The story of Bonnie Leigh Scott is a forgotten Chicago tragedy. Bonnie vanished on September 22, 1956. That evening, around 6:30 p.m., she left the home where she lived in Addison, Illinois, and told her grandmother that she was going out to look for a blouse. Bonnie lived with her aunt and uncle, Mrs. Robert Schwolow; their daughter, Sue, 15; and Bonnie’s maternal grandmother, Mrs. Doris Hitchins. Her parents were separated and in the midst of a divorce. Bonnie was an ordinary girl, a sophomore at York Community High School and a babysitter for many of the young children who lived in the quiet suburban community. The five-room, newly built ranch house where she lived was virtually identical to all the others on the street. Before the night of September 22, Bonnie never caused a problem, never drew much attention, and seemed like every other girl her age. But that night, she became a mystery. As the police began tracing her steps, assuming that she was a runaway, they managed to find four teenagers who saw her at a diner in Addison around 7:30 p.m. that night. She was also seen at a surplus store, located next door to the town’s police station. After that, she had apparently vanished into thin air.
IN THIS EPISODE: A university apartment is filled with ghostly voices, shadows and footsteps. *** The playful spirit of a child haunts a home in Canterbury, England. *** A woman hears footsteps in an empty bedroom. *** The biblical story of the witch of Endor. Just a story, or was she a real woman with supernatural powers? *** Did a British Air Force pilot somehow slip into a time portal and fly into the past? *** 87 years ago a fire broke out at the Ohio State Penitentiary – yet somehow, souls still linger there.
When the Martians first land on Earth in the 1996 sci-fi comedy Mars Attacks!, for a moment it appears all will be fine. “We come in peace,” says their leader, as the music swells and a dove soars overhead. Seconds later the Martian pulls out a laser gun and opens fire on a crowd of human onlookers. Yet another blockbuster alien invasion has begun. That’s Hollywood, of course. But the melodrama underscores one of humanity’s most widely held fears: that if and when we do encounter extraterrestrial beings, they will wreak all kinds of havoc, much as they do in the movies. Or will they?
Poltergeist activity is probably the most misunderstood form of paranormal activity, at least in conjunction with haunted houses. The word poltergeist actually means “noisy ghost” when translated from German and for many years, researchers believed that noisy ghosts were causing the phenomena reported in these cases. It was assumed that the things which occurred in a house that was “haunted” by a poltergeist were caused by an outside force. While some cases of real-life “poltergeists” have turned out to be both “intelligent” spirits and the work of human agents, some cases exist that lead researchers to believe that they may actually be combination of the two. But then… what if it’s possible that some locations actually attract both kinds of phenomena?
IN THIS EPISODE: A dream home becomes a house of nightmares… A woman living alone hears a raspy man’s voice speak to her in the dark… While exploring a haunted ship, a woman gets burned – literally… A non-believer in the paranormal becomes a believer… in his own house… Howard Carter became the first person to peer inside of the tomb of King Tutankhamen in Egypt’s Valley of the Kings. It turned out to be the discovery of a lifetime and the start of an ancient curse. *** The Wendigo… a shapeshifter, a cannibal, and many believe it to be completely real. *** Puzzling loud booms have been heard in many locations this year and despite lots of speculations no-one knows what’s behind this disturbing phenomenon. *** Why would something want to possess a department-store mannequin? *** Samuel Clemens – better known as Mark Twain. There is a part of his life that is all too often ignored by historians and biographers. Most scholars ignore the fact that Twain had a lifelong interest and fascination with the supernatural. *** Plus, if you’re a fan of cryptozoology, you’ll love my last story… a creepypasta called “The Fairies”.
IN THIS EPISODE: The ghost of a man in gray haunts a London theater. *** The boogeyman – where did he come from, and is he based on a real person? *** A disaster that took place at the Pemberton Mill on January 10, 1860 – a disaster that left a community, and a nation stunned! *** A night of children telling scary stories to each other turns into the real thing. *** A young girl bumps into her father in the hallway… which is impossible, as her father isn’t home. *** James Bond, 007 himself tells his own personal story of the paranormal. Sir Roger Moore tells of his terrifying experience. *** A young teen girl wakes up in the dark of night being choked by a red-eyed being. *** Friends hear a crash in the kitchen… and though everything appears normal, what they eventually find is the stuff of nightmares. *** The discovery of a body in the local river leaves one town with a gruesome mystery – and possibly the framing of an innocent man for the murder. *** Known to the outside world as the City of the Dead, Dargavs is a truly remarkable and mysterious place we know little about. *** Do you ever get the feeling that you are being watched, or that someone is following you? Perhaps it’s not your imagination. *** A father in South Yorkshire claims his family is being haunted by the ghost of an old lady. *** Two men, a forest, and a ouija board – will that be enough to find a rumored black eyed child that has been seen there? *** A man hears pounding on the walls of his apartment – from the outside of the building. *** What appears to be a poltergeist continues to torment office colleagues… or is it just being playful? *** Plus, I’ll share an original creepypasta from a fan of Weird Darkness… it’s a story called “Amoeba”.
IN THIS EPISODE: A young wife, home alone with her husband in the military, begins experiencing strange happenings in their apartment. *** On a rainy night, a man begins to hear strange sounds from above that can’t be explained. *** A WeirdDarkness listener tells their story of being terrified by an entity… for over 21 years. *** A deceased relative saves the life of one woman – her husband tells us the story. *** An invisible friend decides to show up, uninvited, on a camping trip in an original story submitted by a WeirdDarkness subscriber. *** A chat with a small boy at a wedding unexpectedly turns into a paranormal encounter. *** A female presence haunts a newly married Japanese couple. *** A conman teams up with a necromancer… and it does not bode well for either one of them. *** The old Lake View Sanitarium, constructed in 1930 as a tuberculosis sanatorium, is now one of the most haunted places in Wisconsin. *** A young girl encounters a terrifying entity… in the bathroom. *** Is a time portal hidden in the Arizona Mountains near Mexico? One man swears to it.
IN THIS EPISODE: (Dark Archives episode with stories from October 14-15, 2018) *** A castle in the Czech countryside is not only rumored to be haunted… but also to contain a crack leading to the gates of Hell. *** A shadow person appears in a Texas funeral parlor. *** Two occult magicians feud over who can destroy the vampire terrorizing their community. *** The purchase of a beautiful table leads to a haunting of one couple’s bedroom. *** Shadows horrify a woman when her husband is away and her child is asleep. *** PLUS, the incredible classic story of Bisclavret: The Werewolf! *** Quite possibly the most controversial episode I’ve ever narrated; a theory about the Manson family murders that you likely have never heard before. (Helter Skelter)
You wake up on a cloudy morning in late 1348 and glance out your window. Outside, you see carts hauling off lifeless bodies of those you considered friends and neighbors, and you can hear the wails of mourners. You run down to the street to see what has happened, and a man wearing a terrifying bird-like mask claiming to be a doctor says you don’t look too good. Suddenly you notice the sweat on your forehead and a pounding headache. You rush back inside and ask a loved one to check your armpits and groin for dark swelling. Thank heavens, they don’t find any! As your fever rages, you rush to examine your astrological chart. After all, everyone knows the stars can cause disease. But before you find the chart, you remember a strange thing you saw recently: a comet streaking across the night sky. The evil comet must have caused your sickness. With sweat pouring down your face, you run out of your house again, desperate to get to the nearest church. If God sent this sickness, your best protection now would be the prayers of a priest. But when you arrive, the church is empty. You remember when talking to the doctor on the street, you saw a cart filled with the dead – and one of them wearing priestly robes. Apparently religion didn’t protect them, so why would it protect you? Perhaps the church isn’t the best place to protect yourself from disease after all. Maybe penitence is the answer. Or better yet… punishment for your sins. Barely able to walk now, you stumble over to a group of people gathered in the town square – the flagellants; religious penitents punishing themselves to repent. You stagger over and ask for a lash, watching the men and women trying to placate an angry God. Even though the dark swelling in your armpits and groin hasn’t appeared yet, you can tell that something is terribly wrong. Your head aches. Your limbs feel weak. The lashes only made you feel worse. You stumble back to your house and fall into bed. Thankfully, another nearby doctor notices your trauma and offers to help. When you ask him for his medical credentials, he ignores your question. But you’re too weak to fight back. The doctor pulls out two live chickens and tries to strap them to your armpits. He claims it helps with the dark swellings. When he sees you don’t have any yet, he offers you a potion that glows like silver. Since you’re already nearing your end, you drink it. Is that strange taste mercury or arsenic? As you fall into a feverish unconsciousness, the “doctor” takes all your savings, which was hidden under your mattress, and leaves you to perish alone. You’ve only been sick for a few hours, but already you can barely breathe. You drift in and out of consciousness, your breath becoming shorter, until…. you perish. You’ve succumbed to the Black Death, the most prolific epidemic in human history. The plague claimed the lives of millions, with nearly half of Europe’s population perishing from the disease. Some feared they were living through the apocalypse amidst the chaotic upheaval, while others turned to sinful pleasure during the plague to distract from the horror. And as for what happened to victims of the plague, well, it wasn’t opportune. Surviving the Black Death wasn’t easy. How did someone protect themselves from it and who did they blame when they got sick? What happened to their body as the infection spread? Regardless of religion, age, or status, the only certainty was demise; the bubonic plague didn’t spare anyone.
IN THIS EPISODE: A strange encounter in a diner turns terrifying when and old man appears to have black eyes. *** The feeling of being watched and cold spots in the home bring fear to a family in Oklahoma. *** Both a father and a son experience what can only be described as demonic oppression. *** A woman in Utah finds a stranger in her room… directly above her bed. *** Author G. Michael Vasey takes us to a haunted church in the Czech Republic village of Lukova. *** A strange figure appears in a photo – but wasn’t there when the picture was being taken. *** Ohio has its own strange creature roaming the forests… they call it the Dogman. And one man tells of his encounter with it. Ohio’s Silver Creek Dogman – what many consider to be a real life werewolf. *** The first recorded ghost in the United States was reported in Sullivan, Maine, in 1799. And her name, was Nelly Cooper. *** Built in 1839, Highgate Cemetery, in Highgate, London, is now said to be one of the most actively haunted cemeteries in the UK. There were even newspaper stories that there was a vampire at large in there – the so-called “Highgate Vampire”. *** When a woman died, leaving no heirs and no will. A couple were brought in to clear out the property after the estate had been settled. When it came time to clear out the deceased woman’s shed, what they found was more than disturbing… it was horrifying. *** A neighborhood in old Louisville, Kentucky had a large tree that stood in the center of the court – and served at one time as a hanging tree for various lynchings in the 1800s. The hangings may have stopped – but the darkness surrounding it, hasn’t.
Throughout history the battlefields of our bloody wars have been saturated with all manner of tales of valor, bravery, cruelty, and tragedy. These are part of the fabric of war, an intrinsic property of it, and this tapestry of death infuses our history with its grim shadow. Often overshadowed by the atrocity and gloom of war there are often other bizarre stories scattered about and buried within this history, and war seems to bring about it stories of strange entities, creatures, and mysteries as well, with some of these things being just as sinister and scary as any enemy.
True, scary stories from Weirdo family members! If you have a true scary, bizarre, or dark story to tell about something that happened to you or someone you know, you can send it to me by visiting the Tell Your Story page at WeirdDarkness.com.
IN THIS EPISODE: The founder of the website Chicago Hauntings, Ursula Bielski, shares how the paranormal first invaded her life. (My Paranormal Life) *** The death of Thomas Becket shook the middle-ages. It’s believed his assassination in Canterbury Cathedral on December 29th, 1170 changed the course of history. (The Assassination of Thomas Becket) *** We’ll take a humorous look at the insane life of Boston Corbett – the man who was a hero because he killed John Wilkes Booth, but was also an idiot, cutting off his own manhood. (Abraham Lincoln’s Insane Avenger) *** Female serial killers… they are a lot more common than you think. (We’re Surrounded by Female Serial Killers)