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The Umbrella Man

Credit: New York Times

The assassination of John F. Kennedy is full of conspiracy theories, but the most popular is the Umbrella Man. He raised suspicion for possibly being involved in the assassination for his use of an umbrella on a sunny day, and also his position near Kennedy when he was shot. It remained a mystery for 15 years until 1978 when Umbrella man came and identified himself. Turns out, the umbrella he used was just a symbol of political process – He was at the wrong place, wrong time.

Carlina White

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In 2011, Nejdra Nance discovered her real name was Carlina White. Back in 1987, 19-day-old White was abducted from the hospital she was born in. The kidnapping remained unsolved for 2 decades until White herself cracked the case when she realised she wasn’t her ‘mother’s’ biological daughter. The kidnapper was actually Annugetta Pettway who was desperate for a child of her own and raised White as ‘Nejdra Nance’. In 2011, DNA proved this, and Pettway served 10 years in prison.

The Florida Sinkhole

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The Aucilla river in Tallahassee had a huge sink hole in it. No one wanted to dive into this sinkhole as it was pitch black with no light at all. That was until scientist Jessi Halligan volunteered to go in, and what she found was fascinating. Inside the sink hole were ancient stone tool and mastodon cones, which was evidence of human activity, meaning we had been in the United States at least 14,500 years ago, which is 1,500 years earlier than we had believed!

Pamela Jackson & Cheryl Miller

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Back in 1971, 17-year-olds Pamela Jackson and Cheryl Miller were driving to a party, driving behind some other classmates, when they disappeared, and the other car realised they were no longer following them. It seemed as if the car had just simply vanished, even after an extensive search – there were no evidence left behind. In 2013, a drought dried up a local creek and revealed a rusted car. Authorities believe the car somehow went off the road and crashed into the creek – killing the 2 occupants.

The Death Valley sailing stones

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Death Valley is a creepy name – not to mention that it hosts the eeriest natural phenomena ever. Along a smooth valley floor are heavy rocks, with clear drag marks trailing behind them. However, there’s no evidence of human activity – so what caused these drag marks? Aliens, maybe? Unfortunately it was a pretty boring answer – a thin sheet of ice forms on the valley floor in winter, and when the ice melts, the rocks slide across the slippery surface – making them drag.

The Patterson-Gimlin Bigfoot film

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The legendary Patterson-Gimlin film from 1967 served as evidence of supposedly Bigfoot walking. It was some great footage, but it sparked some authenticity questions. Eventually, the mystery was claimed fake when costume maker since revealed that he sold an ape suit to Patterson in 1967, and another man claimed to be the actual person inside the suit. Author Greg Long found circumstantial evidence that Patterson was a known hoaxer, and ever Gimlin himself claimed ‘there could have been the possibility [of a hoax]’.

The Olympic Park Criminal

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In the late 90s, a serial bomber was let loose throughout the southern United States, injuring well over 100 people and killing 3. Their most famous attack was the Centennial Olympic Park bombing in 1996, which killed 2 people and injured 111. The unknown perpetrator remained fugitive and continued to commit bombings in 1997 and ’98. Due to various clues, Eric Rudolph was named as the bomber, but wasn’t found until 2003.

The Roswell Incident

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We all know the story – July 1947, a UFO crashed into Roswell, New Mexico, and the government covered it up by stating it was a weather balloon. However, this story wasn’t widely accepted until the 1970s, for 3 decades prior people accepted the truth – the device really was just a balloon. But it wasn’t until 1994 when the US Air Force admitted that the balloon wasn’t a weather balloon, but it was actually a balloon from Project Mogul, a top secret government programme that spied on the Soviets.

The Golden State Killer

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The Golden State Killer remained a mystery for 50 years, and his crimes lasted over a period of 12 years between 1974 and 1986. He committed over 50 sexual assaults and 13 murders within this time, and even taunted local police through obscene phone calls – but even this wasn’t enough to let him be caught. Until 2018, when the perpetrator was 72 years-old. Through DNA, investigators identified the man as James DeAngelo, a former police officer, and he was sentenced to life in prison.

The Vampire Clan

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There is no other unsolved mystery quite like the Vampire Clan. In 1996, someone entered the home of Naomi and Richard Wendorf and beat them to death with a crowbar, and they were later found by their daughter, Jennifer. Suspicion immediately fell to Vampire Clan, led by Rod Farrell, Jennifer’s sister Heather had been friendly with this group. Ferrell made prospective members drink his blood to join the cult. The grandmother of a member told the police where the cult were next heading, Ferrell was then found and sentenced to life in prison.