"...we should pass over all biographies of 'the good and the great,' while we search carefully the slight records of wretches who died in prison, in Bedlam, or upon the gallows."
~Edgar Allan Poe

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Newspaper Clipping of the Day

This one comes to us courtesy of a journal, not a newspaper, but close enough.  It is a short, if anything but sweet story from the "Worcester Magazine," for the third week of September, 1787. As M.R. James would say, it is a warning to the curious.
Philadelphia, September 1. We learn from Lancaster that the following singular affair is founded on fact, and confirmed by Dr. Huston.

On the evening of the 11th ultimo, a young man having obtained information of some young women near Wright's ferry, having formed a resolution of going in the evening to a cornfield to get some roasting ears of Indian corn, resolved he would go with a white sheet about him to represent a ghost, and have some fun in scaring them; but fatal was the consequence to him; whether he saw any thing which might be permitted to chastise him for his boldness, or what incident fell out to craze his imagination we cannot tell. But so it turned out, that after running through the fields for some hours, at last he reached a house in a manner frighted beyond description; he was immediately seized with epileptic fits, and continued to have frequent returns of them, till they put a period to his existence about the middle of last week. Doctor Huston attended him, and says when he was not in these fits, he was always scared and imagined he saw something terrible, and cried to be taken away from it.

This is an awful warning against all attempts to terrify women and children, from which no good consequences will follow, but sometimes those that are very fatal.

1 comment:

  1. Maybe the women and children were scarier than the man suspected...


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