I knew long before I started killing that I was going to be killing, that it was going to end up like that. The fantasies were too strong.

— Edmund Kemper
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Tom Snyder’s Interview – Part1


For this page I took only those questions and answers that I find very interesting. This is a transcript of the video interview. Too see a full lenght video interview of Charles Manson with Tom Synder, as well as more interesting videos visit the multimedia tab of this page.

Tom: (sighs) Let me take you back to your mom.

Manson: Take me back to old river..

Tom: What else did she talk to you about besides the fellow who’s head popped off?

Manson: The head popped off, yeah. She was living in the Blue Moon Café and she hit a dude in the head with one of them bottles of uh, Jim Beam Whiskey. She tried to hustle a few dollars on the corner but there wasn’t no money, so when she jammed this whiskey bottle upside that clown’s head, he went down and she took his bread and come up and got me and we left and went to Indiana.

Tom: When you were a boy, did you love your mother?

Manson: Uh, I didn’t know what that was.

Tom: Did you respect your mother? How did you feel about , how do you feel about your mom right now? If your mother, I don’t know if she is alive Charles or not.

(Note from CharlieManson.com:  Manson’s mother had passed away several years before this interview)

Manson: Yeah you don’t huh?

Tom: Do you?

Manson: Hmmm. Let’s see. Alive now…yeah, yeah, maybe..

Tom: I mean, if she could be watching this right now..

Manson: She could watching this right now..

Tom: What would you say to her Charles?

Manson: Oh well, what would I say to her…

Tom: What would you say?

Manson: I’d say, “you sure did go through a lot of changes to get me as far as you did. And you did a damn good job with the help of my grandma.” My grandma was a mountain girl (chuckles) from Kentucky up in the mountains. And uh she never did drink or smoke or cuss or lie. She used to cook for the Salvation Army and she was a human being, a good one. I’d go to Church down there and sweep the floor for her.


Tom: Well, whether you like it or not Charles, all those things that happened that August in Los Angeles are identified as the Manson Killings.

Manson: Yeah, that’s what your history book will tell you.

Tom: So you can sit here and talk about the whales and Hiroshima and you can sit and talk about the environment and the Great Lakes and that’s all fine, but what it really comes down to in this particular instance is that this one is your ballgame.

Manson: Well if I could get some help from the doctor then I could get my mind straightened out a little bit and I come back and play like a human.


Tom: They think you are a monster Charles.

Manson: Yeah, they think you are a monster because you reflect this news media on me. Cult leader. I never had long hair before I got busted. I never had a beard before I got busted. I went to shave and the guy’s “No, you can’t shave”, I said “I need a razor to shave”, he said “No you can’t shave” I said “Let me get a hair cut” he said “no we don’t want you to change your appearance.” So when you , first put that camera on me you got long hair and a beard. First time in my life I’ve got long hair and a beard.


Manson: Yeah, yeah I was trying to explain to you man, that a lot of what they pushed of on me is not me. They said I had a great family and I was the followers and leader. There was no followers and leaders, bunch of kids out at the ranch playing, to me.

Tom: Playing at what?

Manson: Playing at living.

Tom: The accounts say that you, that you gave them dope. I’m just saying what the accounts say.

Manson: Oh yeah.

Tom: I’m not saying I know it to be so. So here’s your chance to say that it wasn’t true.

Manson: Yeah, yeah

Tom: That there was a lot of hanky panky. That you turned the girls on with dope and sex out there. That’s..

Manson: That’s what they said.

Tom: Alright that’s what they said, well are they wrong?

Manson: Oh! Well! I went down to Haight-Ashbury and a little kid 10 years old came up and said “You want an acid pill?” I said “what’s that?” he said “This is good. Make colors go” I said “No, I’ve heard of them things. I don’t want none of that.” And then, then another little kid was rolling a joint, and they were sitting there smoking a joint and asked me if I wanted one.

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