All posts by Charlie Hintz

  • The Unpublishable Pop-up Book of Burlesque

    Peter Larkin set out to create a pop-up book about burlesque where the clothes came off. The result is a sophisticated book that will never be published.

    • Posted January 27, 2015
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  • Declining Vulture Population Threatens Mumbai’s Towers of Silence

    3,000-year-old Zoroastrian tradition of disposing of dead bodies by exposing them to scavenger birds in Mumbia is threatened by a declining Vulture population.

    • Posted January 26, 2015
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  • Tutankhamun’s Burial Mask Damaged Irreversibly

    The burial mask of pharaoh Tutankhamun has been irreversibly damaged during a cleaning in the Egyptian Museum in Cairo.

    • Posted January 22, 2015
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  • The Skull of Mary Magdalene

    This bizarre reliquary in the St. Maximin basilica in France is believed to contain the skull of Mary Magdalene.

    • Posted January 22, 2015
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  • Two-Headed Calf Taxidermy Unveiled in South Carolina

    Taxidermist Grover Bearden talks about the unique challenge of preserving a recently completed two-headed calf born to South Carolina dairy farmer John Anderson.

    • Posted January 19, 2015
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  • Jim Skull’s Elaborate Human Skull Sculptures Transcend Death

    When artist Jim Skull was eight years old, he found a human skull. Needless to say, it left a lasting mark on him.

    • Posted January 17, 2015
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  • Photographer Breathes Life Into Natural History Dioramas

    Hiroshi Sugimoto's photos breathe life and depth into otherwise static natural history museum dioramas.

    • Posted January 14, 2015
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  • Project Blue Book UFO Files Go Online

    Files from the United States Air Force Project Blue Book study on UFO activity are now available to view online for free.

    • Posted January 14, 2015
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  • Taxidermy Makes Funerals Fun in Wisconsin

    Cress Funeral Home in Madison, WI is home to funeral director Sam Sanfillippo's quirky collection of squirrel and chipmunk anthropomorphic taxidermy dioramas.

    • Posted January 13, 2015
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  • Walter Potter’s Two-Faced Kitten at the Morbid Anatomy Museum

    Victorian taxidermist Walter Potter's two-faced kitten is among the extraordinary objects to be showcased at the new Morbid Anatomy Museum exhibition.

    • Posted January 13, 2015
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  • Shelves for Life: DIY Shelf Converts to Coffin

    Build your own bookshelf that converts into a coffin.

    • Posted January 12, 2015
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  • Lonesome George: How The AMNH Turned the Last of a Species Into Taxidermy

    How did taxidermists bring Lonesome George, the last Pinta Island tortoise, back to life?

    • Posted January 5, 2015
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  • Mummy Brown: Painting with the Dead

    Human remains were once the primary ingredient of a popular pigment used by Pre-Raphaelite artists.

    • Posted January 2, 2015
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  • New Species of Stick Insect is Second Largest in the World

    This new species of stick insect discovered in Vietnam is almost two feet long, making it the second largest insect in the world.

    • Posted January 1, 2015
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  • Cult of Weird Bookmarks Have Arrived

    Limited edition Cult of Weird bookmarks feature exclusive collage art made with Victorian scientific illustrations of tentacles, anatomy and insects.

    • Posted December 31, 2014
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  • The Year in Weird 2014

    A look back at the year's most bizarre and fascinating weird news.

    • Posted December 30, 2014
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  • Most Popular Weird Books of 2014

    The most popular weird, macabre and insanely fascinating books of 2014.

    • Posted December 29, 2014
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  • Heather Benning’s Life-Size Dollhouse

    Artist Heather Benning transformed this abandoned farmhouse into a life-size dollhouse.

    • Posted December 28, 2014
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  • Goatman Named Best Weird Cryptid Book of 2014

    Goatman: Flesh or Folklore? by J. Nathan Couch has been named the Best Weird Cryptid book of 2014 by International Cryptozoology Museum founder Loren Coleman.

    • Posted December 23, 2014
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  • Scuba Claus, Cave Santa and Other Weird Ways to Visit the Jolly Man for Christmas

    Scuba Claus, Cave Santa and other weird ways to visit the jolly fat man for Christmas.

    • Posted December 22, 2014
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  • Under the Knife Morbid Christmas Special with Dr Lindsey Fitzharris

    Under the Knife puts a morbid twisted on the classic 'Twas the Night Before Christmas.

    • Posted December 18, 2014
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  • Serial Killer Trivia Board Game

    Slaughter your friends with the Serial Killer Trivia board game! Pick your killer and go on a murderous rampage. The first player to score five victims wins!

    • Posted December 17, 2014
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  • New Weird Species of Bone Worm Discovered

    Typically confined to a life of mating inside the body of the female bone worm, a new species of independent male reveals a rare case of evolutionary reversal.

    • Posted December 15, 2014
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  • Court Battle Over the Coffin of Lee Harvey Oswald

    A battle rages in a Texas court over the sale of the coffin that once held Lee Harvey Oswald, the gunman who assassinated President John F. Kennedy in 1963.

    • Posted December 11, 2014
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  • Inventors Killed by Their Inventions

    Infographic: 7 inventors whose fates were determined by the very things they created.

    • Posted December 10, 2014
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  • The Landing Short Film

    A man returns to the Midwestern farm of his childhood on a desperate mission to unearth the horrifying truth of what landed there in the summer of 1960.

    • Posted December 10, 2014
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  • Beyond the Dark Veil: Post Mortem Photography

    The Thanatos Archive put together this book of post mortem and mourning photography shedding light on the practice of death in the Victorian era.

    • Posted December 4, 2014
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  • Chernobyl’s Ghost City: Postcards From Pripyat

    Filmmaker Danny Cooke captures some amazing views of Pripyat, the city abandoned after the Chernobyl nuclear disaster.

    • Posted November 30, 2014
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  • Cult of Weird Holiday Gift Guide 2014

    Find the perfect oddities to finish up your holiday shopping with the official Cult of Weird 2014 holiday gift guide!

    • Posted November 24, 2014
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  • Talking Board Historical Society Launches

    The Talking Board Historical Society has officially launched, founded by Ouija board historians Robert Murch and Brandon Hodge.

    • Posted November 20, 2014
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  • Abandoned America Book Documents Forgotten Spaces Across the US

    Photographer Matthew Christopher documents the empty, crumbling ruins of civilization across the US.

    • Posted November 20, 2014
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  • Deep-Fried Tarantula Recipe

    Make Thanksgiving unique this year by serving something your guests won't soon forget...deep-fried tarantulas.

    • Posted November 19, 2014
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  • Giant Skeletons of Mound Builders in Wisconsin

    Strange remains of giant skeletons and other bizarre remnants of the mound builders have been found throughout Wisconsin.

    • Posted November 16, 2014
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  • Under the Knife: The Plague Doctor

    Dr. Lindsey Fitzharris discusses the history of the bubonic plague and the iconic plague mask in the second episode of her new web series Under the Knife.

    • Posted November 11, 2014
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  • Morbid Anatomy Museum

    The week before Halloween, I came home to find a package on my doorstep. Inside were the items pictured above: A Morbid Anatomy Museum t-shirt, a copy of the Morbid Anatomy Anthology, and a thank you postcard...

    • Posted November 10, 2014
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  • Review: Search for the Lost Giants

    Unusual evidence is unearthed at locations where giant human skeletons were supposedly discovered around the turn of the century in the debut episode of the new History series Search for the Lost Giants.

    • Posted November 6, 2014
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  • History Series Goes in Search of the Lost Giants

    A new History series explores claims of giant skeletons unearthed in the early 19th century and searches for evidence of giants in the ancient world.

    • Posted October 30, 2014
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  • Piece of Amelia Earhart’s Plane Identified

    A piece of aluminum debris recovered in 1991 most likely belongs to Amelia Earhart's plane.

    • Posted October 30, 2014
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  • Escaping the Grave: Listen to Houdini’s Final Seance on Halloween Night, 1936

    The wife of escape artist Harry Houdini held seances every Halloween night for ten years after his death to contact him.

    • Posted October 29, 2014
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  • Grave of the Torryburn Witch Found in Scotland

    The grave of the Torryburn witch has recently been uncovered on the shore of Scotland's Fife Coast.

    • Posted October 28, 2014
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  • DNA Solves Foss Lake Mystery

    DNA confirms the identities of six bodies found in Oklahoma’s Foss Lake last year, solving decades-old missing persons cases. In 2013, while testing sonar equipment in Oklahoma’s murky Foss Lake, Police discovered two cars rusting side by...

    • Posted October 27, 2014
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  • Russian Man Dug Up, Mummified Remains of 150 Girls

    Russian man robbed graves of 150 young girls to make grisly collection of mummified dolls with the remains and have birthday parties. 46-year-old Russian historian Anatoly Moskvin, who was found with mummified human remains in his Nizhni...

    • Posted October 27, 2014
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  • A Halloween Tour of Woolly Mammoth

    Take a tour of Chicago oddities shop Woolly Mammoth with owner Adam Rust in this special Halloween episode of American Dealers.

    • Posted October 23, 2014
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  • Hand Crafted Ouija Board by Jesse Acosta

    Ebony stained wood Ouija boards hand crafted by illustrator Jesse Acosta.

    • Posted October 21, 2014
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  • The Disappearance of Ambrose Bierce

    Eye witness accounts detail the numerous fates of author and journalist Ambrose Bierce in 1913.

    • Posted October 21, 2014
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  • Ouija: Mystifying History of the Dreaded Talking Board Game

    How did a harmless board game manage to conjure such a fearful reputation?

    • Posted October 17, 2014
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  • Tibetan Skeleton Dance

    The Skeleton dance is a sacred Tibetan dance ritual found in Himalayan Buddhist lineages. It is intended to reflect the transient nature of things, including states of mind and the body itself. The monk pictured in the...

    • Posted October 15, 2014
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  • Video: Cremation of a Human Body

    Graphic video shows the cremation of a human body from beginning to end.

    • Posted October 10, 2014
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  • Freak Show: Most Famous Circus Sideshow Performers

    A look at some of history's most famous and fascinating circus sideshow performers.

    • Posted October 8, 2014
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  • SS Baychimo, Alaska’s Mysterious Ghost Ship

    Built in 1914, the SS Baychimo was a 1,322 ton cargo steamer used for Inuit pelt trading in Alaska. In 1931, after becoming trapped in pack ice, it was abandoned and left for dead. The captain believed...

    • Posted October 8, 2014
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  • Goatman: Author J. Nathan Couch Explores the Bizarre Legend in His New Book

    Author and paranormal investigator J. Nathan Couch explores legends of the Goatman across the US.

    • Posted October 8, 2014
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  • Cult of Weird Fall Reading List

    Explore themes of death, cremation, devil worship, the occult, doomed expeditions and do-it-yourself taxidermy with these weird books perfect for fall reading.

    • Posted October 3, 2014
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  • Mummified Fetus Discovered in Italy

    An article recently published in the Journal of Osteoarcheology details the discovery and examination of a mummified 29-week-old fetus dating to 1840 and other 19th-century remains in Central Italy. The remains were found after a 6.3-magnitude earthquake...

    • Posted October 3, 2014
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  • Franklin Expedition Erebus Shipwreck Found

    160 years after the crew of the doomed Franklin Expedition succumbed to madness and cannibalism, the wreck of the HMS Erebus has been found. After 150 years, Canadian explorers have found one of the two missing ships...

    • Posted October 3, 2014
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  • Sculpture Being Installed to Mark Rendlesham UFO Incident

    A sculpture is being installed at the site of the Rendlesham Forest UFO incident in Suffolk. The incident, which occurred in December of 1980, is now regarded as one of the biggest UFO mysteries in the UK,...

    • Posted September 20, 2014
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  • Jane: Jamestown Cannibalism Victim

    Jane is the skull of a 14-year-old girl was unearthed at the site of the early Virginia colony of Jamestown in 2012. Marks on the bone showed clear evidence that after death, the girl had been butchered...

    • Posted July 31, 2014
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  • July Weird News Roundup

    Last July there were so many weird things to share that I threw together a roundup of the weirdest to gather it all in one place. Either I am more motivated in July, or this month just...

    • Posted July 31, 2014
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  • Rosalia Lombardo: Blinking Mummy of the Capuchin Catacombs

    Rosalia Lombardo died at two years old of pneumonia in 1920. She was preserved by a skilled embalmer using methods only recently understood, and entombed in Italy’s Capuchin Catacombs. Recently, a bizarre phenomenon has stirred controversy and...

    • Posted July 30, 2014
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  • Alien Structure on Asteroid 1999-RQ36

    I don’t usually post much about aliens or UFOs, but the sci-fi/horror geek in me loves the sound of this one. According to Mysterious Universe, the OSIRIS-REx (Origins Spectral Interpretation Resource Identification Security — Regolith Explorer) spacecraft...

    • Posted July 10, 2014
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  • The Mummified Ancestors of Papua New Guinea’s Anga Tribe

    For hundreds of years, the Anga tribe in the remote, mountainous region of Papua New Guinea’s Morobe province has been practicing the ritual preservation of their dead with fire and clay. The first step in the mummification...

    • Posted June 27, 2014
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  • Boy Finds Mummified Corpse Hanging in Abandoned House

    News is sweeping the internet about a twelve-year-old boy who discovered a mummified corpse hanging in the closet while he was exploring an abandoned house in Dayton, Ohio. Authorities say the corpse belonged to a suicide victim...

    • Posted June 18, 2014
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  • Skull Collection Goes on Display

    Some of bone collector Randy Bandar’s 7,000 skulls, which he has been collecting for 60 years, are being exhibited at the California Academy of Sciences. Full article here: A Bone Collector’s Basement of Animal Skulls Sees the...

    • Posted June 12, 2014
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  • Capuchin Catacomb Mummies of Palermo, Italy

    Mummies in the Capuchin catacombs of Palermo, Italy. The monks began mummifying their brothers in 1599, entombing them in the catacombs below with their clothes and religious items. Soon locals began requesting burial in the catacombs, as...

    • Posted June 10, 2014
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  • The Art of Ryan Matthew Cohn

    The Collective Disease: The Art and Artifacts of Ryan Matthew Cohn explores the Oddities star’s incredible personal collection in his museum-like New York home, including his exploded Beauchene skulls, taxidermy, anatomical wet specimens, skeletal articulations, shrunken heads...

    • Posted May 22, 2014
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  • Carl Akeley’s Powerful Sculpture Depicting the Humanity of Gorillas

    Sculpted in 1924 by taxidermist and gorilla advocate Carl Akeley, "Chrysalis" represents his belief in the humanity of the apes.

    • Posted May 21, 2014
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  • Famed Taxidermist Carl Akeley Turns 150

    Carl Akeley, the grandfather of modern taxidermy, turns 150 this week. Recently, tales of the legendary tough guy have been circulating around the web, recounting his first expedition for the Chicago Field Museum in 1896, when he...

    • Posted May 21, 2014
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  • Condemning Smallpox to Extinction

    Delegates meet next week for the 67th World Health Assembly to discuss the deliberate extinction of the smallpox virus. The global eradication of smallpox was confirmed in 1980. The World Health Organization closed smallpox research labs and...

    • Posted May 20, 2014
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  • The Death Car of Bonnie and Clyde

    The 'death car' of Bonnie and Clyde, still riddled with bullet holes, has been on display ever since the notorious bank robbers were gunned down.

    • Posted May 20, 2014
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  • UFO Cult Says No to Alien Baptisms

    The Pope recently made weird news headlines with the statement that he would baptize aliens if they wanted him to. Now the Raëlian UFO cult has chimed in with their disapproval, stating that since the aliens created...

    • Posted May 20, 2014
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  • Ancient Remains May Solve Mystery of First Americans

    Ancient skeletal remains of an adolescent girl discovered in an underwater cave in Mexico may help uncover the identity of the earliest American inhabitants. Naia (ancient Greek for ‘water nymph’) was found a half mile inside the...

    • Posted May 19, 2014
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  • The Screw-In Coffin

    Donald Scruggs' Easy Inter Burial Container screws into the ground for easy interment and space-saving vertical burial.

    • Posted May 18, 2014
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  • House on the Rock: A Slow Descent Into Madness Disguised as a Tourist Attraction

    A slow descent into madness disguised as a tourist attraction in Spring Green, WI.

    • Posted May 17, 2014
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  • Nightmare at the Museum @Midnight

    Cult of Weird was featured on last night’s episode of @Midnight on Comedy Central! Host Chris Hardwick (of Nerdist and AMC’s Talking Dead) introduced the site for the category Nightmare at the Museum. The contestants then had...

    • Posted May 13, 2014
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  • Morbid Anatomy Museum Kickstarter

    The Morbid Anatomy Museum needs your help to move into a 3-story facility in Brooklyn to house their collections. The Kickstarter campaign includes some great incentives such as art prints, t-shirts, the Morbid Anatomy Anthology book, tickets...

    • Posted March 25, 2014
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  • Diaphonized Specimens by Iori Tomita

    Colorful and intriguing examples of diaphonized specimens by artist Iori Tomita:

    • Posted March 20, 2014
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  • Giraffe Leg Lamp, Wet Specimens & Teeth

    This week’s edition of strange and amazing things you can buy online right now (unless they sold sometime after this was posted) comes from a couple of my favorite shops, as well as a few new ones...

    • Posted February 20, 2014
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  • Love Plastinated: Story of the Heart

    This powerful image of a plastinated couple is from the Body Worlds exhibit Story of the Heart, about the cardiovascular system.

    • Posted February 13, 2014
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  • Las Momias de Guanajuato

    Guanajuato, Mexico is home to El Museo De Las Momias, a unique museum where the mummified remains of over one hundred 19th century cholera victims are on display. The cholera epidemic gripped the city of Guanajuato in...

    • Posted February 11, 2014
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  • New Exhibit at the Milwaukee Public Museum

    Last year while roaming the mysterious caverns of the Milwaukee Public Museum, we noticed a full-size taxidermy camel locked away in a dark hallway. What was it doing in there? What were we missing? It turns out...

    • Posted January 31, 2014
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  • Carl Akeley’s Muskrat Habitat Diorama

    I grew up in awe of the muskrat display and other astounding (and often creepy) dioramas at the Milwaukee Public Museum. Though I have made many expeditions into it’s dark, fascinating labyrinth throughout my life, it was...

    • Posted January 31, 2014
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  • Bog Bodies: The Mysterious Weerdinge Men

    The Weerdinge Men were uncovered by a farmer in 1904 in a peat bog in the Netherlands. They have been radiocarbon-dated to between 160 BC and 220 AD. One of the bodies has a hole in the...

    • Posted January 4, 2014
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  • Pink Pills for Pale People

    Dr. William’s Pink Pills for Pale People, 1890

    • Posted January 4, 2014
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  • Top Weird Posts of 2013

    The 2013 weird news was filled with flesh-eating drugs, testicle-biting fish, sinkholes swallowing cars and buildings and people having intimate relations with inanimate objects in public. Here are the top Cult of Weird posts, weird news and...

    • Posted December 30, 2013
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  • How to Taxidermy a Mouse

    If you are looking to embark on your first taxidermy adventure, you should not begin without Mouse: A Taxidermy Workshop Manual at your side. Taxidermist and workshop instructor Margot Magpie assembled this 70-page step-by-step photo tutorial to...

    • Posted December 27, 2013
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  • Walter Potter’s Taxidermy Book for Christmas

    I found Walter Potter’s Curious World of Taxidermy under the Cult of Weird Christmas tree this year from Slasher Betty!

    • Posted December 26, 2013
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  • A Very Merry Cult Christmas

    Cult of Weird Christmas challenge: Put a Christmas hat, bow or ribbon on something odd and tag it #CultOfWeird on Instagram, Twitter or Tumblr!

    • Posted December 19, 2013
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  • The Porcelain Sculptures of Kate MacDowell

    Portland artist Kate Macdowell hand-sculpts these porcelain figures where humanity and nature collide to create intricate and beautiful new forms that have been dissected to expose the bizarre and intricate details, such as human skeletons inside animals...

    • Posted December 16, 2013
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  • Snow in Egypt

    Egypt experienced its first in 112 years, leaving many people who had never seen snow in wonder and amazement on Friday, December 13th. While the photos circulating of the sphinx covered in snow are actually from a...

    • Posted December 16, 2013
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  • These Creepy Vintage Santa Photos Will Give You Nightmares

    A collection of creepy vintage Santa photos sure to traumatize you for Christmas.

    • Posted December 12, 2013
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  • Giant Ant Hill Excavated

    A giant ant colony is pumped full of concrete, then excavated to reveal the complexity of its inner structure.

    • Posted December 11, 2013
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  • Greetings from the Krampus

    A collection of vintage Gruss vom Krampus cards to fill your Yule with Christmas terror.

    • Posted December 9, 2013
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  • Breast Ripper

    Similar to the Iron Spider, the Breast Ripper was an instrument of torture used for interrogation and punishment in Germany and France from 1599 until the nineteenth century. It would be heated up and used to slowly...

    • Posted December 9, 2013
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  • Oddities from Crystal Curios

    It is always amazing to see what bizarre, unique and rare objects may be hiding in someone’s personal cabinet of curiosities. Here are some amazing pieces from the collection of Crystal Curios, the weirdest shop in Milton...

    • Posted December 6, 2013
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  • The Bones of St. Nicholas

    Sorry folks, St. Nick is dead. And apparently his bones leak some kind of holy, healing oil.

    • Posted December 3, 2013
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  • Exploding Whale Video

    A local fisherman was attempting to cut open this dead, bloated sperm whale on the Faroe Islands when he apparently hit a pocket of gas inside the blubber and caused it to erupt.

    • Posted November 27, 2013
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  • Saturn Devouring His Son

    Francisco Goya painted “Saturn Devouring His Son” on a wall inside his house on the banks of the Manzanares river near Madrid. It was one of six works Goya used to decorate his dining room, painted sometime...

    • Posted November 27, 2013
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  • Marilyn Monroe Thanksgiving

    Marilyn Monroe as a sexy pilgrim hunting turkey for Thanksgiving…1950. Related: Marilyn Monroe’s Grave Marker Up for Grabs

    • Posted November 26, 2013
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  • Hand of Glory

    A hand of glory is the pickled hand of a man who has been hanged. Usually the left hand was used. If the man was hanged for murder, then the hand with which he committed the crime...

    • Posted November 26, 2013
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  • Death: 10 Macabre and Fascinating Books

    I embarked on a mission to create a simple list of “weird” books that would look great (and possibly frighten guests) on your coffee table. Instead I accidentally assembled a rather profound exploration of humanity’s most primal...

    • Posted November 25, 2013
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  • Sea and Land: Victorian History Book Illustrates the Dreaded and Grotesque Natural World

    This 1889 book highlights all the horrors of the natural world, from sea serpents and krakens to carnivorous man-eating plants.

    • Posted November 24, 2013
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