19th Century American Criminals

This ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

Rank the Most Wicked American

 1 Billy the Kid

Billy the Kid
7
Famous As: Gunman
Birthdate: November 17, 1859
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Manhattan
Died: July 14, 1881

Billy the Kid was a gunfighter of the American Old West whose notoriety grew when he escaped from jail after killing two sheriff's deputies. He remains one of the most notorious personalities of the American Old West, whose life has been often dramatized in popular culture. His story has inspired over 50 films, including Billy the Kid, and The Outlaw.

 2 Lucky Luciano

Lucky Luciano
7
Famous As: Gangster
Birthdate: November 11, 1897
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Lercara Friddi, Italy
Died: January 26, 1962

An Italian-born gangster, Lucky Luciano is regarded as the father of modern organized crime in the US; he served as the first boss of the Genovese crime family. He also played a key role in the rise of the National Crime Syndicate. His life and style inspired several films, television series, and books. His eponymous biopic was released in 1973.

 3 Albert Fish

Albert Fish
10
Famous As: Serial Killer
Birthdate: May 19, 1870
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Washington, D.C., United States
Died: January 16, 1936

Albert Fish was an American cannibal, child rapist, and serial killer. Fish confessed to three murders out of the five murders for which he was suspected. However, he claimed to have victimized about 100 people and boasted of having children in every state. His crimes and the subsequent execution by electric chair were dramatized in the film The Gray Man.

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 4 H. H. Holmes

H. H. Holmes
11
Famous As: Serial Killer
Birthdate: May 16, 1861
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Gilmanton, New Hampshire, United States
Died: May 7, 1896
American serial killer H.H. Holmes was sentenced to death for the murder of his accomplice Benjamin Pitezel but confessed to 27 murders and might have killed almost 200 people. He had set up a hotel, later known as the Murder Castle, specifically for this purpose. He inspired a bestselling book.

 5 Jesse James

Jesse James
3
Famous As: American Outlaw & Gang Leader
Birthdate: September 5, 1847
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Kearney
Died: April 3, 1882
Jesse James was an outlaw from Missouri, who robbed trains, stagecoaches, and banks. He was also a guerrilla and led the James–Younger Gang. Along with his brother Frank, he joined pro-Confederate “bushwhackers” during the American Civil War. James became a legendary Wild West figure after his death.

 6 Delphine LaLaurie

Delphine LaLaurie
3
Famous As: Serial killer
Birthdate: March 19, 1780
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: New Orleans, Louisiana, United States
Died: December 7, 1849
Delphine LaLaurie, also known as Marie Delphine Macarty or Madame Blanque, was a socialite from New Orleans who tortured and killed countless slaves in her Royal Street mansion. Her crimes were discovered after a fire at her mansion. An outraged mob subsequently destroyed the house, while she left New Orleans.

 7 Butch Cassidy

Butch Cassidy
2
Famous As: Criminal
Birthdate: April 13, 1866
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Beaver, Utah
Died: November 7, 1908

Train and bank robber Butch Cassidy was the leader of a gang of criminal outlaws known as the "Wild Bunch" in the Old West. The son of ranchers, he ran away from home as a teenager and became involved in a life of crime. He started with minor criminal offenses and eventually became a much-feared robber.

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 8 Arnold Rothstein

Arnold Rothstein
3
Famous As: Racketeer
Birthdate: January 17, 1882
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: nhattan, New York City, New York
Died: November 6, 1928

Arnold Rothstein, or the Brain, was a racketeer, gambler, and businessman who later became a leader of New York’s Jewish crime circuit. He had reportedly fixed the 1919 World Series. He inspired several fictional characters, including Meyer Wolfsheim in The Great Gatsby. He was murdered for declining a poker-related payment.

 9 Nucky Johnson

Nucky Johnson
2
Famous As: Politician
Birthdate: January 20, 1883
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Galloway, New Jersey, United States
Died: December 9, 1968

 10 Leon Czolgosz

Leon Czolgosz
2
Famous As: Assassin of American President William McKinley
Birthdate: May 5, 1873
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Alpena, Michigan
Died: October 29, 1901

Steelworker Leon Czołgosz was an anarchist who assassinated President William McKinley. He shot McKinley twice from point-blank range on September 6, 1901, and the president died of his wounds on September 14. Czołgosz was eventually convicted and executed for his crime. He was the main character in the musical Assassins.

 11 Ike Clanton

Ike Clanton
0
Famous As: Member of Brigand Group - The Cowboys
Birthdate: 1847 AD
Birthplace: Callaway County, Missouri
Died: June 1, 1887

 12 John Wesley Hardin

John Wesley Hardin
2
Famous As: Gunslinger
Birthdate: May 26, 1853
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Bonham, Texas
Died: August 19, 1895

 13 Sundance Kid

Sundance Kid
1
Famous As: Criminal
Birthdate: 1867 AD
Birthplace: Mont Clare, Pennsylvania, United States
Died: November 7, 1908

Sundance Kid was the nickname of Harry Alonzo Longabaugh, an outlaw and member of Butch Cassidy's Wild Bunch in the American Old West. He first met Cassidy around 1896 and became part of his gang. As a Wild Bunch member, Sundance Kid participated in several train and bank robberies. He is believed to have been killed in 1908.  

 14 Charles J. Guiteau

Charles J. Guiteau
3
Famous As: Guy who Assassinated the US President James A. Garfield
Birthdate: September 8, 1841
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Freeport, Illinois, United States
Died: June 30, 1882

Charles J. Guiteau was an American lawyer and writer who assassinated US President James A. Garfield, in 1881. He falsely believed that he helped Garfield win the presidential elections and that Garfield owed his victory to him. However, when his applications to serve in Paris or Vienna were rejected, he got offended and killed the president.

 15 Ma Barker

Ma Barker
1
Famous As: Matriarch of the Barker Family
Birthdate: October 8, 1873
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Ash Grove, Missouri, United States
Died: January 16, 1935

 16 William M. Tweed

William M. Tweed
0
Famous As: Politician
Birthdate: April 3, 1823
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Manhattan
Died: April 12, 1878

William M. Tweed was an American politician best known for serving as the boss of Tammany Hall, which had a major influence on the political scene of 19th-century New York State. He was later convicted for stealing millions of dollars from New York City taxpayers. His life and career inspired several films, such as Up in Central Park and Liberty.

 17 Tommy Lucchese

Tommy Lucchese
4
Famous As: Criminal
Birthdate: December 1, 1899
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Palermo, Italy
Died: July 13, 1967

 18 Belle Gunness

Belle Gunness
9
Famous As: Serial Killer
Birthdate: November 11, 1859
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Selbu
Died: April 28, 1908
Also known as the Mistress of Murder Farms, Norwegian-born American immigrant Brynhild Paulsdatter Storset later changed her name to Belle. The brutal murderer is believed to have seduced and then butchered her countless suitors. A headless body found recovered from her burnt house was thought to be hers.

 19 Jean Lafitte

Jean Lafitte
0
Famous As: Pirate
Birthdate: September 25, 1780
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Biarritz, France
Died: 1823 AD

 20 Mary Surratt

Mary Surratt
2
Famous As: Criminal, Businessperson
Birthdate: 1823 AD
Birthplace: Waterloo, Maryland, United States
Died: July 7, 1865

 21 Robert Stroud

Robert Stroud
0
Famous As: Writer
Birthdate: January 8, 1890
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Seattle, Washington, USA
Died: November 21, 1963

 22 Vincent Mangano

Vincent Mangano
3
Famous As: Criminal
Birthdate: March 28, 1888
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Villabate, Italy
Died: April 19, 1951

 23 Frank James

Frank James
1
Famous As: Outlaw
Birthdate: January 10, 1843
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Clay County, Missouri, USA
Died: February 18, 1915

Frank James was an American Confederate soldier turned outlaw. He was a good student and once aspired to be a teacher. He served in the American Civil War and was later pushed into the world of crime. He became a part of the James-Younger Gang and participated in many robberies. He eventually quit crime to work other jobs. 

 24 Belle Starr

Belle Starr
1
Famous As: Outlaw
Birthdate: February 5, 1848
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Carthage, Missouri, United States
Died: February 3, 1889

 25 William C. Quantrill

William C. Quantrill
1
Famous As: Confederate guerrilla leader
Birthdate: July 31, 1837
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Canal Dover, Ohio, United States
Died: June 6, 1865

 26 Giuseppe Morello

Giuseppe Morello
1
Famous As: Criminal
Birthdate: May 2, 1867
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Corleone, Italy
Died: August 15, 1930

 27 Dean O'Banion

Dean O'Banion
3
Famous As: Mobster
Birthdate: July 8, 1892
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Maroa, Illinois, United States
Died: November 10, 1924

 28 Hawley Harvey Crippen

Hawley Harvey Crippen
0
Famous As: Homeopath & Killer of His Wife
Birthdate: September 11, 1862
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Coldwater, Michigan, United States
Died: November 23, 1910

 29 James Colosimo

James Colosimo
0
Famous As: Criminal
Birthdate: February 16, 1878
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Calabria
Died: May 11, 1920

 30 Jane Toppan

Jane Toppan
1
Famous As: Serial killer
Birthdate: March 31, 1854
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Boston
Died: October 29, 1938

 31 Zerelda Mimms

Zerelda Mimms
0
Famous As: Jesse James' Wife
Birthdate: July 21, 1845
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Logan, Kentucky
Died: November 13, 1900

Zerelda Mimms was the wife of bank and train robber Jesse James. She was the daughter of a pastor. Her mother, Mary Elizabeth, and Jesse James' father, Robert S. James, were siblings, making Zerelda and Jesse first cousins. Zerelda married Jesse in 1874. The couple had four children, two of whom died in infancy. 

 32 Alferd Packer

Alferd Packer
5
Famous As: Criminal, Serial killer
Birthdate: January 21, 1842
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Allegheny County
Died: April 23, 1907

 33 Elmer McCurdy

Elmer McCurdy
0
Famous As: Robber
Birthdate: January 1, 1880
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Washington, USA
Died: October 7, 1911

Elmer McCurdy was a bank and train robber. Born to an unwed teenage mother, he struggled a lot in his early life and took to a life of crime. He was a heavy drinker and often sabotaged his gang’s robberies. He was killed in a shootout after robbing a Katy Train in Oklahoma in October 1911. 

 34 Louis Buchalter

Louis Buchalter
1
Famous As: Gangster
Birthdate: February 6, 1897
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: New York City
Died: March 4, 1944

 35 Doc Scurlock

Doc Scurlock
0
Famous As: Cowboy
Birthdate: January 11, 1849
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Tallapoosa County, Alabama, United States
Died: July 25, 1929

 36 Frankie Yale

Frankie Yale
0
Famous As: Criminal
Birthdate: January 22, 1893
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Longobucco
Died: July 1, 1928

 37 Tommy Gagliano

Tommy Gagliano
0
Famous As: Mobster
Birthdate: May 29, 1883
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Corleone, Italy
Died: February 16, 1951

 38 Harvey Logan

Harvey Logan
0
Famous As: Outlaw
Birthdate: 1867 AD
Birthplace: Richland, Iowa, United States
Died: June 17, 1904

Harvey Logan, also known as Kid Curry, was an outlaw and gunman. He was associated with Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid's infamous Wild Bunch gang. He reportedly killed at least nine law enforcement officers in five shootings. He killed himself during a lengthy physical fight with lawmen in order to escape being captured. 

 39 Stefano Magaddino

Stefano Magaddino
0
Famous As: Funeral director
Birthdate: October 10, 1891
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Castellammare del Golfo
Died: July 19, 1974

 40 Bill Doolin

Bill Doolin
0
Famous As: Robber
Birthdate: 1858 AD
Birthplace: Johnson County, Arkansas, United States
Died: August 24, 1896

Bill Doolin was an outlaw and bandit who founded the Wild Bunch, also known as the Doolin-Dalton Gang. This group of criminals committed a series of bank robberies and train robberies in Arkansas, Kansas, Indiana, and Oklahoma during the 1890s. His gang was extremely powerful. He was relentlessly pursued by lawmen and was shot to death in 1896.  

 41 Owney Madden

Owney Madden
0
Famous As: Gangster
Birthdate: December 18, 1891
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Leeds
Died: April 24, 1965

 42 Paul Ricca

Paul Ricca
1
Famous As: mobster
Birthdate: November 14, 1897
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Naples
Died: October 11, 1972

 43 Black Bart

Black Bart
1
Famous As: Outlaw
Birthdate: 1829 AD
Birthplace: Norfolk, England
Died: January 31, 1888

Black Bart was the nickname of Charles E. Boles, an outlaw who was one of the most notorious stagecoach robbers to operate in Northern California during the 1870s and early 1880s. He was considered a “gentleman bandit” with a love for sophistication. His final robbery took place in 1883, following which he was arrested. He was released in 1888. 

 44 Servant Girl Annihilator

Servant Girl Annihilator
2
Famous As: Serial killer
Birthdate: 0000 AD
Birthplace: United States

 45 Gaetano Reina

Gaetano Reina
1
Famous As: gangster, businessperson
Birthdate: September 27, 1889
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Corleone
Died: February 26, 1930

 46 Willie Moretti

Willie Moretti
1
Birthdate: February 24, 1894
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: New York City
Died: October 4, 1951

 47 Sam Bass

Sam Bass
0
Famous As: Outlaw
Birthdate: July 21, 1851
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Mitchell, Indiana, United States
Died: July 21, 1878

Sam Bass was a 19th-century train robber and outlaw. Having lost his parents as a child, he lived with an uncle for a few years before leaving home. He started doing odd jobs but was dissatisfied with the pay. So, he took to a life of crime and participated in numerous train robberies. He was killed by the lawmen. 

 48 Joe Aiello

Joe Aiello
0
Birthdate: September 20, 1891
Sun Sign: Virgo
Birthplace: Bagheria
Died: October 23, 1930

 49 Gaston Means

Gaston Means
0
Famous As: Private Detective
Birthdate: July 11, 1879
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Concord, North Carolina, United States
Died: December 12, 1938

 50 Elzy Lay

Elzy Lay
0
Famous As: Outlaw
Birthdate: November 25, 1868
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Ohio, United States
Died: November 10, 1934

Elzy Lay was an American outlaw who was part of the infamous Butch Cassidy's Wild Bunch. A close associate of the founder of the gang Butch Cassidy, Lay played an important role in leading the gang which operated out of a remote pass called Hole-in-the-Wall in Johnson County, Wyoming. Lay's arrest in 1899 led to the collapse of the gang.