Sometimes the scariest things are the ones that you can’t explain away. Below are five scary stories that will keep you up at night; ones that, unfortunately, actually happened.
Vlad The Impaler- Do you think Dracula is just the creation of a wild imagination? Nah, son. Vlad The Impaler was a sick fuck who got off on torturing the Ottomans he conquered. It is reported that he would roast children and feed them to their mothers, cut off women’s breasts, and skewer people while they were alive on huge wooden spikes where they would remain for hours in agony. Eventually he was captured and locked away in a tower to waste away. It is reported that during his time in captivity he would sharpen little sticks and skewer the rats who were his only company.
This colossal mansion in San Jose was in construction day and night for 38 years. The 162 acre property was the work of Sarah Winchester, heir to the Winchester rifle fortune. The rifle that brought Sarah her money also claimed countless lives in The Civil War. After her husband and daughter were both taken from Mrs. Winchester, she saw a medium who told her the spirits of the victims who died from the Winchester rifle were angry with her. In order to keep the spirits pleased, the medium told Sarah she must keep building her house until the day she dies. So Sarah Winchester did. The originally seven story house has doors that lead to nowhere and staircases that lead directly to the ceiling. Sarah Winchester would sleep in a different room every night and perform seances in order to get building instructions from beyond. When Sarah Winchester finally died, construction halted immediately. There are still nails not completely hammered in from when workers abruptly left. Today you can tour the Winchester house, but if a house build specifically to please ghosts isn’t haunted– I don’t know what the fuck would be.
H.H. Holmes– America’s first serial killer, H.H. Holmes build a hotel specifically to murder people, before Norman Bates thought it was cool. The rooms would only open from the outside and he had multiple rooms in which he was able to run gas into, killing guests at his will. All these murders occurred during the 1893 Chicago World Fair. Most of his victims were lovers of his or his employees whom he would lock in airtight rooms to suffocate. He would then drop their bodies down a chute and skin them, selling their corpses to medical research. He would also insist that all his employees take out life insurance plans (where he was the beneficiary) so that when he slaughtered them, he would get a huge pile of cash. Um, Rude Boy!
Pripyat– This abandoned city in the Ukraine is the stuff nightmares are made of. Due to a failure at Chernobyl, the radioactive power plant outside the city, the inhabitants were forced to leave the city immediately. Few had time to grab any of their belongings. Only recently did the radiation die down enough people to walk through the city without wearing protective suits. What they found was a city reclaimed by nature. It is abandoned and haunting. I think they let Frankie Muniz shoot a really shitty horror film called Chernobyl Diaries there a few years ago, but I like to pretend that film doesn’t exist.
Glen Tucker– Every day people go under the care of licensed physicians putting their trust in them that they know what they’re doing and that they’ll be safe. In the case of Glen Tucker, people who underwent his knife were in terrible danger. He left a trail of mangled bodies after purposefully botching surgeries. There was the man who came in with arm spasms only to wake up with his arms amputated. There was a woman who went in with a broken nose and woke up during surgery to find Tucker ripping tubing out of her nose. Eventually Tucker took a .45 rifle and shot himself and his whole family, but the bodies of those he deformed are still here to remind us just how vulnerable we are when we’re sedated.
Have any more true legends that scare you? Let us know in the comment section!
This essay first appeared on BoyFactor