Charles Manson has endured as the face of evil for nearly 50 years

Other killers snuffed out far more lives than Charles Manson did in 1969. Yet he has endured for nearly a half century as the personification of evil, even in an age in which mass shootings leave dozens dead at a time.

Manson, the hippie cult leader who died Sunday at 83, horrified America more than a generation ago with the way...