“UFOs AND CREEPY HUMANOIDS” 4 More Terrifying True Horror Stories! #WeirdDarkness

UFOs AND CREEPY HUMANOIDS” 4 More Terrifying True Horror Stories! #WeirdDarkness

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IN THIS EPISODE: Most news reporters would relish the opportunity to cover the story of a flying saucer sighting… but one case in 1987 left one radio newsman wishing he’d never heard of the letters U-F-O. (The Wytheville UFOs and Men in Black) *** A Weirdo Family member shares her story of some creepy sensations. (We Were Not Alone) *** In Victorian England. Some women had the responsibility of taking in young, unwed pregnant women and caring for them until they gave birth. Baby Farmers, as these ladies were called, were in their positions because of their love for children and the desire to see them start life with hope. But Amelia Dyer was so sinister, she was rumored to be responsible for the deaths of 400 children. (The Ogress of Reading) *** One was reported as wiry and slightly muscular, and around 6 feet tall. It might have been humanoid in shape – but there is nothing else humanlike about these bizarre entities being encountered in Japan. (Creepy Humanoids in Japan)

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(Over time links can and may become invalid, disappear, or have different content.)
“Creepy Humanoids in Japan” by Brent Swancer for Mysterious Universe: http://bit.ly/35gEXiM
“The Wytheville UFOs and Men in Black”, from Paranormal Scholar: http://bit.ly/2O2W7dW
“We Were Not Alone” submitted anonymously at WeirdDarkness.com.
“The Ogress of Reading” by Jamie Bogert for The Line Up: http://bit.ly/2pCo1nK
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TRANSCRIPT:

DISCLAIMER==========

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

INTRODUCTION==========

One type of very unusual phenomenon that seems to span the disparate worlds of ghosts, aliens, and cryptozoology is that of enigmatic, often utterly perplexing humanoid creatures of all types. These beings can take a wide range of sizes and shapes, but they all have some things in common in that they are more or less human-like in basic form, and they all lie well-out in the fringe of the weird. Mysterious reports of encounters with bizarre humanoid entities come in from all over the world, from people of all walks of life, and the nation of Japan also has its fair share of such tales.

I’m Darren Marlar and this is Weird Darkness.

SHOW OPEN==========

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

If you’re new here, welcome to the podcast – and be sure to subscribe so you don’t miss future episodes! If you’re already a Weirdo, please share the podcast with others – doing so helps make it possible for me to keep creating episodes as often as I do!

Coming up in this episode…

Most news reporters would relish the opportunity to cover the story of a flying saucer sighting… but one case in 1987 left one radio newsman wishing he’d never heard of the letters U-F-O. (The Wytheville UFOs and Men in Black)

A Weirdo Family member shares her story of some creepy sensations. (We Were Not Alone)

In Victorian England. Some women had the responsibility of taking in young, unwed pregnant women and caring for them until they gave birth. Baby Farmers, as these ladies were called, were in their positions because of their love for children and the desire to see them start life with hope. But Amelia Dyer was so sinister, she was rumored to be responsible for the deaths of 400 children. (The Ogress of Reading)

But first… one was reported as wiry and slightly muscular, and around 6 feet tall. It might have been humanoid in shape – but there is nothing else humanlike about these bizarre entities being encountered in Japan. We begin with that story. (Creepy Humanoids in Japan)

While listening, be sure to check out the Weird Darkness website. At WeirdDarkness.com you can sign up for the newsletter to win monthly prizes, find paranormal and horror audiobooks I’ve narrated, watch old horror movies for free, plus you can visit the “Hope In The Darkness” page if you are struggling with depression or dark thoughts. 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!

STORY: CREEPY HUMANOIDS IN JAPAN==========

In November of 2015 there was a rather odd encounter with some sort of unidentified humanoid just outside the beautiful historic former capital city Kyoto, known for its numerous traditional temples and ancient shrines. According to Cryptozoology News, 36-year-old teacher Toriki Watanabe had a rather surreal experience as he was driving from Tokyo to Kyoto for his brother’s wedding. At around 10 PM, he claims he stopped at a small roadside shop and stepped outside to have a cigarette before hitting the road again. The surrounding area was said to be forested, and as he had his cigarette and admired the view he says he noticed something quite odd in the form of a slouched humanoid figure lurking off in the brush around 200 feet away.

Whatever it was moved in a distinctly odd way, and as Watanabe looked on he could begin to make out some of its features and came to the conclusion that this was no person at all. It was described as being wiry and slightly muscular, and around 6 feet tall, with a bent over posture and covered in grey skin. No clothing was visible, and as it walked it remained hunched over, with its unnaturally long arms dragging along the ground. Although the witness could not see the thing’s face clearly, he did notice the strange detail that it seemed to emit a “faint yellow or white light coming from behind it just around its lower back.” The startled man called out to it but it did not respond, and he stared after it as whatever it was meandered off into the forest.

Although it is hard to tell what this bizarre entity could have possibly been, Watanabe has had his own thought, suggesting it was an actual specimen of a type of folkloric creature known as a shirime. This creature was said to be a mischievous, impish thing that liked to scare travelers in the region around Kyoto. Very bizarrely, the creature is depicted in folklore as having a huge glittering eye where its anus should be, and indeed “shirime” literally means “buttocks eye.” Too bad the witness couldn’t see an eye back there, leaving us to speculate as to whether this was an anus-eyed mythical creature, an alien, an interdimensional traveler, or just a weird looking naked guy running around in the woods. Whatever it was, it is a weird report to be sure.

Kyoto has in later years been the location for other similarly strange sightings as well. In 2016, a woman living on the outskirts of the city claims that she was startled when she heard her normally quiet dog start barking uncontrollably. Wondering what was going on, she claims to have looked outside to see the animal cowering against a fence, smashing up against it as hard as it could, as if trying to push itself through the barrier and away from something there in the yard with it. When the woman looked to see what it was so afraid of she was met with the site of a skinny, grey-skinned creature hunched over the dog’s food bowl, apparently eating the contents with relish and ignoring the barks and whines of the dog nearby. She says that the odd creature was humanoid, but grey and hairless, very thin and sinewy “like a greyhound,” and with long arms that ended into tiny clawed hands. At first she could not make out its face as it was concentrating on eating, but then it seemed to sense it was being watched and whipped its head up to look straight at her in surprise. She would say of its face and what happened next thus:

***It had a small, triangular face with huge, yellow eyes that took up most of its face and seemed to faintly glow. The ears were small and pointed. As it licked its lips I could see that it had sharp, jagged teeth. It looked at me for a second with sort of a startled expression, and then it leapt right over the fence in a single bound.***

What was this being and why did it want that dog food so much? Who knows? Even more recently is a report from the same city from March of 2018, and involves an out-of-town tourist who was staying in Kyoto at a place he had found on Airbnb. On the evening of March 11, he claims that he had been on his way back to his place at around 11:40 PM and as he passed a darkened shrine there were two bizarre creatures that jumped over the wall right in from of him, seemingly coming from the shrine’s courtyard. At first he thought them to be children, but as he approached he could see that they were something altogether different. The creatures were described as being 3 to 4 feet tall, with bodies that were “as white as snow,” long, thin arms and legs, and heads with pointy ears and large, triangular black eyes. When they saw the witness the beings seemed startled, and began to run away. The witness has said to MUFON:

*****They ran with arms behind them. They went behind a corner of a wall. As I walked towards there, one of them looked back at me and made eye contact. I was feeling terrified. I didn’t want to get too close. I lost sight of them as they turned a corner.*****

What could these diminutive creatures have been? While the exact origins of these particular creatures are unclear, another strange and rather frightening humanoid report from another area of Japan seems to suggest bizarre creatures which can only be described as aliens. On February 23, 1975, two 7-year-old boys named Masato Kawano and Katsuhiro Yamahata, were out roller skating in the early evening hours in Kofu City, Yamanashi Prefecture, when they claim that they saw in the sky a pair of luminous orange lights that flickered and made a strange “ticking sound.” As they looked on in amazement, one of the lights apparently moved off towards the distant mountains, while the other started to descend towards the ground nearby.

The boys claimed that they went off to investigate, and saw the strange craft come down to rest in a small vineyard behind an old, abandoned estate. The craft was described as being a domed disc around 15 feet in diameter and 7 feet high, which rested upon three ball-shaped legs. The surface of the strange object was silver-colored, and appeared to have characters or letters of some sort etched upon it. The loud ticking sound of the craft was very pronounced as they drew closer, sounding somewhat reminiscent of a Geiger counter. As the two boys pondered what they were seeing, a hatch purportedly opened on the side out of nowhere and a ladder extended towards the ground, after which a strange looking being climbed out.

The creature stood around 4 feet tall, and was wearing a reflective silver suit of some sort. The being’s skin was allegedly a dark brown in color, and it was covered with thick wrinkles that were so pronounced as to make most of its facial features indiscernible, save for two pointed ears and prominent and intimidating 2-inch long silver fangs that jutted out from the folds of where its mouth might be. In its hands it held some sort of device whose purpose could not be fathomed, but which looked somewhat like “a rifle.” Another of the creatures could be seen sitting within the craft huddled over some sort of flickering control panel. Whatever it was seemed to have completely ignored the two young boys standing there gawking at it as it proceeded to carefully examine the surrounding terrain. After a few moments of this it suddenly seemed to become aware of the boys, after which it approached them and patted one of them, Yamahata, twice on the shoulder while issuing a sound that sounded like “a tape recorder running backwards.”

Upon being tapped, Yamahata allegedly slumped to the ground and was unable to move, paralyzed by some inscrutable force. This pushed Kawano into action, and he quickly scooped his friend up onto his shoulders and ran from the area as fast as his legs could carry him. When he got home, Yamahata came to, and they supposedly told their parents what had happened, who would grudgingly follow the boys out to the estate outside to see the strange orange light climbing up into the sky for themselves. The light would then emit a burst of blinding light and vanish. Later, school officials would descend upon the area in daylight to examine the site, and would allegedly find two sturdy concrete posts that had been pushed over by some powerful force, as well as a ring pattern etched into the ground nearby. Authorities of the Civil Aviation Bureau of Transportation Ministry would later get wind of the story and dismiss the lights as merely from normal aircraft in the area. No word on what they thought the fanged humanoid could have been.

Another account from the same area was related to me that seems to involve some sort of gnome-like creatures that are really hard to classify. The witness says that this happened in the summer of 2011, out in the wilds of Yamanashi prefecture. The man claims that he had been hiking out along a remote trail in the middle of nowhere when he heard what sounded like singing coming from somewhere up ahead. It seemed odd, as this was a rarely used trail and he had not passed anyone or seen anyone out all day. He stood and listened and the ethereal singing continued, the voices high-pitched like those of children.

Curious, the witness continued on his path and the singing got louder, and he slowed down and quietly approached what seemed to be the source, which was a forest clearing up ahead. As he peeked through the brush into the clearing he could now see the origins of the singing, which were no children. He explained that there were 7 to 10 tiny beings in the clearing, measuring only about 2 or 3 feet in height and wearing what looked like some sort of whites robes. The faces seemed to be a bright red in color, and they were all dancing about and singing in some language the man could not understand. Most bizarrely of all, they were making huge, lofty bounds about the clearing, gracefully arching up into the air to come floating down, as if they were defying gravity somehow.

The witness claims that at some point they realized they were being watched and abruptly stopped their singing, dancing, and bounding about. At this point they all turned in unison and stared at the intruder, and he could see that their red faces held smallish beady black eyes, large noses, and that they had tiny mouths without expression. For a moment they merely stared at each other, and the witness said he could feel a certain feeling of dread and foreboding, as if he was not supposed to be there, and described the sense he got from the entities as somewhat malevolent. Then, without a sound the creatures suddenly and silently dispersed into the surrounding forest, totally without sound and without so much as a snap of a twig or rustle of branches. It is a confounding report that defies any easy classification, and one wonders just what in the world these entities could have possibly been.

This sense of bafflement is a common thread running through all of these reports, and we are left to speculate on what the nature of any of these perplexing beings could have been. Considering their unearthly humanoid nature, it seems unlikely that any of these things could have been any sort of undiscovered cryptid in the wilds of Japan. Could they have been spirits of some sort? Were they visitors from another world? One possibility is that they could have been visitors from some other dimension, so-called “ultra-terrestrials,” who have for whatever reasons managed to somehow punch through into our reality. Is that what these were? It is curious to note that in some cases the creatures have seemed to be just as surprised as the witnesses, as if they are baffled as to how they could be seen. What possible significance does this have, if any? These are questions we are likely to be left without the answers to, and these reports serve to merely add to the very bizarre literature on strange humanoid sightings reported from all over the world.

BREAK==========

Up next…

Most news reporters would relish the opportunity to cover the story of a flying saucer sighting… but one case in 1987 left one radio newsman wishing he’d never heard of the letters U-F-O. (The Wytheville UFOs and Men in Black)

In Victorian England. Some women had the responsibility of taking in young, unwed pregnant women and caring for them until they gave birth. Baby Farmers, as these ladies were called, were in their positions because of their love for children and the desire to see them start life with hope. But Amelia Dyer was so sinister, she was rumored to be responsible for the deaths of 400 children. (The Ogress of Reading)

These stories and more when Weird Darkness returns.

<COMMERCIAL BREAK>

STORY: WYTHEVILLE UFOS AND MEN IN BLACK==========

Reports of men in black date back to at least the 1940s. Described as dressing in all-black suits and black hats, these shadowy figures are said to deliver veiled threats to those who dare to discuss publicly the existence of UFOs and aliens. Who there are is a mystery, with speculation ranging from government-backed agencies charged with keeping extraterrestrial secrets out of the hands of ordinary citizens, to extraterrestrials themselves, intent on observing those with connections to alien activity.

In early October, 1987, Danny Gordon, a radio journalist for the country music station WYVE, heard a local report of an unidentified flying object in his home town, Wytheville, Virginia. The news came from the Sheriff’s department, and stated that four police officers, three of whom were Sheriff’s deputies and former military men, had witnessed a strange object in the sky the previous night.

Being a “very sceptical newsman”, Danny decided to report the story as a “ha ha piece”, something to conclude his news segment on a light-hearted note. What he could not have anticipated, was the response from his listeners. Reports of similar UFO sightings flooded in, so much so that Danny set up a special call-in programme for the following week.

Discussing the call-in programme on the twenty-fifth anniversary of the sightings, Danny Gordon described it as a “lightning rod” moment. After that, “every day the phone would ring off the hook”.

The people of Wytheville had not only witnessed similar sky anomalies as the police officers, but were willing to share what they had seen.

“Well, it kind of looks something ‘bout like an egg shape to me”  – caller transcript

“What we could see was red, green and white, sort of flashing lights. We saw a plane go by, with, you know, red, red flashing lights. We knew it wasn’t a jet of any sort.” – caller transcript

Determined that there was a rational explanation for the strange sightings, such as experimental military aircraft, Danny felt the situation would resolve itself in time, and the sightings would ebb away. He was wrong. Local residents continued to witness strange lights in the sky, with their suspicions raised when rumours spread about town that the local military had unconvincingly explained the sightings as planes simply refuelling mid-air above residents’ houses.

To help clarify the situation, Danny states that he called the Pentagon “and talked to the air force general there”, who told him that under no circumstance would refuelling occur “under 13,000 feet”, and that the reported sightings of strange lights and aircraft, which were spotted no more than 5,000 feet above the ground, were simply not the US air force.

With the sightings still unexplained, Danny and his friend, Roger Hall, decided to investigate further. They headed out to the location of one of the sighting hotspots one evening. After a fruitless search, on their return to town, about quarter to nine, they “saw a very unusual object coming across the horizon.” Alarmed, Danny stopped the car, and both men jumped out. In a later interview, Danny described seeing a craft which was “very large, it had a dome-shaped top, and no wings, and had what appeared to be a strobe putting out multi-coloured lights on the right side.” Roger Hall stated that the object was “probably less than a 1,000 feet away and a 1,000 feet high at the maximum”.

“We guessed it at being at least two football fields in diameter. You could see, three huge, looked like picture windows in the back of it, that were lit from the inside out.” – Roger Hall

“As I watched the sky, from the left came a red ball. As a big mothership went into a small skip of clouds, the red ball docked with the craft.” – Danny Gordon

Dumbstruck by what they were witnessing, neither men were able to photograph the object, despite having gone out that night armed with cameras.

The following evening the men went out again, and this time managed to photograph the anomaly. When they were developed, they only showed vague streaks of light in the sky.

Ready to share his findings with his audience, Danny arranged a press conference. The night before, he “received a phone call from somebody who refused to identify themself.” Eerily, the stranger warned Danny that “the CIA and the Federal government were very much interested in Wythe County UFOs” and that it was something that he needed to leave alone, because it was not his place “to be messing in defense matters”.

The following night, after the press conference, Danny returned home to discover his house had been broken into. Nothing was missing, however, it seemed as though someone – whoever had broken in – had been searching for something.

“I started to wonder what I’d stepped into, and my wife was urging me to back off, to leave it alone.” – Danny Gordon

Far from being over, reports of UFOs continued to flood Wythe County.

Six weeks after the press conference, Danny Gordon caught sight of strange objects in the sky for a third time. He, his wife and daughter were leaving the shopping centre when everyone in the area stopped to look up. Danny recalls a group of school children pointing and shouting at the sky. Supposedly, there were “four different aircraft flying in formation, that made no sound”. According to Danny’s estimates, there were 200 people who watched them fly over.

Once again, Danny was able to photograph the crafts, in four separate photos.

“We looked very quickly and saw what I thought was a large object, which later appeared to be four flying disc shapes. As soon as the objects were photographed, they disappeared from view. When the pictures came out, they had a lot of grain, but they showed definite four shapes of objects in the sky. But the most impressive point, in the four photographs the objects appeared to change shape, or light formations within one click of the camera. They do from a teardrop shape, to a round ball shape, then they go to a flying saucer-like disc shape, and then they go to an egg shape, as they out of sight.” – Danny Gordon 

Three months after the initial sightings and Wythe County now had more than 1,500 reports of UFOs. Something was clearly going on.

Danny once again phoned the Pentagon and pushed for answers. The response he allegedly received was shocking. Speaking with “the spokesman for defense at the Pentagon”, he was told, “We do not deny UFOs exist. The government confirms they exist, but we deny they pose a threat to the populace of Wythe County.” When Danny asked how the spokesman could know such a thing, he was bluntly told that no further information could be given. 

Danny continued to investigate the UFOs which plagued Wythe County. However, one night, after receiving yet another strange phone call, he began to wonder if he was making the right decision. 

He claims to have been contacted by a “retired military intelligence officer”, who asked Danny to record their conversation, so that if anything happened to him, it was on record that he had been forewarned. The man told Danny that he too had been researching UFOs – to a tragic end.

“What I’m tell’ you, Danny is I’ve been pursuing this thing for many, many years, and like I said, I saw my son die, of leukaemia.”

The man claimed that, because of his research, his son had been targeted.

“What I’m telling you, is they will try to hit you if they think it’s advisable for their purposes to keep you from further investigating this thing, and then most likely it’d be done through skin contact chemicals It’s be something on the door knob of your car, or on the steering wheel. They could also come up with something, or do something to your children.”

Segments from the original taped conversation were publicly broadcast during an episode of NBC’s Unsolved Mysteries.

Understandably, the conversation left Danny chilled. Regardless, he felt he needed to continue his research and uncover the truth behind the mass UFO sightings.

Less than one month later, two strange men in black arrived at his home, supposedly journalists wishing to write an article about Danny and the UFOs for their newspaper. 

The men stayed for about forty-five minutes: one interviewing Danny, and the other wandering around the house taking photos.

As they left, they said they would send Danny a copy of the article when it was published. When it did not arrived, Danny contacted the newspaper they claimed to work for, however, it had no record of the journalists, stating that the two men did not work for them.

“So, who they were I don’t know, but they were in my house, saw my pictures, saw my negatives, talked to my family, took pictures, and then left, and they were not with the newspaper.” – Danny Gordon

It was sometime after this meeting that Danny realised the negatives of the photos he had taken outside the shopping centre were missing. Someone had taken the original images of the four UFO photographs.

“I felt like maybe there was something in those photographs that I was not seeing, so I took the photographs to some other people to look at, we used magnifying glasses, we measured angles, trying to find out why these photographs were so important, and we’re yet to discover why anyone would want to steal that one specific set of four in a series of photographs of UFOs.” 

By now Danny was living alone. His wife and daughter had moved out, exhausted and living in fear of what may happen to them as Danny continued his research. Two months later, Danny had a stress-induced heart attack. He had to stop his investigation. By the time he left Wythe county, he had collected 3,000 sightings from telephone calls and conversations with people in the street.

Speaking years later, Danny spoke of his regrets in how he handled the case. “If I had the choice, I’d not report the UFO story again. It’s just been too hard on my life and created too many problems.”

STORY: THE OGRESS OF READING==========

Amelia Dyer may have started her career as respectfully as a “baby farmer” could, but her care soon transformed into terror for the poor infants she took under her wing. Years passed before the so-called caregiver was finally exposed as the Ogress of Reading—by which point she had claimed a shockingly high number of young lives.

In Victorian Britain, unmarried mothers strived to stay afloat. With the passage of the 1834 Poor Law Amendment Act, fathers of illegitimate children no longer had a financial obligation to their offspring, which left unmarried mothers struggling to find any income. It was difficult to bring up children during Victorian society; single parenthood and illegitimacy were looked down upon. This led to the practice of baby farming. While many businesses were set up to take in young women and care for them until they gave birth, some unsavory operations had other plans. There could be lucrative financial gain if the baby had well-off parents—sometimes, a newborn was sent away in secret, hiding a scandalous or unwanted pregnancy.

However, those who desperately needed the services were primarily impoverished women. During the 19th century, adoption, foster care, and out-nursing were normal practices across England. Mothers and families paid these institutions to take in and care for their newborns. Often, this was done out of desperation; impoverished new mothers, unable to afford longterm childcare, would pay the comparatively lower charge to send away their child. Yet wealthier families also paid for other similar services. Sometimes, newborns were sent to nearby villages to be cared for in their early years, returning to the family when they were toddlers.

In a rather well known example, Jane Austen’s family was accustomed to sending their children to a “wet nurse” in a nearby village for the beginning months of an infant’s life. Jane spent a fair amount of time with her parents in the beginning, but was in the care of a nurse for the first two years of her life. These wet nurses were reputable, even a part of the family in many ways, and her mother and father visited regularly.

Later, James Edward Austen, Jane’s nephew, would write disapprovingly of this practice though he recognized the value in the out care system. Many babies who were provided for by a credible wet nurse would survive infancy in a time when this was not typical.

But not every institution was on that level. Infants who ended up at baby farms were frequently lost in the system. Others died of neglect—or worse. Once again, working class and single mothers were most likely to fall victim to these disreputable operations. Often, they could afford no other option.

Enter Amelia Dyer, one of the most infamous baby farmers of Victorian England. Amelia Hobley was born in a small village near Bristol in 1838. She was the daughter of a successful shoemaker and was privileged enough to learn to read and write at a time when the majority of women were illiterate. Despite her relative privilege, young Amelia had a difficult childhood due to her mother’s mental illness. From a very young age, Amelia was obliged to watch her mother’s violent fits and care for her. In 1848, despite Amelia’s best efforts, her mother died. After her mother’s death, Amelia moved in with an aunt for a while. She eventually found an apprenticeship with a corset maker. In 1859, her father passed away and she became estranged to a few of her siblings. Later, she was trained as a nurse and soon began her adult life as a nurse and midwife.

At age 34, she married William Dyer, a brewers laborer from Bristol. William was her second husband—her first, much older husband had passed away in 1869. The Dyers had two children together, Mary Ann, who was better known as Polly, and William Samuel. Though she eventually left her husband and not much is known about her son, Polly became something of Dyer’s assistant.

Her life as a midwife proved to be an arduous one, and Dyer was not keen on continuing it. It did, however, lead to her next business venture. Her friend and fellow midwife, Ellen Dane, put an idea into Dyer’s head: Charging families to care for their infants was far easier—and more lucrative—than bringing the newborns into the world.

Working under numerous aliases Dyer put out ads in the newspaper offering a “nice family with no children, quaint country home, £10”. Unwed, desperate mothers responded to this seemingly respectable “Mrs. Harding” and be thrilled to find a good home for their children.

Dyer wrote back, assuring the mother that she would do her “duty by that dear child. I will be a mother, as far as lies in my power”. Once the mothers were put at ease, the baby and adoption fees were handed over. Regardless of what the mother wanted, Dyer always insisted on a full adoption with no further contact. Many a desperate mother relented.

It’s unclear just when Dyer’s operation turned deadly; records indicate she initially tried to care for the newborns she adopted. At some point, however, whether intentionally or not, the babies under her care began to die. A cruel math then materialized: The quicker a newly adopted infant died, the less money Dyer spent on care, and the more profit went into her pockets.

Where Dyer once assisted in the process of welcoming life, she soon felt more content in her role as an Angel of Death.

Eventually, however, one too many death certificates were issued to Dyer. A doctor grew suspicious, and authorities were alerted. In 1879, Dyer was arrested. At the time, she was charged with allowing children to die by neglect rather than manslaughter or murder. She was sentenced to six months of hard labor—an experience she later claimed left her mentally ill.

Once released, Dyer went in and out of mental hospitals. There is evidence that Dyer began abusing alcohol and opium-based products early on in her baby-farming career; at one point, Dyer drank two bottles of laudanum in a suicide attempt. However, her long-term abuse had built up her tolerance to opium products.

She soon revisited her deadly trade. In 1890, the illegitimate baby of a governess was put under Dyer’s care. When the mother returned for a visit she realized something was wrong. The governess grew suspicious and upon further inspection decided to strip the baby to locate a birthmark on one of its hips. The baby was missing the birthmark and an enraged mother began to question Dyer. This led to Dyer having—possibly feigning—a breakdown and entering a mental asylum. Having served as an asylum nurse, Dyer knew how to behave to ensure a comfortable environment during her time as an asylum inmate. Eventually, she also returned completely to baby farming. This time around, she took extra care to cover her tracks.

She no longer called for death certificates. Bodies were wrapped in bags, weighted down with bricks, and tossed into bodies of water. Dyer and her family frequently moved—through Bristol, Reading, Cardiff, and London, never remaining in one place for too long, never leaving a trace.

Until one cold March day in 1896.

A bargeman sending cargo up the Thames in Reading noticed a box lying along the riverbank. Upon further investigation, he discovered the body of an infant within. The bargeman called the police. They confirmed that the body was that of a little girl, between six and 12 months old.

They also discovered faint writing on the box that pointed to one “Mrs. Thomas” and a barely visible address.

Detectives were—and had been—onto Dyer but there was no strong evidence to link her directly to the crimes. They had collected additional evidence from witnesses and more information from Bristol police but were unable to find any conclusive details. That is when detectives decided to use a young woman as a decoy in order to secure a meeting with Dyer to discuss her services. Whether it was designed to link Dyer to her business or as a certain opportunity to arrest her, the plan worked. On April 3, 1896, Dyer was expecting a new client–she was instead greeted by detectives outside her home.

They entered and raided the home. Upon entering, authorities were apparently hit by the stench of death, though no bodies were actually discovered on the premises. What they did find, however, was a mountain of evidence: telegrams about adoption arrangements and letters from concerned mothers inquiring about the health and safety of their children, receipts for newspaper adverts and pawn tickets for children’s clothing, and edging tape used to strangle babies to death. Authorities estimated that upwards of 20 children had been in the care of this “Mrs. Thomas” within the last few months alone; all told, the death toll may have been as high as 400.

Amelia Dyer was arrested, charged with murder and brought to Newgate Prison where her plea for insanity was rejected. After a jury meeting of just four minutes, Dyer was condemned. On June 10, 1896, Amelia Dyer was hanged outside the Newgate Prison.

Dyer’s disturbing story dominated headlines and soon led to stricter adoption laws. Unfortunately, the baby trafficking did not cease completely after this horrifying case. Polly, Dyer’s daughter who got off scot-free from any charges after her mother testified that she had never been involved, was rumored to continue baby-farming after Amelia’s hanging. A number of advertisements by a Mrs. Stewart for adoptable babies said “the little one would have a good home and a parent’s love and care.” Many observers believed that Mrs. Stewart was Polly’s pseudonym, following in a ghoulish family business she knew so well.

BREAK==========

When Weird Darkness returns…

A Weirdo Family member shares her story of some creepy sensations. (We Were Not Alone)

<COMMERCIAL BREAK>

STORY: WE WERE NOT ALONE==========

When I got married, 24 years ago, my husband and I bought a small 3 bedroom apartment. We loved it and redecorated it with our own hands, our two children grew up in that apartment and we spent many happy days there until we moved after my husband got a job overseas, but even now, many years later, I can’t help but think that we were not alone in that apartment. You see, I always had a very strong sensation that someone was with us there, watching us. I tried to check about the former residences, but with no result and since this presence didn’t disturbed or harmed us I went along with my life. A few years after we moved into the apartment, a young couple bought the apartment above ours. They were an established duo and they decided to do a huge makeover to their apartment in plan to raise a family there. The renovation work took a couple of months, I was invited to see the results and it looked beautiful! A few weeks later I ran into my new neighbor, he looked distracted and somewhat angry. “Hi neighbor “, I called him, and he answered: “well unfortunately not everyone…”, “why?!” I said, “you just finished the work on the apartment!”, to which he answered almost apologetically: “my wife left and went to her mother, she says she won’t spend one night in this apartment since it’s haunted…” so what was there in our building, did I and my neighbor’s wife both imagined, or was there someone there, visiting us uninvited…

SHOW CLOSE, CREDITS, A LITTLE LIGHT, AND A FINAL THOUGHT==========

Thanks for listening.

If you like the podcast, and you haven’t already subscribed, be sure to do so now so you don’t miss future episodes! And also, please – tell someone else about the podcast. 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 the podcast with someone new, it helps spread the word about the show – and a growing audience makes it possible for me to keep creating episodes as often as I do. Plus, telling others about Weird Darkness also helps get the word out about resources that are available for those who suffer from depression. So please share the podcast with someone today.

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Do you have a dark tale to tell of your own? Fact or fiction, click on “Tell Your Story” on the website 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.

“Creepy Humanoids in Japan” by Brent Swancer for Mysterious Universe

“The Wytheville UFOs and Men in Black”, from Paranormal Scholar

“We Were Not Alone” submitted anonymously at WeirdDarkness.com

“The Ogress of Reading” by Jamie Bogert for The Line Up

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… “The LORD is my light and my salvation— whom shall I fear? The LORD is the stronghold of my life— of whom shall I be afraid?” – Psalm 27:1

And a final thought… “The only way to achieve the impossible is to believe it is possible.” – Charles Kingsleigh, Alice in Wonderland (2010)

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

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