongue-tied about?

Expressing her feelings to her father

Who does Nancy discuss her troubled relationship with?

Her father

What is Susan's situation in relation to having a father figure?

She doesn't have a father figure

What is Nancy uncertain about in relation to her father's behavior?

Whether her behavior is causing her father’s grouchiness

What does the text portray Nancy's struggle with?

Her relationships and packed daily schedule

What does Nancy feel conflicted about?

Her relationship with her father and her love for Bobby

Who is Nancy's confidante?

Susan

What does Nancy wish to make her father understand?

Her love for Bobby

What is Perry trying to improve for Dick?

His grammar and vocabulary

What is Perry's distinguishing feature?

A fraternity tattoo under his left eye

What is the reason for Nancy feeling like she's losing her mind?

Smelling smoke

What is Dick's occupation?

Mechanic

What are Dick and Perry planning to do?

Robbery

What is the book from which the excerpt is taken?

In Cold Blood by Truman Capote

What is Susan worried about?

Something and being apart from the Clutter family

What did Perry bring along with a guitar?

A shotgun

What is the reason for Susan and Nancy being apart?

Susan transferred to a different school

What have Dick and Perry lied about?

Their whereabouts

What is Nancy's emotional state?

Feeling like she's losing her mind

What are Dick and Perry planning to do to gain access to a house?

Deceive someone

Who is studying to be a nurse in Kansas City?

Beverly

Who is the town darling?

Nancy

What does Mr. Clutter disapprove of regarding Nancy?

Her relationship with Bobby Rupp

What has been Mrs. Clutter's health issue for the last six years?

Psychiatric problems

Why is Mr. Clutter relieved after Mrs. Clutter's return from Wichita?

Her health issues are physical and require an operation

Where does Mrs. Clutter stay after returning from treatment in Wichita?

In Nancy's former bedroom

What did Nancy do on the evening before November 14, 1959, that caused concern for Mr. Clutter?

Went on a date with Bobby Rupp

Where does Mrs. Clutter sleep?

In Nancy's former bedroom

What is Kenyon's relationship to Nancy?

He is her brother

What is the main cause of Mr. Clutter's late start on November 14, 1959?

Concerns about Nancy

Where is Beverly studying to be a nurse?

Kansas City

What is Kenyon's gender?

Male

What is the primary reason for Dick's tattoos?

To create a tough and intimidating image

How did Dick's appearance change when he was fully clothed?

He seemed slimmer and shorter

What was the reason for Dick and Carol's separation?

Dick's desire to 'do the right thing' by another woman

What was the significance of the tattoo on Dick's hand?

It was a self-expression of his tough image

What was the primary source of income from the rabbit roundups conducted by Kenyon and his friend?

Sale of rabbits to a processing plant

What was the main reason for the change in the relationship between Kenyon and his friend Bob?

Bob started dating a girl

What was the significance of the 'rabbit factory' mentioned in the text?

It paid ten cents per rabbit for quick-freezing and shipping

What was the most enjoyable part of the hunting hikes for Kenyon and Bob?

Swaggering homeward with a dozen duck dinners

What does Perry consider buying for disguise during the shopping trip in Emporia, Kansas?

Black stockings

What item do Perry and Dick buy for the murders they plan?

White nylon cord

What is Kenyon building for his fiancée, Beverly?

A hope chest

What is Kenyon's den a place for?

His carpentry and Nancy's needlework

What do Kenyon and Bob enjoy racing with their truck, the Coyote Wagon?

Coyotes

What is the Sand Hills near River Valley Farm described as?

A mysterious area

What do Kenyon and Bob attempt to outrace in the moonlit evenings?

Coyotes

What is described as creating thrilling experiences for the boys?

Their wild and beautiful fun with the coyotes

What is Perry's personality trait that sets him apart but also limits his relationships?

Fearless self-assurance

What is the primary purpose of the black Chevrolet's trip to Emporia, Kansas?

Shopping

What is Kenyon's physical appearance and his friendship with Bob Jones described as?

Described

What does Dick dismiss the need for, emphasizing the plan's flawlessness?

Stockings

What is the reason for Perry becoming an aspirin addict?

He was injured in a motorcycle wreck

What is the primary reason for Dick's facial disfigurement?

A car accident in 1950

What is the significance of Perry's tattoos?

Elaborate, done by professionals

What is the distance between Olathe and Holcomb?

Around 400 miles

What is the primary feature of Garden City's historical development?

Opulent ranching center

What role did Buffalo Jones play in Garden City's expansion?

Itinerant buffalo hunter

What are some of the amenities boasted about by the citizens of Garden City?

Well-run public library, competent daily newspaper, large park with a menagerie

What are the primary characteristics of Garden City?

Fair-sized town with friendly people, good schools, and a well-run public library

What are the significant features of the town of Holcomb?

Green-lawned and shady squares, placid residential streets, a park with a small menagerie, and a large swimming pool

What is the perception of Garden City by travelers?

Often overlooked by travelers

What is the historical significance of Garden City's souvenirs?

Reflects the town's past, including the Buffalo Block and the Windsor Hotel

What do Dick and Perry plan to deceive someone for?

To gain access to a house

What does Perry have under his left eye?

A fraternity tattoo

What is Dick's occupation?

Mechanic

What is Perry trying to improve for Dick?

Grammar and vocabulary

What is the main item Perry brings along with a guitar for the crime?

Shotgun

What is Nancy worried about?

Something that is concerning her and is close to the Clutter family

Why have Perry's family and Dick's family disapproved of their association?

They are planning a robbery

What is the excerpt from?

The book 'In Cold Blood' by Truman Capote

What does Nancy mention feeling like?

Losing her mind

What are Dick and Perry planning?

A robbery

What has Susan done that caused her and Nancy to be apart?

Transferred to a different school

What does Perry bring along with a guitar for the crime?

Shotgun

What is the significant factor influencing class status in Garden City?

Church affiliation

What was Mr. Clutter's political affiliation?

Republican

What was the aim of the Finney County 4-H Club, of which Mr. Clutter was chairman?

Develop practical abilities and moral character in rural area residents

What did Mrs. Ashida consider doing for better opportunities?

Leaving for Nebraska

What did Mrs. Ashida ask Mr. Clutter's opinion about as a Christmas gift for her husband?

Gold teeth

What did Mrs. Ashida ask Mr. Clutter not to do at the Achievement Banquet?

Make a speech in her honor

What quality of Mr. Clutter was recognized by the community?

His ease and ability to convince others

What was Mrs. Ashida's reaction to Mr. Clutter's opinion about her Christmas gift idea?

She was delighted

What was the predominant political affiliation of the elite in Finney County?

Republican

What did Mr. Clutter prefer to do with his time instead of socializing with the local patricians?

Pursue activities that he felt would 'accomplish something'

What did Garden City residents deny, despite clear observations of it?

Social grading

What did Mrs. Ashida express despite considering leaving for better opportunities?

Her fondness for the place they lived

What was the primary factor influencing class status in Garden City?

Church affiliation

Who were the elite in Finney County predominantly associated with?

Presbyterian and Episcopalian faiths

What was the aim of the Finney County 4-H Club?

Develop practical abilities and moral character

What did Mrs. Ashida seek Mr. Clutter's opinion about as a Christmas gift for her husband?

Gold teeth

What did Mrs. Ashida ask Mr. Clutter not to do at the Achievement Banquet?

Not to make a speech in her honor

What did Mrs. Ashida admire Mr. Clutter for?

His ability to speak to a large audience

What did residents of Garden City deny, despite clear observations?

Social grading

What was Mr. Clutter's preferred type of activities?

Activities that would 'accomplish something'

What did Mrs. Ashida express despite considering leaving for better opportunities?

Her fondness for the place they lived

What did Mrs. Clutter worry about in regards to Jolene's happiness?

Her social life

What was Mr. Clutter's reaction to Mrs. Ashida's idea about her husband's Christmas gift?

He delighted her with his reaction

What was the condition of Nancy's body when the sheriff found her in her room?

She had been shot in the back of the head with a shotgun from a close range

What did the sheriff do after seeing Nancy's condition in her room?

He radioed his office for reinforcements and an ambulance

What did the sheriff notice about the phone in the kitchen?

The wires had been cut

What was the sheriff's demeanor as he ascended the stairs to Nancy's room?

He kept his hand on his hip pistol, ready to draw

What was the value of the check Mr. Johnson had in his pocket?

Eighty thousand dollars

Who did Mr. Johnson call for advice about the delicate situation he was in?

The manager of their office in Wichita

What did Mr. Johnson have in his pocket that made the situation a delicate matter?

Clutter’s check

Who were the two persons who benefited from the honorable attitude of Mr. Johnson's company?

Eveanna Jarchow and her

Who was found tied with her hands in front, shot in the head, and wearing jewelry, a robe, and a nightgown?

Mrs. Clutter

Where was Mr. Clutter found?

In the furnace room

Who was found tied up and shot in the face in the basement?

Kenyon

What was used to tie Nancy Clutter's ankles?

Venetian blind cord

What did the sheriff and team find puzzling about the crime scene?

The lack of struggle and the complex nature of the crimes

What was found in the furnace room with Mr. Clutter?

A blood-stained box

What was used to tie Kenyon in the basement?

Venetian blind cord

What did the undersheriff find puzzling about the state of the bodies?

The lack of clues

What was found tied with intricate cord and gagged in the basement?

Kenyon

What was missing from the house after the crime?

Shotguns

What was the condition of Nancy Clutter's body when she was found in her room?

Tied with her hands behind her

What did the sheriff and team notice about the lack of struggle at the crime scene?

Puzzling

What is Mrs. Clare's reaction when she hears about the Clutters being shot?

She nonchalantly reveals the news

Where does the community gather to discuss the Clutter murders?

Hartman's Café

What is the community's belief about the motive behind the Clutter murders?

A grudge killing by someone who knew the house well

How does Mrs. Clare's demeanor change after the Clutter murders?

She remains stoic

What is the general reaction of the community to the brutal murders?

Shocked and frightened

What was Mrs. Clare's previous occupation before working at the Federal Building?

Dance hall owner

Who informs Mrs. Clare about the two ambulances going to the Clutters'?

Mrs. Truitt

What is the atmosphere in Hartman's Café after the news of the Clutter murders?

Filled with shocked gossips and speculation

What is Mrs. Hartman's reaction to the Clutter murders?

Expresses disbelief and fear

What effect do the murders have on the community's sense of safety and trust?

Shattered

What is the community left wondering after the brutal murders?

Who could have committed such a crime

What is the community's reaction to Mrs. Clare's stoic behavior?

Shock and curiosity

What is the name of the oldest native-born Holcombite who works as the mail messenger?

Mrs. Sadie Truitt

Who is the local postmistress and the previous owner of the Holcomb Dance Pavilion?

Mrs. Myrtle Clare

What is the title of the Holcomb post office as mentioned in the text?

The Federal Building

What led Mrs. Truitt to abandon her duties as mail messenger for the first time?

The arrival of ambulances at the Clutter property

What is the unique characteristic of Mrs. Truitt's attire as described in the text?

Babushka bandannas and cowboy boots

What is the previous occupation of Mrs. Clare before becoming the postmistress?

Dance hall hostess

What is the frequency of passenger trains passing through the town of Holcomb?

Frequent

What is the significance of the Holcomb Dance Pavilion as mentioned in the text?

A gathering place for the community

What is the condition of the Holcomb post office as described in the text?

Poor

What is the role of Mrs. Truitt in the town of Holcomb?

Mail messenger

What is the familial tie of Mrs. Truitt to the town of Holcomb?

Oldest native-born Holcombite

What is the previous occupation of Mrs. Clare's late husband as mentioned in the text?

Holcomb Dance Pavilion owner

What were some of the ventures Perry ardently proposed?

Buying a deep-sea fishing boat and chauffeuring stolen cars across South American borders

What did Perry remind Dick of as a potential source of fortune?

Cocos Island, a land speck off the coast of Costa Rica

What was the estimated worth of the fortune Perry mentioned?

Sixty million dollars

What was one of the projects Perry and Dick had discussed despite lacking experience?

Buying and manning a deep-sea fishing boat

What did Dick dislike about the fancy dark glasses Perry bought in Kansas City?

The mirrored lenses

What was the primary reason for Dick's uncertainty about Perry?

Perry's behavior during Perry's friend's illness

What did Dick express his discomfort with regarding Perry's fancy dark glasses?

The mirrored lenses

What did Perry purchase in Kansas City that Dick disliked?

Fancy dark glasses

What prompted Dewey to reconsider the possibility of robbery as a motive for the Clutter family murders?

The absence of Kenyon's radio

What did a man who called claiming to be the killer demand before revealing his identity?

A reward

What forced Dewey to consider the possibility of 'plain robbery' as a motive for the murders?

The discovery of the missing radio and the gold wristwatch

What prompted Dewey to remain hopeful despite the lack of progress in the investigation?

The belief that the next lead could be the breakthrough needed to solve the case

What led Dewey to feel tense, frustrated, and unable to sleep during the investigation?

The lack of progress and the absence of meaningful leads

What prompted Dewey to reconsider the possibility of a motive for the Clutter family murders?

The discovery of a gold wristwatch in Nancy's shoe

What indicated potential false confessions and opportunistic behavior in the investigation?

A man calling claiming to be the killer but demanding a reward before revealing his identity

What led Dewey to eliminate several suspects in the investigation?

The lack of progress in the investigation

What were the primary sources of the phone calls received by Al Dewey during the investigation?

Journalists, theorists, and concerned citizens

What was a meaningful development in the investigation of the Clutter family murders?

The discovery of a gold wristwatch in Nancy's shoe

What was the impact of the numerous phone calls received by Al Dewey?

None of the conversations led to a breakthrough in the case

What did the absence of Kenyon's radio and the discovery of the gold wristwatch suggest in the investigation?

Robbery as a possible motive

What did Howard Fox do after the Clutter family's murder?

He wrote a letter to the Garden City Telegram urging forgiveness for the killers

What was Perry's behavior during the stop to picnic in Mexico?

He reflected on their actions

How did Dick view himself in comparison to Perry?

Normal and balanced

What peculiar behaviors did Perry exhibit?

Wetting the bed, crying in his sleep, and obsessing over treasure guides

What did Beverly Clutter do three days after mourning her family's murder?

She married Vere Edward English

What was Dick's reaction to leaving Kansas City for Mexico?

He was conflicted due to leaving loved ones behind

What did Perry do during the journey to Mexico?

He seemed relieved to leave Kansas behind

How did Dick perceive Perry's behavior?

Peculiar and troubled

What were Perry's peculiar behaviors?

Wetting the bed, crying in his sleep, and obsessing over treasure guides

What was Dick's reaction to Perry's temper?

He found it annoying

What was Dick's perception of Perry's outward demeanor?

Cool and tough

What did Howard Fox do in response to the Clutter family's murder?

He wrote a letter urging forgiveness for the killers

Why did Dewey refuse to accept the theory that the family was killed for a paltry profit?

It contradicted his image of the killer(s)

What did Dewey prioritize in the investigation?

Facts over 'fancy theories'

What was Dewey's belief about at least one of the murderers?

Emotional involvement with the victims

What did Dewey and his wife prioritize in their daily routines?

Faith and family values

What did Dewey aim to understand about the Clutters?

Better than they knew themselves

What did Dewey believe the expert execution of the crimes indicated?

At least one perpetrator with calculated motive and cool-headed slyness

How did Dewey's family react to the case?

His son felt endangered and his wife concerned about returning to normal life

What was Dewey's vision for the future?

A farm with oak and elm trees

What was Dewey's approach to evidence gathering?

Tracking down hundreds of people related to the Clutters

What did Dewey believe about the murderers' impulses?

Considerate, such as moving a mattress box to make the victim more comfortable

What did Dewey's wife attribute their happiness to?

Their faith and family time

What was Dewey's stance on

Facts over 'fancy theories'

What did Dewey and his associates decide to pluralize?

The term 'killer'

What reinforced Dewey's conviction that at least one of the murderers was emotionally involved with the victims?

Particulars he became aware of

What did Dewey believe the intention was behind moving the mattress box in the basement room?

To make Mr. Clutter more comfortable

What did Dewey believe was the reason for drawing up the bedcovers and tucking them in, as well as placing a pillow under Kenyon's head?

To make the victims more comfortable

What did Dewey put his faith in when solving a case?

Facts 'sweated for and sworn to'

What did Dewey's wife find him doing in the kitchen?

Waiting for a pot of coffee to percolate with murder-scene photographs spread before him

What was Mrs. Dewey's stance on blessing the table before meals?

She believed it was important to bless the table

What was the Deweys' normal life like?

Both worked and divided household chores

What was Dewey saving for?

To build a house on a farm he bought

What was an important part of the Deweys' existence?

Belief in God and associated rituals

What did Dewey do when the weather was fine and the days were hot and ripe?

Drove out to the farm he bought to practice shooting and imagine his future house and garden

What was Mrs. Dewey's sentiment when she came home from work and found dinner ready?

She felt happy and grateful

Study Notes

Clutter Family Dynamics and Events Leading Up to the Tragedy

  • The Clutter family is preparing for a Thanksgiving reunion with extended family members coming from various locations.
  • Beverly, the second oldest child, is studying to be a nurse in Kansas City and is engaged to a biology student.
  • Kenyon, the only son, and Nancy, the oldest daughter, are still living at home. Nancy is the town darling.
  • Mr. Clutter is concerned about his wife's health, as she has been suffering from psychiatric issues for the last six years.
  • Mrs. Clutter returns from treatment in Wichita with news that her health issues are physical, related to a misplaced vertebrae, and will require an operation.
  • Mr. Clutter is relieved by the news and looks forward to a Thanksgiving celebration.
  • Mr. Clutter's morning routine is delayed due to a tiring yet exhilarating evening where his wife, Bonnie, appeared to have regained vigor.
  • Nancy returns home late after attending a "Spook Show" with a boy named Bobby Rupp, causing concern for Mr. Clutter.
  • Mr. Clutter disapproves of Nancy's relationship with Bobby Rupp due to their different religious backgrounds and has advised her to gradually break off the relationship.
  • The family dynamics and events have caused Mr. Clutter to have a late start to his day on November 14, 1959.
  • Mr. Clutter and his wife sleep in separate bedrooms, with Mrs. Clutter occupying their daughter's former bedroom.
  • The Clutter family resides in a two-story, fourteen-room frame-and-brick structure, with Mrs. Clutter using her daughter's former room for occupancy.

Life in a Small Town

  • Garden City is remembered with nostalgia by those who have left and provides a sense of roots and contentment for those who have remained.
  • Garden City residents deny social grading, but class distinctions are clearly observed, with church affiliation being a significant factor influencing class status.
  • The elite in Finney County are predominantly right-wing Republicans of the Presbyterian and Episcopalian faiths.
  • Mr. Clutter, an educated and successful man, was a prominent Republican and church leader, entitled to rank among the local patricians.
  • Mr. Clutter was not part of the local patricians' social circle and preferred activities that he felt would "accomplish something."
  • The Finney County 4-H Club, of which Mr. Clutter was chairman, aimed to help rural area residents, particularly children, develop practical abilities and moral character.
  • Mr. Clutter suggested honoring Mrs. Ashida, a tenant farmer's wife, for her contributions to the community at the Achievement Banquet.
  • Mrs. Ashida and her family had received gifts from Mr. Clutter and his family, and she expressed her fondness for the place they lived despite considering leaving for better opportunities in Nebraska.
  • Mrs. Ashida sought Mr. Clutter's opinion about giving her husband gold teeth for Christmas, showing their close relationship and trust.
  • Mr. Clutter's reaction to Mrs. Ashida's idea delighted her, as she knew he was a gentleman and would not approve unless he meant it.
  • Mrs. Ashida asked Mr. Clutter not to make a speech in her honor at the banquet, highlighting his ease and ability to convince others, a quality recognized by the community.
  • Mrs. Ashida admired Mr. Clutter's ability to speak to a large audience and be convincing, emphasizing his fearless nature.

Holcomb's Mail Messenger and the Clutter Family Murder

  • The text describes the aftermath of the murder of the Clutter family, with a detailed account of the scene and the reactions of the townspeople and law enforcement.
  • The town of Holcomb is described, including the frequency of passenger trains passing through, and the town's mail messenger, Mrs. Sadie Truitt, who is also the oldest native-born Holcombite.
  • Mrs. Truitt's role as the mail messenger is detailed, including the dangerous nature of her work, her age, and her familial ties to the town.
  • The text also introduces Mrs. Myrtle Clare, Mrs. Truitt's daughter, who is the local postmistress and the previous owner of the Holcomb Dance Pavilion.
  • Mrs. Clare's unique appearance and personality traits are described, as well as her previous occupation as a dance hall hostess and the clientele it attracted.
  • The description of the Holcomb post office, referred to as "the Federal Building," is given, highlighting its poor condition and Mrs. Clare's nonchalant attitude towards it.
  • The text also mentions the incident that led Mrs. Truitt to abandon her duties as mail messenger for the first time, due to the arrival of ambulances at the Clutter property.
  • Mrs. Truitt is described as a weathered widow who wears babushka bandannas and cowboy boots, and her dedication to her job is emphasized despite the challenges she faces.
  • The townspeople's reactions to the murder and the significance of the post office in the community are detailed, including the title "the Federal Building" for the post office.
  • The text provides insight into the history of Holcomb, including the origin of its name and the unique character of its residents, such as Mrs. Truitt and Mrs. Clare.
  • The text also includes descriptions of the Holcomb Dance Pavilion, its clientele, and the tough times experienced by Mrs. Clare and her late husband during its operation.
  • The text showcases the unique personalities and roles of Mrs. Truitt and Mrs. Clare in the context of the small town of Holcomb, providing a glimpse into the community and its history.

Investigation of the Clutter Family Murders

  • Dewey refused to accept the theory that the family was killed for a paltry profit, as it would contradict his image of the killer(s).
  • He was convinced that the expert execution of the crimes indicated at least one perpetrator with calculated motive and cool-headed slyness.
  • Dewey believed that at least one of the murderers was emotionally involved with the victims, as evidenced by certain details at the crime scene.
  • He was intrigued by the murderers' considerate impulses, such as moving a mattress box to make the victim more comfortable.
  • Dewey prioritized facts over "fancy theories" and planned to track down hundreds of people related to the Clutters to gather evidence.
  • The investigation aimed to understand the Clutters better than they knew themselves, tracing connections to events from years ago.
  • Dewey's family was impacted by the case, with his son feeling endangered and his wife concerned about returning to normal life.
  • Dewey and his wife led a normal life, both working and sharing household chores, while saving to build a house on a farm he bought in 1951.
  • Dewey had a strong belief in God and practiced rituals such as attending church, saying grace, and prayers before bed.
  • Mrs. Dewey expressed gratitude for the simple pleasures of life, attributing their happiness to their faith and family time.
  • Dewey's vision for the future included a farm with oak and elm trees, and he often practiced shooting there.
  • Dewey's faith and family values were integral to his and his wife's existence, influencing their daily routines and outlook on life.

Delve into the events leading up to the tragic murder of the Clutter family in Holcomb, Kansas, and explore the investigation that unfolded. This quiz covers the family dynamics, the small-town setting, and the aftermath of the crime.

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