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Eccentricities, true crime, macabre, lore

Category: Extraordinary People (Page 2 of 2)

Dan Rice

Well, Halloween is over, the scary clowns seem to be over, and the next scariest thing, the presidential elections in the US, will soon also be over. Given the chance, let’s cross the Atlantic and let me introduce you to Dan Rice, the man who managed to combine most of those mentioned above.

Dan Rice was born in 1823 in New York City. He was an entertainer, in the broader sense, and during his time he was really famous. How was he entertaining? Well, he was a famous clown! Okay, maybe I don’t do him justice… He was more than that.

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Caroline Prodgers

Be honest with me.

How many of you have been enraged by cab drivers? How many of you have picked up fights with them, or felt cheated, or wished you could have sought revenge, but never got around it? Let me introduce you to your patron saint, Mrs. Caroline Prodgers.

Caroline was born in 1829, and until her death in 1890, she became famous for her seemingly endless court disputes.

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Jane Lewson

“On this day of the year, long before you were born, this heap of decay,” stabbing with her crutched stick at the pile of cobwebs on the table but not touching it, “was brought here. It and I have worn away together. The mice have gnawed at it, and sharper teeth than teeth of mice have gnawed at me.”

Does this quote sound familiar? No? It’s OK, we’ll get there.

Jane Lewson, or Lady Lewson to some, was born in 1700, in Strand. She married a wealthy merchant, moved to Coldbath Square, and had a daughter. All was fine until her husband died when she was 26 years old. Although she allegedly had many suitors, she decided not to remarry. After the marriage of her daughter, her life took a weird turn.

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Carl Von Cosel

I’m going to tell you the story of Carl von Cosel, or Karl Tanzler or even better, Count Carl von Cosel. Yes, he used to go around under a lot of names and as it turned out, under a lot of occupations too. There is no real evidence that he was indeed a Count, nor is there proof that he was a radiologist, a microbiologist, a bacteriologist or anything with an -ologist at the end. Suspicious as it might sound, this not why I’m telling you his story.

Let’s go back to the basics. Carl was born in Dresden, Germany, in 1877. Considering all the false Ids maybe I should just skip everything he claimed he did and fast-forward his story in the years following WWI in 1926. That’s the year he migrated to the US, in Zephyrhills, Florida where his sister was already living. His wife and two daughters followed him shortly after.

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