"...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

Thursday, December 31, 2015

A Strange Company 2015

As I did at the close of 2014, I thought I'd do a year-end wrap-up taking a look at the top ten posts from the past year.  Just to be different, it had occurred to me to make a list of my innumerable posts that proved to be about as popular as botulism at a picnic, but after some reflection I decided that might be too depressing.  For me, at any rate.

I figure there's more than enough Weird in the world to keep this goofy little blog of mine going at least through 2016.  I hope at least some of you will continue to be part of Strange Company's strange company, as we look at more disappearances, murders, cats, scandals, cats, ghosts, witches, kidnappings, general bad behavior, and, of course, cats.

So, on with the countdown, starting with 2015's most popular tale:

1. The Horror in Room 1046. 

This is one of those murder mysteries that I'm surprised isn't more well-known.  The post, incidentally, owes its relative popularity to a link on a Reddit sub.  [Side note:  If you want to make any blogger really, really happy, share one of their posts on Reddit.  Hit-count gold, baby.]

2. Newspaper Clipping of the Day, February 25, 2015.

All hail those Ladies of the Illustrated Police News!

3.  A Case For David Paulides.

The tragedy of a small boy's inexplicable disappearance from an amusement park.

4. The Witch of Ringtown.

Witchcraft, hexes, ghostly black cat familiars, and murder...in 20th century America.

5. The Great Trinity Church Hoax; or, Dix Picked For Slick Tricks.

A New York clergyman is the target of a series of increasingly deranged hoaxes.

6.  The Adventures of Miss Cora Strayer, Private Detective.

I can't tell you how much fun I had with this one.

7. Newspaper Clipping of the Day, May 13, 2015.

As I said at the time, I was uneasy about posting this story of a grave-robber's dreadful end.  It was so macabre, so incredibly gruesome in detail, I thought it could be too much for anyone to read.  I feared it might drive all of you away for good.

So, next thing I know it's the 7th most popular post of the year.  God love ya, gang.

8. A Disappearance at West Point:  The Case of Richard Colvin Cox.

This vanishing of a USMA cadet is one of the strangest missing-persons cases I know.

9. Captain King and the Golden Needle.

This account of the eerie death of a British military officer in Egypt was a particular favorite of mine from the past year--it  reminds me of M.R. James' more open-ended stories--so I was pleased to see it make the Top Ten.  Usually, my favorite posts on this blog tend to get the fewest hits.  Which probably helps explain why I'm a financially-strapped nobody and J.K. Rowling is a multigazillionaire.

But I digress.

10. The Sinister Disappearance of a Film Pioneer.

What the hell happened to Louis Le Prince?

So, there you have the best--or, at least, best-read--of Strange Company 2015.  See you in 2016, and may it be a happy, prosperous, and really, really peculiar year for us all.


  1. All good choices, and interesting reads. I have never liked or trusted Edison...

    Happy new year to all the Strange Company!

    1. A happy new year to you too, John. I hope the move to your new place is going well.

  2. I can only agree with John Bellen's opinion of Edison! I just wanted to say Happy New Year to you, Undine. I can't pick a favourite piece of yours from such an embarrassment of riches. I always look forward to the next one as I feel that yours is easily one of the best blogs out there. Hopefully you'll be firing my imagination with more accounts of wild oddities for years to come.

  3. You said: "My innumerable posts that proved to be about as popular as botulism at a picnic" - Well, hey, who doesn't enjoy a good dose of botulism at a picnic? (BTW, that would make a great blog post!)

    I will be lurking around in 2016, reading, even if I'm too lazy to comment. Just so you know, it took me multiple clicks to find the "Comments" box (I figured out you have to click the main title of the site, not the title of the post, when you load the page from your email.) My new middle name will be "Untechnical," after I get it legally changed. It's not just blogs - I just spent two hours of my New Year's Eve on the phone with the computer help desk - yay! - trying to get into my work computer. (Almost as fun for me as it was for the guy on the other end of the call.) I hope your New Year's Eve goes better than mine! Thanks for the "Illustrated Police News" ladies, and the exploding corpse guy with the flesh-eating bacterial precursors, and all the other fun in 2015

  4. I'm so happy to have found this site. You do a tremendous job here!

  5. Thanks to all of you. :) A happy 2016 among the oddities to us all!

  6. Hey Undine.., I wont be going anywhere.., yours is one of my favorite blogs.. I look forward to the bizarrities you have uncovered throughout history..., Weirdness abounds, & "Truth" is always stranger than fiction.. More power to ya in 2016.. ;-)


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