Forgotten Darkness

Strange things are lost and forgotten in obscure corners of the newspaper.

August 30th, 2018    

7 - The Galleanists

A profile of Italian anarchist Luigi Galleani and his followers, the Galleanists, who after his deportation engaged in a campaign of bombing and destruction across the country.  Also the "Palmer Raids" of 1919-1920 and a few appearances of people who became of importance later.



“Anarchists held Paterson,” Leadville (CO) Herald Democrat, June 19, 1902.

“Anarchists in bombing case under arrest,” Port Huron (MI) Times Herald, June 5, 1919.

“Arrest Boston Bolshevist in Roxbury bomb outrage,” Boston Globe, June 4, 1919.

“Arrest of bomb plot heads to be made soon,” Muncie (IN) Evening Press, June 4, 1919.

“Believe Paterson bomb meant for Fitzgerald,” Boston Globe, June 4, 1919.

“Bomb for Mr. Smoot returned to Gimbel's,” Washington Evening Star, May 1, 1919.

“Bomb is sent to Senator Overman,” Washington Evening Star, May 1, 1919.

“Central Union and the Paterson riots,” New York Times, November 3, 1902.

“Congress aroused to stamp out Red activities in U.S.,” Buffalo Enquirer, June 4, 1919.

Cronaca Sovversiva plant is raided,” Barre (VT) Daily Times, September 5, 1918.

“Luigi Galleani on trial in N.J.,” Montpelier (VT) Journal, April 26, 1907.

“May have M'Queen,” Elmira (NY) Star-Gazette, June 27, 1902.

“Mistaken identity Galleani's defense,” Barre (VT) Daily Times, April 27, 1907.

“M'Queen here to surrender for sentence,” The Star Press (Muncie, IN), April 11, 1904.

“New York bomb trail leads to Philadelphia,” Boston Globe, June 4, 1919.

“Once helped publish Cronaca Sovversiva,” Barre (VT) Daily Times, May 5, 1920.

“Ordered deported,” Barre (VT) Daily Times, February 20, 1919.

“Palmer asks for appropriation to hunt down Reds,” El Paso Times, June 13, 1919.

“Plot to assassinate King Humbert and other monarchs was hatched in this city,” New York World, August 3, 1900.

“Police seek boy explosion spared,” Binghamton (NY) Press and Sun-Bulletin, July 6, 1904.

“Red at Niagara,” Buffalo Enquirer, September 17, 1920.

“Soldiers are sent to quell Paterson riots,” Buffalo Evening News, June 20, 1902.

“Sued for $5,000,” Montpelier (VT) Journal, December 29, 1910.

“Terrorists attack in Philadelphia, wrecking houses of judge, police head and prominent businessman by bombs,” Barre (VT) Daily Times, December 31, 1918.

“Trials of Tarrytown rioters are postponed,” Binghamton (NY) Press and Sun-Bulletin, July 6, 1904.

“U.S. hunts anarchists as May Day mail plot fails to gain victims,” Washington Evening Star, May 1, 1919.

“Work of anarchists of some other city,” Boston Globe, June 3, 1919.

Flynn, William J. “On the trail of the anarchist band,” Nashville Tennessean, March 5, 1922.

Gage, Beverly. The Day Wall Street Exploded: A Story of America in its First Age of Terror. New York: Oxford University Press, 2009.


August 20th, 2018    

6 - A Little California Voodoo

The story of Charles M. Hatfield, rainmaker of California, and the 1916 flood of San Diego with which he was - maybe - connected.



“$5,000 price named,” Monroe (LA) News-Star, April 28, 1925.

“A rainmaker's claim,” Scranton (PA) Republican, April 1, 1904.

“Charles M. Hatfield, alleged rain maker, again visits here, wants $3,000 for three inches,” Oxnard Press-Courier, March 13, 1923.

“Cloud-compelling Jove has a bold competitor in Oregon,” Oregon Daily Journal, July 14, 1907.

Destruction and death follow in wake of water,” San Bernardino County Sun, January 29, 1916.

“Dam breaks and angry flood assails Pomona,” Los Angeles Times, January 19, 1916.

“Droughts and famine needless, says 'rainmaker' Hatfield,” Bismarck (ND) Tribune, August 13, 1921.

“Fall in San Diego,” Los Angeles Times, January 16, 1916.

“Hatfield chasing elusive cloudlets,” Los Angeles Herald, October 4, 1908.

“Hatfield, good guesser, ranchers may feel assured there will be 12 inches or more of rain this season,” Oxnard Press-Courier, December 16, 1921.

“Hatfield has corner on rain,” Los Angeles Times, December 3, 1904.

“Hatfield made the sky fall (and fall), Taylor (TX) Daily Press, November 30, 1978.

“'Hatfield the rainmaker' started all this tinkering with the weather,” Oakland Tribune, February 15, 1951.

“Hocus pocus is what Ventura dubs Hatfield,” Oxnard Press-Courier, December 16, 1921.

“Making rain again,” Des Moines Daily Register, November 6, 1921.

“Morton County people interested in Hatfield,” Morton County (KS) Progress and Rolla Progress, June 18, 1925.

“Plants for rainmaking,” Harrisburg (PA) Telegraph, February 2, 1906.

“Rain promised, flood followed in 1916.” Retrieved from

“Rain promised for Christmas,” Los Angeles Times, December 19, 1904.

“'Rainmaker' is not re-engaged,” Vancouver Daily World, February 11, 1922.

“'Rainmaker' to get paid for rainfall,” Montreal Gazette, July 29, 1921.

“'Rainmaker' offers to break big drought,” Fresno Bee, August 12, 1934.

“'Rainmaker' wins $8,000 for breaking dry spell,” Springville (UT) Herald, April 24, 1925.

“Raining dollars into 'hat',” Vancouver Daily World, May 21, 1921.

“Rainmaker busy,” Los Angeles Times, December 13, 1904.

“Rainmaker may get $10,000 as result of floods in California,” Indianapolis News, February 10, 1916.

“Rainmaker sues,” Los Angeles Times, December 3, 1916.

“Rainmaker Hatfield in Italy in attempt to end long drought,” Bismarck (ND) Tribune, August 21, 1922.

“Rainstorms at $50 each, or your money back,” Boston Globe, March 2, 1904.

“San Bernardino county loss about a million,” Los Angeles Times, January 19, 1916.

“Six deaths and $2,000,000 loss; storm havoc in south,” Santa Ana Register, January 19, 1916.

“Steamer is embedded in silt at the harbor,” Los Angeles Times, January 19, 1916.

“Thinks he can coerce nature,” San Francisco Chronicle, Decmber 12, 1904.

“Trains by the score crawl out of floods,” Los Angeles Times, January 21, 1916.

“Wall of water rushes from hills near Claremont School,” San Bernardino Sun, January 19, 1916.

“With a grain of salt,” Redlands (CA) Daily Facts, April 16, 1958.

Brimner, Larry Dane. The Rain Wizard. Honesdale, PA: Calkins Creek, 2015.



August 14th, 2018    

5 - The Leopard People

A history of the Leopard Men, a murderous - sometimes - animistic cult in Central Africa.  Also other similar African groups, the Crocodile Men, Baboon Society and Lion-Men or Mbojo are dealt with.  Finally, we detour briefly to South America and take a quick look at the legends of werejaguars in the armies of an Argentine general.



Aldridge, Thomas Joshua. A Transformed Colony: Sierra Leone as it Was, and as it Is, Its Progress, Peoples, Native Customs and Undeveloped Wealth. London: Seeley & Co., 1910.

Ambrosetti, Juan. “The Legend of the Yaguarete-Aba; the Indian Tiger, and its Projections among the Guaranies, Quichuas, etc.” Annals of the Argentine Scientific Society 41 (1896).

Beatty, K.J. Human Leopards: An Account of the Trials of Human Leopards Before the Special Commission Court. London: Hugh Rees, 1915.

Fyle, Magbaily C. Historical Dictionary of Sierra Leone. Lanham, MD: Scarecrow, 2006.

Howard, Robert E. “Man-Eaters of Zamboula.”

Miller, Ivor L. “Bongo Ita: Leopard Society Music and Language in West Africa, Western Cuba, and New York City.” African and Black Diaspora: An International Journal 5:1 (January 2012). Retrieved from:

Miller, Ivor and Mathew Ojong. “Ekpe 'Leopard' Society in Africa and the Americas: Influence and Values of an Ancient Tradition.” Ethnic and Racial Studies 36:2 (2013). Retrieved from:

Pratten, David. The Man-Leopard Murders: History and Society in Colonial Nigeria. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 2007.

“The Influence of Islam on African Native Law – II.” In The Moslem World, Vol. 11 (S.M. Zwemer, ed.). Harrisburg, PA: Missionary Review, 1921.

Van Bockhaven, Vicky. “Leopard-men of the Congo in Literature and Popular Imagination.” Tydskrif vir Letterkunde 46:1 (January 2009). Retrieved from:


August 9th, 2018    

4 - The Black Cat of Killakee

In this episode, we'll hear the story of an Irish ghost?  poltergeist?  demon?  that appeared as a large talking black cat.  Also, some history of the Hellfire Clubs, and a 1566 English witch trial in which a cat turned toad turned dog named Satan figured.



Philips, John. An Examination and Confession of Certain Witches at Chelmsford in the County of Essex, before the Queen Majesty's Judges, the 26th day of July Anno 1566. London: 1566.

Fennel, Paul. Haunted: A Guide to Paranormal Ireland. Dublin: Poolbeg, 2006.

Joyce, P.W. Origin and History of Irish Names of Places. Dublin: McGlashan & Gill, 1875.

St. John Joyce, Weston. The Neighbourhood of Dublin, its Topography, Antiquities and Historical Associations. Dublin: M.H. Gill & Son, 1921.

The Demonic Cat at Killakee House.


August 1st, 2018    

3 - Jack the Shoe Slasher

In this episode, we'll hear the story of a violent offender in Philadelphia and Baltimore that carried a foot fetish to the next level.  Also, we'll hear about a Springheel Jack and Jersey Devil sighting that may be connected to each other and to the offender.



“Brutal attack upon young girl,” Philadelphia Inquirer, January 7, 1905.

“Excited over slasher,” Baltimore Sun, February 5, 1905.

“Is he the shoe slasher?,” Baltimore Sun, February 6, 1905.

“Jack the foot slasher,” Washington Post, February 16, 1905.

“Jack the shoe slasher,” Harrisburg (PA) Daily Independent, January 19, 1905.

“Jack the slasher again,” Washington Post, March 13, 1906.

“Jack the slasher has moved uptown,” Philadelphia Inquirer, January 23, 1905.

“Know Karolis as Burt,” Baltimore Sun, February 9, 1905.

“Mrs. Kirschner's assailant?” Baltimore Sun, February 2, 1905.

“Not the shoe slasher,” Baltimore Sun, February 22, 1905.

“Says devil forced him,” Baltimore Sun, March 24, 1909.

“Shoe slasher,” Montpelier (VT) Evening Argus, January 21, 1905.

“Shoe slasher again?,” Baltimore Sun, February 24, 1905.

“Shoe slasher is here,” Baltimore Sun, February 4, 1905.

“Shoe slasher busy in blizzard,” Wilmington (DE) Morning News, January 26, 1905.

“Slasher at it again,” Baltimore Sun, February 10, 1905.

“Think him the slasher,” Baltimore Sun, February 20, 1905.

“Was not the slasher,” Baltimore Sun, February 17, 1905.

“Wielded knife on the skirts of five women,” Philadelphia Inquirer, January 16, 1905.

Bondeson, Jan. The London Monster: A Sanguinary Tale. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2000.

Oordt, Darcy. Haunted Philadelphia: Famous Phantoms, Sinister Sites, and Lingering Legends. Guilford, CT: Globe Pequot, 2015.

Paijmans, Theo. “Philadelphia's 'Jack the Slasher' Case.” Fortean Times 279 (September 2011).


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