Scholar of the Strange and Mysterious
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Professor Hex
Scholar of the Strange and Mysterious
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Tuesday, December 30, 2014


On the Old Holland road near Calumet, ILL, lives a German family with a 12-year-old boy who is a remarkable phenomenon. He is a boy in every particular, as far as form and feature are concerned, but there the similarity ends. In every attribute of mind and matter he is exactly like a chicken. He moves like a chicken, eats like a chicken, scratches like a chicken, flaps his arms arid crows, and sleeps on his feet crouched in a corner. These strange traits were imparted to him by a surgical operation, wherein the blood of a live chicken was conveyed into his veins to sustain life during a protracted siege of fever in which his own blood turned almost to a colorless liquid. Mention of his case is made in two medical books of resent date, and the case attracted some considerable attention five years ago, when the operation was performed; but, singularly enough, nothing of it crept into the newspapers.
As the reporter drove up to the house the boy was seen standing by the gate. He could not be mistaken, for, while two or three other children, like him yellow-haired and blue-eyed, evidently his brothers and sisters, were playing around, he stood perfectly quiet, leaning against the fence with one foot drawn up, as a chicken sometimes stands, and with his head turned to one side and dropping on his shoulder. His eyes were closed and he appeared to be sleeping, precisely as a chicken sleeps – its left foot drawn up and the head under its right wing. The noise of the buggy seemed to awaken him. He gave a somewhat startled look, put his foot down and shook himself as a chicken ruffles its feathers, and, starting off with a short, quickstep, ran into the garden, where, a moment afterward, apparently forgetful of what had alarmed him, he stopped and began scratching with one foot in some soft earth beside a pine box, on which stood a saucer of corn meal and a rusty tin pan half full of water. These, it was afterward learned, were placed there regularly every day for him to feed upon. The boy's mother, it was learned, is dead. She died about two years ago. The father was away from home, at work in the Pullman car wheel foundry. The boy, whose peculiar characteristics make him an object of so much interest, is named Charley Wolfson. The driver of the buggy who conducted the reporter to the house said that he had heard that up to the time of his affliction the boy was a more than commonly bright child. Since then he has insisted on laying out of doors, going under cover only when it rained, and seeking shelter only in some of the outhouses along with the chickens. He never wears any hat, not even in the coldest weather, and never talks or takes any notice of things more than a chicken. One of the children, the oldest girl, evidently about 10 years of age, at the reporter's request called the boy by making a clucking sound, but he would not consent to be caught, and immediately ran away as an effort was made to take him. The girl said that he often sat on the fence, and not in frequently was found at sundown perched on the limb of a tree. 

- Mexico Weekly Ledger, March 06, 1884,

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Perry, Mo., October 6. - This community is somewhat stirred up over the report that a spirit's knocking could be distinctly heard at the farm-house of John G. Brown, one-half mile west of this city.

Your correspondent visited the place last night and gleaned the following from the occupants of the house: Mr. Ingerham said: "The first noise heard was last Friday night. I thought it was caused by rats. Upon investigation, however, I found the noise changed position.

My sister-in-law seemed to be the medium, and she began to interrogate the spirit, which would answer some of the questions by three knocks and some with one. Ever since the first observance the mysterious noise there has been strange sounds around the premises.

Your correspondent made a thorough investigation of the house, heard three distinct knocks to each of the following letters of the alphabet; A, B, C, E, I, L, and M. No answer was made when the other letters were called. The lady who seems to be the medium is very much excited over the matter, as her name has been repeatedly called and three knocks were clearly heard each time. The knocking ceases when a light is brought into the room, or when too much unusual conversation is indulged in. A least twenty-five persons visited the place last night, and to-night no doubt the number will be doubled. Everyone is anxious to have the mystery explained. – IWW

- Mexico Weekly Ledger, October 14, 1886

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

New Mode of Suicide (1906) 
New York Oct 15 - A Rio Janeiro dispatch published here says that Viscount Almeida, a well-known member of society, committed suicide in a novel manner. He invited a number of his friends to dinner and afterward led them to a cage of lions that he had hired from a traveling menagerie. When all were watching the animal and chatting, the Viscount opened the door of the cage and entered. The lions pounced on him and he was fatally mutilated before he could be dragged out. It is said he was overwhelmed by gambling debts.

- The Hartford Herald (KY), October 17, 1906,

Tuesday, December 09, 2014

A FALLEN STAR - A Once Famous London Actress Picking Coal in Kansas City (1873) 
The Kansas City Times says: The recent arrest of a number of poor coal pickers in West Kansas City, resulted in the discovery of the identity and the present home of a once very popular actress, who made her debut in, and for a season drove the play going public of London, wild over her beauty and power of delineation. Mrs. Caroline Whittlesey, or, as she was better known, the "Brighton Pearl" appeared on the stage in Drury Line about twenty years ago, and after a brilliant season of favor and popularity suddenly – faded from the London stage, and for several years was lost to the public eye. When next she appeared before the footlights, it was as Mrs. Whittlesey in the Theatre Royal, Hull, Yorkshire.

These brief outlines of this woman's remarkable history were given by herself to a neighbor, who has by kindness and attention to the child of this gifted and eccentric woman – a little girl of thirteen years, who was caught by a railroad watchman a few days ago, in the act of filling her little basket with coal from the cars of the Missouri Pacific Railroad. Mrs. Whittlesey appeared in behalf of her child, and her calm lady-like manner, and pale, careworn face, was all the eloquence required to release the little girl from the watchman's grasp. This man, to test the woman's word as to her poverty and destitution, visited her shanty, a rude, unplastered hovel in the bottoms near the rail road track. The contents of the home of this once brilliant woman is a vivid contrast to her fine palatial residence, furnished her while the mistress of the late Lord Denbigh. A clean but humble bed, a few chairs, a table, a number of relics of the stage, such as play bills, portraits, etc, and a sewing machine, comprise all her earthly possessions. Although poor and pinched by poverty this woman preserves all the dignity of a queen Elizabeth, a character she has no doubt filled to perfection some day, long, long ago. She came to Kansas City about five years ago and has lived here since the death of her husband in 1870, by her own exertions as a seamstress. She wears upon her finger a handsome ring with the Denbigh coat of arms engraved thereon. She says, when she left the stage in 1853 she did so to become the wife of Lord Denbigh, with whom she went as his wife, to Geneva and thence to Florence, where they lived in retirement several mouths. On his death her claims as his wife were set aside, and having neither money nor friends she abandoned her claims and again returned to the stage, and for several years was a popular provincial favorite in England, Australia and Canada. While in England in 1860 she married a young Englishman named Whittlesey, with whom she lived many happy years in domestic quiet. She says she has been compelled to send her child to gather coal, to assist in ekeing out the scanty support won by her needle.

Among the curious mementoes of her early life Mrs. Whittlesey preserves nothing with such jealous care as a folio of play bills giving her "cast" in plays for several years in England, Australia and Canada. This lady still retains some trace of that remarkable dash and beauty which made her the favorite star of the London stage twenty years ago.

-The Leavenworth Weekly Times, November 6, 1873.

Monday, December 08, 2014

Satanic Ritual Trial 

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