In the wake of massive disasters, it isn’t uncommon for entire communities to abandon affected areas and never return. This is done for a variety of reasons: the damage and destruction might be too severe for rebuilding work to ever take place; there might be a chance that the disaster could occur again at a later date; or, simply, the loss of life that occurred might be too heartbreaking.

Indeed, you might have heard about the abandonment of places like Chernobyl and Centralia from previous articles. So, here are ten examples of this phenomenon which you might not have heard about:

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In the early 1970s, the town of Times Beach in Missouri was plagued with a problem: as most of its roads were unpaved, cars and pedestrians would kick up quantities of dust, causing a massive safety issue for anyone traveling along them. So in order to prevent this, the town hired a waste hauler called Russell Bliss to oil the roads, a role he carried out between 1972 and 1976.

At the same time, however, Bliss was also contracted by another company, ICP, to dispose of toxic waste produced by Northeastern Pharmaceutical and Chemical Company (NEPACCO). During the Vietnam War, NEPACCO was one of the government’s suppliers of the infamous Agent Orange, a defoliant which contained the dioxin, TCDD. Like all dioxins, TCDD can cause immune and reproductive disorders, alongside other conditions such as cancer and chloracne (a severe acne-like condition which can last for decades).

Unbeknownst to everyone, Bliss had been oiling the roads of Times Beach with a mixture containing used engine oil and the NEPACCO waste. On December 3, 1982, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) took samples of the town’s soil. The result? It was contaminated with levels of dioxin one hundred times higher than the level considered hazardous to human health. Unfortunately, before any action could be taken, the nearby Meramec River overflowed on December 5 and flooded the town, spreading the contaminant throughout the whole city.

Eventually, the floodwaters receded and in 1983, the EPA evicted the town’s population and reclaimed the land—a buyout which cost a reported $32 million. By 1985, the town had been bulldozed and all the soil incinerated in specially-built mobile furnaces. Today, the area on which the town stood is now a state park. As for the dioxins, the EPA revisited the site in 2012 and tested the soil again, eventually concluding that there was no longer any health risk associated with the site.

Ghost Town

The town of Wittenoom in Western Australia was originally established in 1947 to provide accommodation for workers at the nearby crocidolite mine. But as time went on, the town grew in size. In 1951, it had a population of five hundred, and prior to its abandonment in 1966, it was home to over twenty thousand people.

Dirt extracted from the mines was used to create sandpits for the children of the town to play in, as well as greens for the town’s gold course and a “beach” next to the town’s pool. The dirt was also used to line the streets, playgrounds and footpaths of the town. Sadly, however, no resident realized the danger of what they were doing. Crocidolite is known today as “blue asbestos.” Although all types of asbestos are hazardous to human health, blue asbestos is perhaps the most dangerous, as its fibers are likely to cause malignant mesothelioma (a rare form of cancer which develops inside the linings of organs such as the lungs and heart) in people who inhale it.

Throughout much of the time that the mine was operating, concerns were constantly raised by health specialists about the effects of the asbestos on the townspeople. But these were ignored by the mine’s owners. The mine finally closed in 1966 and, at nearly the same time, several air surveys revealed that asbestos particles were present in every building of the town. Action was finally taken in 1979 when the government began winding down Wittenoom by offering to buy residents’ houses and pay for their relocation costs. Many took this offer, and left their homes to be demolished. But a small number defied this situation, and were still resident in the town as of 2006—despite the official removal of the town’s status, its removal from all road signs, and its disconnection from the country’s main electric grid.

A conservative estimate of the casualties suggests that of the twenty thousand who lived in Wittenoom, over two thousand have since died from asbestos-related illnesses. As well as this, Western Australia suffers from one of the highest rates per capita of malignant mesothelioma in the world.

Bath

Deception Island is located seventy-five miles north of Antarctica, inside the cluster of islands known as the South Shetland Islands. It was first founded in the early nineteenth century by a British naval expedition, and it played host to a thriving early-twentieth century industry of whaling. By 1914, there were fourteen whale blubber processing plants on the island, owned by a variety of nations, including Chile and Norway. But after the Great Depression caused the whaling plants to become unprofitable, they were eventually abandoned.

The British established a permanent scientific base on the islands in 1944, and Chile did the same ten years later. But volcanic eruptions on the island in 1967, 1968, and 1969 forced the British to abandon the island entirely, leaving behind derelict fueling stations and huts. Although they somehow survived the eruptions of 1967 and 1968, the 1969 eruption also caused the destruction of two Chilean bases, a loss which led their scientists to abandon the island as well.

The island currently has no permanent residents—but like Chernobyl, it plays host to a thriving tourist trade. The variety of industries that once occupied the island have left behind a wealth of ruined buildings and equipment for tourists to explore, including fueling stations and pumps, huts, scientific research stations, and an aircraft hangar.

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On May 12, 2008, an earthquake with a magnitude of 8.0 hit the Sichuan province of China, killing more than 69,000 people and injuring another 374,000. It also left between five and eleven million people homeless—a high proportion of the fifteen million people that lived in the affected area.

One of the worst-hit towns was the town of Beichuan, in the north of the province. Of all the buildings that stood there, over eighty percent collapsed during the quake.

Thoughtfully, the government elected not to demolish the ruins of Beichuan, and instead decided to preserve the town as a museum. Collapsed buildings were supported with specially-installed hydraulics to prevent their further collapse, effectively freezing the site in the state caused by the earthquake.

St Jean Vianney

Unusually, there is little information about the disaster that devastated the tiny village of Saint-Jean-Vianney in Québec on May 4, 1971. What is known tells us that following a period of extremely heavy rain, the notoriously unstable Leda Clay—upon which the town had been built—liquefied and collapsed. This created a thiry-meter high abyss, which consumed as many as forty houses.

Prior to this cataclysm, the townspeople reported a number of strange occurrences: the foundations of several houses sank six to eight inches into the soil, large cracks appeared in streets and driveways, and people reported hearing heavy thumping noises (as well as the sound of running water) coming from underground. Nevertheless, in the five minutes that it took for this landslide to occur, thirty-one people were killed—a figure which would have been much higher if it had happened later at night. Unsurprisingly, the village was later abandoned by the remaining residents, who were rehoused in the nearby city of Arvida.

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The town of Gilman, in Colorado, was home to Eagle Mine, one of the most important mines in the state. It held massive reserves of zinc and lead, and could contain several hundred workers. Opened in 1886, its miners were rendered exempt from the military draft of WWII because the zinc they were mining was vital to the country’s war effort. Following the end of this war, however, the mine ran into financial problems as demand dried up, and in 1977 the mine was closed.

After closure, the mine’s dewatering pumps—which prevented the lead and zinc from washing into the groundwater—were turned off. As the result, the deepest levels of the mine were flooded and the chemicals were washed into the nearby Eagle River, a main source of drinking water for the townspeople.

In response, the EPA took control of the mines and the town, declared the entire area to be a Superfund site, and evicted everybody living there. Work to decontaminate the site was carried out, but the town is still closed today.

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Following the meltdown at the Fukushima Nuclear Power Plant after the 2011 Japanese Tsunami, a 30km exclusion zone was established around the facility, in order to safeguard people from being exposed to any potential fallout from the reactor. Tomioka was one of several towns, villages, and cities to be evacuated (in total, 488,000 people were rushed out of the area in the two weeks following the disaster). Before the disaster, Tomioka had a population of approximately 16,000 people, the vast majority of whom were evacuated. For this reason, much of the damage caused by the tsunami (which hit the coastal area of the town) has still not been repaired.

Only one man still resides in the city, and he has tasked himself with feeding the animals that were abandoned by their owners during the evacuation. Alongside dogs and cats, these include cattle, pigs, and boar which escaped captivity and now live in the wild.

As of writing, there’s no indication that the exclusion zone will ever be lifted or that the townspeople will ever be allowed back inside.

Tyneham-England

The outbreak of World War Two led to a number of areas of the British countryside being seized in order to provide space for military bases and training areas. One example of this is the tiny village of Tyneham in Dorset, which was seized in 1943 along with the surrounding 7500 acres of woodland and heathland. This resulted in the immediate eviction of 252 people. Reportedly, the last person to leave left the following note nailed to the door of the church (which is still preserved there today):

“Please treat the church and houses with care; we have given up our homes where many of us lived for generations to help win the war to keep men free. We shall return one day and thank you for treating the village kindly.”

It seems unlikely that the villagers (or, at least, their descendants) will ever be allowed to return. As the author discovered when he visited the site several years ago, the surrounding countryside is littered with signs warning of hazards including unexploded shells and fast-moving armored tanks from the nearby Armored Fighting Vehicles Gunnery School. Regardless, visitors are sometimes allowed into the village, which contains a medieval-era church, a renovated manor house, and a vast array of wildlife (which has thrived as a result of the relative abandonment of this area).

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On February 20, 1943, two farmers were burning shrubbery in their cornfield, when suddenly a patch of land in front of them began to swell. While they watched in amazement, the ground split open, forming a smoking, two-meter-deep fissure which smelt strongly of rotting eggs. Within a single day of this fissure’s appearance, a fifty-meter-tall cone of rock had erupted from the ground. Within a week, the cone was one hundred meters tall and spewing out thick clouds of smoke and ash, which began to fall on the adjacent villages of San Juan Parangaricutiro and Paricutin.

On June 12, the new volcano (now with a height of 424 meters) finally erupted; fortunately for Paricutin, however, the flow of lava that emerged was so slow that the entire village was successfully evacuated by the end of the next day. Several months later, San Juan Parangaricutiro was also evacuated in the same manner, before lava could engulf the village. Miraculously, no-one was killed directly by the volcano; the only deaths occurred when three people were struck by lightning, which was caused by atmospheric disturbances triggered by the volcano.

By the end of 1944, both villages had been buried under a tide of lava and ash, with the only visible reminder that they once existed being the church tower of San Juan Parangaricutiro which now sticks out of the cooled lava. The slow eruption of Paricutin volcano continued for another nine years, before eventually coming to a halt in 1952.

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In July 1993, following an intense period of fighting, forces belonging to the Nagomo Karabakh Republic captured the city of Agdam, located within south-western Azerbaijan. This republic, which was supported by neighboring Armenia, had been formed only one year earlier, following the secession of several areas from Azerbaijani control. The attacks were therefore intended to expand the territories held by the Nagomo Karabakh.

On July 4, an artillery strike from Armenian forces led to the mass evacuation of Agdam by its citizens. By the end of July, the entire town was under the control of the Nagomo Karabakh Republic who, according to reports, committed several violations of the rules of war (including the forcible displacement of citizens and hostage-taking). Eventually, fearing a counterattack by Azerbaijani forces, the Nagomo Karabakh ordered the town to be destroyed, in order to prevent its recapture.

Today, the ruins of Agdam serve as a buffer zone between Azerbaijan and the Nagomo Karabakh Republic, meaning that its permanent reoccupation is near-impossible.

Read more: http://listverse.com/2013/03/30/10-places-abandoned-after-disasters/

Top 10 Bizarre Collectibles

Since the ancient days of humanity as hunters and collectors, we have had a fascination with groups of similar objects. While these objects are generally quite normal – cards, stamps, coins, oftentimes they are strange – or downright bizarre. This is a list of the top 10 bizarre collectibles.

10. Hubcaps / License Plates

Hubcaps

It seems that the two go hand in hand, and that this collection of rusted and otherwise useless car parts can get way out of hand. Imagine towering stacks of meticulously placed hubcaps and entire garage walls emblazoned with license plates from the world over, and you have your car enthusiasts dream workshop. For some reason, be it nostalgia or just another psychotic compulsion, some people just love the idea of having more hubcaps than necessary. License plates, okay maybe, but hubcaps? Why?

9. Newspapers

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Often called hoarding, or ‘newspaper squalor’, many people have the compulsive urge to save up unread papers or magazines in the hopes of reading them some day. Yes, I have a MAD magazine collection and many have comic books, but those are generally bagged and boarded and kept neatly filed in a box or something. Oh, and some folks have a nice little stack of MAXIM or PLAYBOY for bathroom perusing, but most of these folks don’t have towering stacks along every wall and corner of the home. As it turns out, mass collections of such fire-hazardous reading materials can be particularly deadly and have, in the past, trapped people under collapsing piles and even caused fatal fires. Be careful with your papers!

8. Duct Tape

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Though still bizarre, collecting duct tape has become more common of late since someone discovered its use in making all sorts of fun crafts. You can, with minimal folding and swearing, create: wallets, purses, small bags, belt, hats, and apparently, entire outfits made from rolls upon rolls of the multi-colored adhesive. Now everyone’s favorite mispronounced tape (duck tape) can be worn or collected.

7. Food

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Daisy Randone (Brittany Murphy in Girl, Interrupted) ate nothing but rotisserie chicken from her father’s restaurant. Granted, she was in a mental ward at the time, during which she amassed quite the collection of mostly-eaten bones from said meals under her bed. It was only the smell that alerted the others to her filthy situation. Strangely, this is not just a Hollywood concept. As it turns out, there are people obsessed with a specific taste and smell of a food, who will go to great lengths to guard it, regardless of the fact that it is half-eaten and prone to rot. The neurological phenomenon is classified as hoarding or the bizarre desire to want to collect useless things.

6. Dead Animals

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Here is an excerpt from the San Francisco Chronicle about a woman who collects animals for a living:

“As a kid growing up in Oakland, Nancy Valente had one reaction to the idea of a dead animal: “Eeeuuuw!” Now friends call her up and say, “I saw something dead on the road and thought of you.” “Did you pick it up?” is Valente’s comeback. “It’s a standard joke,” says Valente, known as “Roadkill Nancy” among local park rangers who are used to the Mill Valley zooarchaeologist’s unconventional ways of adding to her impressive collection of animal bones. “I’m the bone lady,” says Valente, 67. “I don’t know why I like them so much. I have a lot of them around the house, like the elk skull with a whole rack of antlers. I’d love to show it to people, but I can’t even put it in my car.”

For years, Valente’s cheery mix of nature and the macabre thrilled kids and grossed-out parents at the Marin Headlands Visitors Center with “Bones, Bones, Bones,” her monthly presentation of bones and skins of local animals. Valente has now moved her program to Muir Wood National Monument, and is also venturing into the East Bay.

5. Spit

WARNING: This video is disgusting.

Yes, there is a whole club of people who collect spit and enjoy doing it. There is really nothing else that can be said on this – the sooner we move to item 4 the better.

4. Skulls

Skulls

In Mexico, many religious celebrations relating to the dead involve the extensive use of skulls. These are normally very old skulls – often kept in crypts full of old bones. However, the collecting of skulls is also occasionally found outside of religious circles. The Chicago Sun Times reported this in May 2007:

“It certainly seemed suspicious — a skull boiling in a pot of water on the stove. That was the ghoulish report Chicago Police received Tuesday night when they were summoned to a Bucktown apartment in the 2100 block of North Damen. Sure enough, police found four human skulls, as the witness reported. But by Wednesday detectives had determined this was a legal case of bone collecting. There’s a market — a legal market — for bones, and I import and sell bones for medical research” on the auction Web site eBay, said 26-year-old Brian Sloan.”

3. Boogers

Professional Etiquette Picking Nose

Strangely, some people do collect these. One Baron VonKlyf posted this on Dave Berry’s website blog in 2006:

“Leetie… I would donate a good rare and interesting booger for your collection, but I seem to have misplaced it under a table at McDonalds. If anyone finds it, please forward it to Leetie for her collection. Thanks. Oh, and thanks nannie for your random thought. It has been added to the collection.”

To some, booger collecting is revolting, but to a few, it is just another hobby. Many people, after successfully rooting through their noses will randomly wipe their found treasures wherever they can find a conveniently discreet spot. And then there are those folks who have a specifically designated location for their nose discoveries.

2. Skin

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Lets kick this one off with an excerpt from The Harvard Crimson (found in the Harvard Library) on November 13 2005:

“Langdell’s curator of rare books and manuscripts, David Ferris, says of his library’s man-bound holding: “We are reluctant to have it become an object of fascination.” But the Spanish law book, which dates back to 1605, may become just that.
Accessible in the library’s Elihu Reading Room, the book, entitled “Practicarum quaestionum circa leges regias…,” looks old but otherwise ordinary. Delicate, stiff, and with wrinkled edges, the skin’s coloring is a subdued yellow, with sporadic brown and black splotches like an old banana. The skin is not covered in hair or marked by tattoos—except for a “Harvard Law Library” branding on its spine. Nothing about it shouts “human flesh” to the untrained eye.”

However collecting skin is not just for the discriminating bookbinder anymore. Many people collect bits of their own flesh for pleasure. Just something a bit wrong with that.

1. Eyeballs

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The collection that stares back at you. I guess to some that would be appealing enough to want to amass a big bunch of eyeballs. Slightly rounded objects resembling eyeballs have appeared in many gift shops, vending machines, and even on websites devoted to the sole purchasing of ocular memorabilia. You can find pillows, serving bowls, Christmas Tree lights, gum balls, and pajamas all with images of eyeballs. Once you have made the leap into the more macabre and outlandish, why not collect the real thing? There are people known to collect real human eyeballs and, lest they deflate, or become dried out and unappealing, one must keep them in a jar of formaldehyde. Now that is dedication.

So go out and find something fun to collect!

Read more: http://listverse.com/2007/11/29/top-10-bizarre-collectibles/

This is our third place winner in the Listverse launch competition. This list looks at 10 more conspiracy theories that may, or may not, link to various theories Listverse has already covered. By popular demand, here are 10 awesome examples of governmental cover-ups, global cataclysms on the verge of occurrence, and supernatural shenanigans that defy explanation. Read, if you dare, but keep an eye over your shoulder: Someone may be watching…

 
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Everyone knows about Earhart’s ill-fated voyage around the world.  She intended to be the first person to circumnavigate the globe at the equator, which would be the longest such trip (about 29,000 miles).  After a failed first attempt, she departed with one of her best friends, Fred Noonan, from California to Miami. After leaving Miami, Earhart’s last stop before the Pacific was at Lae, New Guinea, on June, 29, 1937.  She and Noonan departed from there on July 2, making for Howland Island, 2,556 miles away, a tiny island in the middle of nowhere.   However, they never arrived at Howland.  All that is known is from Earhart’s radio transmissions, attempting to find Howland.  The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter, Itasca, picked up her voice and attempted to reply to her, but never got through.  The Itasca records them as having made it to the immediate vicinity of the island around 7:58 a.m., on July 3: “We must be on you, but cannot see you — but gas is running low. Have been unable to reach you by radio. We are flying at 1,000 feet.”  The fact that the Itasca could not get through to her makes no sense.

No one ever saw her or Noonan again.  The various theories as to what happened to them have run from the most plausible “pilot error and exhaustion of fuel, landing in the sea,” to “crash-landing on another island controlled by the hostile Japanese, who killed both, or forced Earhart to become the Tokyo Rose, the friendly American demoralizer of WWII,” to the most extreme, “Earhart flew through a temporal rift.”  That’s a rip in the fabric of space-time, and mathematics now states that such “wormholes” are possible, although mathematics cannot yet answer whether or not they exist in Earth’s atmosphere. The Bermuda Triangle is the most infamous area where conspiracy theorists say these wormholes are.

 
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Project Phoenix is an independently-funded foundation, intent on the search for extraterrestrial intelligence (SETI). Many separate organizations, foundations and even individual people, are involved in finding out if we are not alone in the universe. Phoenix, so the theory states, is secretly in charge of all the major organizations searching for alien signals. They are based out of Mountain View, CA, and went online in 1995. They use the largest telescope in the Southern Hemisphere, the Parkes radio scope in New South Wales, Australia. They do not scan the whole sky, but only those systems within 200 light-years of ours, totaling about 800 stars. So far, there have been no signals,  or so we’ve been told.
 
In fact, the Project is a cover for a secret communications link between Earth and some alien intelligence out there. Now that the aliens know where we are, they are on their way, and they may not come in peace. Project Phoenix has no intention of telling anyone, of course, and has brokered a deal for the survival of its members (who usually include all the most powerful people in the world) by giving away the weaknesses of our military organizations. No announcement will be made to the public until the alien arrival is complete, in order to avoid a panic for as long as possible. This point ties in with #3.
 

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Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart may have been the most naturally gifted genius, in any field of human activity, that the world has ever seen, or shall see. His memory was like a tape recorder. He wrote down Gregorio Allegri’s Miserere from memory, after only one hearing, at the age of 14, when on a visit to Rome. He went, later that day, to the second performance and made a few minor corrections. His music is as perfectly fresh, light and brilliant to listen to today as it was in his lifetime.
 
But every genius has his competitors. The film Amadeus follows the theory that Antonio Salieri poisoned him because he could not stand being second best (even though he was far below second place) to “a boastful, lustful, smutty, infantile boy.” All that is known of Mozart’s death comes from correspondence that has survived to be scrutinized by modern doctors.  He fell suddenly ill, while conducting the premiere of La clemenza di Tito, in Prague on September 6, 1791.  He died on December 5th aged 35, and in the prime of his life.
 
This has given rise to the theory that he was poisoned, and Salieri, who made no secret of his disdain for Mozart’s character, seems a plausible scapegoat.  However, Salieri also made no secret of his love for Mozart’s music, and it seems unlikely that he would have ended such genius.  Mozart had, however, other enemies. There are about 120 different diagnoses floating around concerning his death, from poisoning to overwork, cirrhosis or alcohol poisoning. Even trichinosis (which is usually acquired from consuming undercooked pork) has been suggested.  The most common theory is rheumatic fever.  The official cause was recorded as “severe miliary fever,” which could be anything.
 

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Apricot pits, like many fruit seeds, contain cyanogenic glycosides, which are similar enough to cyanide to kill you, if you eat a large quantity of them.  These glycosides also have a chemical in them called laetrile (LAY-uh-trill), which the presented theory states can not only prevent cancer, but can actively seek it out in the body and destroy it with extreme prejudice.  The American Cancer Association currently has no such drug in its arsenal: chemo-therapy and radiation therapy are, supposedly, the best we can do at present, and they are woefully inefficient, often poisoning the patient to death.

The theory states that laetrile is the cure the whole world has been looking for, throughout the 20th Century, but the ACA and the American Medical Association refuse to let this knowledge out, because once the cure is available, the cancer industry will go out of business. There is factual documentation that apricot pits were used in the 1950s in Europe, to reduce the size of tumors, and the documentation states that it worked. But, rather than cure people, as per the Hippocratic Oath, the doctors involved in this cover-up choose to treat people indefinitely, prolonging life for a few years, while the bills, and their paychecks, rack up astronomically. To this end, the AMA and ACA have issued public service announcements defaming apricot pits as an extremely dangerous food to ingest: you have to crush the pit just right to extract the laetrile with only a minute quantity of cyanide, so you do not poison yourself. This is true, but the two organizations maintain that it impossible to do this and that laetrile does nothing for cancer, even though both statements are verifiably false.

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A lot of time has passed since Louis XIV was the King of France. So, here are the facts concerning a prisoner arrested in 1669, during his reign. His name is given as Eustache Dauger, and he was transferred from prison to prison, all over France, for the next 34 years. It appears as though the authorities didn’t know what to do with him. He was held in the Fortress of Pignerol, then in the Bastille, and for a time, he was fitted with a padlocked steel mask over his entire head, with slots for his eyes, nose and mouth. For most of his incarceration, he was masked with black velvet. Correspondence from the Marquis de Louvois, one of the king’s secretaries, to the warden of Pingerol, indicated that the prisoner was to be housed in a special cell with multiple iron doors, so that no one outside could hear him.  The prisoner was to be instructed that if he ever said anything other than “food” or “water” he was to be killed on the spot. 

It seems strange that such pains should be taken to ensure a prisoner’s silence and solitude for 34 years. He mercifully died on 19 November, 1703, in the Bastille, and was buried the next day, under the name “Marchioly.” Theories abound as to his identity. The fact that he was not simply killed implies that he was of the royal lineage, and Louis XIV had to honor the law that no person of royal blood be murdered. However, if he was happy to put this man in prison for 34 years, he obviously had no problem circumventing the law in the first place. Dauger may have been a twin brother of the king, and thus a challenge to his throne, in which case Louis could not bring himself to have his own brother killed. Voltaire believed that he was the king’s illegitimate half-brother. Alexander Dumas Sr. used this theory in his famous book, on which most of the films have been based. He may also have been a general named Vivien du Bulonde, who acted in a cowardly manner at the siege of Cuneo, and infuriated the king. But then, why the mask? France had many generals. There are many other candidates, including the son of Charles II of England. Who was that masked man? Pictured above is the view from the real cell of the Man in the Iron Mask. [Image source]

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One of the more chilling moments of Saint John the Divine’s Revelation from God, at the end of the Bible is Apocalypse. 13:16-18, which says “And he shall make all, both little and great, rich and poor, freemen and bondmen, to have a character in their right hand, or on their foreheads. And that no man might buy or sell, but he that hath the character, or the name of the beast, or the number of his name. Here is wisdom. He that hath understanding, let him count the number of the beast. For it is the number of a man: and the number of him is six hundred sixty-six.”

This was written at a time before global communication was feasible, but now, at a time when it has been worked out to an exact science, Christian fundamentalists and Apocalypse enthusiasts are more scared than ever. They fear anyone attempting to “communize” the world with commercial implants: barcodes in the forehead or hand, designed to facilitate buying and selling. Such implants have not yet appeared, but the theory states that the moment is close at hand, when all the UPC codes that are printed on packages will be removed and one UPC per person will be used, scanned directly from that person’s body, and that we will not have a choice about using them.

To this end, the theory goes on to say that the barcodes on packages, credit cards, debit cards and even personal checks are secretly hiding a 666 somewhere on them. The theory is only corroborated, however implausibly, by the fact that barcodes did not come about until 1948, the same year that the Jews finally got a home to call their own. According to the theory, Bernard Silver, who invented barcodes that year after overhearing the president of a local food chain asking for a system to read product information, via machine, in a grocery store, was deceived by supernatural forces into inventing them: the president of the food chain was actually Satan.

Nsa-Emblem-1

The national Security Agency does exist. Their headquarters are located in Fort Meade, Maryland, fifteen miles southwest of Baltimore. The parking lot has 18,000 spaces, most of which are filled during the day, and Interstate-295 South has an exit solely for those employees, with a road sign that reads, “NSA Employees Only.” The NSA works in tandem with the CIA and FBI, but its activities are so top-secret that no one in the entire planet, except for a handful of high-ranking NSA supervisors, knows what they are doing.  They are officially “responsible for the collection and analysis of foreign communications and foreign signals intelligence, which involves cryptanalysis.”

Whenever you see the word “crypt” in a conspiracy theory, some wonderful fun is going to come about.  What no one realises, not even the President, is that the NSA knows the truth behind every single conspiracy theory ever put forth. This is because they have the entire world’s information at their fingertips, and control the Internet more diabolically than Stalin controlled the Soviet Union.  The conspiracy theories about the NSA either blame it for, or accuse it of withholding information concerning: the 9/11 terrorist attacks; the alien landings at Roswell, NM, and Rendlesham, UK; all UFO sightings; the location of the Ark of the Covenant; the identity of the antichrist, who is alive and well; the Kennedy assassinations (both of them); the protection of high-ranking Nazis after the war, including Hitler; the Philadelphia Experiment and the Montauk Project; the date for the end of the world, according to the Mayan long count calendar; the location of the asteroid that will hit us; and just about anything else you could dream up. 
That’s how this theory works: once you set it up with an all-powerful, secret government organization, it can effectively link to any other conspiracy theory.

What’s most mysterious about it is that Harry Truman founded the NSA, in 1952, 5 years after the founding of the CIA, which was also courtesy of Truman, who was a 33rd degree Master Freemason. The NSA have a special handshake, the very same one the Freemasons use, or so the theory states. The CIA is on the books as having “no police or law enforcement functions, either at home or abroad,” including “sabotage, anti-sabotage, demolition and evacuation measures…subversion [and] assistance to underground resistance movements, guerrillas and refugee liberation movements, and support of indigenous anti-communist elements in threatened countries of the free world.” The NSA has no such requirements on its books. No one can control them because no one knows what they’re up to. They are not even thought to go by the name “NSA,” but instead by “National Security Council,” which is actually a White House cover to make it appear that the President is in control of them. Conspiracy theorists lovingly refer to them as “No Such Agency.”

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No, not the film, but the Strategic Defense Initiative. The brainchild of the late, great Ronald Reagan, who insisted on staying one step ahead of the Soviets, was going to be comprised of particle beam weapons (á la Tesla’s Death Ray), electromagnetic railguns (á la the Schwarzenegger film Eraser) and X-Ray lasers that would shoot down nuclear ICBMs. America was skeptical, in case you don’t remember, and the whole project was eventually scrapped, because of the impossibility of maintaining such a wide array of satellite orbits, communications, computers and so on. Even after American scientists told Reagan it was impossible, he refused to give up on his dream. Once his presidency (or reign of terror, as some might say) was over, the SDI faded into obscurity. But why, in the world, was he so obsessed with it? Anyone else would have given up along with the scientists. Especially considering that the SDI’s main task was to deal with a Soviet nuclear bombardment. And yet Gorbachev offered, in 1986, to eliminate all nuclear weapons in the world within 15 years, which would have been the crowning achievement of Reagan’s career. But he said no.
 
The theory states that Reagan knew of an impending extraterrestrial attack on Earth, just like H. G. Wells depicted. Only Reagan and a very select few knew of it, and did not want to terrify the world’s population. So, he tried to cover it up, while preparing for it in true Reagan style: don’t beg for mercy–fight back. The most convincing evidence that aliens are on the move right now, and perhaps not far away, comes in two parts: firstly that George W. Bush tried his best to reinitiate the SDI, and it was dubbed “Son of Star Wars” and “The Empire Strikes Back.” Dubya refused to listen to the protests of anyone, even the UK, which was where he intended to build part of the SDI system. The second part is a remark Reagan made to Steven Spielberg at the 1982 White House screening of “E. T.: the Extraterrestrial.” He leaned over to Spielberg and said: “You have no idea how damned close to reality this is.”
 

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This is one of the lister’s personal favorites. For centuries, people believed that the earth is hollow in the center, that it is not a superheated mantle spinning around a solid iron core, but is in fact a hollow sphere of crust, like a gumball. How thin this crust measures is up for grabs, but the theory centers on what might be residing down there. Edmond Halley, the namesake of Halley’s Comet, theorized, in 1692, that the Earth is a shell, 500 miles thick, with concentric rings inside. Inside there would be a solid core, and between the rings there would be various atmospheres of fluorescent gases.  When these gases escape at the poles, they create the aurora borealis and australis.

By the 20th Century, it had reached the mainstream, been argued against by scientists and caught the attention of Adolf Hitler, who sent a mission to the South Pole to find the entrance he was sure was there. It would lead to the underground, where Hitler believed a subterranean race of 12-foot-tall, super intelligent humanoids lived.  He intended to convince them to come up to the surface and fight for Nazi Germany, or at least give the Nazis some futuristic firepower.  Whether Hitler sent this mission or not is part of the theory, but if he did, it never came back. This was due to either having been killed by the subterranean race, or Antarctica.

He was a madman when it came to occult theories like this, sending missions to Tibet to find Shambhala, and yes, he actually attempted to find the Ark of the Covenant.  Admiral Karl Donitz is on record as stating that the Fuhrer could be protected by the Kriegsmarine with “an invisible fortification anywhere in the world.”  He also stated at the Nuremberg Trials that this invisible fortification was “in the midst of eternal ice.” Once Nazi occultism got into the mix, this theory really took off. It became a worldwide governmental cover-up, the true source of all the UFOs ever witnessed and photographed, and the secret hideout of many high-ranking Nazis after the war, including Hitler, Himmler (the corpse was a double), Josef Mengele for a time, and many others. It is said that the subterranean race has the power to keep people alive forever, which means Hitler is still doing fine and may be on his way back to the surface someday.

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You have probably never heard of him.  Tom Ogle invented a vapor-fuel intake system, in 1977, for all automobiles.  His system could be affixed to any existing car engine, and would enable the car to travel 100 miles on one gallon of gas.  He claimed that the emissions were clean enough that you could dry your hair with the exhaust.  He astounded the auto industry with his invention, and was, in fact, approached in 1978 by a representative of Shell Oil, who offered him $20 million, on the spot, for the patent and plans to his invention.  He refused, stating flatly that Shell would simply shelve the idea and it would never see the light of day.

Tom Ogle was found dead from an apparent overdose of Darvon and alcohol poisoning on 19, August, 1981.  He had been known to drink, but never so heavily that he had to go to the hospital.  The Darvon is the weakest link to the report that his death was an accidental suicide: Darvon is an opioid painkiller.  It does nothing else, and Ogle had no history of using it. He also had no immediate history of pain requiring an opioid analgesic.  The theory states that he was murdered by a Shell-hired assassin, who made it look like a suicide.  He actually got his fuel system patented, on 11 December, 1979, with patent number 4,177,179.  He was shot and wounded outside an El Paso, TX, bar earlier in the summer of 1981.  He claimed that people were after him for his patent.  Three months after his death, his original schematics and blueprints went missing from the Patent Office in Washington, DC.  Some of his schematics have turned up on the Internet, but not enough have surfaced to actually build his device.

Read more: http://listverse.com/2010/10/25/10-long-awaited-conspiracy-theories/