Large-scale flower apports from materializing medium Elizabeth d’Esperance and her spirit guides. And some less impressive floral offerings from Mrs Guppy.
In a shameless bid to ride the coattails of publicity for Dan Brown’s new book Inferno, and since I have previously covered Hell and its geography as well as some fiery relics of the Poor Souls in Purgatory, let’s look at some stories about Purgatorial pranks, where the living impersonate the dead for their own purposes.
“It was rather dark, for the lower half of the windows were boarded up; but in one corner, on the floor, was plainly distinguishable what looked like a heap of clothes flung together in disorder. It appeared to be in motion, however, and the mistress of the house once more turning to her follower had just time to utter the mysterious words—”Don’t be frightened. If she likes you, she’ll hoot; if she doesn’t, she’ll scream…”
In 1871 the David Hoffman family of Wooster was attacked by an entity they called “IT.” The poltergeist stole money, food, and seemed to have a special hatred for clothing, which it slashed and shredded. Here is the story of a family haunted and tortured by malignant spirits.
The Shakers of Union Village, Ohio were in the midst of a Spiritualist revival: child mediums fell into trance, were dictated songs by angels, and were visited by Indian spirits. As an experiment, one telepathic Shaker girl was sent on a strange errand–to fly a message from Ohio to New York state.
It was widely believed in the 19th century that whatever a pregnant woman gazed upon would affect her baby. The papers were full of stories of children born with birth defects or phobias ascribed to their mother being frightened by such horrors as a snarling dog, a rat crushed in a trap, a lightning storm, or a ghost. They are disturbing reading for it was an insensitive age and those born deformed were referred to by journalists in terms like rat baby, human frog, infant monster, or “It.” This is a look at some of those maternally influenced monsters.
As we come to the end of the Mysteries Beasts series, we look at mystery reptiles, a field rife with hoaxes and thrilling tales.
A look at some historical mystery fish and aquatic enigmas. I’ve tried to avoid the traditional “humps in the water” and “periscope-necked” sea monsters in favor of the more unusual. Grab your net and let us wade into the sea of mystery fish of the past.
Monstrous birds, mystery birds, birds that seem to be made up out of bits of many creatures, killer eagles, spectral birds, belled buzzards and the proverbial white crow: A look at birds of mystery and legend.
Get our your bug spray. From Kissing Bugs to the Death Bug of Chicago, we look at some mystery insects from the past.