Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Wednesday Weird: Dead Man's Chair

Today we have another cursed item. Specifically a chair.

In 1702, Thomas Busby was convicted of murdering his father-in-law in North Yorkshire and sentenced to death by hanging. After he was hanged his body was dipped in pitch and strung up in a gibbet.
Before he died, though, he cursed to death anyone who sat in his chair at the next door inn/pub.

The chair remained in the pub for centuries, and guests would often dare one another to sit in the cursed seat. During World War II, airmen from a nearby base frequented the pub, and locals noticed that the soldiers who sat in the chair would never return from war.

The pub owner changed the name to Busby's Stoop, since a cursed chair was good publicity.


They even had a fake noose hanging outside next to the pub.

In 1967, two Royal Air Force pilots sat in the chair, only to crash their truck into a tree just after they left. In 1970, a mason sat down in the chair and died that same afternoon by falling into a hole at his job site. A year later, a roofer who sat in it died after the roof he was working on collapsed. When the pub's cleaning lady tripped and fell into the chair, she died shortly afterwards from a brain tumor. 

Finally the pub owner moved the chair into the basement. Unfortunately, even in storage the chair claimed another victim. After a delivery man took a quick rest while unloading packages in the store room, he was killed in a car accident that same day. 

The chair is attributed to 63 deaths and eventually, the pub owner donated the chair to the local museum in 1972. The museum displays the chair by hanging on the wall so that no one can sit in it by mistake again. 

Thoughts or theories?


Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Smart idea to put it on the wall.
I think it's just that everyone was aware of the curse and attributed it to that chair.

Rena said...

Coincidence counts for a lot, but that chaor ia down right spooky. It could be a sampling issue, but that's a ton of anecdotal evevidence, significantly more than expected from a "touch this item and die" curse. I only bring that up because there are a lot of things said to kill after being handled and the list is usually four or five, but 63... That's unnerving.

Crystal Collier said...

Methinks hanging the chair was a good idea. Yikes. I'm not superstitious, but that does give one pause.

Maria Zannini said...

Methinks I would've put it in the burn pile.

Matthew MacNish said...

63 victims is no coincidence.

Ryan Spires said...

Now that the chair is safely in the museum, people can chair-ish it. Get it? Sorry, it's early :-)

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