In Cold Blood Slideshow A widely distributed picture of the Clutters, minus their surviving elder daughters, Beverly and Eveanna. Clockwise from bottom left: Nancy, Bonnie, Herb, and Kenyon. The Clutters’ house on River Valley Farm in Holcomb, Kansas. Apparently the heinous crime committed there didn’t put a curse on the structure. It stands today and has had other occupants. Holcomb, the home of the Clutters, had only 270 residents at the time of the murders in 1959, but 1,000 people showed up for their funeral in Garden City. The author was born Truman Streckfus Persons, but his birth father had little to do with him. His mother’s second husband adopted him and renamed him Truman Garcia Capote. Nancy Clutter, second from left, regularly cooked meals for her family and also won prizes for her baked goods. The last person to see the Clutters alive, Nancy’s boyfriend Bobby Rupp faced suspicion in the community and briefly transferred to a different high school to avoid it. Bobby Rupp, seen here circa 2005, said that he and his brother drove to the Clutters’ farm after they heard about the murders; In Cold Blood says they walked. He allowed Capote to ask him some questions early on, but didn’t like him and wasn’t interested in his book. Nancy Clutter, left, with her close friend Susan Kidwell. The basement of the Clutters’ house, where police found Herb lying on a large piece of cardboard, with his throat cut and a bullet wound. The New Yorker magazine, which published the serialized version of In Cold Blood in 1965, is still the Holy Grail for aspiring writers. The Chinses elms that lined the Clutters’ driveway. Garden City, Kansas, newspaper coverage of the murders. Both killers suffered severe accidents in their youth. A car crash left Hickock with askew facial features (Capote noted that he looked normal when he smiled). Smith’s legs were damaged so badly in a motorcycle wreck that some sources describe him as “crippled.” But he could walk and do manual labor despite chronic pain. Truman Capote in middle age. He died in 1984 at 59 — at the home of Johnny Carson’s ex-wife Joanne Carson — of alcohol-related health problems. A rare photo of all six Clutters, with Kenyon and Nancy at the lower left and Herb in the middle. Bonnie, Beverly, and Eveanna are in the picture, although it’s not clear who’s who. Truman Capote and Harper Lee met as children and stayed friends. She based the character Dill after him in To Kill a Mockingbird. Truman Capote around the time he made a splash with Other Voices, Other Rooms, about a little boy who searches for his father only to find he’s severely handicapped and unable to speak — a metaphor for the absence of his real father. Richard Hickock grew up in a stable home and was a popular student-athlete. Perry Smith was severely abused and, at times, abandoned as a child. They were both executed by hanging. Truman Capote lacked parental love as a child, but his wealthy stepfather Joe Capote provided well for him materially and paid for expensive private schooling. Harper Lee looks on as Truman Capote signs copies of In Cold Blook in Holcomb, Kansas, in 1966. She helped him research the book. Robert Blake played Perry Smith in a 1967 movie version of In Cold Blood. He went on to success in the 1970s TV series Barretta. Blake was himself tried for murder in 2005 and acquitted. Click on any image to view this post as a slideshow.