The media is trumpeting the Virgina Tech shooting as "the worst shooting in US History". I assume they just mean shootings by just one person, because there was this little thing called the Civil War, anyone remember that? I'm sure more people died at Shiloh than at Virginia tech.
So I looked up some shootings.
Kent State massacre, 4 dead, 9 wounded.
Columbine, 13 dead, 24 wounded.
James Huberty killed 21 people and wounded 19 others in a San Ysidro, California, McDonald's using an uzi. Known as the McDonald's Massacre.
Charles Whitman, the University of Texas at Austin. In all Whitman killed 15 people and wounded 31 others before he was shot dead by Austin police. (Some accounts allege 16 or 17 victims, citing a later suicide stemming from the attacks, and a pregnant woman who subsequently miscarried.
George Hennard, Killeen Texas, shot and killed 23 people, wounded 20 and then killed himself. Known as the Luby's cafeteria massacre.
Brenda Ann Spencer The "I don't like mondays" killer. Body count, killed 3, wounded 8.
Let's not leave out the ATF.. On February 28, 1993, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) raided the Branch Davidian ranch at Mount Carmel, a property located nine miles east-northeast of Waco, Texas. The initial raid resulted in the deaths of four agents and six Davidians. The subsequent 51-day siege by the FBI ended on April 19 when fire completely consumed the complex, killing 79 people, including 21 children and Davidian leader David Koresh, that has come to be known as the Waco Siege. Autopsies confirmed that many of the victims, including David Koresh, had died of single gunshot wounds to their heads.
So good going US government. Way to get that bodycount up.
Here's the big list of massacres.
The lesson here seems to be that poison and explosives are the way to go if you want a big body count. Just ask Union Carbide.