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Staff claimed to have seen creepy Mothman-like creature before blast

L.J. Charleston
news.com.au

The terrifying creature rose above the horizon of Chernobyl and Pripyat, a hideous humanoid with giant wings, a black headless body and red glowing eyes sending a message of doom to all who gazed upon it.

In the days leading up to the Chernobyl disaster, several of the workers in the control room of the nuclear power plant in northern Ukraine claimed to have seen the creature that is known as the Blackbird of Chernobyl.

Those unlucky enough to see the creature were said to be plagued with terrifying dreams and threatening phone calls.

Still others believe the Black Bird of Chernobyl was a form of the creature known as Mothman whose presence only ever meant one thing: that a catastrophic event would soon follow.

Last month marked 33 years since the Chernobyl tragedy and it seems the further time moves away from the event, the stories, folklore and legends continue to captivate and grow. And, since the huge success of the TV series, Chernobyl, there’s a seemingly endless desire for more knowledge about the disaster – the known as well as the unknown.

The Black Bird Rises In Chernobyl

Sydney archaeologist Robert Maxwell is the only archaeologist who has ever worked at Chernobyl, completing two field excursions at the exclusion zone in 2010 and 2012.

He is passionate about the place in both a historical and archaeological sense; there is little Maxwell doesn’t know about Chernobyl, on matters of both the physical and supernatural world.

Maxwell told news.com.au that the legend of the Blackbird of Chernobyl was something he heard about when he was in the exclusion zone.

“The legend states that in the days leading up to April 26, 1986, that a supernatural creature was sighted in the sky over Chernobyl by many of the men in the control room. They also claimed to have seen this terrifying creature just before the explosion,” Maxwell said.

“Now it’s become one of those fables that’s difficult to track because it relies on the accounts of people who died due to radioactive contamination.

“The Blackbird has also become one of those fairly safe legends where, if you try to look for proof, it might not be available because the workers are dead, or maybe the sightings were never officially recorded.

“So, for people trying to check the voracity of these claims, of course, you’ve got to take them on face value because there’s not a lot of history or archaeology to go on.

“But the stories persist, even to this day.”

Maxwell describes the legends around Chernobyl as “the fireside stories of the 21st century.”

These days, the Blackbird of Chernobyl is something of an internet legend, similar to “Slenderman“, and creepy pasta legend “The Smiling Man“.

“These legends fill a place for us as humans that the ghost stories and stories by the fireside fulfilled back in the earlier centuries. But there are a couple of versions of the Blackbird story, and the earliest known account seems to have come from 2005,” Maxwell said.

“According to the legend, rumours went through the ranks of Chernobyl, that five employees had seen a large, dark headless creature with gigantic wings and fire red eyes. Chernobyl employees began sharing strangely similar experiences, some had horrifying nightmares, while others received threatening phone calls,” Maxwell said.

“The second account I’ve heard of this story comes from 2007 which says that people in and around the power plant began to experience a series of strange events revolving around sightings of a mysterious creature – also described as a large dark and mutated creature with large wings and piercing red eyes.

“People affected by the phenomena also experienced nightmares and had first-hand encounters with the winged beast.

“Some of the workers reported their bizarre experiences to supervisors of the facility but there was very little these officials could do even if they’d been willing to take action. Then, in April, disaster struck.”

Reactor number four of the nuclear power plant exploded on April 26 and, two days later, the entire city of Pripyat was evacuated.

It was several years later that the stories of the Blackbird began to spread.

“Because the workers apparently described the Blackbird as a headless, large-winged black creature with no head, but with fire red eyes – which most people take to mean the eyes appear in the torso, it sounded very similar to the Mothman sightings in the west.

“Many people believe the Mothman, like the Blackbird of Chernobyl, are the harbingers of doom, in the same way the banshee was a herald of doom and death to many Celtic societies.”

The Mothman

Mothman sightings are an enduring mystery that began in November 1967 in Point Pleasant, West Virginia. More than 100 locals reported seeing what they described as a six-foot (182cm) tall beast, covered in hair or feathers with a wingspan of six to ten feet (182-305cm) and bright, glowing red eyes.

Then, in December, a chain suspension bridge across the Ohio River, from Point Pleasant to Gallipolis, crashed into the river at peak hour, killing 46 people.

Some reported that they saw the Mothman on the bridge just before the collapse.

Due to the bridge collapse happening around the same time as the Mothman sightings, inevitably the two became intertwined.

Whether you want to believe the legend or not, one irrefutable fact is that the story of one can’t be told without the other: the bridge collapse and Mothman are forever linked. There’s even a Mothman statue in Point Pleasant which is now a popular tourist attraction.

The Mothman was also reportedly spotted in Germany, on September 10, 1978, when a mine collapsed in Freiburg, killed several miners. But more than 20 miners who were supposed to work that day were apparently scared away by the sight of a Mothman-like creature perched at the entrance of the mine.

This creature was known as “Freiburg Shrieker“. And now the Mothman is seen as a “grim reaper” appearing just before death.

Of course, sceptics dismiss the Mothman as an elaborate hoax or an example of mass illusion. Some believe the stories have actually been created by Pripyat authorities in a bid to prevent people from entering the radioactive area as looters are still a security problem.

The herald of doom

According to Maxwell, while some see the Mothman as a herald of doom, others see the creature in a different light, that it seems to be a time traveller of some kind that keeps returning to sudden, unexpected disasters.

“And for others, the Mothman is a completely supernatural entity that’s drawn in, like a moth is drawn to a flame; the Mothman or the Blackbird is simply drawn to the energy of disasters, or so the story goes,” Maxwell said.

“It’s a fascinating little spooky sidenote to the story of Chernobyl because not many people are aware of the stories of this creature. But it certainly adds to the creep factor.

“As if the Chernobyl disaster wasn’t terrifying enough, then you’ve got these alleged encounters with a black winged red eyed creature at night.”

And as for Maxwell, the question remains: during his two field excursions to the Chernobyl exclusion zone, did he see anything supernatural?

“No, absolutely not. It was entirely very much real terror when you’re there. What’s truly frightening is that you’ve got the all-encompassing overwhelming threat of radioactive contamination if you do the wrong thing or go in the wrong place or lean against the wrong object.

“There are certain things in the zone today for which any contact for any prolonged period of time will definitely kill you.

“There is one thing in particular that I still think about quite a lot: The Claw.”

Next week news.com.au will bring you the story of The Claw: the most contaminated thing at Chernobyl.

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Paranormal

Ghost Hunters and Psychic Kids return to A&E for a Back to Back Debut

On Wednesday August 21st both Ghost Hunters and Psychic Kids return to A&E channel for back to back debut episodes starting at 9PM ET/PT.

From having the opportunity to preview both new episodes I can tell you its straight back to business for both shows.

Fifteen years ago the world was introduced to Ghost Hunters with Grant Wilson, Jason Hawes and the TAPS team investigating lots of haunted locations over 11 seasons.

Seven years ago Grant Wilson decided to quit Ghost Hunters to spend more time with his family but now in 2019 Grant is back with a whole new team of hand picked professional ghost hunters as they use their decades of experience to investigate hauntings across America.

Grants new team members are Daryl Marston co-lead investigator, Kirtsen Luman co-lead investigator, Mustafa Gatollari Historian and site analyst, Richel Stratton paranormal investigator, Brian Murray paranormal investigator and Brandon Alvis paranormal technician.

The season premiers with “School Spirit”.  Grant is contacted by the principal of Pocatello High School in Idaho after security cameras capture unexplained electrical light disturbances and a ghostly apparition in the hallway.

The school has long been rumoured to be haunted, but most rumours are thought to be just urban legends, but are they?

Psychic Kids first debuted in 2008 and became a hit series for A&E. It brought together children who had psychic abilities and helped them to harness and cope with their abilities to try and stop them from being afraid.

Now with the new series, the kids from 10 years ago are now in their 20’s and ready to assist the next generation of children with psychic abilities.

In the first episode we are introduced to Kendyll and Ethan. Two children who are scared and having a hard time controlling their abilities and turn to mentors to help them cope.

The mentors Peri Zarella and Ryan Michaels, two psychics who featured in the original series when they were children, try to help and guide Kendyll and Ethen with their abilities via different scenarios.

Will you be watching?

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Scientists attempting to open portal to a parallel universe

Does a mysterious mirror world lurk in the shadows of perceived reality? It could explain a lot

Could 2019 be the year humans open the first portal to a shadowy dimension which mirrors our own world?

Scientists in Oak Ridge National Laboratory in eastern Tennessee hope so, and have completed building equipment they are to test this summer which may allow us the first glimpse of a parallel universe which could be identical in many ways to our own, with mirror particles, mirror planets and possibly even mirror life.

That is according to Leah Broussard, the physicist behind the project, who described the attempt to reveal a hidden shadow world as “pretty wacky” in an interview with NBC last week.

The discovery of a concealed mirror world may sound like science fiction from the Stranger Things series, but it has been repeatedly suggested by physicists as a tempting means of explaining anomalous results. However, as yet, hard evidence such a realm exists has refused to manifest itself.

One set of anomalous results, and the ones which inspired the research, date back to the 1990s, when particle physicists were measuring the time it took for neutron particles to break down into protons once they were removed from an atom’s nucleus.

Two separate experiments saw the neutrons broke down at differing rates, instead of decaying and becoming protons at exactly the same rate, as was expected.

In one, the free neutrons were captured by magnetic fields and herded into laboratory bottle traps, and in the other they were detected by the subsequent appearance of proton particles from a nuclear reactor stream.

Those particles fired out in the stream from the nuclear reactor lived on average for 14 minutes and 48 seconds – nine seconds longer than those from the bottle traps.

It may sound like a small difference, but it has troubled scientists.

But the existence of a mirror world offers a credible explanation: That there are two separate neutron lifetimes, and it could be that around 1 per cent of neutrons could be crossing the divide between our reality and the mirror world before crossing back and then emitting a detectable proton.

The new experiment will fire a beam of neutrons at an impenetrable wall. On the other side of the wall, a neutron detector will be set up, which normally would expect to detect nothing.

But if the detector does register the presence of neutrons, the theory is that they may have gone through the wall by “oscillating” into the mirror world – becoming mirror neutrons – and reappearing in this universe, and more specifically the lab in Tennessee.

“Only the ones that can oscillate and then come back into our universe can be detected,” Ms Broussard told the New Scientist in June.

Furthermore, the team will set up magnetic fields on either side of the wall, which they can alter in strength. It is hoped certain strengths may assist the oscillation of the particles.

Despite the tidy theory, the team is playing down the chances of revealing reality’s shadowy twin.

“I fully expect to measure zero,” Ms Broussard said of the initial tests.

But if they do detect a neutron on the far side of the wall, it could have profound implications.

“If you discover something new like that, the game totally changes,” Ms Broussard told NBC.

The existence of a mirror world could also explain our universe’s lack of the isotope Lithium 7, which physicists believe doesn’t match the quantities the Big Bang would have created.

The detection of high-energy cosmic rays which come from beyond our galaxy could also be explained by the existence of the mirror world.

They are too powerful to have travelled only through the observed universe, but if they had oscillated into the mirror realm and then back out again, it could explain why that is the case.

Source www.independent.co.uk

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Haunted Eddy Brothers House: Séances and Bizarre Phenomena

In 1874, uncanny events were happening in the home of William and Horatio Eddy, two middle-aged illiterate brothers, and their sister, Mary.

According to newspaper and Spiritualist accounts in 1874, mysterious incidents were happening in a small Vermont farmhouse near Chittenden where the Eddy’s lived. They resided in a two-story building that was reported to be infested with supernatural entities.

People came from all over the world to experience them in the house that Spiritualists dubbed the “Spirit Capital of the Universe.” Prominent attorney Henry Steel Olcott was a skeptic until he experienced the paranormal incidents.

The Eddy Brothers’ Early Years

William and Horatio were descended from a long line of psychics. Mary Bradbury, a distant relative, was convicted of witchcraft in Salem in 1692. Their grandmother had second sight and often went into trances and spoke to entities that no one else saw.

Their mother, Julia, was known for scaring neighbors with predictions and visions although her husband, Zepaniah, condemned her powers as the work of the Devil. She learned to hide her gifts from the cruel and abusive man.

When the couple had children, strange poundings began shaking the house, disembodied voices were heard in empty rooms, and, allegedly, babies vanished from their cribs. They were discovered in the house and outside.

As William and Horatio grew older, their paranormal powers strengthened. Zepaniah beat them with a rawhide whip. He tried everything he could to stop the paranormal incidents by abusing them. The events continued. He doused the boys with boiling water, on the advice of a “Christian” friend.

An illustrated sketch of the Eddy Brothers
An illustrated sketch of the Eddy Brothers

When this didn’t work, he allowed this friend to drop a hot coal into William’s hand to exorcize the devils. When he realized that he couldn’t stop them, he was furious.

The boys couldn’t attend school. The strange events, including invisible hands throwing books, levitating desks and objects flying about the room, kept happening.

Zepaniah realized they had money-making potential, so he sold them to a traveling showman, who, for the next fourteen years, took them all over America, Canada and Europe. He challenged audience members to try to awaken the boys from their trances, as part of their performance.

The Eddy’s were locked into small wooden boxes to see if they could escape. Hot wax was poured into their mouths to see if they could produce spirit voices when they were unable to talk. Skeptics poked, prodded and punched the entranced brothers. On several occasions, they were stoned and shot at by angry crowds.

The brothers moved home after their father died. They and Mary opened the farmhouse as an inn, the Green Tavern.

Eddy Brothers’ Validity Challenged

Were they genuine or a hoax? Henry Steel Olcott challenged the authenticity of the events at Eddy House. He had no interest in the paranormal before he read about the brothers in the Spiritualist newspaper, the Banner of Light. Although skeptical, he knew that if the stories were true, they were important in physical science.

Olcott traveled to Vermont, accompanied by newspaper artist Alfred Kappes. They planned to investigate the weird events in the Eddy farmhouse. If the stories were a hoax, they would expose the Eddy’s in the Daily Graphic newspaper as charlatans. If they were genuine, Olcott would confirm the validity of Spiritualism. He was determined to be fair and unbiased.

Colonel Henry Steel Olcott

Olcott’s first impression was that the brothers were belligerent and unfriendly. They weren’t the scamsters he expected. He attended an outdoor séance. A group of ten participants gathered in front of Honto’s Cave, named in honor of the Native American spirit who often appeared there. Olcott investigated the cave and found no other egress. Horatio was the medium for the séance.

He sat on a stool in the cave’s opening and was draped in a makeshift spirit cabinet formed by shawls and branches. As Horatio sat there, a gigantic man, in AmerIndian clothing emerged from the cave. While Horatio spoke to the spirit, someone cried and pointed toward the top of the cave.

There was another enormous AmerIndian. A spectral female materialized on a ledge. Ten specters appeared during the séance. After the séance ended, Olcott and Kappes carefully searched the cave and the surrounding area for footprints. They found none. Olcott found the séance convincing but wanted to try to detect fraud in the farmhouse.

Kappes and he carefully examined the large séance room. Olcott drew maps, charts and diagrams and took numerous measurements because he was sure he would find false panels, secret doors and/or hidden passages. He found nothing. He convinced the newspaper to hire experts to examine the house. Carpenters and engineers were the consultants. They found nothing unusual.

Eddy Brothers’ Validity Established

Each séance was basically the same. Guests sat on wooden benches in the room. A platform was lit by a kerosene lamp, in a barrel. William, the primary medium, got on the platform and entered a small cabinet. Soft voices whispered in the distance.

Often, it was singing, accompanied by phantom music. Musical instruments soared over the heads of the audience, disembodied hands appeared, waving and touching spectators, odd lights and unexplained noises appeared. The first spirit emerged from the cabinet. They materialized, alone or in groups. Some seemed solid; others, transparent and otherworldly.

Olcott examined the spirit cabinet and platform and found no trap doors or hidden passages. There was no room in the cabinet for anyone other than the medium. Olcott was familiar with the work of stage magicians and fake mediums, but couldn’t find any of their trickery in the Eddy house.

The apparitions sang and chatted with the sitters. Phenomena included rappings, moving physical items, spirit paintings, automatic writing, prophecies and levitations.

Olcott concluded that such a show would have required actors, costumes and would have cost a fortune. The brothers were nearly penniless. Olcott believed that fraud would have been physically and financially impossible.

Olcott documented the paranormal events in the newspaper and wrote a book, People from Other Worlds. The book contains meticulous drawings of the apparitions, the grounds, the house and blueprints of its construction that proved there were no hidden passages.

He collected hundreds of affidavits and testimonies to the events and reproduced dozens of statements from respected tradesmen and carpenters who examined the house for trickery.

The Eddy Brothers: Post Script

The Eddy brothers and Mary went their separate ways. Horatio died on September 8, 1922; William on October 25, 1932. Some people are inclined to dismiss the events as fiction; however Olcott’s extensive documentation and investigations imply the events weren’t a hoax.

He was skeptical and analytical during his ten-week stay at the farmhouse and he became a believer.

Sources: Dennis William Hauck, Haunted Places, Penguin Books, 2002., Rosemary Ellen Guiley, The Encyclopedia of Ghosts and Spirits, FactsOnFile, 1992., Troy Taylor, “The Strange Mystery of the Eddy Brothers,” www.prairieghosts.com/eddy.html Accessed on October 20, 2011. By Jill Stefko

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