Mysteries: Cinder Woman and Gold Hoax Pictures

Don Wildman examines a set of binders that contain clues to an incendiary tale of a woman who met a bizarre fate, an experimental box and more.

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Jacksonville Museum of Military History
Damascus Missile

Damascus Missile

The Jacksonville Museum of Military History in Arkansas houses a collection of metallic shards recovered after a catastrophic explosion that nearly wiped out the entire state. 960 1280

  

Damascus Missile

Damascus Missile

The blast occurred at the Air Force base outside Damascus, AR, when one of the world's most powerful, long-range weapons, a 9-megaton warhead, mysteriously blew off a Titan II missile, spelling disaster of near-nuclear proportions. 960 1280

  

Eye in the Sky

Eye in the Sky

When a hot air balloon ride in 1861 drifted off-course during the midst of the Civil War, its navigator, Thaddeus Lowe, discovers that he can repurpose the lofty contraption for the benefit of Union troops. 960 1280

  

Eye in the Sky

Eye in the Sky

The Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum in Washington, DC, boasts a set of binoculars that helped elevate military spy craft to newfound heights. 960 1280

  

St. Louis Marathon

St. Louis Marathon

The Missouri History Museum in St. Louis exhibits an octagonal medal bearing the 1904 Olympic games insignia. The 1904 games marked the first time the Olympic competition took place outside of Europe. 960 1280

  

St. Louis Marathon

St. Louis Marathon

The token (pictured above) hearkens back to a bizarre and excruciating test of human endurance, and one of the strangest contests in athletic history. In fact, several runners began to have their lungs fill up with dirt, cough up blood and even collapse along the marathon route. 960 1280

  

Soapy Smith

Soapy Smith

The Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park Museum in Skagway, AK, is home to a crude effigy of a swindler whose fortune grew from a host of small-time scams. 960 1280

  

Soapy Smith

Soapy Smith

After seizing control of the remote mining town of Skagway, Jefferson "Soapy" Smith befriended JD Stewart, gaining his trust only to assault and rob him of all his gold. The robbery led to the locals calling a protective meeting to stop Smith from further sullying the town’s reputation ... only to end in bloodshed. 960 1280

  

Spirit Board Boyfriend

Spirit Board Boyfriend

The Warren Occult Museum in Monroe, CT, features a fire-scarred picture frame tied to a shocking tale of satanic seduction. According to the family who owned it, the artifact is evidence of a diabolical series of events set in motion by an unwitting teenager’s innocent experiment. 960 1280

  

Spirit Board Boyfriend

Spirit Board Boyfriend

Once the Beckford family was convinced their Connecticut home was haunted, they contacted local demonologists Ed and Lorraine Warren for help. After investigating the property, it was determined that Victoria Beckford had summoned what appeared to be the entity of a teenage boy to the house through the use of a spirit board. 960 1280

  

Victoria Woodhull

Victoria Woodhull

New York City’s Museum of American Finance collection includes a dress linked to one of the most controversial figures in American history, the 34-year-old psychic entrepreneur, Victoria Woodhull. 960 1280

  

Victoria Woodhull

Victoria Woodhull

Not only was Victoria Woodhull the United States' first female financier -- owning a very successful brokerage firm -- she was also a famous spirit medium and the first female presidential candidate. 960 1280

  

National Atomic Testing Museum
National Atomic Testing Museum

National Atomic Testing Museum

Allan Palmer, director at the National Atomic Testing Museum, examines a collection of rocks found after a strange explosion in Russia. The debris has some very unusual properties, confounding scientists since its discovery in 1986. 960 1280

  

Pieces of Eight

Pieces of Eight

Spanish dollars, also known as Pieces of Eight, that are housed at the McLarty Treasure Museum in Vero Beach, FL. The museum was built on land that was once used as a camp for the survivors of a 1715 shipwreck, and is home to many objects that have washed ashore from that ill-fated Spanish ship. 960 1280

  

Haggin Museum

Haggin Museum

On display at the Haggin Museum in Stockton, CA, is a vintage trunk that was at the center of a notorious (and gruesome) scandal. 960 1280

  

Koreshan State Historic Site

Koreshan State Historic Site

On display at the Koreshan State Historic Site in Estero, FL, is a strange-looking globe that tells the story of a man named Cyrus Reed Teed. Teed had some rather … unusual … beliefs about the structure of earth, and founded a cult that referred to themselves as the Koreshan Unity. 960 1280

  

McLarty Treasure Museum

McLarty Treasure Museum

Visit the McLarty Treasure Museum in Vero Beach, FL, to see some of the loot that has washed ashore from a Spanish shipwreck in 1715. 960 1280

  

National Atomic Testing Museum

National Atomic Testing Museum

Get a look at debris that many believe is out of this world …. literally ... at the National Atomic Testing Museum. 960 1280

  

Emma LeDoux Murder

Emma LeDoux Murder

In 1906, a woman by the name of Emma LeDoux murdered her fiancé … and attempted to ship his body home in this now-bloodstained trunk, on display at the Haggin Museum in Stockton, CA. 960 1280

  

McLarty Treasure Museum

McLarty Treasure Museum

Pieces of Eight coins on display at the McLarty Treasure Museum. 960 1280

  

National Atomic Testing Museum

National Atomic Testing Museum

Visit the National Atomic Testing Museum to see evidence from the “Russian Roswell” incident. 960 1280

  

Haggin Museum

Haggin Museum

Don examines a trunk tied to a gruesome murder at the Haggin Museum in Stockton, CA. 960 1280

  

1986 UFO Crash

1986 UFO Crash

Get an up-close look at rocks that could be evidence of a 1986 UFO crash in Russia. 960 1280

  

Nantucket Historical Association Whaling Museum
Great Moon Hoax

Great Moon Hoax

At the Nantucket Historical Association Whaling Museum in Nantucket, MA, a picture printed on decorative wallpaper reveals an astounding tale of astronomical intrigue and a quest to peer into the darkest recesses of the galaxy to prove that there is life on the moon.  960 1280

  

Great Moon Hoax

Great Moon Hoax

"A Peep at the Moon" was an attempt by a local reporter to prove that there was life on the moon. However, after the reports were put out by the New York Sun, its chief rival, the New York Herald, posted scathing reviews of the Sun's claims, ultimately resulting in the truth. 960 1280

  

First Men in the Stratosphere

First Men in the Stratosphere

The Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago displays a large armored contraption that launched one of the most dizzying adventures of the 20th century. With a history-making passenger aboard, it pushed the understanding of the universe to unprecedented heights. 960 1280

  

First Men in the Stratosphere

First Men in the Stratosphere

In 1933, during the century of progress exhibition in Chicago, 2 men, Navy lieutenant commander Thomas Settle and Army major Chester Fordney, took to the sky in a high-altitude balloon in an attempt to reach the stratosphere. The men made it 61, 237 feet high, setting the record for highest altitude ever reached at the time. 960 1280

  

Baseball Stalker

Baseball Stalker

The Yogi Berra Museum and Learning Center in Montclair, NJ, displays a baseball bat that’s linked to a case of fanatical obsession that haunted America’s pastime. The man who wielded the bat was the victim of a violent attack that threatened to end more than just his career. 960 1280

  

Baseball Stalker

Baseball Stalker

In the spring of 1949, star Philadelphia first baseman, Eddie Waitkus arrived in town for an average baseball game. But unfortunately, an obsessed fan lured Waitkus into her hotel room and shot him in the chest with a .22 caliber rifle. 960 1280

  

Dead Woman Running

Dead Woman Running

The National Track and Field Hall of Fame in New York City has in its collection a pair of leather shoes that belonged to a woman who raced past a death-defying tragedy.  960 1280

  

Dead Woman Running

Dead Woman Running

In March of 1931, 19-year-old Olympic sprinter Betty Robinson and her cousin were in a horrific plane crash outside of Chicago. After finally waking up from a 2-month coma, all hope for a comeback appeared to be dashed. However, after 18-months of training and determination, Betty returned to the Olympic stage in 1936 to win the gold medal. 960 1280

  

New England's Dark Day

New England's Dark Day

The Massachusetts Historical Society in Boston has in its collection a small book that documents an awful cataclysm that many thought would lead to humanity’s demise. 960 1280

  

New England's Dark Day

New England's Dark Day

In 1780, while still in the throes of the revolution with the British, local reports of a yellow sky and devilish-red sun setting over New England sent the townspeople into hysteria. Nearly 200 years later, it was discovered that a massive fire in Canada due to prevailing winds and low barometric pressure caused the terrifying sky. 960 1280

  

Peggy Shippen

Peggy Shippen

Located on the campus of the University of Michigann Ann Arbor, the William L. Clements Library has a set of letters that turned a long-accepted and infamous tale of deceit on its head.  960 1280

  

Peggy Shippen

Peggy Shippen

For over 100 years, it was believed that Benedict Arnold conspired with the British, betraying the colonial forces on his own. However, the discovery of this letter revealed the stunning truth.  960 1280

  

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