CHAPTER 18

One Sunny August Day in Texas

I love her dearly. . . . I cannot rationally pinpoint any specific reason for doing this.

-Charles Whitman, in a note he left after murdering his mother on the day of his mass-shooting spree, August 1, 1966

At first, only Charles Whitman knew what was happening.

Claire James was a freshman at the University of Texas and was one of the first people whom Whitman shot from his perch in the University of Texas clock tower. Fifty years after Whitman shot James in America’s first civilian mass shooting, she told Texas Monthly about how she had become one of America’s first mass-shooting victims:

We were walking across the South Mall, holding hands, when all of a sudden I felt like I’d stepped on a live wire, ...

Get The Hidden History of Guns and the Second Amendment now with O’Reilly online learning.

O’Reilly members experience live online training, plus books, videos, and digital content from 200+ publishers.