Posts Tagged ‘USA’

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WKCR Hijacking is one of those incidents described as a Broadcast Signal Intrusion, like the Max Headroom Incident (I covered this in my June 2014 blog) and it seems unconfirmed but the story interested me. So here goes:

It was originally posted on 4chan where the original poster says that they came across an old recording made in 1994/1995 and that they never thought about copying it, then they found it again and decided to upload it digitally. The uploader says that it was from WKCR 89.9, among the posts there is the usual insults and trolling but there are other comments.

From the post I found myself listening to the upload, it is discordant and overlapping with various sounds. All together when combined the effect is pretty creepy and well not entirely pleasant on the ears, if like me you find high pitched squealing noises hard work on the ears.

So off I went to the internet having listening a few times, and here’s a summary of what I think are the best points.

Reddit – WKCR FM Columbia, New York is a college radio station, generally the idea behind this is that many think it was an arts project. It seems a worthy consideration and given their listings on the website, sounds quite fair.

It was compared to some other experimental artists and many comment that it does not feel like it was an old tape and converted over, purely down to the high quality of it. Some think it would be a little about how clean it was that made it a spurious claim and others countered this saying that you can clean tapes up to very good quality these days.

A comment I saw mentioned that a date in the audio was 1998. I listened to it quite a lot and did not manage to pick that out. Can you tell me if you do and where?

Some people think it might be an attempt at replicating artists like Diamanda Galás, she centered on things like AIDS, mental illness and despair as examples. I compared them, I thought she was interesting but this does not sound like something copying her work.

This is what I could make out – add corrections if you can. I have placed them in date order…

February 1985 – Frank Oppenheimer, brother of Robert. Husband of Jackie, their father of Micheal, our friend.

August 22nd 1985 [incoherent] Tulio. Sister of Millie, Margaret, Dominic and joe. Wife of William. Mother of Mary, Lisa and Billy.

July 4th 1987 Peter Dunwell, Son of Robert, Husband of Lisa

March 17th 1988, Edward McEllis (McNellis?) [Incoherent] Edward’s brother. William, June, Peggy father of Julie, Heart Attack.

April 1988 Rupert [incoherent]

October 1988 Morgan (Tunic?) father of Barbara, Husband of Elsie. Barbara’s dad. Kidney failure.

November 1988 John Byrne (Burn?) Son of John, brother of Catherine and Chris.

December 21st 1988 Barry Valentino, son of Barry Senior, brother of Scott, Mark and Lisa. And his friend, my friend.

May 1987 Henrietta Graham, Mother of [incoherent] my friend.

So is there any relevance? Well 22nd August 1985 was the date of an airways disaster. British Airtours Flight 28m. In total 55 people died as a result but I couldn’t find anything that listed those names and I think I would need the name of the diseased, I could not make that out.

I would also like to clarify that Frank Oppenheimer was not part of the Manhattan project as some of the sources suggest. Robert is mentioned but they are reading out the details about Frank, Frank died 3rd February 1985 and died at home, not as a result of a plane accident, so there is no link there.

Barry Valentino is listed and appears to be a victim of the Pan AM Flight 103, Lockerbie. There is a plane involved in this one.

So is it a creepy art project and a false claim of broadcast intrusion? At the moment I have to say yes, there is nothing specific enough here and I don’t really recognise what message they are trying to portray within the recording.

I am standing ready to be corrected.

 

Animal Planet – The Haunted, Episode 1, Season 1 in 2009 had found a nameplate with “The Blakely Home” upon looking for information, the owners of a software company, find that from 1919 to 1950 it was an insane asylum. Going outside the owners of the company find empty animal cages, the cages seemed big enough for cats, dogs and other small animals. Some weeks after this the motion sensors went off the police could find no reason for it.

I tried to look into this, I really found it quite hard work as I am not local and the information online is scant. I found that there were references to Blackley, Blockley or Blakely Insane Asylum all in the area. What I could find in general was an old reference to Blakely Home as an historical building stating it is now used by Calvert Laboratories. The company deals in pharmaceuticals and my research online shows animal testing is mentioned.

Initially I was getting frustrated but genealogy sites can really be of great help. The Blakely Home is located in Lackawama County, PA, USA. Kriswfield has entered a message on ancestry.co.uk about the place, he says that his father and his partner brought the property from the county in 1976. The business his dad owned ran up until 1982. He comments he could not say about the ethics of the lab that came in after that. He does however say that the labs were tightly regulated by the FDA and says in the main building, where they lived, that it was never considered to be haunted.

A nurse prior to that was able to say it was used as convalescent home and she worked there from 1971 to 1972, she states that it was a nice place to work.

Mentions I found in the area:

Built 1891 – Blakely Poor Farm.

Active Electronics building 2014, the PPA.net shows a picture of the building.

Ease Diagnostics – Auto Inspection & Testing Services

What can I work out? There was more than one building and I’m sure there are blurred lines here as I am not local and actually you need to ignore Ease Diagnostics, I believe. So that leaves the electronic company and Calvert Laboratories Inc on the same site. In 1891 the poor farm expanded and on that area there has been an old poor house; insane asylum, nursing home and then animal testing lab. So perhaps the bit more referred too is the one used by the electronics company and its really more coincidence Calvert Laboratories Inc are nearby now.

Haunted Title Screen.jpg
By Source, Fair use, Link

Or the Dybbuk Box, is basically a wine cabinet that was sold on ebay and some believe it is haunted by a dybbuk. They are usually restless spirits that are able to haunt and possess the living. It is also the inspiration for the film The Possession (2012). I became more aware of the story when it was covered on the Mysterious Universe Podcast, they went into detail about it.

Kevin Mannis listed the wine cabinet on Ebay and the item description included a paranormal story about events he linked to the item. It is worth noting that Mannis is by trade a writer and creative professional and at the time was involved in the antiques business at Portland, Oregon.

The story he provided was that the box was brought during an estate sale in 2003, A Polish Holocaust survivor named Havela had escaped to Spain and then purchased the box there before immigrating to the United States. Havela’s granddaughter provided the information and he said that as it was a family heirloom he would happily hand it back. She said that they did not want it, it had always been in her grandmother’s sewing room and had not been opened as a dybbuk lived inside.

Mannis opened the box and found two 1920’s pennies, a lock of blond hair bound in a chord, a lock of black/brown hair with a chord, a small statue with the Hebrew word ‘Shalom’ on it, a small golden wine goblet, a dried rose bud and a single candle holder with four octopus shaped feet. He said that since owning it he suffered horrific nightmares, and that anyone staying at his place experienced the same thing. He gave the box to his mother has a birthday present and she suffered a stroke the same day it was handed to her.

The claims are that owners or those staying near the box suffer nightmares, and that many report the smell of cat urine, jasmine flowers or nightmares of an old hag. Iosif Neitkza was a student at Kirksville, Missouri and the last person to have auctioned it on Ebay. He said that the box caused lights to burn out at the house and his hair to fall out. When it was ready to be sold the Director of the Museum of Osteopathic Medicine stepped forward to offer to buy it and Neitzke sold it to him.

Haxton wrote The Dibbuk Box, and claimed that since he had taken hold of it he had developed strange health problems that included hives, coughing up blood and ‘head to toe’ welts. He said that he also spoke to Rabbi’s to find a way to seal the dybbuk back into the box. This was successful and he states he has now hidden it away in a secret location, that he does not intend to reveal.

Skeptic Chris French states that he think it’s down to the owners being primed about the purchase and relating it to bad things. If they believe it has caused them to be cursed then it would play out that way, anything bad would be related to the box and not to something unfortunate happening, with or without its presence.

So it sounds like quite a tale, but here’s the thing, the entity is supposed to possess people not objects and talks from the victims mouth not from a wooden box, the soul of the dybbuk clings to the soul of the person it is possessing. However again that’s folklore so who is to say that this one didn’t decide the box was a better offering?

What is worth noting – it’s not been handled by “lots of people”, more a small number, Kevin Mannis who owned it, said he got it off someone that had it in the family. Mannis gave it to his mother, it was returned and then tried to give it to his sister and brother. Having had it returned he then sold it and the new owner returned it, “This has a bad darkness”.

Mannis then sold it on Ebay and the owner became Neitzke, he then relisted it 8 months later having created a blog and talking about it. However there seems to be no blog to refer too about this now. He doubled his money on the sale for the old wine box and it went to Jason Haxton. So in total there have been three full owners, three Mannis family members and one person that handed it back quickly to the antiques store.

Given that no one can find Nietzke and that all of them have promoted the thing to sell it, resulting in a film which gave no credit to them, it seems that there are more questions about it than answers. And now that it cannot be located it is, lets offer the sceptical point here, no way to investigate the validity of this crummy old wine box anyway.

I remain sceptical on this one due to the lack of actual evidence about some of the people involved and that seemingly the end result of this is Haxton’s book, a story for profit.

AGaNnHa

Floyd Collins was a well-known explorer who visited the large cave complex in Kentucky, USA known as Mammoth Cave. Tragically he died in Sand Cave there on 30th January, 1925 after a rock fell on his leg and he was pinned in a small passageway.

The day after two friends found him and for two weeks rescuers attempted to reach Collins. It was a media sensation but had a tragic end as three days before the rescuers could reach him Collins perished.

They could not remove the rock and so left him there and sealed the area up that led to his body. His brother, Homer, finally recovered him and then had his body buried at the family property. Two years later his father sold up the place and the new family had his body exhumed, they had the body placed in a glass coffin and he was left on display there for several years.

In 1929 Floyd was subject to another move when his body was stolen, the police recovered the unfortunate corpse but his injured leg was missing. He has not finally got rest at the Jackson’s Flint Ridge Cemetery and hopefully will remain undisturbed.

Is it any wonder then that he is not at rest? the area of Sand Cave is said to be haunted by Floyd, his screams and pleas can be heard from the sealed cave. A story recounts about decades old whiskey bottles being thrown at people who get too close. Is he trying to help though? Colleen Olsen told Kentucky’s Wave 3 News she slipped and started to fall but was grabbed and pulled back up. She turned to thank her friend Richard only to find that he was on the other side and so she thanked Floyd instead.

I have this picture via the Musical written about the events, I am not entirely sure how I feel about that… but here you go anyway.

floyd_dress_0375_resized

 

There you go for a song from Black Stone Cherry too:

The hotel is located in Manhattan, New York and a half-block away from Times Square. It was originally financed by a loan to Harris and Percy Uris in May 1929, then chartered by M C Levine on 22nd April 1930. Until 1976 the hotel was known as the Dixie Hotel and it is 24 stories high, when it opened it had 1000 rooms and now has 700. It was incredibly large but the wing on 42nd street has since been demolished.

Thanks to reviews from 2004-2008 the hotel gained notoriety because it was voted the dirtiest hotel in America for those four years in a row, numerous reports on Trip Advisor warned of bedbugs and unsafe conditions. As of 2012 it was still in the process of renovation and mixed reviews are on trip advisor of late with the location being it’s primary bonus but the reviews still seem to show that the hotel’s age and wear still show. I am a little frustrated that I found out about this after I had been, during my visit to New York I am sure I would have convinced my friend from Connecticut that we could have a nose around!

The hotel has seen several owners and so I am going to just pick up on relevant points for interest in regards to this blog. For instance the hotel and bus terminal were sold in March 1932 during the Great Depression to pay off a debt, Roy S Hubbel gained control of it and incidentally died in the hotel in his room October 1932, aged 55.

In 1942 The Carter Hotels corporation took over, they allocated money to it in 1976 for renovation and sign alterations as part of the project to clean up the Times Square area. They then changed the name to fit with the chain of hotels. The bus depot there was in used for 27 years, finally closing July 1957. At the peak it handled 350 buses per day in summer.

April 1942 it got an increase in people using it as a permanent residence, there was a 255 seat theatre there that opened in 1966 and was then used as a nightclub and restaurant. Food was served in the hotels restaurant and amateur magicians would drop in during the 70’s to sit around the “Dixie Round Table” to swap stories and tricks. The theatre is now occupied by the Cheetah’s Gentleman’s Club.

In 1983 the hotel was home for 190 families and in December 1983 it was cited for constantly failing in regulations for health and safety, the city sued the hotel and by 1985 the owner (Truong) was found in contempt of court and ordered to pay out a $10,000 fine. New York City used it as a homeless shelter in June 1984 and the hotels 43rd Street Entrance was in regular use for teenagers and children to gather.

By the end of 1985 the number of families there had been reduced from 300 to 61 and eventually the city moved all of the homeless families from the hotel in 1988. They moved the homeless families because of troubles with plumbing, electricity, security and vermin, yet despite this they continued to try and attract guests to the hotel. In 1990 the Penthouse Hostel operated leases on the 23rd and 24th floors and the hostel sign was barely visible, then in 1998 the hotel was temporarily closed because an emergency fire exit was damaged.

There are a few anecdotes for the hotel, such as the store clerk, Sidney Miller, being arrested for violating an antismut law and was convicted in March 1966. He had an accomplice and the two were printing dirty magazines. In 1980 Darrell Bossett was an unemployed laborer who was arrested in a scuffle with police on the 4th floor. He was then charged with first and second degree murder, along with possession of a weapon, for the shooting of Officer Gabriele Vitale.

Along with this are the deaths, George R Sanders from Brooklyn jumped out of the 14th floor on 13th March, 1931. His body went through the roof of a single story restaurant; he landed at the feet of two customers and the night manager. No doubt scarring them for life! Mr Sanders left a note in his room to identify himself and citing that he was depressed.

Olga Kilbrick committed suicide too October 1931, she was the daughter of a wealthy Brockton, Mass insurance executive and had been staying on the 21st Floor. Police found a Brockton Musical Chorus card, 15 cents in change, her gloves and a pocketbook in her room.

Another suicide was Mr James M Fairbanks, a former office manager and was discovered by hotel employees on the roof of a three story extension, April 1932. He was avoiding a $29,000 embezzlement from his employers, he was staying in Room 2002 that night, and he was due to be sentenced the next day which would have carried a 5-10 year sentence.

September 1941 saw a young man from Wayne, Nebraska meet his end on the 12th floor of the hotel when he fell asleep smoking. The story made headlines because just after he arrived he got a letter from his father saying that he his mother had a premonition of something happening to him. He was found by the hotel employees in a chair with the clothes on his upper body burned completely, he died after being taken to Roosevelt Hospital.

In November 1983 there was a tragedy too, a 25 day old infant was beaten to death by Jack Joaquin Correa, the father and resident. He was charged with murder and child abuse. In 1987 a woman was thrown to her death from a window on one of the top floors and then in July 1999 a clerk murdered a co-worker in a brawl near the front desk.

31st August, 2007 a housekeeper found the body of Kristine Yitref, 33 years old, who was wrapped in plastic garbage bags under a bed in Room 608. Clarence Dean, 35 years old, was a sex offender who was charged with her homicide. “Miss Kris” was a former member of the goth rock group, The Nons, and turned to prostitution to fuel a drug habit, sadly she met her end at Hotel Carter.

That leads me to the whether or not it’s haunted, well it seems that guests think so. A review on Trip Advisor from May 2010 tells you that the place was dirty and the staff weren’t too great either. What they did put was that the elevator would take you to the wrong floor, it might be wiring but happened to others they new, they say that they had a shower and hangers kept swinging uncontrollably and even flew off for some reason. They radio then turned on, they had checked and there had been no alarm set. The customer said that they feel it was haunted.

The second one that I found was from further back in November 2003, so just before all the bad reviews really kicked into the limelight. The customer again mentioned the rudeness of some staff. They had a nicer hotel to start with but wanted to save money and so picked the alternative 2 star, sensibly so they had more to spend on things to do.

The review goes on to say that they felt “creeped out” and they assumed it was just down to it being an old hotel. The guests in the party got very little sleep in four days and when they she did sleep she was awoken to the feeling that someone was there, like they had jumped on the bed with them. Lisa says that two of her friends felt good with the ghost but she felt pretty freaked out. She even felt that she needed to shower with the door open and that she warns people that whilst the hotel was great you needed to be aware of the spooks