Ep 90: Chasing Amelia Earhart with Chris Williamson

 
 
 
“Obviously I faced the possibility of not returning when first I considered going.  Once faced and settled there really wasn’t any good reason to refer to it.”
– Amelia Earhart
 
CE_AL-3-2.jpg
 
 
LOCATION: Garapan Prison, Saipan
 

BACKGROUND:

Join us tonight as we sit down with Chris Williamson, the project creator of Chasing Earhart.  Chris, along with his wife Vanessa and their dedicated team of researchers and producers, has created a podcast and are working on a documentary all about legendary aviatrix Amelia Earhart: her life, her persona, her fateful last flight and the controversy that surrounds her legacy.  The result is that Chasing Earhart has rapidly become one of the definitive repositories of information and interviews of the authorities who continue to devote their lives to solving her disappearance.  In our interview with Chris, we discuss the major researchers, their theories, and current investigations which aim to solve one of the greatest mysteries of the 20th Century.  

 
 

Related Books:

Amelia Earhart's Radio
The Paragon Agency Publishers
 

Special Offers from our Special Sponsors:

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The Dark Myths Collective  

http://darkmyths.org/

 

Credits:

Episode 90: Chasing Amelia Earhart with Chris Williamson.  Produced by Scott Philbrook & Forrest Burgess; Audio Editing by Sarah Vorhees; Ryan McCullough Sound Design; Research Assistance by Tess Pfeifle and the astonishing League of Astonishing Researchers, a.k.a. The Astonishing Research Corps, or "A.R.C." for short. Copyright 2017 Astonishing Legends Productions, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Ep 89: Black Eyed Kids Part 3

 
 
 
 

“Perhaps we shall never discover what the black eyed children truly are or what they represent, but by all appearances, they are here to stay.”

– Author David Weatherly, from his book, "The Black Eyed Children"
 
LOCATION: Near the old Westwood Twin Theater at 3440 N. 1st Street, Abilene, TX 79603, where journalist Brian Bethel was in a nearby parking lot and encountered two "Black Eyed Kids."
 

BACKGROUND:

Whether you choose to think of Black Eyed Kids as demonic entities or just unaccompanied children out by themselves late at night with full-sclera Contacts trying to scare people, one thing our research and the research of those who have written extensively on the subject has concluded, this is not just an internet hoax, no matter what you keep telling yourself.  Perhaps the only proof of their authenticity is also something that is unquantifiable: a deep down, primal fear upon meeting them that is so profound it is unrelatable and incomprehensible to those who have not experienced it.  In other words, when the real thing comes for you, you'll know.  Maybe, in the end, you don't believe any of the accounts of these encounters, or you choose to believe it's simply a misidentification leading to an exaggeration of unease.  That's fine.  Whatever you need to tell yourself to get to sleep.  But maybe one day you'll hear that late-night knock at your own door, and you'll wonder just what kind of evil awaits you on the other side.

 
 

Suggested Listening:

If you like the topics we cover, then you're going to love Dan Cummins' Timesuck Podcast!  Dan approaches these subjects with the same zeal for research and analysis that we do, but with his own unique perspective.  He's also a touring standup comic, so he brings a bit of comedy to his inisghts, but also some adult language, so be forewarned!  The Timesuck Podcast is available on iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher, various podcast apps, or wherever you get your podcasts.  And then check out his website, http://timesuckpodcast.com/ for all of his episodes, plus his touring schedule.

 

Related Books:

The Black Eyed Children
By David Weatherly
Strange Intruders
By David Weatherly
 

Special Offers from our Special Sponsors:

  • Blue Apron – Let Blue Apron help you with your Thanksgiving dinner by providing recipes for superb side dishes your guests will rave about!  Go to blueapron.com/astonishing to check out this week's menu and get $30 OFF your first order with FREE SHIPPING!
  • The Great Courses Plus – Learn about anything, now with over 8500 lectures on almost any subject you can think of – from history and science to learning a new language, how to cook, or how to play the guitar!  And now their app lets you listen to the courses as well as watch, just like a podcast!  Available for iOS and Android.  Get unlimited access to all of their lectures for free for a whole month by going to TheGreatCoursesPlus.com/LEGENDS
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The Dark Myths Collective  

http://darkmyths.org/

 

Credits:

Episode 89: Black Eyed Kids Part 3.  Produced by Scott Philbrook & Forrest Burgess; Audio Editing by Sarah Vorhees; Ryan McCullough Sound Design; Research Assistance by Tess Pfeifle and the astonishing League of Astonishing Researchers, a.k.a. The Astonishing Research Corps, or "A.R.C." for short. Copyright 2017 Astonishing Legends Productions, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Ep 88: Black Eyed Kids Part 2

 
 
 
 
“When you look into a human being's eyes you can see the light within them and these things had no light at all.”
– Brian Bethel
 
LOCATION: Near the old Westwood Twin Theater at 3440 N. 1st Street, Abilene, TX 79603, where journalist Brian Bethel was in a nearby parking lot and encountered two "Black Eyed Kids."
 

BACKGROUND:

The accounts of encounters with Black Eyed Kids vary with their observable details, except for two main factors: their dead, black eyes which you see and can never forget and the feeling of utter horror and doom which you will continue to feel every time you think about them.  If the eyes truly are "windows to the soul" then these entities have no soul, or that soul resides in hell.  Remember that the next time you hear a knock and think it's just a harmless kid or two, and all they want is some Halloween candy, or to use your phone, or a ride, or to come in and warm up, because what they will take is something you literally can't live without.

 
 

Suggested Listening:

If you like the topics we cover, then you're going to love Dan Cummins' Timesuck Podcast!  Dan approaches these subjects with the same zeal for research and analysis that we do, but with his own unique perspective.  He's also a touring standup comic, so he brings a bit of comedy to his inisghts, but also some adult language, so be forewarned!  The Timesuck Podcast is available on iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher, various podcast apps, or wherever you get your podcasts.  And then check out his website, http://timesuckpodcast.com/ for all of his episodes, plus his touring schedule.

 

Related Books:

The Black Eyed Children
By David Weatherly
Strange Intruders
By David Weatherly
 

Special Offers from our Special Sponsors:

  • Stamps.com – Anything you can do at the Post Office, now you can do at home so you'll never have to wait in line again!  Just visit Stamps.com and click on the microphone icon at the upper right corner of the webpage then enter the word ASTONISHING to get a 4-week trial which includes postage and a digital scale!
  • The Great Courses Plus – Learn about anything, now with over 8500 lectures on almost any subject you can think of – from history and science to learning a new language, how to cook, or how to play the guitar!  And now their app lets you listen to the courses as well as watch, just like a podcast!  Available for iOS and Android.  Get unlimited access to all of their lectures for free for a whole month by going to TheGreatCoursesPlus.com/LEGENDS
  • Blue Apron – Join in the celebration of Blue Apron's 5th anniversary by trying their top 20 recipes from the last 5 years, as picked by their community of home chefs!  Go to blueapron.com/astonishing to check out this week's menu and get $30 OFF your first meal with FREE SHIPPING!
 

The Dark Myths Collective  

http://darkmyths.org/

 

Credits:

Episode 88: Black Eyed Kids Part 2.  Produced by Scott Philbrook & Forrest Burgess; Audio Editing by Sarah Vorhees; Ryan McCullough Sound Design; Research Assistance by Tess Pfeifle and the astonishing League of Astonishing Researchers, a.k.a. The Astonishing Research Corps, or "A.R.C." for short. Copyright 2017 Astonishing Legends Productions, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Ep 87: Black Eyed Kids Part 1

ALBEK.jpg
“Hell is empty, and all the devils are here.”
William Shakespeare, The Tempest
 
LOCATION: Don't worry.  No matter where you are, the Black Eyed Kids will find you.
 

BACKGROUND:

First, there's a knock.  A very persistent knock, at your door, at your car window.  Or maybe they stop you on a walk, on your way somewhere, when you're alone.  They're just kids, right? And who doesn't want to help out kids in need?  Except that these aren't like any kids you've met before.  They're not like any humans you've ever met before, because what humans have you seen that have completely all-black eyes and fill you with an inexplicable dread?  These kids don't want money (that's what humans want) and they really don't need to use your phone, even though that's what they mostly ask for.  No.  What they want is to get in.  Into your house, into your car, into your space, to be near you.  But, they need your permission first. Why?  What are the rules?  And what do they want when they get in?  What they want is the only thing you possess of any real value – your soul.  

 
 

Suggested Listening:

If you like the topics we cover, then you're going to love Dan Cummins' Timesuck Podcast!  Dan approaches these subjects with the same zeal for research and analysis that we do, but with his own unique perspective.  He's also a touring standup comic, so he brings a bit of comedy to his insights, but also adult language, so be forewarned!  The Timesuck Podcast is available on iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher, various podcast apps, or wherever you get your podcasts.  And then check out his website, http://timesuckpodcast.com/ for all of his episodes, plus his touring schedule.

 

Related Books:

The Black Eyed Children
By David Weatherly
Strange Intruders
By David Weatherly
 

Special Offers from our Special Sponsors:

  • The Great Courses Plus – Learn about anything, now with over 8500 lectures on almost any subject you can think of – from history and science to learning a new language, how to cook, or how to play the guitar!  And now their app lets you listen to the courses as well as watch, just like a podcast!  Available for iOS and Android.  Get unlimited access to all of their lectures for free for a whole month by going to TheGreatCoursesPlus.com/LEGENDS
  • PolicyGenius – Life insurance is something every family needs and PolicyGenius.com is the quick and easy way to learn about it, and you can save up to 40% just by comparing policies. The quotes are free, there's no sales pressure and zero hassle.  You can also get Health Insurance, Pet Insurance and secure your income for you and your loved ones
 

The Dark Myths Collective  

http://darkmyths.org/

 

Credits:

Episode 87: Black Eyed Kids Part 1.  Produced by Scott Philbrook & Forrest Burgess; Audio Editing by Sarah Vorhees; Ryan McCullough Sound Design; Research Assistance by Tess Pfeifle and the astonishing League of Astonishing Researchers, a.k.a. The Astonishing Research Corps, or "A.R.C." for short. Copyright 2017 Astonishing Legends Productions, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Ep 86: The Bell Witch Part 2

A replica of the John Bell family homestead, located at the site of the "Bell Witch Cave" tour in Adams, Tennessee.  Photo courtesy of listener Liz Shadbolt.

“There are spirits millions of years old, John, that never have been connected with a body, but were created spirits.” 
– The "Bell Witch" speaking to John Bell Jr., as told by Richard Williams Bell in his memoir, Our Family Trouble
 
LOCATION: The "Bell Witch Cave," now a tourist attraction near the town of Adams, in Robertson County, Tennessee.  At the time the Bell and Johnston families lived there in the early 19th century, it was known as the Red River Community.
Map showing the plots of the various families homesteading in the Red River Community in the early 19th century, now known as the town of Adams, TN.  Map overlay provided by David Britton, Tennessee State Park Ranger, and manager of the Port Royal State Historic Park, 7 miles from Adams, TN.  Port Royal was the closest town to the Bell family farm at that time.

Map showing the plots of the various families homesteading in the Red River Community in the early 19th century, now known as the town of Adams, TN.  Map overlay provided by David Britton, Tennessee State Park Ranger, and manager of the Port Royal State Historic Park, 7 miles from Adams, TN.  Port Royal was the closest town to the Bell family farm at that time.

 

BACKGROUND:

Folklore can simply be described as beliefs, customs or legends handed down and preserved among a people.  Some believe they are merely made up tales designed to entertain, while others believe folklore may be based on truths that have been gilded over the years by the oral tradition, yet their truth survives as valuable instruction or even a warning.  Whether the legend of the Bell Witch was based on a real poltergeist event with the details being accurately preserved, or somewhat true but padded for effect, or wholly a lie spun to cover more humanly misdeeds, we'll likely never know.  But before you dismiss the Bell Witch story outright, first think about your own family's stories or even how your own true tales you've told will be perceived through the lenses of bias and time.  Will you be remembered as a faithful narrator or a liar?  The purported entity called "Kate" may have left her legend behind for later generations to make that judgment but there are many who live in the area today that claim something may still be lingering.  So before you bravely disrespect the legend of whatever it may have been, remember there is nowhere you can hide from a force that will gleefully visit misfortune upon you to make its point.

 

Reference Links:

 

Suggested Listening:

If you like our show and the Parcast Network's podcast, Serial Killers, you'll love their new show called CULTS!  With the same outstanding production quality, hosts Greg Polcyn and Vanessa Richardson along with their team of researchers present a fascinating, thorough and often disturbing look at the background and psychological profiles of the most demented cult leaders in history, as well as the cult members that blindly follow their every command.  Visit Apple Podcasts, TuneIn, Spotify, GooglePlay, or wherever you listen to podcasts... and search for the word "Cults" or just go to parcast.com/cults to listen now!

 

Related Books:

Salem Possessed: The Social Origins of Witchcraft
By Paul Boyer, Stephen Nissenbaum
The Bell Witch of Tennessee
By Charles Bailey Bell, Harriet Parks Miller
The Bell witch of Middle Tennessee
By Harriet Parks Miller
 

Special Offers from our Special Sponsors:

  • Blue Apron – Join in the celebration of Blue Apron's 5th anniversary by trying their top 20 recipes from the last 5 years, as picked by their community of home chefs!  Go to blueapron.com/astonishing to check out this week's menu and get $30 OFF your first meal with FREE SHIPPING!
  • Beachbody® On Demand is the complete solution for getting in shape that goes wherever you do!  With popular workout programs already in their collection like PiYo, P90X, Insanity, and the 3 Week Yoga Retreat, Beachbody® On Demand has something to offer everyone's interests and fitness levels.  Text the word "LEGENDS" to the number 303030 to get FULL ACCESS to their entire platform with your FREE TRIAL MEMBERSHIP!
 

The Dark Myths Collective  

http://darkmyths.org/

 

Credits:

Episode 86: The Bell Witch Part 2.  Produced by Scott Philbrook & Forrest Burgess; Audio Editing by Sarah Vorhees; Ryan McCullough Sound Design; Research Assistance by Tess Pfeifle and the astonishing League of Astonishing Researchers, a.k.a. The Astonishing Research Corps, or "A.R.C." for short. Copyright 2017 Astonishing Legends Productions, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Ep 85: The Bell Witch Part 1

Illustration of William Porter attempting to burn "Kate" the Bell Witch, from the book by M. V. Ingram, An Authenticated History of the Famous Bell Witch [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

"I am a spirit from everywhere, Heaven, Hell, the earth; am in the air, in houses, in any place at any time; have been created millions of years; that is all I will tell you.”
– The Bell Witch
 
LOCATION: The town of Adams, in Robertson County, Tennessee.  At the time the Bell and Johnston families lived there in the early 19th century, it was known as the Red River Community.
Map showing the plots of the various families homesteading in the Red River Community in the early 19th century, now known as the town of Adams, TN.  Map overlay provided by David Britton, Tennessee State Park Ranger, and manager of the Port Royal State Historic Park, 7 miles from Adams, TN.  Port Royal was the closest town to the Bell family farm at that time.

Map showing the plots of the various families homesteading in the Red River Community in the early 19th century, now known as the town of Adams, TN.  Map overlay provided by David Britton, Tennessee State Park Ranger, and manager of the Port Royal State Historic Park, 7 miles from Adams, TN.  Port Royal was the closest town to the Bell family farm at that time.

 

BACKGROUND:

Every family has their stories passed down from generation to generation, but most aren't as fantastical or have made as much of an impact on regional history as the legend of the Bell Witch.  From about 1817 to 1821 in the Red River Community, now known as Adams, Tennessee, some sort of supernatural entity known as the "Bell Witch" was claimed to have terrorized the family of John Bell.  The activity was not just confined to the Bells, but many in the area at the time reported instances of poltergeist annoyances like slapping and pinching that then progressed to pranks and premonition, then to beatings and even murder.  If the story of the Bell Witch is just a family's "tall tale" then it's one of the most fascinating and enduring family legends in American history.  If the Bell folklore is even remotely true, then the consideration of trying to keep your own family safe from an omniscient, deceitful, vengeful and violent entity that wants you dead, surely makes for one of the most frightening tales ever told.

 
 

Related Books:

The Bell Witch of Tennessee
By Charles Bailey Bell, Harriet Parks Miller
The Bell witch of Middle Tennessee
By Harriet Parks Miller
 

Special Offers from our Special Sponsors:

  • Stamps.com – Anything you can do at the Post Office, now you can do at home so you'll never have to wait in line again!  Just visit Stamps.com and click on the microphone icon at the upper right corner of the webpage then enter the word ASTONISHING to get a 4-week trial which includes postage and a digital scale!
  • The Great Courses Plus – Learn about anything with over 8000 lectures on almost any subject you can think of – from history and science to forensic crime and genealogy!  Now you can get unlimited access to all of their lectures for free for a whole month by going to TheGreatCoursesPlus.com/LEGENDS
  • Beachbody® On Demand is the complete solution for getting in shape that goes wherever you do!  With popular workout programs already in their collection like PiYo, P90X, Insanity, and the 3 Week Yoga Retreat, Beachbody® On Demand has something to offer everyone's interests and fitness levels.  Text the word "LEGENDS" to the number 303030 to get FULL ACCESS to their entire platform with your FREE TRIAL MEMBERSHIP!
  • Harry's – a close, comfortable shave at a fair price.  See for yourself by getting their TRIAL SHAVE SET FOR FREE!  A $13 VALUE! - you just pay for the shipping!  Go to Harrys.com/LEGENDS
 

The Dark Myths Collective  

http://darkmyths.org/

 

Credits:

Episode 85: The Bell Witch Part 1.  Produced by Scott Philbrook & Forrest Burgess; Audio Editing by Sarah Vorhees; Ryan McCullough Sound Design; Research Assistance by Tess Pfeifle and the astonishing League of Astonishing Researchers, a.k.a. The Astonishing Research Corps, or "A.R.C." for short. Copyright 2017 Astonishing Legends Productions, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Ep 84: Houska Castle – Gateway to Hell (Part 2)

Image of Houska Castle's chapel, over which the fissure or "Gate to Hell" was built.  Photo Credit by Scary Side of Earth on flickr, used with CC by 2.0 attribution.

"How well I have learned that there is no fence to sit on between heaven and hell.  There is a deep, wide gulf, a chasm, and in that chasm is no place for any man."
– Johnny Cash
 
LOCATION: Castle or "Hrad" Houska, in the Czech Republic
 
Map showing location of Hauska Castle relative to other medieval Bohemian castles that were under Nazi control during WWII.  Map created by A.R.C. member Cody Rice.
 

BACKGROUND:

There are two connected, yet distinct traditions of weirdness concerning Houska Castle: its mysterious, violent and spotty history of purpose and ownership, and the reported sightings of horrific creatures and terrifying specters since its founding.  Regarding the castle's originally intended design; whether it was really built to keep something from escaping rather than defense from outside forces, the lack of any definitive or comprehensive historical records will only lead to debate and speculation.  However, those that have been inside the walls of this fortress and others in the region will tell you that Houska's architecture clearly doesn't seem to fit with the standard intentions.  Regarding the encounters with frightening phantoms, if you believe places can be haunted, Houska Castle seems to be just that. 

 

 

 

 

Reference Links:

 

Related Books:

77 Prague legends
By Alena Jezkova
 

Suggested listening:

Mission to Zyxx is an Improv Comedy Sci-Fi podcast about a crew of interstellar ambassadors traveling to the far reaches of space, created by veteran comedians from the Upright Citizens Brigade Theater, with special guests from Saturday Night Live, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, The Chris Gethard Show, Search Party and other great comedy shows you know and love.  Find, Subscribe and Listen NOW to the first season of Mission to Zyxx, available on Apple Podcasts, audioBoom, or wherever you find really, really funny podcasts.

 

Special Offers from our Special Sponsors:

  • Blue Apron – It's the #1 recipe and fresh ingredient delivery service in the country.  And Blue Apron knows you’re busy so now they’re offering "30-Minute Meals!"  Check out this week’s menu and get your first THREE meals FREE, with FREE SHIPPING, by going to blueapron.com/astonishing.  And now Blue Apron will be delivering recipes inspired by the winning dishes on MasterChef! Tune-in to MasterChef on FOX every Wednesday at 8/7 Central and visit Blue Apron every Thursday Starting August 24th to see and select the winning recipes to cook in your own home!
  • The Great Courses Plus – Learn about anything with over 8000 lectures on almost any subject you can think of – from history and science to forensic crime and genealogy!  Now you can get unlimited access to all of their lectures for free for a whole month by going to TheGreatCoursesPlus.com/LEGENDS
 

The Dark Myths Collective  

http://darkmyths.org/

 

Credits:

Episode 84: Houska Castle – Gateway to Hell (Part 2).  Produced by Scott Philbrook & Forrest Burgess; Audio Editing by Sarah Vorhees; Ryan McCullough Sound Design; Research Assistance by Tess Pfeifle and the astonishing League of Astonishing Researchers, a.k.a. The Astonishing Research Corps, or "A.R.C." for short. Copyright 2017 Astonishing Legends Productions, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Ep 83: Houska Castle – Gateway to Hell (Part 1)

Title image of Houska Castle By Mirek256 - Own work, "Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0" CC BY-SA 3.0

"The gates of hell are open night and day; Smooth the descent and easy is the way.”
– John Dryden’s translation of Virgil’s Aeneid , Book  6, Line 126

 
LOCATION: Castle or "Hrad" Houska, in the Czech Republic
 
Map showing location of Hauska Castle relative to other medieval Bohemian castles that were under Nazi control during WWII.  Map created by A.R.C. member Cody Rice.
 

BACKGROUND:

The descriptor "Hell Hole" can currently describe anything from your first apartment to the workplace you dread, but where do we get that term?  Ages ago, could there have been a hole that people believed led straight to the depths of hell itself?  There are several sites in our world that could lay claim to that title, where the "veil" to the underworld seems a little "thin," but a historically solid contender would no doubt be Houska Castle, about 40 miles north of Prague in the Czech Republic.  Tales of demonic beasts issuing forth from the chasm and visiting violence upon villagers and ghastly specters scaring those who roam the castle grounds have been known since the Middle Ages to the present, but what of the edifice itself? No matter what you believe about the folklore, what can't be denied is that the castle was not built for the usual reasons – instead of a fortification to keep people out, it was built to keep things in.

 

Suggested listening:

Mission to Zyxx is an Improv Comedy Sci-Fi podcast about a crew of interstellar ambassadors traveling to the far reaches of space, created by veteran comedians from the Upright Citizens Brigade Theater, with special guests from Saturday Night Live, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, The Chris Gethard Show, Search Party and other great comedy shows you know and love.  Find, Subscribe and Listen NOW to the first season of Mission to Zyxx, available on Apple Podcasts, audioBoom, or wherever you find really, really funny podcasts.

 
 

Related Books:

 

Special Offers from our Special Sponsors:

  • The Great Courses Plus – Learn about anything with over 8000 lectures on almost any subject you can think of – from history and science to forensic crime and genealogy!  Now you can get unlimited access to all of their lectures for free for a whole month by going to: TheGreatCoursesPlus.com/LEGENDS
  • PolicyGenius – Life insurance is something every family needs and PolicyGenius.com is the quick and easy way to learn about it, and you can save up to 40% just by comparing policies. The quotes are free, there's no sales pressure and zero hassle.  You can also get Health Insurance, Pet Insurance and secure your income for you and your loved ones
  • Blue Apron – It's the #1 recipe and fresh ingredient delivery service in the country.  And Blue Apron knows you’re busy so now they’re offering "30-Minute Meals!"  Check out this week’s menu and get your first THREE meals FREE, with FREE SHIPPING, by going to blueapron.com/astonishing
     
 

The Dark Myths Collective  

http://darkmyths.org/

 

Credits:

Episode 83: Houska Castle – Gateway to Hell (Part 1).  Produced by Scott Philbrook & Forrest Burgess; Audio Editing by Sarah Vorhees; Ryan McCullough Sound Design; Research Assistance by Tess Pfeifle and the astonishing League of Astonishing Researchers, a.k.a. The Astonishing Research Corps, or "A.R.C." for short. Copyright 2017 Astonishing Legends Productions, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Ep 82: The Hatem Files – Case #1

 
 
Richard Hatem Debonair screenwriter, Bon Vivant, celebrated wit, casual philosopher, "Man of Letters" and The Most Interesting Man in the Astonishing Legends Studio  

Richard Hatem

Debonair screenwriter, Bon Vivant, celebrated wit, casual philosopher, "Man of Letters" and The Most Interesting Man in the Astonishing Legends Studio

 

 

"Could you make my Martini 'dirtier?'  Thanks!"
– Richard Hatem, Screenwriter

 
Approximate location of the Astonishing Legend Studio, a.k.a., "Blanket Forteana."
 
Interactive Google Map of reported "Chicago Mothman, Chicago Phantom, Owl Man, etc. etc. sightings.
 

BACKGROUND:

Tonight's show is... well... we don't know what it is, frankly.  What we can tell you is that friend and screenwriter Richard Hatem stopped by the Astonishing Legends studio, we ordered pizzas, made more than a few "Dirty Martinis" (at Rich's resolute insistence, which he then sent back several times to the bar until they met with his exacting and cruel satisfaction) and talked with great ardor and exuberance about everything paranormal and supernatural from the sublime to the silly, and apparently, this is the result.  Oh, and we eventually talk about the recent spate of Moth-Owl-Bat-Man sightings in the Chicago, IL metropolitan area, which was the primary reason for inviting him over in the first place.  For those of you who can embrace a rollicking discourse as a fresh change of pace, please enjoy.  For those of you expecting more conventional and disciplined fare, please accept our apologies.  ; )

 

Suggested listening:

Mission to Zyxx is an Improv Comedy Sci-Fi podcast about a crew of interstellar ambassadors traveling to the far reaches of space, created by veteran comedians from the Upright Citizens Brigade Theater, with special guests from Saturday Night Live, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, The Chris Gethard Show, Search Party and other great comedy shows you know and love.  Find, Subscribe and Listen NOW to the first season of Mission to Zyxx, available on Apple Podcasts, audioBoom, or wherever you find really, really funny podcasts.

 
 

Related Books:

The Super Natural: A New Vision of the Unexplained
By Whitley Strieber, Jeffrey J. Kripal
The Amityville Horror Conspiracy
By Stephen Kaplan, Roxanne Salch Kaplan
 

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The Dark Myths Collective  

http://darkmyths.org/

 

Credits:

Episode 82: The Hatem Files – Case #1.  Produced by Scott Philbrook & Forrest Burgess; Audio Editing by Sarah Vorhees; Ryan McCullough Sound Design; Research Assistance by Tess Pfeifle and the astonishing League of Astonishing Researchers, a.k.a. The Astonishing Research Corps, or "A.R.C." for short. Copyright 2017 Astonishing Legends Productions, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Ep 81: The Kelly–Hopkinsville Encounter (Part 3)

Detail from Tim Bertelink's Artist Impression of the Kelly-Hopkinsville "goblin."  Image used under CC BY-SA 4.0 license.

"In and around the whole area, the house, the fields, that night, there was a weird feeling.  It was partly uneasiness, but not entirely.  Everyone had it.  There were men there that I'd call brave men, men I've been in dangerous situations with.  They felt it too.  They've told me so."
– Hopkinsville Police Chief, Russell Greenwell

 

 
Approximate location of the Sutton family farmhouse on Old Madisonville Road, in the unincorporated area of Kelly, about 8 miles north of Hopkinsville, KY
 

BACKGROUND:

It's easy to dismiss the entire Kelly-Hopkinsville Encounter as the booze-fueled fantasy of a bunch of backward hicks who can't tell the difference between a goblin and an owl, or maybe you think it was an outrageous hoax perpetrated for cash.  But before you begin telling people what they saw, or make assumptions based on character or class, just remember: unless you were there, you weren't there.  These people didn't ask for this incident to happen to them, and they especially didn't ask for the notoriety or ridicule that followed.  What the authorities at the time believed, and what many skeptics agree on in hindsight, is that the Sutton and Taylor families were genuinely terrified of something real, and yet even the most seasoned paranormal researcher can't definitively say by what or by whom.  So maybe your educated reasoning doesn't allow for the possibility of otherworldly creatures?  Well, that's fine, it's a natural human desire to make sense of the impossibilities of our strange world with rationalizations that we can comfortably live with.  But as you do so, keep one more thing in mind: you can spend years or a whole lifetime developing and refining your rationale for disbelief, but it only takes one undeniable, paranormal experience to make you a believer.

 
Interested in Podcasting?  Come see Scott and Forrest at Podcast Movement 2017 in Anaheim, California August 23 – 25, 2017 Use PROMO CODE "Legends50" for a $50 Savings!

Interested in Podcasting?  Come see Scott and Forrest at Podcast Movement 2017 in Anaheim, California

August 23 – 25, 2017

Use PROMO CODE "Legends50" for a $50 Savings!

 

If you enjoy the subjects we cover on this show and love stories that take you down deep, dark "rabbit holes," check out Tanis, The Black Tapes, and Rabbits podcasts, from The Public Radio Alliance.  Subscribe in iTunes/Apple Podcasts or wherever you find wondrous and outstanding shows.

 

Reference Links:

 

Related Books:

Alien Legacy
By Geraldine Sutton Stith
The Kelly Green Men
By Geraldine Sutton Stith
 

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The Dark Myths Collective  

http://darkmyths.org/

 

Credits:

Episode 81: The Kelly-Hopkinsville Incident, Part 3.  Produced by Scott Philbrook & Forrest Burgess; Audio Editing by Sarah Vorhees; Ryan McCullough Sound Design; Research Assistance by Tess Pfeifle and the astonishing League of Astonishing Researchers, a.k.a. The Astonishing Research Corps, or "A.R.C." for short. Copyright 2017 Astonishing Legends Productions, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Ep 80: The Kelly–Hopkinsville Encounter (Part 2)

"If aliens visit us, the outcome would be much as when Columbus landed in America, which didn't turn out well for the Native Americans."

Stephen Hawking

 
Approximate location of the Sutton family farmhouse on Old Madisonville Road, in the unincorporated area of Kelly, about 8 miles north of Hopkinsville, KY
 

BACKGROUND:

In Part Two of our series on the Kelly-Hopkinsville Encounter, we analyze the elements of the Sutton and Taylor families' story.  Is the tale that ended up in the media what actually happened or were certain descriptions exaggerated to make the story more sensational in order to sell newspapers?  Perhaps some details were misreported due to anxiety, faulty memories and the phenomenon of the "Telephone Game?"  Or was it all a hoax and for what gain?  What we find is that the story in its original and accurate telling is so bizarre, any further embellishment would be pointless and believe it or not, that's the story the families stuck to, which only serves to add more mystery to an already mysterious world.  

 
Interested in Podcasting?  Come see Scott and Forrest at Podcast Movement 2017 in Anaheim, California August 23 – 25, 2017 Use PROMO CODE "Legends50" for a $50 Savings!

Interested in Podcasting?  Come see Scott and Forrest at Podcast Movement 2017 in Anaheim, California

August 23 – 25, 2017

Use PROMO CODE "Legends50" for a $50 Savings!

 

If you enjoy the subjects we cover on this show and love stories that take you down deep, dark "rabbit holes," check out Tanis, The Black Tapes, and Rabbits podcasts, from The Public Radio Alliance.  Subscribe in iTunes/Apple Podcasts or wherever you find wondrous and outstanding shows.

 

Reference Links:

 

Related Books:

Alien Legacy
By Geraldine Sutton Stith
The Kelly Green Men
By Geraldine Sutton Stith
 

Special Offers from our Special Sponsors:

  • Harry's – a close, comfortable shave at a fair price.  See for yourself by getting their TRIAL SHAVE SET FOR FREE!  A $13 VALUE! - you just pay for the shipping!  Go to Harrys.com/LEGENDS
  • The Great Courses Plus – Learn everything about anything with over 8000 lectures on almost any subject you can think of – and now for a limited time, get your first month's subscription for FREE and get your second month for only 99¢!  Check it out NOW at TheGreatCoursesPlus.com/LEGENDS
 

The Dark Myths Collective  

http://darkmyths.org/

 

Credits:

Episode 80: The Kelly-Hopkinsville Incident, Part 2.  Produced by Scott Philbrook & Forrest Burgess; Audio Editing by Sarah Vorhees; Ryan McCullough Sound Design; Research Assistance by Tess Pfeifle and the astonishing League of Astonishing Researchers, a.k.a. The Astonishing Research Corps, or "A.R.C." for short. Copyright 2017 Astonishing Legends Productions, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Ep 79: The Kelly–Hopkinsville Encounter (Part 1)

"I turned my head three different times because I thought maybe my eyes were fooling me. But every time I turned my head back, there he was."
– Glennie Lankford, Matriarch of the Sutton Farmhouse
 
Approximate location of the Sutton family farmhouse on Old Madisonville Road, in the unincorporated area of Kelly, about 8 miles north of Hopkinsville, KY
 

BACKGROUND:

The 1950s was awash with incredible UFO sightings and purported alien encounters, but the Kelly-Hopkinsville Incident remains a highlight for the field of Ufology.  The report was significant not only because of the long duration of the event and a large number of witnesses but also because the frightening contact sparked a one-sided gun battle.  On the evening of Sunday, August 21, 1955, one of the occupants of the Sutton farmhouse, in the unincorporated area of Kelly north of Hopkinsville, Kentucky, reported seeing a saucer-like craft land a short distance away in a gully to the rear of the property.  Moments later, the two families staying there claimed that a number of "strange little men" approached the house and peered through the windows, and one even tugged the hair of Billy Ray Taylor, the man who had first seen the craft land.  Understandably bewildered and fearing for their lives, Taylor, and another adult male, "Lucky" Sutton, fired round after round at the unwanted visitors from close range, all to little effect.  After about four hours of this awkward alien interaction, the families saw their chance to escape and rushed to police headquarters to get help.  The unusually large police response which resulted in a flurry of sensational news reports for years to come would cast this incident as one of the most bizarre and intriguing "Close Encounters of the Third Kind" ever to be included in UFO lore.

 
Interested in Podcasting?  Come see Scott and Forrest at Podcast Movement 2017 in Anaheim, California August 23 – 25, 2017 Use PROMO CODE "Legends50" for a $50 Savings!

Interested in Podcasting?  Come see Scott and Forrest at Podcast Movement 2017 in Anaheim, California

August 23 – 25, 2017

Use PROMO CODE "Legends50" for a $50 Savings!

 

If you enjoy the subjects we cover on this show and love stories that take you down deep, dark "rabbit holes," check out Tanis, The Black Tapes, and Rabbits podcasts, from The Public Radio Alliance.  Subscribe in iTunes/Apple Podcasts or wherever you find wondrous and outstanding shows.

 
 

Related Books:

Alien Legacy
By Geraldine Sutton Stith
The Kelly Green Men
By Geraldine Sutton Stith
 

Special Offers from our Special Sponsors:

  • Blue Apron – You will love how good it feels, and tastes, to create incredible home cooked meals with Blue Apron!  Go to blueapron.com/astonishing to check out this week’s menu and get your first THREE meals FREE, with FREE SHIPPING
  • That's It. Fruit Bars – No preservatives, added sugar, fat or gluten.  Kosher, Vegan and Raw-Diet friendly.  Just wholesome and delicious fruit and MORE FRUIT.  That's It!  Go to thatsitfruit.com and enter the promo code LEGENDS at checkout to receive 10% OFF your order!
 

The Dark Myths Collective  

http://darkmyths.org/

 

Credits:

Episode 79: The Kelly-Hopkinsville Incident, Part 1.  Produced by Scott Philbrook & Forrest Burgess; Audio Editing by Sarah Vorhees; Ryan McCullough Sound Design; Research Assistance by Tess Pfeifle and the astonishing League of Astonishing Researchers, a.k.a. The Astonishing Research Corps, or "A.R.C." for short. Copyright 2017 Astonishing Legends Productions, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Ep 78: The Devil and Anneliese Michel – Exorcism on Trial (Part 3)

Anneliese Michel's gravestone in Klingenberg am Main, Bavaria, Germany.  Photo by Offenbacherjung, with no endorsement of the content of this episode or topic.  Used under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.
Dr. Jennifer Sy, Ph.D.

Dr. Jennifer Sy, Ph.D.

 
“The Klingenberg case was for all those involved, a breathtaking experience. Someone on the outside cannot possibly appreciate this experience. Man’s imagination is stretched past the limit when it comes to demonic possession.”
– Father Ernst Alt, quoted from "Anneliese Michel:  A true story of a case of demonic possession" by Lawrence LeBlanc and Fr. Jose Antonio Fortea
 
Anneliese Michel was buried in the Klingenberg Cemetery, Klingenberg am Main, Miltenberger Landkreis, Bavaria (Bayern), Germany.  To this day, her grave remains a pilgrimage site for believers.
 

BACKGROUND:

Was Anneliese Michel truly possessed by demonic forces, or was she suffering from a more earthly psychological affliction such as an extreme case of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder with Scrupulosity, epilepsy, PTSD or Anti-NMDA Receptor Encephalitis?  Tonight we examine this case from the solely scientific, clinical angle with our interview of Dr. Jennifer Sy, Ph.D. of the Houston OCD Program.  Dr. Sy is a licensed clinical psychologist with training in cognitive-behavioral treatment of mood and anxiety disorders.  She received a BA in Cognitive Science from Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire, and her MS and Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology from the University of Wyoming.  She has published on cognitive/behavioral mechanisms and exposure-based treatment of social anxiety, specific phobias, and panic.  In the end, however, even with a diagnosis that seems to cover many of her symptoms, those who allow themselves to consider possibilities beyond flesh and blood may wonder if the truth of Anneliese Michel will remain forever hidden between the worlds of the natural and the supernatural.

 
Interested in Podcasting?  Come see Scott and Forrest at Podcast Movement 2017 in Anaheim, California August 23 – 25, 2017 Use PROMO CODE "Legends50" for a $50 Savings!

Interested in Podcasting?  Come see Scott and Forrest at Podcast Movement 2017 in Anaheim, California

August 23 – 25, 2017

Use PROMO CODE "Legends50" for a $50 Savings!

 

Reference Links:

 

Related books:

The Exorcism of Anneliese Michel:
By Felicitas D. Goodman
 

Special Offers from our Special Sponsors:

 

The Dark Myths Collective  

http://darkmyths.org/

 

Credits:

Episode 78: The Devil and Anneliese Michel – Exorcism on Trial (Part 3).  Produced by Scott Philbrook & Forrest Burgess; Audio Editing by Sarah Vorhees; Ryan McCullough Sound Design; Research Assistance by Tess Pfeifle and the astonishing League of Astonishing Researchers, a.k.a. The Astonishing Research Corps, or "A.R.C." for short. Copyright 2017 Astonishing Legends Productions, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Ep 77: The Devil and Anneliese Michel – Exorcism on Trial (Part 2)

Ep 77: The Devil and Anneliese Michel – Exorcism on Trial (Part 2)

The San Damiano cross, image from The San Damiano Society at St. Francis Center for Renewal website. Circa 1100 A.D., it is said that St. Francis of Assisi was praying before this cross when he received a commission from the Lord to rebuild the Church.

Ep 76: The Devil and Anneliese Michel – Exorcism on Trial (Part 1)

“Father, I never thought it would be as cruel as this. I always thought that I would want to suffer for others so they would not have to go to hell, but that it could be this bad and this cruel and terrible.”
– Anneliese Michel, from a transcript of a recorded conversation with Exorcist Father Arnold Renz.
 
Location: Klingenberg, Bavaria, Germany, where the Michel family had a comfortable two-story house, not far from Josef Michel's sawmill.  Anneliese Michel was born in Lieblfing, Germany on 21 September, 1952 to Anna and Josef Michel.  Klingenberg, known as "Blade Mountain" is a small town on the Main River.  On one side of the river is the Odenwald forest, on the other side are the woods of the Spessart forest.  Kligenberg is well-known for its terraced vinyards on its hills and the wine produced from them.  The town is about an hour drive southeast of Frankfurt.
 

Background: 

The legal systems of Western societies have no place for, nor consideration of, the offenses of the spiritual world.  Neither does the spirit world have regard for the laws of men.  These factors make the case of the death of Anneliese Michel so fascinating, so compelling, so confounding and ultimately so tragic, that it remains one of the benchmark legal cases for determining negligent culpability in purported cases demonic possession.  Anneliese was a German girl who was known in life for being very intelligent, shy, kind, generous and pious, but will always be known in death as an unfortunate soul who experienced a deteriorating malady so mysterious and devastating she ultimately succumbed to starvation.  But who, or what, is to blame?  Was it the severe affliction of an extreme case of epilepsy or Obsessive Compulsive Disorder having gone untreated, or was it the detestable work of the Devil himself?

 

Reference Links:

 

Related Books:

The Exorcism of Anneliese Michel:
By Felicitas D. Goodman
 

Special Offers from our Special Sponsors:

 

The Dark Myths Collective  

http://darkmyths.org/

 

Credits:

Episode 76: The Devil and Anneliese Michel – Exorcism on Trial (Part 1).  Produced by Scott Philbrook & Forrest Burgess; Audio Editing by Sarah Vorhees; Ryan McCullough Sound Design; Research Assistance by Tess Pfeifle and the astonishing League of Astonishing Researchers, a.k.a. The Astonishing Research Corps, or "A.R.C." for short. Copyright 2017 Astonishing Legends Productions, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Ep 75: The Jersey Devil - Prince of the Pine Barrens (Part 2)

“When the horses heard the Devil scream, they’d carry on so you’d think they were gonna tear the barn down. You could hear the Devil scream a long way off when the horses would quiet down. People may say there’s nothing to it but I know darned well there is.”

– Amanda Sutts’ 1900 eyewitness account from Loren Coleman and Bruce G. Hallenbeck’s book, Monsters of New Jersey: Mysterious Creatures in the Garden State

 
Location: Bucks County, Pennsylvania.  The Jersey Devil's territory isn't just confined to the coastal region of New Jersey's Pine Barrens.  Long before the "Leeds Devil" story became part of the local lore in the mid-18th century, the Native Americans of the Leni Lenape tribe had noted a strange creature in the area and named the nearby creek "Popuessing" meaning, "Place of the dragon."  Also according to Loren Coleman and Bruce Hallenbeck in their book, Monsters of New Jersey: Mysterious Creatures in the Garden State, in 1677, Swedish explorers found strange footprints in the rocks near the same creek and renamed it "Drake Kill" – "drake" also meaning dragon.
 

Background: 

Southern New Jersey is steeped in the legend of The Jersey Devil, with the eponymous rascal inspiring everything from the names of businesses to stickers and T-shirts for tourists.  But as one "South Jersey" native has informed us, The Pine Barrens themselves may be nothing like what outsiders envision, with most of it being "lush, green and beautiful" and a joy to explore.  Also, maybe almost no one from the area believes the myth themselves.  However, it seems in the case of the legend of Jersey Devil – there are two distinct yet connected phenomenal elements at play: the ye olde myth, and the otherworldly thing that more than a few people swear they've encountered.  So what do you say to them?  Are you sure all they saw or heard was an owl, a stray African bat, a mutant goat havin' a laugh, or that good ol' well-worn chestnut the Sandhill Crane?  Because now these accounts become much like any other testimony of the paranormal; those who have not experienced it probably won't believe it, but those that have can never forget it.

 
 

Reference Links:

 

 

Related Books:

The Jersey Devil
By James F McCloy, Ray Miller Jr.
The Jersey Devil
By Hunter Shea
Phantom of the Pines: More Tales of the Jersey Devil
By James F. McCloy, Ray, Jr. Miller
The Flight of Dragons
By Peter Dickinson
 

Special Offers from our Special Sponsors:

  • Blue Apron – It's time to start making something better for dinner!  Go to blueapron.com/astonishing to get your first THREE MEALS FREE with FREE SHIPPING! 
  • Squarespace – Make YOUR NEXT MOVE and get your enterprise up on the web with Squarespace!  Go to squarespace.com and use our OFFER CODE "LEGENDS" at checkout to get 10% OFF your first purchase of a website and domain name.

Then check out this fascinating new podcast from the Parcast Network called SERIAL KILLERS.  If you're curious about that deep, dark place of evil depravity – the minds & deeds of the most notorious serial killers in history – then this is the show for you!  But be forewarned – hosts Greg and Vanessa and their team of researchers do such in-depth investigation and critical analyzation with their profiling, along with dramatizations and real audio from the more recent murderers, you might be suffering from a "Will Graham" experience!  But in all seriousness, this show is for MATURE AUDIENCES ONLY.  Just go to Parcast.com/serial to start listening, or go to iTunes, Google Play, Stitcher or your favorite podcast directory and search for the term, "Serial Killers."  Then lock your doors & windows and don't accept any rides from strangers, and sometimes even people you know...

 

The Dark Myths Collective  

http://darkmyths.org/

 

Credits:

Episode 75: The Jersey Devil – Prince of the Pine Barrens (Part 2).  Produced by Scott Philbrook & Forrest Burgess; Audio Editing by Sarah Vorhees; Ryan McCullough Sound Design; Research Assistance by Tess Pfeifle and the astonishing League of Astonishing Researchers, a.k.a. The Astonishing Research Corps, or "A.R.C." for short. Copyright 2017 Astonishing Legends Productions, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Ep 74: The Jersey Devil - Prince of the Pine Barrens (Part 1)

“It was neither beast, nor man, nor spirit, but a hellish brew of all three.” 
– Vance Larner, writing in his diary about his encounter with the Jersey Devil in 1790.
 
 
Leeds Point, Galloway, New Jersey, United States.  As the most popular version of the legend of the Jersey Devil goes, Deborah Leeds (nee Smith) emigrated from England to marry Daniel Leeds in the mid-Eighteenth century.  When her 13th child was born, she cursed the difficult labor and the already impoverishing cicumstances of a brood of 12, and invoked the Devil.  The infant became a ghastly cryptid and has haunted the New Jersey Pine Barrens ever since.  Some legends have it as a "Mrs. Shrouds" as the beast's mother.
 

Background: 

They say if you meet someone from New Jersey, Pennsylvania or New York, you don't ask them if they've heard of the "Jersey Devil," you ask them if they've had some kind of encounter with it.  The legend of the curious cryptid is so prolific, they've no doubt heard of it, and if they've spent any time near the Pine Barrens of "The Garden State," more often than not you'll find they've experienced some evidence of the beast, or know someone who has.  Folklorists say that there are more than 30 variations of the legend,  but the main origin story of New Jersey's own "Official Demon" goes all the way back to 1735, and a Mrs. Leeds of Galloway, NJ, who upon a difficult delivery of her 13th child, exclaimed it might as well be a devil – which, if the tale is to be believed, you should never do.  Since then, the story has been so popular that the idea of The Jersey Devil has made its way into movies, television, and video games, and is even the inspiration for the name of New Jersey's National Hockey League team.  But why has this tale endured for at least 282 years?  Is it because somehow the legend is just so fantastic that people can't forget it?  Or is it because, as so many residents throughout the years have claimed, from New Jersey's eastern shores, through the mysterious Pine Barrens all the way to western Pennsylvania, something really is out there?

 

Reference Links:

 

Related Books:

The Jersey Devil
By James F McCloy, Ray Miller Jr.
The Jersey Devil
By Hunter Shea
The Flight of Dragons
By Peter Dickinson
Phantom of the Pines: More Tales of the Jersey Devil
By James F. McCloy, Ray, Jr. Miller
 

Special Offers from our Special Sponsors:

 

The Dark Myths Collective  

http://darkmyths.org/

 

Credits:

Episode 74: The Jersey Devil: Prince of the Pine Barrens (Part 1).  Produced by Scott Philbrook & Forrest Burgess; Audio Editing by Sarah Vorhees; Ryan McCullough Sound Design; Research Assistance by Tess Pfeifle and the astonishing League of Astonishing Researchers, a.k.a. The Astonishing Research Corps, or "A.R.C." for short. Copyright 2017 Astonishing Legends Productions, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Ep 73: Orfeo Angelucci - Secret of the Saucers