The Restless Corpse of Elmer McCurdy

Elmer McCurdy wanted to be an Old West outlaw, but he was particularly bad at it. He and his gang once used too much nitroglycerin during a train robbery and destroyed the safe they tried to break into -and its contents. A bank robbery failed when they couldn’t open a safe. And for his last robbery, he targeted the wrong train, which had no money. McCurdy was eventually shot and killed by police in 1911, and that’s when his adventures really began.

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McCurdy’s body was taken to the Johnson Funeral Home in Pawhuska, Oklahoma. He had no immediate kin to claim the body, so it was preserved in hopes that someone would claim it. Several weeks elapsed, and still, no one showed up to claim the body. The funeral homeowner decided to embalm the body and dress him in a suit. He put up the body for public exhibition, charging people 5 cents just to take a look.

For five long years, Elmer’s body remained in the Oklahoma funeral home, till one day it was claimed. Two men, James, and Charles Patterson showed up at the funeral home and requested the body. They identified themselves as Elmer McCurdy’s long-lost brothers. The funeral director was a bit suspicious of the two, but since the attraction fell out of favor, he decided to let go of the body. He also felt that McCurdy deserved a decent burial after an extended stay in the funeral home.

McCurdy did not get a decent burial until 1977. Read the story of Elmer McCurdy’s restless corpse at Sometimes Interesting. -via Strange Company 

(Image credit: W. G. Boag)

Source: neatorama

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