In 1942, residents of Pascagoula, Mississippi lived in fear of the “phantom barber”: a criminal who would sneak into homes at night only to steal locks of hair from his victims. Though an arrest was made, many believe it to be a setup, and the identity of the phantom barber remains a mystery.
12Edgar Allen Poe
Hours before his death Edgar Allen Poe was found on the streets of Baltimore. He was incoherent, wearing another man's clothes, and unable to explain how he got there. The cause of his death is an unsolved mystery. Many people think that he was a victim of cooping, a form of voter fraud. This is when someone is paid to abduct and drug a civilian then force them to go to the polls and vote for their captors' employer. This wasn't an uncommon thing to happen back then and explains most of his situation when found close to death on the streets.
Yale University holds the mysterious 'Voynich Manuscript', which originated from medieval Europe. It is a 600 year old 200 page book which is dotted with illustrations ranging from zodiac, herbs, astrology to naked women. It is written in a language which is still completely unknown today and it has left cryptographers and linguists stumped for over a century since its discovery. What makes it mysterious rather is the fact that it is too systematic to be “random gibberish.” Voynich Manuscript obeys the law of Zipf, making it very plausible that it's either derived from a real language or is an incredibly advanced hoax. Zipf’s Law is the linguistic phenomenon which states that in every language, the most frequent word used occurs twice as much as the second most frequent word which occurs three times as much as the third, etc.
A Merchant ship known as the Mary Celeste was discovered adrift and deserted in the Atlantic in 1872. The last log entry was 10 days before her discovery. When another ship happened upon her, all of the provisions and belongings of the crew were perfectly intact, but the whole crew was missing. Even her cargo of denatured alcohol was intact. Investigating officers considered various possibilities of foul play, including mutiny by Mary Celeste's crew, piracy, and conspiracy to carry out insurance or salvage fraud. No convincing evidence supported these theories, but unresolved suspicions led to a relatively low salvage award.
15Boeing 727 disappearance
In 2003 a former American Airlines Boeing 727 was stolen from an airport in Angola. Two men had mysteriously boarded the plane and disappeared without a trace. The plane and its occupants have never been found, despite an extensive FBI/CIA investigation.
In 2014, astronomers discovered that 18 giant blue stars were being ejected out of our galaxy and they were unsure how the stars were being propelled. Unlike most other known hypervelocity stars, these are not exiting after interacting with the black hole in the heart of the galaxy. Leaving the galaxy takes a phenomenal amount of energy. Stars must reach speeds 1 million mph (1.6 million km/h) faster than the 600,000 mph (970,000 km/h) at which objects already speed around the Milky Way.
The Guadalupe Mountains, located in West Texas and Southeastern New Mexico, are said to be home to some of the richest gold mines in the world. Ben Sublett, an old miner who lived during the 19th century, was supposed to have found a vein of gold so valuable he could mine $10,000 worth of gold in a week. Sublett was the first "town character." He left town frequently on prospecting trips. The railroad workers and good women of the town saw that his family didn't go hungry. He didn't provide for them much better when he was there. He frequented the saloons and did odd jobs; “witching” for water, collecting bones and day work on the railroad to make a grub stake to go back to the mountains. Then, one day he came into the saloon and tossed a bag of gold nuggets on the bar and bought drinks for the house. He also promised his family the moon. He made several more trips of 3 or 4 days duration and brought back nuggets each time. People tried to bribe him with both whiskey and cash to disclose the location of his treasure, but he wouldn't tell. He didn't even tell his own son. He died in January, 1892, leaving less than $50 in gold nuggets under his pillow in a buckskin sack. To this day, no one knows where the mine is located, and scientists don’t believe large gold veins are even located in the Guadalupe Mountains.
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In 1763, a paralyzed man named Owen Parfitt mysteriously disappeared without any trace. In Shepton Mallet, England, Parfitt sat outside his sister’s home, as was often his habit on warm evenings. Virtually unable to move, the 60-year-old man sat quietly is his nightshirt upon his folded greatcoat. Across the road was a farm where workers were finishing their workday. At about 7 p.m., Parfitt’s sister, Susannah, went outside with a neighbor to help Parfitt move back into the house, as a storm was approaching. But he was gone. Only his folded greatcoat upon which he sat remained. Investigations of this mysterious disappearance were carried out as late as 1933, but no trace or clues to Parfitt’s fate were ever uncovered.
Ken McElroy terrorized the town of Skidmore, Missouri for more than 10 yeras. He was indicted 21 times for various horrible crimes, but was only ever convicted for one—the murder of the town’s 70-year-old grocer. After being released on bond in 1981, he returned to the town, and he showed up in the local tavern armed and threatening to kill the town’s minister. Next day, he was shot dead in the presence of over 30 witnesses, but the shooters were never named, and no charges were ever pressed because no one spoke up.
Dorothy Kilgallen, a panelist on the hit TV show, “What's My Line?” died under what some consider mysterious circumstances while investigating the assassination of John F. Kennedy. Shortly before she died, she told a friend, “I’m going to break the real story and have the biggest scoop of the century.” Apparently, she interviewed Jack Ruby twice. Jack Ruby was the Texas nightclub owner who fatally shot Lee Harvey Oswald. She was about to write a book about Jack Ruby. After she died, they couldn't find her files about him.