10 Times The Past Was Crazier Than People Could Ever Imagine

10 Times The Past Was Crazier Than People Could Ever Imagine

Khalid Elhassan - July 12, 2018

We might be living through what many consider to be strange and weird times today, but we are not the first to have gone through an odd era. History is replete with weirdness, and the past had no shortage of examples of people living through strange head scratching events.

Following are ten examples when history was crazier than many might have imagined.

Pranksters and Conmen Pretending to be Ghosts

Back in the days when superstition was even more widespread and prevalent than today, grifters and conmen had a field day taking advantage of the gullible by preying on their beliefs in the supernatural. One of the ways they did that was by pretending to be the restless spirits of the dearly (or not so dearly) departed, and haunting their marks into doing their bidding, whether for the pretender’s financial gain, or just for fun.

On the more innocent end of the spectrum was an 18th century university-educated farmer’s son, who got bored one day with his scholarly pursuits. So just for kicks and giggles, he gussied himself up as a ghost to haunt a local well, and threw the countryside into a panic. A century earlier, in the 1620s, another panic had swept southern England, when youths took to terrorizing people by getting themselves up as werewolves.

10 Times The Past Was Crazier Than People Could Ever Imagine
‘English Credulity or the Invisible Ghost’, 1762, depicting the Cock Lane Ghost case. Wikimedia

Less innocent was The Cock Lane Ghost case, which attracted mass public attention in 1762. A landlord of a dwelling in Cock Lane, London, lost a lawsuit against a former tenant, so he had his daughter pretend to be the ghost of the former tenant’s deceased wife. The “ghost” claimed that she had been poisoned by her husband, the landlord’s former tenant, and she was widely believed. It took a commission, whose members included Samuel Johnson, compiler of the first comprehensive English dictionary, to clear the widower of suspicions that he was a murderer. The landlord was convicted, pilloried, and got two years in prison.

Another case involving a ghost impersonator occurred in the 17th century, when a grifter and cardsharp pretended to be the restless ghost of a recent suicide who had done himself in with a razor. The conman haunted a gambling den by covering himself with a white sheet, and waving a bloody razor around while making “woooo, woooo, wooo” sounds. The terrified gamblers stampeded for the doors, thus enabling the “ghost” to steal their money. The conman also used the same ruse to rob an elderly gentleman and make love to his young wife.

10 Times The Past Was Crazier Than People Could Ever Imagine
Victorian police. Pintrest

Many Victorians Hated Cops and Attacked Them For Fun

Today’s London cops – the officers of the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) – are generally respected and affectionately known as “bobbies”. That was not always the case. For decades after they were first formed in 1829, the very legitimacy of police and the need for their services was questioned by many Victorians, and MPS officers had a correspondingly fraught relationship with the public they were sworn to serve. Indeed, throughout much of the nineteenth century, the bobbies were held in low esteem by much of the public. They were not only routinely derided and disrespected, but were also frequently actively trolled, baited, and attacked for kicks and giggles.

Many disliked the cops, and there was an active anti police ideology in the Victorian Era, communicated through the radical press, which depicted the new police as an unconstitutional infringement on English liberties. The bobbies were often referred to as “blue locusts” and “blue idlers”, reflecting a perception that they were parasites, excused by their position from honest work, and living off the taxes of honest men.

Cops were particularly disliked by the working and lower classes, who resented the suppression of popular recreations and customs such as public drinking, gambling, prize fights, and street games. Routine police work in poorer neighborhoods, such as patrolling and keeping an eye out for trouble, was often viewed by those who had never experienced the such as an intrusive and unprecedented surveillance regime.

Accordingly, many Victorians, developed an active antipathy towards police, and did what they could to make the life of beat cops as miserable as possible. That often took the form of violence, of varying degrees. Police attempting to arrest miscreants, particularly in working class neighborhoods, were often set upon and attacked by the culprit’s neighbors, friends, and passersby, in order to rescue the detainee.

In addition to objections to police interference with street life, there was even greater resentment when the cops got involved in domestic affairs and affrays. Cops who approached private residences, regardless of the motive, risked a hostile reception. Even knocking on doors to alert residents to security lapses, such as leaving a door or window open at night, was often met not with gratitude, but with abuse and violence from Victorians assailing the cops for their temerity in disturbing their peace. The bobbies were especially reluctant to get involved in instances of domestic violence, because they feared encountering the wrath of both parties, who often temporarily forgot their own squabble and united to attack the cops.

Sometimes the violence was not instrumental, such as attempts to free somebody known to the assailants from the police, but was visited upon the bobbies for the sheer fun of it. Many enjoyed leading policemen on merry chases, while others simply attacked them out of the blue. More creative were some gangs of working class youths, who often collaborated to set up and ambushes for police, baiting the cops into chasing them down alleys and footpaths strung with trip wires. The wires’ release would spring Loony Toons-type booby traps, causing bricks to smash into the cops, or tipping buckets of refuse to fall upon their heads.

10 Times The Past Was Crazier Than People Could Ever Imagine
19th century New York City mob violence. Bowery Boys History

Christmas Was Celebrated With Drunken Riots

Today, Christmas is the quintessential family holiday that most Americans associate with a bundle of emotions and images. A blanket of white snow; Santa and his reindeer; malls playing non-stop Christmas music for Holiday shoppers reveling in an orgy of spending; presents under an evergreen tree; family and loved ones gathered around a dining table groaning beneath a sumptuous feast. The only controversial thing about it nowadays seems to be that fraction of the public who grow livid if they hear others say “Happy Holidays” instead of “Merry Christmas”. That is pretty tame, however, to how many Americans viewed Christmas in centuries past, as a time of drunken riots, in which the streets were transformed into free for all drunken brawls.

There was a time when many feared and loathed Christmas, and in the 1600s, the Massachusetts Bay Colony made celebrating Christmas a criminal offense. The Puritans were not upset so much by the religious devotions, as by the disorders that accompanied Christmas celebrations. While many American families tended to commemorate the holiday with wholesome outdoors activities such as skating or watching horse races, Christmas for single men was a time to get wild.

The tendency to get wild on Christmas – and the corresponding concern about the out of control loud and frequently violent celebrations – reached a peak in the 19th century. In cities such as New York and Philadelphia, marked by sharp racial, ethnic, and economic divisions, Christmas was a time for dangerous mob actions. Working class young men would get liquored up, dress up as women or put on blackface, and hit the streets looking for trouble.

Many of them donned masks – a forerunner of Philadelphia’s Mummers Parade – which led contemporaries to label them “fantasticals”. They were also referred to as “callithumpians” – partly from their habit of thumping things (and people). The celebrants would gather in groups, and mocking real music by banging on pots, cowbells, improvised horns, and singing off key, make their way from tavern to tavern. There, they would demand free drinks, and beat up anybody who objected.

Forming themselves into gangs, the drunken celebrants, many of them unemployed, would often parade – or stagger – into rich neighborhoods. There, they would beat drums, sing loudly, ring doorbells, express social discontents, smash windows, fire their guns, and otherwise make themselves disagreeable and “make the night hideous”. Knifings, shootings, arson, and other acts of mayhem and murder were common. It was a reminder to the day’s one percent and upper classes that class conflict and violence seethed beneath America’s surface.

The authorities were largely powerless to do anything about the disorders, and understandably, respectable citizens back then condemned Christmas as a disgrace. Newspapers railed against “the drunken men and boys in the street” and the “black sheep … who made night hideous with Galathumpian doings“. In 1844, an editorial in the New York Ledger deplored the streets being overrun with a “riotous spirit … our city has almost daily been the theater of disorders which practically nullify civil government “.

Pressure from above finally led to the creation of modern police forces capable of effective crowd control. They kept the celebrants out of the business districts and wealthy residential areas, and confined their disorders to their working class neighborhoods. A cultural shift also took the wild partying from holy Christmas, and made the secular New Year’s the time for cutting loose instead.

10 Times The Past Was Crazier Than People Could Ever Imagine
Shoichi Yokoi, during WWII, and when his personal war finally ended nearly three decades later. BBC

A Japanese WWII Sergeant Kept Fighting in Guam for 28 Years After the War Ended

Shoichi Yokoi (1915 – 1997) was a sergeant in the Imperial Japanese Army, who got posted to Guam in 1943. The following year, the island was invaded by US forces, and after it was captured, Yokoi went into hiding with nine other Japanese soldiers. They refused to surrender at war’s end. The group gradually dwindled over the years, until Yokoi’s last two remaining companions were drowned in a flood in 1964, and he was left as the last Japanese WWII holdout on Guam.

Most Japanese holdouts did not believe that the war was over, but Yokoi knew by 1952 that the war had ended with Japan’s surrender. He simply could not bring himself to swallow his pride and return home as a defeated soldier. He also convinced himself that Japan would rise again and attempt to retake Guam, in which case he would be ready and in place to assist with the reconquest. So Yokoi patiently awaited that day, surviving in the jungle, spending his days hiding in an elaborate hole in the ground, and emerging at night to hunt lizards and gather tubers and snails for sustenance.

He waited, and waited, and waited some more. By the time his holdout was over, he had waited for nearly three decades. It finally came to an end in January of 1972, when a pair of local men came across Yokoi in the jungle. They assumed he was a local villager and were ready to move on, but a paranoid Yokoi thought that they were about to attack him, so he attacked them first. However, after decades of rough living in a hole in the ground, Yokoi was not in the best of shape, and lost the fight. The two men beat him up and subdued him, then carried him out of the jungle and back to civilization.

When Yokoi’s astonishing story finally came out, he was asked how he had managed to hide for so long in such a small island, only two miles from a major American air base, Yokoi replied “I was really good at hide and seek“. He was famous by the time he arrived back in Japan. Despite 28 years of isolation in a Pacific jungle, his mind was still sharp, and he swiftly parleyed his celebrity into a successful media career, becoming a popular TV personality and an advocate for austere living. Shoichi Yokoi died of a heart attack in 1997, and was buried under a gravestone that had been commissioned by his mother in 1955, when he had been officially declared dead.

10 Times The Past Was Crazier Than People Could Ever Imagine
Hellenistic statue depicting two wrestlers in action. Ancient Olympics

The Olympics Contestant Who Won Despite Being Dead

Pankration, meaning “all force”, was an ancient Greek martial art, considered to be the forerunner of today’s Mixed Martial Arts (MMA). It combined boxing and wrestling, and nearly everything was permitted except for biting and gouging, or attacking an opponent’s genitals. In the 564 BC Olympics, Ancient Greece’s most famous pankratist, Arrachion of Phigalia (died 564 BC) who had won in the 572 BC and 568 BC Olympiads, sought his third championship.

Arrachion managed to advance through the early rounds, and worked his way until he reached the title fight. There, with age perhaps catching up with him and slowing him down, he got into trouble. Arrachion’s opponent outmaneuvered him and got behind him, and with legs locked around the reigning champ’s torso and his heels digging into his groin, applied a chokehold.

Arrachion feigned a loss of consciousness, which fooled his opponent into relaxing a little. That was when the wily title holder snapped back into action, and snapped his opponent’s ankle while shaking and throwing him off with a convulsive heave. The sudden and excruciating pain induced Arrachion’s opponent into the Ancient Greek equivalent of tapping out, and he made the sign of submission to the referees.

However, in throwing off his opponent while the latter still had him in a powerful chokehold, Arrachion ended up with a broken neck. His opponent having already conceded, the dead Arrachion was declared the title bout’s winner – perhaps the only time in Olympics history that a corpse was crowned a champion. He thus added a wrinkle to the athletic ideal of “victory or death” by gaining victory and death in winning a championship.

10 Times The Past Was Crazier Than People Could Ever Imagine
Charles the Mad. All That is Interesting

A French King Thought He Was Made of Glass

Charles VI of France (1368 – 1422) started his reign auspiciously, and he became known as “Charles the Beloved”. However, that was probably because he ascended the throne at age 11, and his kingdom was governed by regents. When he came of age and took personal charge of France at age 21, things changed. By the time he died over four decades later, he had gone from “Charles the Beloved” to “Charles the Mad”.

Charles had his first bout of insanity in 1392. At age 24, he set out on a military expedition to punish a vassal who had tried to assassinate a royal friend. The king acted weird from the campaign’s start. He was in such a fever to get at the offender that his speech often became incoherent while urging preparations sped up, and once on the road, the army’s slow progress drove Charles into a frenzy.

En route, a crazy leper by the roadside started yelling at the king to halt and turn back because he had been betrayed. The leper was shooed away, but he was persistent, and kept following Charles, repeating his warnings at the top of his lungs. While that was going on, a drowsy page dropped a lance, which clanged off somebody’s helmet. Something about the noise caused the king to snap: drawing his sword, Charles charged at his retinue and started hacking and stabbing them, left and right. By the time he was restrained, he had killed at least four knights and men at arms. The king had to be returned to Paris in fetters for his own safety.

The following year, Charles got amnesia. He forgot that he was king, forgot his own name, and failed to recognize his wife. He recognized his companions and officials, but for some reason could not recognize his wife and children. As far as his wife, he might have simply tired of her, and was crazy like a fox in pretending not to recognize her. Be that as it may, things got worse in 1395, when Charles started imagining that he was Saint George.

He also imagined that he was made of glass, and grew extremely frightened of shattering if he fell or was jostled. So he attempted to avert the danger by inserting iron rods in his clothes. At other times, Charles would run wildly at top speed, in the streets or in the halls of his palace. It got so bad, that to keep him inside his Parisian residence, its entrances were bricked up. Charles the Mad kept slipping in and out of insanity until his death in 1422.

10 Times The Past Was Crazier Than People Could Ever Imagine
Cat nun. Mental Floss

Convents Were Often Swept by Mass Craziness

Throughout much of history, convents contained large numbers of nuns who had been forced into them by their families, and once in, they were compelled to lead lives many of them found disagreeable. They were confined in prison-like conditions, and led stressful lifestyles not of their own choosing, that included celibacy, hard work, poverty, and unquestioning obedience. They were bossed around by authority figures who had the right to compel compliance with coercive measures ranging from the imposition of extra labor, to confinement in cells, to withholding food and water. Physical chastisement and punishment were also available, including whipping and caning. Defiant nuns could even be turned over to ecclesiastic courts, where, if things went particularly bad, a hardheaded nun could end up burned at the stake for witchcraft or demonic possession.

Such conditions of longstanding communal stress and fear were textbook causes for the outbreak of mass mental disorders, which swept medieval convents every now and then. One of the more bizarre such incidents occurred in a French convent in the Middle Ages, when a nun started meowing like a cat – an animal viewed at the time not as a cute and cuddly pet, but as being associated with the Devil.

Before long, other nuns joined in, and soon the whole convent was meowing. It eventually became chorus-like, with all the nuns joining in collective caterwauling for several hours each day. The cacophony alarmed and upset the neighbors, particularly in light of cats’ association with Satan and demonic possession. Pleas to stop were not heeded, so soldiers were eventually called in and ordered to whip the meowing sisters into silence. That finally brought the outbreak to an end.

Another bizarre outbreak swept a 15th century German convent, when a nun started biting others in her convent. Before long, the behavior spread and the convent was full of crazed nuns running around and biting each other. As described by a 15th century doctor: “A nun in a German nunnery fell to biting all her companions. In the course of a short time all the nuns of this convent began biting each other. The news of this infatuation among the nuns soon spread and it now passed convent to convent throughout a great part of Germany principally Saxony and It afterwards visited the nunneries of Holland and at last the nuns had biting mania even as far as Rome”

As seen above, the German biting nuns’ outbreak did the French meowing ones one better by not being restricted to a single convent. As news of the biting nuns spread, so did the bad habit, and soon, other convents throughout Germany were similarly afflicted. Before long, the mania went international, and convents in the Netherlands as far north as Holland reported outbreaks of biting nuns. The hysteria also travelled south and crossed the Alps into Italy.

The authorities were baffled and alarmed, and attempted various countermeasures as “the Nuns, at length, worried one another from Rome to Amsterdam“. When prayers and masses failed, the Church resorted to exorcisms and the casting out of devils and demons, but to no avail. So they resorted to a more basic approach, and threatened to flog or dunk into water any nun who bit another. That worked, and after a few salutary examples were made, the nuns quickly came to their senses and the biting fever broke.

10 Times The Past Was Crazier Than People Could Ever Imagine
Britain’s actions during the Opium Wars, as depicted by a contemporary cartoon. Potent Media

Britain Went to War Against China to Force it to Buy British Narcotics

In the 20th century, the United States invaded Panama because it was displeased with the Panamanian government’s actions that furthered and facilitated the drug trade. In the 19th century, Britain invaded China because it was displeased with the Chinese government’s actions against the drug trade. At the time, Victorian Britain was the world’s biggest drug trafficker – bigger than any Latin American drug cartel or any combination of such cartels. And unlike today’s narco traffickers, Britain didn’t conduct its narcotics business in the shadows of the global criminal underground but openly and in the full light of day. So openly, that Britain fought wars in order to force a foreign government to allow British merchants to sell narcotics by the thousands of tons in its territory.

It began in the mid 18th century, when the British East India Company started growing opium, from which heroin is refined, and shipping it to China for a hefty profit. Opium was illegal in China, but the British got around that via trading loopholes and outright smuggling. As Chinese opium consumption and British opium profits boomed, China faced a growing addiction epidemic that caused widespread social and economic disruptions.

Chinese authorities finally began taking serious measures to stop the British from flooding China with opium. In 1839, a drug czar was appointed, and he initiated a crackdown. 1700 drug dealers were arrested, and over 1400 tons of opium sitting in warehouses were seized and destroyed. However, most of that opium belonged to British merchants, and they appealed to their government.

Britain demanded compensation from the Chinese government, and sent a military expedition to China to back those demands. It arrived in June of 1840, and sailed up the Pearl River estuary to Canton. After months of unavailing negotiations, the British attacked and seized Canton in May of 1841. The Chinese, still using medieval weapons and tactics, were outmatched by the modern British forces, armed with the latest firearms and artillery, and drilled in the latest tactics. The invaders easily beat back a Chinese attempt to retake Canton, then seized Nanking in August of 1842.

The Chinese sued for peace, and negotiations concluded in the Treaty of Nanking. The Chinese were made to pay a huge indemnity, and cede Hong Kong to the British. The number of “Treaty Ports” where the British could trade and reside was also increased from one to five. British citizens were also granted extraterritoriality, or the right to be tried by British courts, instead of Chinese ones, for offenses committed in China

The British fought another war against China, known as the Second Opium War (1856 – 1860), that was also caused by Chinese resistance to British opium flooding their country. This time around, Britain sought to force China to completely legalize the opium trade, exempt foreign imports from internal Chinese tariffs, and open all of China to British merchants.

France, which also sought greater trade concessions from the Chinese, joined Britain. The disparity between Chinese and Western forces was even greater this second time around. Moreover, the Chinese were in the midst of dealing with a huge peasant uprising, the Taiping Rebellion, whose leader claimed to be Jesus Christ’s younger brother. The combined British and French army had little trouble in seizing Canton in 1857, and as military setbacks mounted, the Chinese sued for peace.

When negotiations broke down, the invaders sailed to northern China, seized the Taku Forts near Tianjin, and advanced upon Beijing. That brought the Chinese back to the negotiating table. At some point during the fresh round of negotiations, a British envoy insulted his Chinese counterpart, and was arrested along with his party. Half of his entourage were tortured to death. The British-French army retaliated by attacking and routing a Chinese army near Beijing, forcing the emperor to flee his capital.

The invaders then seized a vast imperial compound known as the Summer Palace. There, the British-French soldiers plundered anything made of gold or silver, then went on an orgy of destruction for the sheer fun of it. They crushed statues, smashed exquisite objects of porcelain and jade, ripped paintings with their bayonets, and paraded in ornate silk robes from the imperial wardrobe for comic effect. Then they put the entire palace complex to the torch.

The destruction of the Summer Palace was one of the greatest acts of cultural vandalism of the past few centuries. As one British officer described it: “When we first entered the gardens they reminded one of those magic grounds described in fairy tales; we marched from them upon the 19th October, leaving them a dreary waste of ruined nothings“. Utterly defeated, the Chinese capitulated and signed a peace treaty in 1860 that granted all the invaders’ demands, including the complete legalization of the opium trade.

10 Times The Past Was Crazier Than People Could Ever Imagine
‘Execution of Olivier IV de Clisson’, by Loyset Liedet. Wikimedia

The Medieval Woman Who Went Medieval on All Things French

Early in the Hundred Years War, the French were terrorized by a bloodthirsty female pirate who went on a personal vendetta against France. She was Jeanne de Belleville (1300 – 1359), also known as the Lioness of Brittany. After the French accused her husband of treason and executed him, de Belleville went on the warpath. She turned pirate and preyed on French shipping in the English Channel, torturing and executing every French nobleman she came across.

De Belleville was a Breton noblewoman from the town of Belleville-sur-Vie, and hailed from a prominent family that had ruled the area for centuries. After two marriages, one which ended with her husband’s death and the other with an annulment, de Belleville married a wealthy Breton named Olivier Clisson in 1330. In 1342, during the Hundred Years War, Clisson was military commander of a town that was captured by the English, and he was taken prisoner. He was released soon thereafter in a prisoner exchange – the only Frenchman to be released. Between that and an unusually low ransom requested by the English, Clisson’s compatriots accused him of treason. He was tried and convicted by a court of French nobles, and beheaded in 1343.

De Belleville took her young sons to see their father’s head mounted on a spike, and vowed revenge. She sold her estates, and used the proceeds to raise a private force with which she began attacking the French, who did not take her seriously at first. That ended when she attacked and captured a French castle, and massacred its entire garrison, except for one man whom she let live to tell the tale. She was taken seriously from then on.

A determined French counterattack forced her to retreat across the Channel to England. There, she bought and outfitted three warships, and as a signal of her intent, painted them black and dyed their sails red. Then she led her black fleet into the English Channel, to fall upon French shipping. De Belleville and her pirate squadron soon gained a reputation for savagery, as they massacred nearly all who fell into their hands, except for a few survivors spared to spread the tale. French aristocrats in particular were in for a rough time if they were found aboard any ship captured by the pirate widow. There was serious money to be made ransoming them, as the was custom of the day, but de Belleville did not want their money. Instead, she tortured her aristocratic captives, then personally beheaded them with an ax, before tossing their corpses overboard.

De Belleville continued her murderous rampage against the French wherever she could find them, for thirteen years, before her bloodlust was finally sated. Eventually, in 1356, she gave up the life of piracy, and retired to her estates in Brittany. She remarried for a fourth time, and settled into a castle on Brittany’s southern coast, where she died peacefully in 1359.

10 Times The Past Was Crazier Than People Could Ever Imagine
Damage from the bombing of Naco, Arizona. Wikimedia

The Time a Drunk Pilot Bombed an American Town

Pearl Harbor and 9/11 are well known instances of America being attacked from the air, but they were not the only times American soil came under aerial attack. The first time that happened was in 1929, when the small town of Naco, Arizona, was bombed. A Mexican rebellion’s fighting spilled over across the border, and a drunk mercenary pilot, hired by the rebels to bomb Mexican forces, bombed Naco instead.

Insurgents in northern Mexico had taken up arms against the Mexican government in the late 1920s, in what came to be known as the Escobar Rebellion. Mexican government forces, or federales, entrenched in the Mexican border town of Naco, in the state of Sonora, directly across the border from the American town of Naco, Arizona.

People in American Naco saw the conflict in Mexican Naco as a spectator event. Sightseers arrived from miles around to take up advantageous positions to watch the battles between Mexican government and rebel forces. Many even crossed into Mexican Naco for a better look. It did not seem foolhardy at the time, particularly as both combatants, fearful of US military intervention, were careful not to fire across the border or unnecessarily endanger the gringos. Still, the occasional stray shot flew by, which only added to the spectators’ thrill and excitement.

In April of 1929, however, things got too exciting. The insurgents hired a mercenary barnstormer pilot named Patrick Murphy, to drop homemade bombs on the federales trenches. On April 2nd, 1929, Murphy dropped two bombs near federales positions, that turned out to be duds, before finally striking a Mexican customs house with a bomb that worked. For the American spectators gathered in nearby salons and clubs in Mexican Naco, things went from thrilling to terrifying when they were peppered with shrapnel, and they stampeded to the American side of the border.

Murphy was probably flying drunk, which explains why, soon thereafter, he dropped a bomb on American Naco. In the following days, he flew further bombing raids, frequently missing the federales trenches in Mexican Naco, and bombing American Naco instead. The errant bombing of US soil destroyed a car, blew up a general store, shattered numerous windows, damaged a US Post Office, and inflicted some injuries.

Murphy’s drunk bombing reign of terror finally ended on April 6th, 1929, when a lucky shot from a federales rifle struck his plane’s engine. Trailing white smoke, Murphy crash landed, then sprinted to the rebel lines. From there, he crossed into the US, where he was arrested by American soldiers and taken to a Nogales jail. He was never charged. US Army detachments, plus a fighter squadron, were sent to American Naco, but by the time they got there the insurgents had already been defeated, and the fighting was over.


Where Did We Find This Stuff? Some Sources & Further Reading

Ancient Olympics – Arrichion

Ancient Origins – The Lioness of Brittany and Her Black Fleet of Pirates

BBC – Shoichi Yokoi, the Japanese Soldier Who Held Out in Guam

Biography – Charles VI of France

Churchill, David, History and Societies, 18(1) 131-152 – Rethinking the State Monopolisation Thesis: the Historiography of Policing and Criminal Justice in Nineteenth-Century England

Churchill, David, Social History, 392:2, 248-266 – ‘I Am Just the Man For Upsetting You Bloody Bobbies’: Popular Animosity Towards the Police in Late Nineteenth-Century Leeds

Cracked – 5 Ways the Past Was Crazier Than You Thought

Davis, Susan G., American Quarterly, Volume 34.2 (Summer 1982) – Making the Night Hideous: Christmas Revelry and Public Order in Nineteenth-Century Philadelphia

Encyclopedia Britannica – Opium Wars

How Stuff Works – Meowing and Biting Nuns: 10 Strangest Mass Hysterias

National Interest Magazine, August 1st, 2016 – The Opium Wars: The Bloody Conflicts That Destroyed Imperial China

New York Times, September 26th, 1997 – Shoichi Yokoi, 82, is Dead; Japan Soldier Hid For 27 Years

Wikipedia – Bombing of Naco

Wikipedia – Cock Lane Ghost