“THE DEADLIEST AND MOST HAUNTED ROAD IN BRITAIN” and More Strange and True Stories! #WeirdDarkness

THE DEADLIEST AND MOST HAUNTED ROAD IN BRITAIN” and More Strange and True Stories! #WeirdDarkness

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IN THIS EPISODE: It’s a stretch of road that only opened in 1988 to connect two existing roads, but it is known for being one of the deadliest roads in all of Britain… and one of the most haunted places in the world. The official designation is the A616… but most people know it as the Stocksbridge Bypass. (The Deadly Stocksbridge Bypass) *** 
Experiencing something strange is one thing. Experiencing two strange things in two different places might be called a coincidence. But when you experience three strange things in three different places, as Chet Guthrie did – you have to wonder if maybe the weirdness if following you around. (Three Events In Three Places of Really Weird Happenings) *** The Georgian Britains were obsessed with clean air, which was not surprising… because there was practically no clean air to obsess about. Even less-so in and around the cemeteries. (The Stench of Georgian Graveyards) *** A woman typically carries a baby for nine months before pregnancy. Sometimes a bit longer, sometimes a bit shorter, but that’s the average. Technology has made it possible for the baby to be born much sooner if complications were to arise, and still survive to be a healthy child. But we might have a new record on shortest pregnancy. One woman in Indonesia is claiming she gave birth after being pregnant for only one hour. (The One Hour Pregnancy) *** Heavy fog is commonplace in London, and in 1952 one particular fog rolled in for a full five days, hovering over the city. But when it finally dissipated, over 12,000 Londoners lay dead. (The Deadly Fog of 1952) *** A borrowed gun, romantically linked cousins, and a rigged jury – all the makings of a great murder trial in 1887 New Jersey. (A Mount Holly Tragedy) *** Here’s an idea on how to fight the black plague… throat lozenges… made from toad vomit! Hey, it was good enough for Isaac Newton! It was his own recipe! (Toad Vomit Lozenges)

TRANSCRIPT FOR THIS EPISODE…
Find a full or partial transcript at the bottom of this blog post.

MENTIONED IN THIS EPISODE…
BOOK: “Dark Days of Georgian Britain” by James Hobson: https://amzn.to/2X5cKd6
VIDEO: Britain’s Most Haunted Road – Stocksbridge Bypass: https://tinyurl.com/y3epler8

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STORY AND MUSIC CREDITS/SOURCES…
(Over time links can and may become invalid, disappear, or have different content.)
“Toad Vomit Lozenges” by Laura Geggel for Live Science: https://tinyurl.com/y5dmuwy9
“Three Events In Three Places of Really Weird Happenings” by Chet Guthrie for Cleveland Banner: https://tinyurl.com/y5c2wxhc
“The Deadly Fog of 1952” from The Gypsy Thread: https://tinyurl.com/y3pr4mvx
“The One Hour Pregnancy” by Spooky at Oddity Central: https://tinyurl.com/yxd42hqz
“The Stench of Georgian Graveyards” by James Hobson from his book “Dark Days of Georgian Britain: https://tinyurl.com/y5485fkn
“A Mount Holly Tragedy” by Robert Wilhelm for Murder by Gaslight: https://tinyurl.com/yxwqu7l5
“The Deadly Stocksbridge Bypass” by Brent Swancer for Mysterious Universe: https://tinyurl.com/y6qj6ps2
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TRANSCRIPT:

Stories and content in Weird Darkness can be disturbing for some listeners and is intended for mature audiences only. Parental discretion is strongly advised.

The haunting of the Stocksbridge Bypass began even before the stretch of road was finished being built. The first incident took place September 8th, 1987.  Two security guards were employed by the McAlpine construction company during the building of the bypass; that night their supervisor, Peter Owens, received a frantic call from them.  He arrived at the site to find two big, tough men in a state of hysteria.

They told him of what happened the night before, shortly after midnight. They had been driving along Pearoyd Lane close to the steelworks.  They noticed some children playing on the construction site they were tasked with guarding; the children were close to the electricity pylon and far from any houses.  They decided to investigate and parked the car, pausing to watch the kids skipping and playing.  While doing so, they noticed the children were oddly dressed – wearing strangely out of date clothing.

As they approached the children, they unexpectedly vanished, leaving no trace behind. Even after investigating the spot where the children were playing, the men could find no footprints in the muddy ground.

The following morning, they talked to other workers on the site and were told that others had heard children’s voices during the night while they were resting in the caravans provided for them.

The following night, these two men were once again on patrol, when this time they encountered something more frightening.  As they approached the Pearoyd Lane site once more, they saw a tall, dark figure that they described as a ‘monk’ who then promptly vanished when the headlights reached him.

It was this that caused them to ring Peter Owens once again – and Owens was so concerned about their state and their story that he called the local police station. The officer on duty, PC Ellis, said they sounded like they needed a priest rather than a policeman.

Later in the day, the same officer received a phone call from a priest named Stuart Brindley.  He was asking for help with two security guards from the building project who were in his church, demanding that he perform an exorcism at the Pearoyd Lane construction site.

I’m Darren Marlar and this is Weird Darkness.

Welcome, Weirdos – this is Weird Darkness. Here you’ll find stories of the paranormal, supernatural, legends, lore, crime, conspiracy, mysterious, macabre, unsolved and unexplained.

Coming up in this episode of Weird Darkness…

Experiencing something strange is one thing. Experiencing two strange things in two different places might be called a coincidence. But when you experience three strange things in three different places, as Chet Guthrie did – you have to wonder if maybe the weirdness if following you around.

The Georgian Britains were obsessed with clean air, which was not surprising… because there was practically no clean air to obsess about. Even less-so in and around the cemeteries.

A woman typically carries a baby for nine months before pregnancy. Sometimes a bit longer, sometimes a bit shorter, but that’s the average. Technology has made it possible for the baby to be born much sooner if complications were to arise, and still survive to be a healthy child. But we might have a new record on shortest pregnancy. One woman in Indonesia is claiming she gave birth after being pregnant for only one hour.

Heavy fog is commonplace in London, and in 1952 one particular fog rolled in for a full five days, hovering over the city. But when it finally dissipated, over 12,000 Londoners lay dead.

A borrowed gun, romantically linked cousins, and a rigged jury – all the makings of a great murder trial in 1887 New Jersey.

Here’s an idea on how to fight the black plague… throat lozenges… made from toad vomit! Hey, it was good enough for Isaac Newton! It was his own recipe!

It’s a stretch of road that only opened in 1988 to connect two existing roads, but it is known for being one of the deadliest roads in all of Britain… and one of the most haunted places in the world. The official designation is the A616… but most people know it as the Stocksbridge Bypass.

While you’re listening, you might want to check out the Weird Darkness website. At WeirdDarkness.com you can find transcripts of the episodes, paranormal and horror audiobooks I’ve narrated, 24/7 streaming video of Horror Hosts and classic horror movies, you can find my other podcast, “Church of the Undead”, plus you can visit the “Hope In The Darkness” page if you are struggling with depression, anxiety, or thoughts of suicide. And you can also shop the Weird Darkness store where all profits go to support depression awareness and relief. You can find all of that and more at WeirdDarkness.com.

Now.. bolt your doors, lock your windows, turn off your lights, and come with me into the Weird Darkness!

Cutting through the north part of England, stretching from Newark to Huddersfield, is the road called A616, and one area in Stocksbridge, near Sheffield, holds a section of the highway called the Stocksbridge Bypass. This portion of the road opened in May 1988, in order to connect the M1 motorway with the Woodhead Pass and the A616, passing through quaint hills and moorland on the way. It is most well-known for being one of the deadliest roads in the country, as well as one of the most haunted places in the world.

The bypass purportedly has had high strangeness revolving around it ever since construction began in 1987. Construction workers at the time frequently reported hearing strange sounds as they worked, including anomalous bangs, voices, or the laughter of children, which seemed to skirt about the periphery of the site. Most dramatically were the sightings made of ghostly apparitions around the construction site, with one of the first and perhaps most notable case being that of two site security guards by the names of Steven Brookes and David Goldthorpe, who were on patrol at around midnight one night of September of 1987 when they saw a group of mysterious children playing in the construction site in a muddy field near an electricity pylon at a place called Pearoyd Lane.

This was obviously not a place for children to be playing, especially at that hour, so the guards approached to see what was going on. As they did it became apparent that the children were wearing very old-fashioned clothing, which seemed very odd to the guards but was not enough to cause any concern at this point. The children seemed to be dancing about holding hands in a circle, and did not seem to notice the approaching men, however, as they drew closer the kids allegedly just blinked out of existence, simply there one second and gone the next. An inspection of the area showed no sign of any footprints or disturbance in the mud, which should have certainly been there considering all the dancing and playing the kids had been doing.

This was startling and odd enough that the next day they asked around to some of the construction workers who slept in caravans nearby, and they too confirmed that they had also heard the laughter of children the night before. The two guards were definitely spooked, but returned to their duties that evening. Once again, as they passed the very same area they experienced something very unusual, although this time it was a bit more sinister than a bunch of phantom kids. On this occasion they were driving past when there suddenly appeared in their headlights the tall, dark figure of what looked like someone in robes reminiscent of a medieval monk. They slammed on their brakes, and noticed that the headlights seemed to pass right through the stranger. It stood there glaring at them for a moment before suddenly vanishing right before their eyes. The odd incident was terrifying enough for them that they called their supervisor in a state of panic, although no sign of the figure they described would be found.

The supervisor was skeptical of this talk of ghosts, instead suspecting that is was some trespassers messing around, and called in two police officers by the names of PC Ellis and Special Constable John Beet. The two men then went about conducting a stakeout to try and catch the intruder in the act. As they sat there spacing out in the dark, not really expecting to see anything at all, something then pressed up against the side of the car they were in, appearing the torso of a person wearing “some kind of cravat and a waistcoat.” As the startled policemen looked on, the figure then instantaneously appeared on the other side of the car and just stood there peering in at them. As they got out to confront the stranger the figure just vanished, leaving them completely dumbfounded. As they stood there wondering where the man had gone, they claimed that their car had then been banged and jolted by an unseen force, enough to send it rocking. At that point they said that they had been overcome with a palpable dread and quickly drove out of there.

In the days after these encounters the ghostly children and the dark figure of the monk would be reported by numerous construction workers at the site, to the point that some of them supposedly refused to even come to work. Frightened locals claimed that the children were the spirits of kids who had died by falling into the numerous abandoned mines shafts that dot the areas, while the monk was said to be the ghost of a monk who had been buried there, his grave defiled by the building of the road. Whatever the case may be, even when the road was completed there were frequent sightings of these phantom children and the sinister monk at the side of the road by passing motorists, as well as a phantom black dog and a mysterious woman in white. Some cases of paranormal encounters along the road are particularly spooky or harrowing, such as one involving witnesses Graham Brooke and his son, Nigel. This allegedly happened in 1987, when the bypass hadn’t even been finished yet, and at the time Graham was in training for an upcoming marathon race, making regular runs through the area. On this day his son joined him, and they were taking his regular route right past the bypass. Mr. Brooks would tell researcher Dr. David Clarke of what happened thus:

***I could normally complete the run in about thirty minutes but on this occasion my son asked if he could come with me…We reached the church in about three quarters of an hour but Nigel kept getting the stitch so on the way back I ran on to make time until he caught me up. I was not tired because I was not running at my normal speed and it was dusk at the time but not dark. As we approached a lay-by coming towards Wortley village I suddenly saw a chap walking with his back towards the oncoming traffic. I looked at this figure and my brain just could not take in what I was seeing. He was dressed in what I would say was eighteenth century costume and wore a dark brown hood with a cape covering his body. He was walking in the ground, not on the level of the road itself and I just could not make out what I was seeing. Then I looked at him directly and saw his face. He was carrying a bag and it was slithering along the surface of the road. It was a dark coloured bag with a chain on it and Nigel said he could hear the chain rattling on the ground. I just gasped and said “who is this silly person?” and realized my son was seeing him too, and at that moment the hairs on the back of both of our heads just stood on end and we could smell something really musty just like we were standing in an antique shop. I saw him clearly and was looking directly at him, probably no more than fifty yards away from me with his face towards me and his back to the traffic. He was so close I could see that every half-inch down the cape there was a button, it was that clear. It was a long cape, dark brown in colour and very worn, with a “lived in” look about it; it was so real you could have walked up and touched it. He walked straight past us as we stood there amazed in the middle of the road. Then a lorry came with its lights on and he just disappeared. I will never forget that musty smell, the cape he wore and the blank face. I looked right into the face and everything was black, just like a miner’s face but without any eyes. It was the strangest experience of my whole life.***

With all of these supposed ghosts and paranormal phenomena startling drivers along the road, one might get the impression that this would not be a safe place to drive, and one would be right. The bypass has an unusually high concentration of traffic accidents for just this one stretch of road, to the point that it is often nicknamed the “Death Road,” an “accident blackspot,” and the “most dangerous road in Britain.” Many of these accidents could be just a symptom of the heavy traffic the road sees, but others have been blamed on ghosts. There have often been reports of these specters appearing right in front of cars to cause them to veer or careen about, such as is a case from 1990, when a Judy Simpson was travelling the road with her husband, David, when they had a rather frightening experience, of which she would explain:

***I couldn’t actually see an outline or any facial expression and there were no clothes as such, it was just a grey outline of a person. I could see a head and shoulders, with arms and legs flying everywhere. It was just running aimlessly across the field and I thought it was a jogger until I realized that it wasn’t actually touching the ground. It was around three feet above it. There is an embankment that comes up to the road and it leapt from the field over the embankment and landed in the middle of the road in front of us. It seemed to hit the car and just vanished. I just screeched to a stop and it just seemed to melt into the car and all of a sudden it was gone. I looked at David and said “What’s happened? It’s just gone,” and we got out and looked around but we could not find any trace of anything. We were both left really shocked and upset and I could not believe what had happened. All I could think was that it must have been a ghost, whatever a ghost is.***

A similarly scary encounter was experienced by a couple by the names of Paul and Jane Ford in 1997. On New Year’s Eve of that year they were driving along the bypass when they were confronted by one of the highway’s ghosts and almost had a serious crash as a result when they veered to try and avoid it. Paul Ford would say of the encounter:

***From a distance it looked like someone trying to cross the road but as I got nearer I could see it was like a man in a long cloak. Then I realized it had no face and it was just hovering above the road. I just slammed the brakes on and swerved to avoid hitting it, and it was only through Jane grabbing the wheel that we managed to stop the car from crashing.***

In some cases, phantoms have even appeared inside of vehicles, such as is a 2002 case in which a woman claimed that she had smelled a horrific odor pervade the car like a “rotting body,” after which she looked around to see a robed figure sitting right there in the backseat of her vehicle. The wraith then glared at her with glowing eyes before vanishing into thin air. There are also reported loud bangs of thuds on cars passing through, often described as sounding almost as if someone has landed on the roof, cars being shaken when there is no wind, and various vehicular malfunctions, all of which add to the speculation on the real reason behind the road’s deadly reputation.

In recent years the news of these hauntings and the ominous rumors orbiting the Stocksbridge Bypass have attracted media attention and garnered appearances on supernatural TV and radio programs, and the area has become a magnet for paranormal researchers, some of whom have had strange experiences of their own here. In 2017, paranormal investigator Phil Sinclair decided to make trip out to the bypass to do a little ghost hunting and got more than perhaps he even bargained for.

Sinclair approached his endeavor with the perhaps not necessarily subtle technique of wandering blindly about in the dark calling out to any spirits that might be lurking nearby, which seems silly but seems to have worked. As he and his colleagues walked along videotaping the whole thing he claims that they could sporadically hear the faint sound of children’s laughter from out in the woods, and an electronic device he was carrying started to blurt out voices saying various things such as “erase,” “hate,” “get out,” and more ominously “need your soul.” Particularly scary is when he noticed a dark, shadowy figure standing in some nearby trees, shortly after which he heard a “terrifying growl.” The ghost hunter says in the video:

***I saw a f***ing man there. Who was that? There was a man, there was something there. Is there something evil here? I’m a little bit shook up to be honest. Definitely saw a man but can’t explain it. What is that growl? There’s something not very nice around here asking me for my soul. Something is mocking me around here.***

Sinclair would later post the entire 15-minute episode to YouTube, and while he does seem genuinely terrified in the video it is hard to tell if the footage is actually genuine or not. It is too dark to tell exactly what is going on, and there is very little information on the specifics of the circumstances the footage was taken in. Is it real, or is this a fake, Blair Witch style video? It is hard to say, but whatever the case may be it is compelling viewing nevertheless, and you can see the video for yourself, I’ll place a link to it in the show notes. For his part, the investigator himself remains adamant that it is all real, saying:

***I literally struggle to find the words to describe what I witnessed during this investigation. I will be left with an image I will never forget. I feel I was making contact with multiple spirits either children or that of a male. I can’t help to think I was dealing with an evil presence which ultimately told me to get out.***

What secrets and mysterious forces does this stretch of road hold? Are there really spirits here or is this all urban legend and spooky campfire tales? It is interesting to note that many of the paranormal experiences reported from the Stocksbridge Bypass have been witnessed by more than one person, making it harder to write-it off as delusion or the hallucinations of a tired mind out on the road at night. Could there be anything to any of this, and if so, why should these lost souls be tethered to this place? Whatever the answers to these questions may be, the Stocksbridge Bypass remains one of the eeriest and most haunted roads in all of England.

Up next…

The Georgian Britains were obsessed with clean air, which was not surprising… because there was practically no clean air to obsess about. Even less-so in and around the cemeteries.

A woman says she gave birth after being pregnant for only one hour.

And a heavy fog covered London for five days, and when it rolled out over 12,000 lay dead. What happened?

These stories and more when Weird Darkness returns.

<BREAK>

How would you like to see the very first episode of a horror host’s show?  If your answer is YES, then join us for our next Weirdo Watch Party as horror host Professor Will Shivers from the Staying Scared Show brings his kooky concoctions of creepiness with the 1962 horror film, “Carnival of Souls”. As always, the Weirdo Watch party is always free, and while you watch the film you can jump into the chatroom with me and other Weirdo family members to trade snarky comments about the film – sometimes the horror hosts get in on the chat too! So again – join me as horror host Professor Willie Shivers presents 1962’s “Carnival of Souls!” Again, the Weirdo Watch Party is Saturday August 8th at 9pm Central Time – that’s 7pm Pacific, 8pm Mountain, 10pm Eastern on the Weirdo Watch Party page at WeirdDarkness.com.

It was cold and clear the morning of December 5th, 1952 in London.  People were hunkered down in their homes, huddled around their fireplaces waiting out an unusually early cold snap.  The skies soon began to fill with coal smoke and soot and as the day progressed, a fog rolled in, limiting visibility throughout the city.  The chimney smoke mixed with the fresh fog, turning it a sickly yellow colored pea-soup.  Londoner’s went about their day as usual; heavy fog was very commonplace and there was no need for alarm.  Yet over the next five days, this fog hovered over the city.  The lack wind and a high pressure system combined to keep the fog cloud from moving.  It continued to grow during those five fateful days, nearly covering 30 square miles, growing more dense with each passing day until people literally could not see their hands in front of their faces.  Transportation came to a standstill; air travel was impossible.  No ships could safely move along the waterways, and driving a car was impossible.  Even the dependable British Railway system was unable to operate. Those souls who dared to step outside found themselves slipping and sliding as the walkways were covered with a greasy black film.  Upon returning to their homes, those same travelers found that greasy black film also covered their exposed skin and clothing as if they had been working in a coal mine.

The local citizens called the thick haze, the Great Smog and soon found themselves having difficulties breathing. Family pets and farm animals started dying due to respiratory failure, wild birds either avoided the area or simply fell dead from the skies, and the entranceways to buildings became more blackened with soot each time the door was opened.  The fog then turned it’s attention to the human population, with those already in respiratory distress succumbing to the deadly cloud first.  Babies and young children and the elderly also fell victim to the cloud, which after several days began to stink like rotten eggs.  Undertakers found themselves suddenly overwhelmed with corpses, so much that they ran out of available caskets.  Each day more people slipped away and yet no action could be taken to alleviate the now-poisonous environment.  People tried to make crude gas-masks, however they were ineffective.  It seemed that many were about to give up hope when without warning, a brisk wind rolled in from the west, breaking up the thick fog and pushing the remnants far out to sea.

The casualties from the five day fog were unbelievable.  Over 150,000 people were hospitalized for breathing related issues and the human death toll surpassed over 12,000.  No accurate records were kept of the number of animals that died, but without the protection of a house to at least shield them somewhat, most assume that nearly all exposed animals died.  The aftermath was an eye-opening message for the British Government with so many dead.  Some likened it to the aftermath of German bomb attacks made during World War II.  Bodies were discovered in unexpected places as many of the victims simply stopped breathing and quietly dropped in their tracks.

The British Government, after some investigation and reviewing the death toll, realized they needed to act.  A few years later, the Clean Air Act of 1956 was passed by Parliament.  This Act put restrictions on burning coal within areas of high population and established smoke-free zones.  Those with coal fireplaces were forced to switch to alternative heating systems.  This piece of legislation was the beginning of the end for the coal industry as oil and natural gas systems became the norm.  Even with the new law, the change was slow and not everyone could afford to simply invest a large sum of money into their dwelling.  A smaller event in 1962 killed an additional 750 people, reinforcing the validity of the law.

It was believed that the fog became toxic due to sulfates.  Sulfuric acid particles formed from the sulfur dioxide that was released from the burnt coal.  At the time, no one knew how this chemical change occurred and the event went as unexplained for nearly fifty years.  Modern scientists, studying air pollution, ascertained that the natural fog was the catalyst for the change.  Nitrogen Dioxide, another by-product of burning coal, was introduced to the naturally occurring fog.   Another key aspect in the conversion of sulfur dioxide to sulfate is that it produces acidic particles, which subsequently inhibits this process. Natural fog contained larger particles of several tens of micrometers in size, and the acid formed was sufficiently diluted. Evaporation of those fog particles then left smaller acidic haze particles that covered the city.

In simpler terms, the combination of the coal smoke and a natural fog produced a rare moment for the chemical change, which in turn made the air turn deadly.  The lack of wind kept the killer concoction suspended over the city and allowed the reaction to continue for several days, with terrifying results.

The Georgians were obsessed with clean air, which was not surprising as there was so little of it about.

There were bad smells- ‘effluvium’- everywhere. The most offensive were decomposing animals on the street, in the rubbish heaps, or at the slaughterhouse. These hazards to health were well known, and did not only extend to animals; the other health hazard was the decomposition of human remains buried a few feet into the ground in the graveyards of parish churches that could not cope with the explosion of birth in the late eighteenth century, and the con-commitment blooming of death a generation later.

This problem was known, but not solved, in the Georgian period. It was the Victorian social reformers that dealt with the problem of the overstuffed graveyard, but the Georgians did go as far as to worry  about it a little.

Experts gave out warnings. Joseph Taylor’s The Danger of Premature Interment(1816) condemned the use of overfull graveyards; but reserved special scorn for the burial of corpses indoors in large, damp, unventilated buildings, where windows were never opened and fires were never lit, that were occupied very rarely during the week, but often full when it was in use – that is, a church. There was nothing sacred about this, he said. No other civilization – ancient Rome or Greece, modern Jewish or Islamic, did such a dangerous thing. Only the most conscientious cleric would meet the corpse at the lych-gate if it had died of fever. The only thing that prevented  a disease disaster was that the church and cathedral were not heated.

Dr Buchan in his widely read Domestic Medicine condemned large, crowded funerals. Infections, especially fevers, did not die with the patient. If you attended the funeral of somebody who had been lain on a bier from a week in a crowded house, there was a chance that you would die of the same thing they did. The poor and desperate would often be in danger from the recycling of the dead person’s clothes, so it was thought.

The rich and famous had to wait even longer to go to their grave. In 1805, the Duke of Gloucester has been lying in his lead-lined coffin for five days; delayed by the desire for intricate decoration of the outer one. As he was about to be lifted in, the effluvia was obvious, caused by the smallest of cracks in the lead. The ‘two-coffin’ solution  for the rich was designed to solve this problem of offensive decomposition during the long drawn-out ceremonies, and mostly did; however, in the average parish graveyard, it was common for gravediggers to smash through earlier burials, or for the sexton to check the ground beforehand to make sure it was empty. Graveyards were full; but the desire to treat the consequences as a social rather than a religious problem were not present.

Some Georgians were defending unhealthy burial practice until the end. William Reader defending burials in church in 1830, pointed out that a building with secure foundations and large ventilated upper stories could deal with the inconvenience. Lead Coffins for all would solve the problem, he thought, although metal-lined coffins actually slowed down decomposition. The fact that Jews and Muslims did something different was turned on its head- perhaps they were wrong, like they were on other things?.This was Reader’s conclusion;

But the custom renders our solemn assemblies more venerable and awful for when we walk over the dust of our friends or kneel upon the ashes of our relations this …must strike a lively impression of our own mortality and what consideration can he more effectual to make us serious and attentive to our religious duties

Your ancestral dead were performing one last function for you, according to Reader, and perhaps he had a point about the degree of danger. The mould on the walls of an unheated old church probably caused more death and suffering than the bodies buried beneath.

It was horrible, but the threat to health of buried corpses was overestimated. Noxious effusions from the lungs of the living where a much bigger problem, and in many parts of newly industrializing Britain, a row of slums smelled worse than a cemetery. There were occasional horror stories in the newspapers. Sextons were being poisoned when they tapped a vault to release noxious gases, which had to be done in the first months after death to avoid explosions. Cleaners who had found a decomposing body in the bottom of a well and had died breathing in their effluvia; body snatchers who had been directed to the wrong grave and opened up the wrong one; deaths in households were a murdered body had been hidden or a funeral that took too long to organize.

Nothing serious was done about the problem until the 1840s. The Georgians did not have the benefit of the germ theory of disease, and relied in the belief that bad air in itself caused disease. When improvements were made in public health, it was the smell that motivated reformers- ‘All smell is disease’ said Edwin Chadwick, and introduced effective reforms on the basis of a wrong analysis. It was hard to prove scientifically that ineffective burials caused anything more than inconvenience, and some scientists disagreed with Chadwick; some suggested that liquefying corpses could pollute water sources, but the evidence was not conclusive but was believed. You could not see germs with your eye, but your nose could smell decay, which was fortuitous.

In 1823, the Enon Chapel was built near the Strand which consisted of a place of worship/ social space above, and palace of burial below, separated by now more than a floorboard. The problem of the Enon Chapel was not solved until the 1840s; for the previous twenty years, large numbers of cheap unregulated burials meant that at least 12,000 corpses were crammed in. Customers who used it as dance hall could taste something nasty on their sandwiches and worshippers took to ‘praising the Lord with a handkerchief pressed to their nostrils’*

If you’d like to read more, I’ll place a link to the book this story came from “Dark Days of Georgian Britain” by James Hobson in the show notes.

Human pregnancies normally last around 9 months, but one Indonesian woman has been making news headlines in her country for claiming that she gave birth just one hour after experiencing pregnancy symptoms.

Heni Nuraeni, a 30-year-old woman from Mandalasari, a village in Indonesia’s Tasikmalaya Regency has become the main topic of conversation in her country, after it was revealed that she gave birth to a baby boy after allegedly experiencing pregnancy symptoms for about an hour. Heni claims that on Saturday night, July 18th, 2020 her belly started growing and she started experiencing painful cramps which she immediately associated with child birth, having previously given birth to two children. The problem was that not only had she been oblivious to the pregnancy, she also hadn’t made love to her husband in 19 months…

“I was at home, and nothing was out of the ordinary,” Heni recalled about the night of her childbirth. “Suddenly, I felt something moving on the right side of my abdomen and the cramps started. I asked a neighbor to take me to my father’s house and about an hour later we called a midwife and I gave birth.”

Despite gaining some weight in the months leading up to the childbirth, the 30-year-old woman claims that she experienced none of the symptoms she had when she gave birth to her other two children, including morning sickness, protruding belly or even the ceasing of her monthly menstruation. Nuraeni insists that she had her period every month for the last nine months, which doctors attribute to a hormonal imbalance.

But the most incredible part of this already incredible story is that Heni Nuraeni and her husband Erik hadn’t been intimate for 19 months, since she gave birth to their daughter. They had apparently abstained from sex after the birth of their second child, for medical reasons, which was confirmed by Zalkap Drasman, the head of Puspahiang Sub-District.

It is this small detail – the lack of intercourse – that makes the doctors reluctant to provide the simplest explanation – a case of cryptic pregnancy, where the mother doesn’t know that she is pregnant.

“This is what makes this incident strange but true, but we are grateful because with God’s will anything can happen,” said Zalkap.

Heni Nuraeni’s alleged one-hour-long pregnancy has been garnering a lot of interest with reporters, medical experts and officials from all over Indonesia visiting the young mother to learn more stories about her seemingly miraculous childbirth. All the attention has apparently caused Heni a lot of stress, and her family has asked for some privacy.

When Weird Darkness returns…

Experiencing something strange is one thing. Experiencing two strange things in two different places might be called a coincidence. But when you experience three strange things in three different places, as Chet Guthrie did – you have to wonder if maybe the weirdness if following you around.

A borrowed gun, romantically linked cousins, and a rigged jury – all the makings of a great murder trial in 1887 New Jersey.

And… here’s an idea on how to fight the black plague… throat lozenges… made from toad vomit! Hey, it was good enough for Isaac Newton! It was his own recipe!

These stories are up next.

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As a resident of Cleveland and part-time ghost hunter, I have seen and heard several things that most people would say I’m crazy if I told them.

The truth is ghosts, demons, spirits … all of them, are very much real, especially when you’ve been attacked by one. I will recount three different stories that have happened to me and my friends. The first is an apartment my best friend lived in for a year.
I will not give the address of the apartment although it is not far from M&M Mars. Nothing terrible happened at first. My best friend was happy with his selection. He was good friends with the landlord just as I was, and after about three months of him living there we’re walking the Greenway and he says to me, “I think there’s a spook in my apartment.”

And I said “What do you mean?”
“I was making coffee after work and fell asleep with the coffee maker on. And when I woke up someone had turned it off.”

My best friend was the only person who lived there. I brushed it off and nothing much else happened for a month or two until my best friend started noticing that stuff was disappearing and reappearing in other parts of his apartment without his doing.
I asked him if he thought about moving out because after knowing him for 13 years I knew that stuff had bothered he and his family before.

“I’m waiting until the lease is up,” he said, which was understandable. He and the landlord were good friends and he didn’t want to break that lease early.
Knives would go missing, keys would go missing and then his cat started acting strange. His cat, Scrappy would never enter my best friend’s bedroom. In fact, he would stand in the doorway with an ominous look on his face and he would hiss at empty corners of the room.

Scrappy also stopped eating and was acting off, considering I had known that cat since I was in high school.
And that’s when stranger things began to happen. My best friend told me that he was hearing children’s laughter and a woman’s crying and knocking in “three’s.” Now, our friend the landlord who was Catholic, was hanging out one night about three months earlier, and he told us about the “knocking of threes” which was a mocking of the Holy trinity. If you’ve seen “The Conjuring” you know what I’m talking about. That is very much real.

Then I start hearing from his brother and another friend that a tall shadow had appeared to them on different occasions, and then I started to worry.

But the next few things I’m about to tell about had me in terror and worrying for my best friend’s safety. Whatever this thing was was growling in his ear at night.

And one night while we were watching TV we heard a loud knock at the door. We checked it and there was a large handprint coming from the inside of the glass door. We checked, and that glass door was locked.

Another night Scrappy was sitting in my lap and out of nowhere he started hissing between me and my best friend. There was nothing there, but knowing that something was only a couple of inches away from us made me very uncomfortable.

And then there’s the kicker of all this. It was New Year’s morning and I was trying to sleep on the couch. I began to feel something tall standing over me and heavy breathing, as if it were waiting for me to do something.

After the year was up my best friend moved out. And a few days before he left, his landlord asked him, “Have you seen anything?” Whatever it was was playing with his son.

Later we found out from the neighbor next door that two people on the second floor had died about 20 years before. It was a man and a woman. The man was married to this woman and they had a son who died early on and the man was very abusive to his wife. We don’t know how they died, but they were haunting my best friend, who was just below them.

The second experience was from the Hales Bar Dam. This one was caught on camera while filming an episode of “Adventures United,” and to this day I don’t know how to explain it.

After finding a hand-painted sign while diving the flooded generator rooms, getting a small cut on my knee that swelled to the size of a nickel and getting a shower in the marina showers, one of the teammates had a thermal detector and on the far end of the dam you could see a figure of what I can describe was a little girl in a dress.

We went up the stairs where it was, and there was no heat detected. And we couldn’t find any source where there may have been a reflection of heat. The same teammate who had a double battery attached to his phone and was in the same area noticed his phone and the battery — which were at 81 percent — dropped all the way to 0 in 15 minutes. And the scary part was that after we left, their phone was working just fine.
Another time while filming at the dam for the same episode, Nathan and John heard what sounded to be Cherokee chanting, which they recorded as well. The lore behind that is that the Cherokee referred to that area as “cursed land.” They didn’t put a curse on it, but because of all the bloodshed in that area over the years it had stirred something.

The Old South Pittsburg Hospital is only 15 minutes away from the dam, which may explain why it’s such a hotspot for paranormal activity. Shoutout to Jeff and Vickie Holder who run the tours of the dam and Stacy Sivley, who formerly ran the tours at the hospital.

And the third story — which is less malevolent, but is still scary — happened when I was living with my dad. Now this only happened for a few months until one day I really started praying and finding my relationship with God again.

One night I was sitting downstairs working on a novella of mine and a light in the kitchen just randomly came on.

“That’s weird,” I thought.

I turned it off and went back to what I was doing and the same thing happened again. I would’ve said it was an electrical glitch, but the light switch had moved.

I said “Hell no,” and went upstairs. I came back down later to find that my shoes that had been sitting next to the garage had been moved to the guest room about 40 feet away.

Dad and I were the only ones in the house and I was sitting next to him before I went down there. I heard someone moving and heard the door to the guest room close and I asked Dad who was in the bathroom, then if he had gone downstairs and he said, “No, why?”

I don’t know why it just stopped after that, unless maybe rekindling my relationship with God scared it away.

Mary Catherine Anderson—Katie to her friends—was in good spirits when she went out the evening of Monday, February 7, 1887. 16-year-old Katie Anderson was a domestic servant living at the home of her employer, Stat Colkitt on his farm in Mount Holly, New Jersey. She said she was just going out for a walk, but Katie was not seen again until Tuesday morning when a neighboring farmer found her laying down an embankment alongside a public road, barely clinging to life with a gunshot wound to her temple. She was recognized by people at the Colkitt house and was taken by wagon to her uncle’s house; a doctor from Mount Holly was summoned.
Around dawn that morning another neighbor, Mrs. Brewer, on her way to Colkitt’s house saw some vomit on the road, and near it a pistol with one chamber discharged. At the Colkitt’s house, a young man named Witcraft recognized it as the pistol he had traded to Barclay Peak the week before.
19-year-old Barclay Peak was the cousin of Katie Anderson and was also said to be her lover. When told of her wound, Peak said he believed Katie had committed suicide; she had been despondent over trouble with her employer. He admitted that the pistol was his and said that Sunday night he and Katie had been using it for target practice. After he reloaded the gun, Katie took it from him; when he asked for it back, she said he would get it back when she was through with it and took it home with her Sunday night. He stayed at home all day Monday and did not see Katie at all.
Peak’s story was contradicted by four people who had seen him on Monday waking down the road where Katie was found. Another damning statement came from Andrew Brewer and his wife, who lived near the Colkitts’. Katie was with them a week earlier, and they were talking about Barclay Peak. Both heard Kattie say of Peak, “if a girl would refuse him, he would take her life.” Most people believed that Peak had tried to assault Katie and either succeeded then shot her to keep her from talking, or had failed and shot her out of anger.

Katie was kept under constant medical observation but, with a bullet lodged in her brain, she was not expected to live very long. Remarkably, she began to recover. When she regained consciousness and was cogent enough to speak, she was asked who had shot her, and she replied Barclay Peak.
Peak’s hearing was postponed until Katie was healthy enough to testify. Though she showed signs of improvement and gave her relatives hope that she might recover, on March 12, five weeks after the shooting Katie died. The coroner held an inquest the following day, and the jury charged Barclay Peaks with first-degree murder.
The murder trial in Mount Holly opened on May 25, 1887, to a courtroom filled to overflowing with spectators. Peaks stuck to his original story and most of the witnesses contradicted him. After three weeks of testimony, the jury found Peak guilty. On July 9 he was sentenced to hang on September 1.
Peak’s attorney appealed to the state Supreme Court for a new trial citing numerous exceptions in the Peak’s trial, including invalid jury selection, admission of the dying girl’s statement, and admission of a physician’s expert testimony. The Supreme Court rejected all but the exception regarding jury selection. The jury pool should have been 60 men selected at random; instead, it was 45 men handpicked by the sheriff and prosecutor. Peak was awarded a new trial.
The second trial began on May 21 and proceeded much the same way as the first trial. Then on the fifth day of testimony, it was announced that, following a meeting between Peak’s attorney and the prosecutor, Peak pled guilty to second-degree murder and the prosecutor accepted his plea. Barclay Peak was sentenced to 20 years in prison.

Sir Isaac Newton — famous for developing the three laws of motion and advancing calculus — apparently had a far-out idea for how to treat the plague, also called the black death: toad-vomit lozenges.

In addition to recommending a number of gemstone amulets against the plague, he gave detailed instructions on how to make the putrid toad-vomit treatment, according to two unpublished pages handwritten by Newton.

Newton describes in detail how to suspend a toad by its legs in a chimney for three days, until it vomits up “earth with various insects in it.” This vomit must be caught on “a dish of yellow wax,” he added.

After the toad dies, its body should be turned into powder, mixed with the vomit and a serum and “made into lozenges and worn about the affected area.” This treatment would drive “away the contagion” and draw “out the poison,” Newton wrote.

The toad treatment was best, but if someone was in a pinch, then amulets made out of the gemstones hyacinth, sapphire or amber could also serve as antidotes, he wrote.

Newton and his contemporaries didn’t know that the plague doesn’t respond to toad vomit or gems. It wasn’t until 1894 that the French-Swiss scientist Alexandre Yersin learned that the disease is caused by a bacterium, which was later named Yersinia pestis in his honor.

These days, plague is treated with antibiotics, not vomit from toads that were hung upside down.

Newton likely wrote these notes on the plague shortly after returning to the University of Cambridge in England in 1667. The plague had just swept through Europe, forcing the University of Cambridge to temporarily close its doors in 1665. During that time, Newton quarantined at Woolsthorpe-by-Colsterworth, a hamlet in Lincolnshire, England, where he investigated the laws of gravity and motion. The year 1666 became known as his “annus mirabilis,” Latin for “wonderful year.”

However, while the polymath’s laws of motion became blockbusters, his writings on the plague’s causes, symptoms and treatments did not enjoy world renown. In truth, these notes weren’t entirely his own. Rather, Newton had been reading “Tumulus Pestis” (“The Tomb of the Plague”), by Jan Baptist Van Helmont, a chemist, physiologist and physician from the Spanish Netherlands, a collection of Holy Roman Empire states also run by the Spanish Crown.

Newton’s notes are not verbatim transcriptions of Van Helmont’s text, but rather a synthesis of his central ideas and observations through Newton’s eyes.

Not everything Van Helmont wrote was dismissed by later generations. For instance, he found that chemical reactions could produce substances that were neither solids nor liquids, which led him to invent the word “gas,” according to the Science History Institute in Philadelphia. But religious zeal led to some unusual medical treatments. A verse in the King James Bible at time proclaimed  “the Lord created medicines from the earth, and a sensible man will not despise them,” (Ecclesiasticus 38:4). Van Helmont interpreted this line to mean that doctors were ordained by God, and spent the rest of his life convincing others that this was his role, according to the Science History Institute.

In 1936, Newton’s “plague” manuscript was sold along with a vast trove of his other writings in Sotheby’s Portsmouth sale, but these two pages with the toad vomit lozenges were uncovered only recently after being lost for more than 70 years, but were shortly thereafter sold at auction.

Weird Darkness returns with The Chamber of Comments in just a moment.

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Here in the Chamber of Comments I answer your emails, comments, podcast reviews, voice messages, letters I get in the mail, and more. You can find all of my contact information, postal address, social media links, and a link to leave a voice message, on the CONTACT page at WeirdDarkness.com. While you’re there, join the Facebook Group, “Weird Darkness Weirdos” and hang out with me and the rest of our Weirdo family! Or drop me an email anytime at: darren @ weirddarkness.com.

(Review from Spirit Road): Intended to listen for just a bit, and ended up glued for a couple of hours. Love the energy put into these tales and experiences. And love the inspirational comments and all the help given for those suffering depression. It’s such a critical and devastating issue. Thank you for everything you do. Will look into joining you on Patreon.

REPLY: Thank you very much for the review, Spirit Road! Truly! Do me a favor and share the podcast with others, that is a HUGE help!

(Review from TimberJack54): Great storyteller! This is a captivating podcast. Darrin is a great storyteller. I enjoy the stories and at the end he takes you out of the darkness and into the light. Keep up the great work.

REPLY: I appreciate the kind words, TimberJack!

(YouTube comment from Barbara Wallace): I love it when you share your bloopers with us, Darren; even though we can hear the frustration in your voice when you muck something up (and its always the easy things, isn’t it?) after a while you start laughing at yourself, and its pure joy to hear that laughter.

REPLY: You’ve got that right, Barbara! I’ll get frustrated if I can’t figure out how to pronounce something after a few tries, or if I keep stumbling over a specific word or phrase, but after a while I see the humor in it as if watching myself as an outsider and I can’t help but laugh at myself. I have to – it’s either that or get angry, and life is too short for the latter – plus, what would be the point? It’s not like anger is going to help me succeed in any way – at least laughing alleviates the stress, and elevates the mood!

(Email from Jackie in Canada): Hi Darren, First of all, I want to sincerely thank you. A few months ago I suffered a terrible loss, and Weird Darkness has been such a comfort to me during my grief. I know that not everybody understands how a dark and creepy podcast can be comforting, but I’m sure anyone in the Weirdo family gets it.  I’ll admit that I was a bit leery of your podcast at first. Unfortunately, my experience with Christians and the church has not been positive. I know many christians who claim to live by the teachings of Jesus while preaching intolerance, and I don’t need that kind of hate in my podcast feed.  After listening to your podcast for a while, I feel pretty certain that you aren’t that kind of christian. You seem to genuinely care about your fellow human beings, and this is particularly apparent in your fundraising and raising awareness for mental health. As much as I enjoy your podcast, sometimes I need to skip some episodes. Some topics just hit too close to home. I’m sure other listeners feel the same way. For this reason, I wanted to ask if you would consider including content warnings at the beginning of each story or even just at the beginning of the podcast. Now, I know that you include a general content advisory at the beginning of each episode already! However, this doesn’t really help people who want to get creeped out, but still want to avoid certain topics. I’m not suggesting you add warnings for every possible topic! Maybe just a few topics that many of your listeners likely struggle with; issues like child abuse and child murder, and sexual violence. It would give folks a quick opt-out on episodes that are likely to be too upsetting, or that might cause mental health setbacks. I know that it would help me.  Thank you for reading this. I truly appreciate your dedication to Weird Darkness. Life has been so difficult and uncertain lately, and it truly warms my heart every time I see a new episode in my feed. Thank you Darren, Jackie in Canada

REPLY: I am humbled that you have that opinion of me as a Christian.  I will admit I used to be extreeeeemely judgmental.  Especially when I first found God.  But here I am over thirty years later and I’ve had time to mellow quite a bit and realize that I am actually ignorant of most things in this universe and I need to remember that when dealing with others.  Just because I don’t agree or understand something doesn’t mean it’s wrong.  And even if it is wrong, it’s not necessarily my place to point it out.  If God wants someone to truly change in some area of their lives, He will let them know. I can’t tell you how many people I’ve spoken to who have had similar negative experiences with the church.  It’s truly sad, because that’s not a good representation of Jesus at all.  The church is filled with hypocrites, sinners, and those who fail every day to live up to the standards they set for others.  If we trust in the church and its leadership, we will always be disappointed – because we all, every one of us, are flawed human beings.  Some of us just forget that and we go around pointing fingers at people not realizing we have issues in our own lives we should be taking care of instead.  Like, obviously, pride and vanity!  Jesus is the only perfect person to ever walk the planet, and that’s why he was able to pay for our sins – that’s why we should follow Him, not his followers. Really glad to have you in the Weirdo family, Jaclyn!  God bless! By the way, Jackie emailed this to me just a couple of hours before I posted last night’s episode, which, in the Chamber of Comments, addresses the very issues she’s referring to regarding content. I’ve taken a good hard look at the podcast and I am making some changes so certain materials are not used as often – or perhaps not at all. While the podcast is called “Weird Darkness”, it was getting too dark even for me. Jackie mentions specifically content such as child abuse, child murder, and sexual violence. Those are three areas that hurt my heart as well. I’m going to try to listen to that still small voice in my heart more closely so I don’t cross the line into content that is simply not appropriate. Plus, I know that there are younger Weirdo family members listening and families listen together too. So while some stories might get darker or more gruesome, I’ll try not to go into those kinds of territories that are just too dark that you don’t even want to think about them. Again, as I mentioned yesterday, balancing the show with more weird as well as the darkness – which I tried to do with this episode. Hopefully I succeeded! Drop me a note and let me know.

(Email from Luke who also has a few comments about content – and my Christianity): Hey Darren, I only just started listening to your podcast in the last few weeks, but I’ve really enjoyed it so far! I hadn’t made it a point to find a christian horror podcast, but I was pleasantly surprised when I found out yours was. I’ve never actually written fan mail in my life, so that should tell you how much I like the show – though the personal touch to your podcast probably also contributes to my comfort in writing this. With regards to what is currently the most recent episode (though probably not by the time you read this; you put episodes out at an astounding rate!) I wanted to just add a couple thoughts about the Chamber of Comments. I’m sure you know already where this is going – the complaints you received about the “Hunger Games” style story with the kidnapped and murdered children. I should probably start off by saying that I was also shocked and somewhat dismayed by how dark the story was. There are far worse out there, to be sure, but it just seemed out of place for your podcast. Having said that, I was glad to hear you, too, felt the story wasn’t a good fit. Frankly, you’re in a difficult position; “horror” is a very loosely-defined genre, with things like The Human Centipede and Saw sharing a space with Lovecraft and Poe. Much of the reason I enjoy your podcast is because of the focus on my favourite type of horror – the creepy or eerie, rather than simply the macabre, gross, or deliberately disturbing. “Weirdness in the Wilderness” is one of my all-time favourite podcast episodes ever, including non-horror podcasts. I don’t expect you to cater to my preferences; I’m just one listener, and putting out an hour of content as often as you do probably means you can’t be too picky with what comes across your desk. I guess I’m just writing to give you feedback from where I stand, and let you know that I appreciate what you’ve been doing. And as a final note, I applaud the way you handle your less-than-favourable comments. A while ago, you got a letter with complaints about the time you dedicated to the topic of depression. It’s obviously a topic you’re passionate about, and it’s probably time you could put more ads in and profit off of, but you’re doing what you can to help people. Even then, when you were challenged on it, you were both professional and compassionate. I must say that, personally, you’ve impressed me. So, you keep doing what you’re doing, and God bless. Sincerely, – Luke – Windsor, Ontario, Canada.

REPLY: Your email is going to slide in perfectly with tonight’s episode, so I’m using it Luke – thanks! As for unfavorable comments – I appreciate the encouraging words.  It would be so very easy to delete all the negative comments and emails I receive and only share the positive ones, but that would be disingenuous, and that’s not what I want to be with you (my listeners).  I’ve been radio for over 30 years now – most of that time in Christian radio specifically – and I always felt like I was playing a character.  I used my real name, “Darren Marlar”, “Daily Dose of Darren”, and “Marlar in the Morning” – but I was expected to talk a certain way, focus on certain topics that otherwise I’d have no interest in, support organizations and ministries that I’m sure do a wonderful job but just don’t trip my trigger, and pretend I absolutely love this brand new song from Bobby Cross and The Widget Factory when in reality I despised hip hop and rap (by the way, that’s a made-up music group I just came up with off the top of my head – I’ts not real, so don’t be looking for any of their music).  And there is nooooooooo waaaaaaaay I would have ever been able to even hint at the fact that I had an interest in macabre content.  True story, back in the early 2000s when I was working at a Christian radio station in Kansas City, I was on the air doing the afternoon show on Halloween.  So I decided, rather than promote Halloween, I would talk to my Christian audience and tell the truth about Halloween, the history behind it, and why Christians might want to avoid celebrating it.  Like I said – I was playing a part.  I had a whole four-hour show planned out but within the first three minutes, right after I said, “I want to tell you the truth about Halloween… how it started as Samhain…” my General Manager came in, shut off my microphone and said “no more.”  Not only did I have nothing to talk about the rest of that afternoon, but I had to submit my show prep notes to him in advance for the next three months to get approval before going on the air with them.  Now, with Weird Darkness, I can finally be myself.  I can be the genuine, REAL Christian that I’ve always wanted to be – the one who doesn’t have to hide behind a stained glass mask of holy perfection. I can be imperfect without having to fear retribution from a boss or advertiser, I can be opinionated if I want to be – not that I ever really want to be, but now it’s my choice.  I can do fundraisers for organizations I personally believe in without being forced to pretend I believe in them.  In a way, doing a podcast about ghosts, goblins, and all things paranormal has actually made me a more genuine follower of Jesus.  Go figure. Wow, that was long.  Sorry about that.  God bless – and thanks for your email, Luke!

I’ll answer more of your emails, comments, letters, and voice messages next time! Again, you can find all of my social media, a link to leave a voice message for me, and other contact information on the CONTACT page at WeirdDarkness.com, or drop me an email at darren @ weirddarkness.com.

Thanks for listening. If you like the podcast, please share a link to this episode and recommend Weird Darkness to your friends, family, and co-workers who love the paranormal, horror stories, or true crime like you do! Every time you share a link to the podcast it helps spread the word about it – growing our Weirdo family, and also helps get the word out about resources available for those who suffer from depression. So please share the podcast with others.

Do you have a dark tale to tell of your own? Fact or fiction, click on “Tell Your Story” at WeirdDarkness.com and I might use it in a future episode.

All stories in Weird Darkness are purported to be true (unless stated otherwise), and you can find source links or links to the authors in the show notes.

“Toad Vomit Lozenges” by Laura Geggel for Live Science:

“Three Events In Three Places of Really Weird Happenings” by Chet Guthrie for Cleveland Banner

“The Deadly Fog of 1952” from The Gypsy Thread

“The One Hour Pregnancy” by Spooky at Oddity Central

“The Stench of Georgian Graveyards” by James Hobson from his book “Dark Days of Georgian Britain

“A Mount Holly Tragedy” by Robert Wilhelm for Murder by Gaslight

“The Deadly Stocksbridge Bypass” by Brent Swancer for Mysterious Universe

Weird Darkness theme by Alibi Music.

WeirdDarkness™ – is a registered trademark. Copyright ©Weird Darkness 2020

If you’d like a transcript of this episode, you can find a link in the show notes.

Now that we’re coming out of the dark, I’ll leave you with a little light… 1 Timothy 4:4-5 = “For everything God created is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving, because it is consecrated by the word of God and prayer.”

And a final thought… “Respect yourself enough to walk away from anything that no longer serves you, grows you, or makes you happy.” – Robert Tew

I’m Darren Marlar. Thanks for joining me in the Weird Darkness.

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