10 Weird and Strange Syndromes

When we get ill, majority of us think this is the worst illness we’re going through RIGHT? I used to think this way too before finding about many of the weird syndromes that have to live with throughout their lives. And the sad part is that most of the syndromes have NO CURE AT ALL!

Is everything made of numbers?

when Albert Einstein finally completed his general theory of relativity in 1916, he looked down at the equations and discovered an unexpected message: the universe is expanding.

10 Ways to Lose Calories without Exercising

Infomercials bombard us every day with techniques to lose weight fast . But many of us actually shun the idea of losing weight without much effort. However there are ways of losing weight without being a total gym bunny. All you have to do is make a few changes in your lifestyle.

Top 10 Creepy Girls in Fiction

A recent trend in media is the idea that children are scary or creepy. Girls seem to be particularly popular – from pale-faced, stringy-haired ghosts to demonically possessed victims, creepy girls are becoming a common feature in horror films and other genres. This list covers ten creepy girls who have appeared in films, TV and video games in the past thirty or so years, to frighten or fascinate audiences. Most can be terrifying but have a sense of sympathy to them, or some are just unstoppable creatures of evil wanting to rip the world apart.

10 Tragic Prison and Asylum Fires

While fire is something that has proven to be something very useful to mankind over the years being one of the greatest discoveries, it is potentially a hazard. It’s like a caged demon waiting to be set free so it can render everything to dust and ashes. There have been many dangerous fires throughout our history and has taken many lives but that’s just because of carelessness and well, nature did have a role in forest fires too. Anyway, this list talks about cruel fires in different prisons and asylums throughout the world. Tragic as it may sound, it still holds true. I hope this particular list proves useful and educative to you folks.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

beauty of nature - part I


"click on image for full size"

Apple's logo is considered 'blasphemo​us' in Russia as a sign of sinful behavior

Apple's logo is one of the most recognizable symbols in the world. Many Apple iPhone buyers have referred to the insignia on the back of the handset as a part of the overall design of the phone that attracted them to it in the first place. While most people around the world see the logo and think technology, Orthodox Christians in Russia see the symbol and think 'sin'. For this group, the bitten Apple logo reminds them of the story of Adam and Eve and the concept of original sin. This is based on the translation of a news report in Russia and some have gone on to cover up the Apple trademark with a cross whenever they see it in the country.

To the Russian Orthodox Church, this represents sin

Of course, those familiar with the story of Apple know that the apple portrayed on the back of the Apple iPhone and Apple iPad represents the famous fruit that allegedly fell and conked Sir Isaac Newton on the head leading to the discovery of gravity. The Soviet Church, though, is thought to be interested in passing anti-Blasphemy laws which could force Apple to change its logo in the country or refrain from selling its products there.

Apple might even have a defender in the country. Political party Yabloko is against what it sees as a "clerical police state" in the country. The party is railing against what it sees as a battle between the Russian Orthodox Church and "secular civil society". That would make the party an ally of Apple's if the Russian Orthodox Church ever makes an issue out of the Cupertino based firm's Apple logo.That, and one other thing. It seems that Yabloko, the name of the party, is also Russian for Apple.

Source: phonearena.com

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Top 10 Ways to Make Yourself Look (and Be) Smarter

Whether you're trying to survive an intensive college schedule or just want to seem smarter in front of your friends, you can do a lot of things to both look and be smarter. Here are ten simple tricks for boosting your real (and perceived) brain power.

Astronomers discover giant planet chock-full of diamonds

55 Cancri e was first identified back in 2004, but at the time scientists thought that it was covered in water and rocks, much like the Earth. We now know that's probably not true and, what's more, the most interesting find regarding 55 Cancri e could be under the surface.
More accurate measurements have revealed a surface temperature of nearly 4,000 °F, and a density much higher than our planet, leading researchers to conclude that 55 Cancri e is actually composed almost entirely from high-density carbon, or, in other words, solid diamond.
With a diameter that's about double that of earth's, 55 Cancri e revolves around a star called 55 Cancri a. The star is part of the constellation Cancer and is visible from earth with the naked eye, although the much smaller planet is a tough catch. Both are approximately 40 light years from earth, so the chances of heading up there to grab some diamonds are pretty slim.
I guess that until we perfect warp speed travel, anyone looking for the ultimate bling had better headto Siberia.
Reuters, via The Nation (Pakistan)

Source: dvice.com

Monday, October 15, 2012

Keep Computer and Smartphone Screens from Destroying Your Eyes

Staring at a screen all day can cause eye strain and other vision problems. Keep your eyes healthy and prevent other issues like neck and shoulder pain by practicing good "eye-gonomics."
The Vision Council has published a helpful 16-page guide to avoiding digital eye strain. The first step is to identify symptoms of digital eye strain: red or dry eyes, blurred vision, general fatigue, or headaches. Back and neck pain can also be caused by poor workspace ergonomics.
Remembering to blink and using the 20-20-20 rule (take a 20-second break every 20 minutes and look at something 20 feet away) are among the many tips The Vision Council offers to combat eye strain.
One of the more interesting tips is to make sure your computer screen is far enough away from your eyes using the "high five test": If you can't give your display a proper high five, you're sitting too close. You should be sitting like so:

 And holding your smartphone this way:

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Pictures that are Amazingly Not Photoshopped

I Can’t Believe These Photos Are Not Fakes!

We like the use of Photoshop as much as the next guy.   I can always appreciate the skill it takes to use the program and make photos that couldn’t have been made otherwise.   However, there’s the realist in me that can always appreciate a great photograph.  One that’s taken at the perfect angle, with the perfect light, and with such precision that you might not even think it is in fact real.

Well it just so happens these are the exact kind of photos we’ll be sharing with you right here.

You won’t believe these photos aren’t photoshopped……

Believe it or not, these photos are real, not fakes. That's what the authors say. Excluding cropping or tone adjustments,none of these images have been Photoshopped (as in composed from many images or morphed or painted over). I look at them and I can believe them.

Hmmmm. I mean. Kind of. What do you think?

Some of the photos are just well staged. Some others are good optical illusions. There are a couple that are supposed to be just (very) happy coincidences, like the golf ball above. Or is it?

Staged in the sea while they waited for a wave and the surfer to be in the right position (patience!) or two photos merged in one (effortless)?

Intentional fall about to happen (painful) or man pasted on top with fake shadow (no hip broken)?

Car painted over in real life (expensive and complicated) or painted later in Photoshop (so easy and cheap)?

Staged in a stadium (lots of hard coordination here) or composed and sightly morphed later in Photoshop (no headaches)?

Happy coincidence to get this surreal reflection (magic!) or some crazy layer work (more magic!)?

A woman posing over a real miniature model of a street (building that is hard) or pasted on a tilt-shifted city landscape (masking and composing is so easy)?

check out the other pictures:

"click on image for full size"

Friday, October 12, 2012

10 Unusual and Unbelievable Underground Places

Thousands of unbelievable places to see with the best of all that is weird, amazing and bizarre in the world today. Open up a wonderland of curiosities you never knew existed and amaze your friends, your family, and yourself. Seeing is believing!

(All texts and photos were taken from the amazing collection of Strangest Books) 

 The Catacombs of Paris - Paris, France

Overcrowding in medieval cemeteries in the centre of Paris at the end of the 18th century led the government to the creation of subterranean mass graves. Over the course of 18 months, from 1785, the bones and rotting corpses of 6 million people were moved in large carts across the city at night to a new resting place. Here they are arranged in huge piles at the ‘Empire of Death', as it is commonly known. This network of about 200 miles of underground galleries contains millions of bones and the small part that is open to the public is certain to shock. 

The human bones - including countless skulls - are arranged in many configurations such as crosses, faces, wall ornamentation, or simply huge mounds. Not for those of a nervous disposition. 

 Coober Pedy - South Australia

Coober Pedy - South Australia
Coober Pedy is one of the most unusual places in the world. It is a town where (due to the heat) approximately 80% of the population live and work underground. This is a mining town - opal mining to be precise - and following the early discovery of opals here by a teenager there has been a huge influx of miners since 1915. There are tunnels and associated pitfalls everywhere and mining still goes on here today. Other subterranean structures operating in the same manner as an above ground equivalent include a church, shops, pottery, art gallery, hotel, and other assortedoffices and businesses. Most unusual of all must surely be the golf course where not a single blade of grass can be seen. The fairways are bald and the greens are oiled sand! 

 Batu Caves - Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Batu Caves - Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
To reach the entrance to the massive Batu Caves you have to climb 272 rock steps, which can prove strenuous in the heat and with macaque monkeys vying for your attention; but this is exactly what over a million devotees do every January to celebrate the spectacular Hindu Festival of Thaipusam. This is a colourful celebration of Lord Subramaniam, a Hindu deity of youth, power and virtue, and is not for the squeamish. It may seem strange and bizarre to outsiders who see grown people piercing steel hooks into their chest, back and face, but this is one of the ways in which many penitents express their devotion. It is said that because they are in trance they cannot feel any pain. Surely a million people can't be wrong. 

 Radon Health Mine - Montana, US

Radon Health Mine - Montana, US
The Radon Mine was originally used as far back as 1924 for silver and lead ore mining. In 1949, the by then abandoned mine was found to have the presence of radioactivity, and a visiting woman (for the purpose of stock investment) discovered her ailment had disappeared. Word spread and soon this was turned into a radon-therapy mine. Low dose radiation therapy is said to be beneficial in easing a multitude of ailments and even pets are treated in the radon-laden air here. They advise you to bring a blanket and pillow if you would like to sleep. Whatever next.

 Wieliczka Salt Mine - Krakow, Poland

Wieliczka Salt Mine - Krakow, Poland
This World Heritage Site is remarkable and is certain to astonish visitors as there is no comparable place in the world quite like it. The Wieliczka Salt Mine has been mined continuously since the Middle Ages and miners have carved elaborate underground rooms and intricate sculptures within the Miocene salt. There is a gigantic subterannean cathedral carved entirely from salt including the floor, walls and decorations, with even the glowing chandeliers being made from salt crystals. 

The Salt Mine in Wieliczka has always been extremely popular, from the 14th century when it was shown to the very privileged royal visitors, to today where a million visitors a year pour in to see the labyrinth of chambers, passages, and incredible structures made of salt. 

 Capuchin Catacombs - Sicily, Italy

Capuchin Catacombs - Sicily, Italy
There are numerous places to view mummified bodies if you are so inclined but the Capuchin Catacombs are without doubt the most gruesome place in the world to see them. Frequently referred to as the ‘Museum of Death' - and not without good reason as there are over 8,000 mummies dating back to the 16th century lining the walls of the catacombs here - this place is eerie, sombre and intriguing. The most bizarre aspect of it all is that they give off no smell whatsoever. The assembled ranks of the dead, many with quite elegant costumes that have decayed over the years, are mainly skeletons - although some still have mummified flesh, hair, and even eyes. 

A law passed by the Italian government in 1881 meant the catacombs were no longer allowed to continue with this mummification process, although special permission from the government saw the interring of a 2 year old child called Rosalia Lombardo in 1920. She is known as the ‘Sleeping Beauty' and it is said that her sister and other members of her family often visited her after her death. Her body is still perfectly intact to this day and she can be seen propped up in a glass case. 

 Milk Grotto Chapel - Bethlehem, Israel

Milk Grotto Chapel - Bethlehem, Israel
The legends surrounding the Milk Grotto Chapel are many and varied and this is the place where, according to Christian tradition, the Holy Family took shelter during the Slaughter of the Innocents by Herod's soldiers. It is said that whilst Mary was breast-feeding the baby Jesus some of the milk was spilt onto the floor. This is supposed to have made the rock crumble and, as this was the milk that fed the Son of God, a remarkable pilgrimage cult has grown alongside the legend. Mothers - both Christian and Muslim - journey here to buy packets of the powdered white stone of the grotto which is said to increase the quality and amount of milk created by lactating mothers, by putting the powdery white stone into drinking water. As the white chalky rock resembles the colour of milk this seems reasonable, but in reality any benefits gained should be attributed to the calcium in the rock. Others take the rock home to place under their bed, but wouldn't it be easier, and cheaper, to simply order a few extra pints from your milkman? 

 Ithaa undersea restaurant - rangali island, maldives

Ithaa undersea restaurant - rangali island, maldives
Ithaa Undersea Restaurant is the first ever all-glass undersea restaurant in the world and its distinctive feature is the curved acrylic walls and roof which are 125mm thick. There are 5 of these acrylic arches which are sealed to each other and the structure with a special silicone sealant, and the structure itself was built in Singapore before being shipped to the Island on a massive barge; the barge being equipped with a giant crane to lower it into position in the sea. Incredibly, the structure weighed 175 tons, and a further 85 tons of sand was added to the belly of the structure to sink it into the sea. 

The project cost $5 million to complete which means an astronomical amount of dishes have to be served up to recoup investment costs. Submerged 16ft below sea level the restaurant offers panoramic underwater views, providing diners with a face-to-face experience of the stunning beauty of the Indian Ocean. 

 Waitomo Glow-Worm Caves - Otorohanga, New Zealand

Waitomo Glow-Worm Caves - Otorohanga, New Zealand
A journey unlike no other you will ever experience is a subterranean boat trip into the spectacular Glow-worm Grotto of Waitomo Glow-worm Caves in New Zealand. The Waitomo network of limestone caves attracts up to a million visitors a year and their guided tour takes you through over 250 metres of stunning underground scenery. The acoustics in the Cathedral Cavern are world renowned, whilst other impressive cave formations include the Pipe Organ, Catacombs, and Tomo, which is a deep limestone shaft. 

The Glow-worm Grotto (as it is known) is spectacularly illuminated by a phenomenon known as ‘bioluminescence' which is produced by the females to attract males whilst in the final stage of their pupal development. Without this magnificent display the cave would be pitch-black. This cave has been known to the Maori population for centuries but it was only in the late 19th century that it was discovered by Europeans, and subsequently opened to the public in 1911. 

 London Dungeon - London, England

London Dungeon - London, England
London Dungeon is Europe's largest ‘dark' visitor attraction and is appropriately sited under the bleak, foreboding arches of London bridge. It is certainly not for the faint-hearted and visitors see torture, execution, and macabre medieval madness along the way. The Dungeons are some of Europe's premier themed attractions offering visitors the opportunity to take a terrifying journey through the darker side of history. The Great Fire of London, a Boat Ride to Hell, and the Labyrinth of the Lost are all fantastic multi-million pound themed attractions amongst dozens of other exhibits and tableaux. Live actors add to the terror and excitement. There are many hideous instruments of torture to be seen in recreated settings, most of which are unbelievably sadistic and cruel. The dangerous streets of Whitechapel in Victorian London were the hunting grounds for notorious murderer and mutilator Jack the Ripper. One of the most infamous serial killers of all time, you can meet Jack at the London Dungeon. 

Source: oddee.com

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Lurancy Vennum

In the latter part of the 19th century, during the heyday of Spiritualism, the case of the 'spiritual possession' of Lurancy Vennum attracted a great deal of publicity. Lurancy was a young girl from Illinois who claimed to be a reincarnation of another teenager called Mary Roff, who had died 15 years earlier. Through the spirit of Mary she claimed that she was able to recall in detail a past life with the Roff family and their friends, leading many to believe she was indeed, spiritually at least, Mary Roff. 

Was Lurancy Vennum really the reincarnation of Mary Roff?

The Story of Mary Roff

Mary Roff was born in Warren County, Indiana, on 8 October,1846. When she was thirteen years old the family moved to Watseka,  about 70 miles south of Chicago, Illinois. By that time Mary’s health had been badly weakened by epileptic fits, which she suffered from about twice a day. In spring, 1865, in an attempt to escape from depression caused by her health, she tried to commit suicide by slashing her wrists. Her parents found her unconscious from loss of blood and called a doctor.  When Mary eventually regained consciousness she became so violent that it took several adults to hold her down in bed. She was delirious for five days, after which she suddenly became calm and slept for fifteen hours. She awoke to find bandages covering her eyes to protect them from her unconscious scratching; but instead of removing them, she discovered that she seemed to be able to see as easily while blindfolded as she had before.

Family friends, including A.J. Smith, editor of the Danville Times, and the Reverend J.H. Rhea, witnessed Mary Roff, heavily blindfolded, accurately ‘read’ to them the contents of a sealed letter in the editor’s pocket, and arrange, correctly, a pile of old letters which she could not see. The amazed editor wrote a long, detailed account of the incidence in his paper.  

Slowly, however, the young girl’s health deteriorated, and before long doctor’s advised her parents to put her in a mental institution. They refused and decided to care for her themselves. They took her with them when they visited friends in Peoria, Illinois, for the 4th of July holiday in 1865. While there Mary complained of a terrible headache and went to her room. A few minutes later they found her unconscious on the floor in a pool of blood and rushed her to the asylum, where she died on the afternoon of 5 July.

Lurancy Vennum sees Angels

On the day of Mary Roff’s death, Lurancy Vennum was a fifteen-month-old baby living on her parents’ farm in Iowa. She had been born Mary Lurancy Vennum, on 16 April 1864, at Milford Township, Iroquois Co, Illinois. In 1871, the family moved to a farm seven miles south of Watseka. This was nearly six years after the death of Mary Roff; so there is no possibility that Lurancy Vennum could ever have seen Mary. Lurancy was a normal, healthy child of thirteen when the twelfth anniversary of Mary Roff’s death occurred on 5 July 1877. Next morning she told her parents - ‘There were people in my room last night and they kept calling ‘Rancy! Rancy!’ and I could feel their breath on my face.’ A week after this incident Lurancy was helping her mother stitch a broken seam in a carpet when she suddenly straightened herself up and said - ‘Maw, I feel bad; I feel mighty queer!’ 

Seconds later she became rigid and fell unconscious for five hours. This began to happen every day and usually consisted of Lurancy lying stiff, with only a faint pulse, her breath slow and weak, and her temperature below normal. She suffered from excruciating abdominal pains and would murmur about strange visions which usually involved what she called 'angels'. Sometimes the attacks lasted up to eight hours, during which time Lurancy would speak in different voices, though when she awoke, she would remember nothing. 

A Spiritualist Investigates

Doctors thought her mentally ill and could do nothing for her, only recommending that she be sent to the State Insane Asylum in Peoria. At this time the Spiritualist movement was at its height of popularity and news of the strange girl brought many curious visitors to see her. Mr. and Mrs. Asa B. Roff, the parents of Mary Roff and apparently Spiritualists themselves, heard about the case and were reminded of their own daughter’s similar problems. They visited the Vennums and persuaded them to allow a Dr. E. Winchester Stevens of Janesville, Wisconsin, a medical doctor and an advocate of Spiritualism, to investigate the case.  

Dr. Stevens visited the family, and found Lurancy sitting in a chair near the stove, with her elbows on her knees, her hands under her chin, and feet curled up on the chair, eyes staring wildly. For a while there was silence, broken only when Dr. Stevens moved his chair. At this Lurancy savagely warned him not to come any closer. She was surly and refused to be touched, calling her father ‘Old Black Dick’ and her mother ‘Old Granny.’  

During these trances Lurancy was apparently ‘taken over’ by a range of unpleasant 'spirits' or entities, including an angry old woman called Katrina Hogan and a young man called Willie Canning. After some unintelligible conversation she had another fit, which Dr. Stevens relieved by hypnotizing her. She then calmed down and said that she had been controlled by evil spirits.

Dr. Stevens encouraged her to try and find a better control, after which she mentioned the names of several people who had died, eventually saying that there was one who wanted to come. Her name was Mary Roff. Mary’s father was present, and agreed to let her come, which she apparently did, astounding the whole company with the details she gave of the Roff’s house.  

The 'Spiritual Possession' of Lurancy Vennum

It was after this, in February, 1878, that the ‘control’ of Lurancy, or the 'spiritual possession' as some researchers have called it, began. Far from being sullen and aggressive the girl became mild, passive and polite, not recognizing her own family, but instead asking to be taken ‘home’. On hearing of the extraordinary change in the girl, Mrs. Roff and her daughter, Mrs. Minerva Alter, Mary’s sister, went to visit Lurancy. Lurancy was looking out of the window of her house at the time and when she saw them coming down the street exclaimed - ‘There comes my ma and sister Nervie!’- the latter being the name Mary used to call Mrs. Alter when a young girl. When they came into the house she hugged them and cried for joy. After this incident Lurancy became progressively more homesick and continually begged to be taken 'home' to the Roffs.  

Hoping that it might help their daughter’s recovery, the Vennums allowed their daughter to be taken into the Roff home. When asked how long she would remain there, Lurancy answered that the angels would let her stay until some time in May. She had never been in the house before but, remarkably, seemed to know everything about it. She also spoke almost daily of particular incidents in Mary Roff’s life, she recognized family members and friends, identified her favourite clothes and belongings and recounted past event known only to the family.

For fifteen weeks Lurancy Vennum lived as Mary Roff among her family and friends, and everything she did convinced people that she was the real Mary Roff, whom she had never known. When Mrs. Roff asked her if she recalled the family moving to Texas in 1857 (when Mary was eleven) the girl responded promptly that she remembered it well, particularly seeing the Indians along the Red River and playing with the young daughters of a family named Reeder, who were among the same travelling party. The Roffs also tested her with a velvet head dress Mary used to wear; which she recognized immediately.

The stay at Mr. Roff’s was beneficial to her physical condition, which continued to improved, and her mental health, though she seemed not to recognize or know anything about her own family or their friends and neighbours. When Mr. and Mrs. Vennum and their children visited her she treated them as strangers, though after frequent visit she learned to love them as friends. She was generally happy in her new home and often went out with Mrs. Roff to visit the leading families of the city, who soon became convinced that the girl was not insane but a normal, well-mannered child.

Occasionally, ‘Mary’ would ‘go back to heaven,’ and leave the body in a state of trance, and after eight or nine weeks, the personality of Lurancy would occasionally return partially for a few minutes, and once seems to have taken full possession for a brief time

Lurancy's Past Life

Dr. Stevens often asked ‘Mary’ about her former life, and on one occasion she told him about cutting her arm, and asked if he had seen where she did it. After receiving a negative answer, she started to pull up her sleeve to show him the scar, but suddenly stopped, as if realizing something suddenly, and quickly said - ‘Oh, this is not the arm; that one is in the ground,’ and carried on to describe where it was buried, how she witnessed it done, and who was standing around at the time.

Lurancy often spoke of seeing Dr. Stevens’s daughter Emma Angelia Stevens in heaven; she told him she was happy there. She physically described the girl, who had died in March 1849, and the details were accurate even down to an X-shaped scar on the cheek resulting from surgery after an infection. She also correctly described Dr. Stevens home in Janesville, Wisconsin, where she had never been, and gave the names and ages of his children.

While all this was happening ‘Mary’ was asked where the real Lurancy Vennum was. She told them that Lurancy was away, being treated, and would come back when she was restored to health, both mentally and physically. When Lurancy was ready to return, ‘Mary’ must leave.

The 'Return' of Lurancy

On 7 May, 1878 , ‘Mary’ told the Roff family that it would soon be time for her to leave, as Lurancy Vennum was getting better and would return. Then, on 21 May, after fourteen weeks, thus fulfilling the prophecy which ‘Mary’ had made when first taking control, she tearfully bade everyone goodbye and left. Lurancy was back for good and she asked Mrs. Roff to take her home. When she arrived she met her parents and brothers, hugging and kissing them in tears of happiness, and was completely content to be in her own surroundings again. She told her family that the past fifteen weeks seemed like a dream to her. Back in her own house Lurancy became, in the words of her mother ‘perfectly and entirely well and natural . . . Lurancy has been smarter, more intelligent, more industrious, more womanly, and more polite than before.’

Her parents gave Dr. Stevens and Mr. and Mrs. Roff the credit for her complete cure and believed that if Lurancy had remained at home she would have died, or have been sent to the insane asylum. Her mother added: ‘Several of the relatives of Lurancy, including ourselves, now believe she was cured by spirit power, and that Mary Roff controlled the girl.’ In July, 1878, Dr. Stevens pronounced Lurancy in sound health, both mentally and physically. He received a pencil-written letter from her, in which she thanked him for his patience and help. Apparently, the handwriting in this letter bore no resemblance at all to other recent writings of Lurancy when she was ‘Mary Roff’.

In January 1882, now an attractive young woman, Lurancy Vennum married George Binning, a New York born farmer of English parentage, from near Watseka. They moved to Rawlins Co, Kansas, in 1884, where she became the mother of eleven children (she was to have thirteen altogether). Occasionally, it is said that Mary would take control of her again, but as she was not in an encouraging environment for such things she never developed her mediumistic powers further. George Binning died in Long Beach, California on 21 November, 1916.

In the thirties Lurancy used to travel by train to visit her sister Florence in Medicine Lodge, Kansas at least once, and sometimes twice a year. Her great niece, Joyce Wesbrooks, remembers a family visit to her and her daughter Daisy in Long Beach in 1938. In 1940 she was a seventy-six-year-old woman who preferred not to talk about those fifteen weeks in the 1870s when she had mystified science. Lurancy died  in Los Angeles, California on 30 August 1952. Joyce Wesbrooks' son, William Wesbrooks, a successful director and playwright, has written a play about Lurancy entitled Before I Wake. This was first performed in Gettysburg, PA, at Gettysburg College, in May, 1981. The initial performances were attended by many of Lurancy's relatives.

The Society for Psychical Research Investigates

Dr. Richard Hodgson, a sceptical member of  investigated the case and visited Watseka on 12 April, 1890, questioning the main witnesses who remained in the neighborhood. He also attempted to get some direct statements from Lurancy (Mrs. George Binning) but received no answer to his inquiries. Dr. Stevens wrote a book called The Watseka Wonder about the case based on his personal knowledge, and William James, American psychologist and brother of the novelist Henry James, also investigated and reported his findings in depth.

 Evidence is certainly not lacking in the case of Lurancy Vennum, it attracted wide attention at the time and contemporary newspapers in and around Chicago devoted a lot of space to it.  But what really happened?  Were the Roff and Vennum families involved in an elaborate hoax? Or was Lurancy somehow able to fool, not only her own family and that of Mary Roff, but the investigators as well?  On the other hand, If she was genuine, are the only possible explanations reincarnation or spiritual possession?

The families involved seemed to think Lurancy was indeed possessed by the spirit of Mary Roff. Richard Hodgson, who worked with Morton Prince in the Christine Beauchamp multiple personality case at the end of the 19th century, suggested that Mary Roff could be a secondary personality of Lurancy Vennum’s. If so, we can discount reincarnation, spiritual possession or any other 'paranormal' explanation for the case. However, the problem still remains of how Lurancy obtained the detailed knowledge she is said to have possessed. The same problem applies if the whole thing was an elaborate hoax. Where and how did she obtain the detailed information about people, places and events she knew nothing about? If this mystery could be explained then we would be much closer to understanding this case of alleged 'spiritual possession'.

Source: mysteriouspeople.com