Two Hikers Believe A Statue They Took From A Cave Is Haunted, And It Has Paranormal Experts Stumped
Buckle up, ghost junkies, because you’re in for quite the ride. Have you ever encountered an object that you think might be haunted or possessed? And have you wished you could have it examined by a paranormal expert? That’s what happened to this Redditor, and sometimes, things are better left alone.
In January 2016, Reddit user wiggedhikerthrway (later identified as Danny) posted a frantic story in the r/Paranormal subReddit. He asked for help on behalf of his friend who was seemingly being haunted by a malevolent spirit. The two friends had gone hiking in the Catskills days earlier and stumbled upon a creepy statue in a cave. When Danny’s friend took the statue home, all hell broke loose.
The wood-carved statue had “nails in its eyes and a noose around its neck,” Danny described in his post. He thought it looked fairly old and shared that he got “bad vibes” from it.
Although he urged his friend not to take the statue, fearing it had something to do with rumored devil worshiping in that area, his friend went against his advice and removed the statue from the cave.
“Everyone says that there’s devil worshipers that come out here to sacrifice animals and do their spells and sh*t so I didn’t want anything to do with this thing,” he explained.
“A couple days later my friend calls me and tells me that he thinks the statue is haunted because it keeps moving from its spot and he keeps smelling weird stuff,” Danny wrote. “Says he can’t sleep at night because banging keeps waking him up.
“Now last night someone knocked on his door but no one was there when he opened it and he’s super weirded out.”
He thinks he has a ghost or spirit attached to him, thanks to the disturbing statue. And there were other weird occurrences that made the poster’s friend think they were being followed by a malicious entity.
Like the disturbing smells.
“A couple days later my friend calls me and tells me that he thinks the statue is haunted because it keeps moving from its spot and he keeps smelling weird stuff.”
According to paranormal enthusiasts, this is a bad sign.
Anything that smells rotten, dead, or spoiled could be the sign of an unhappy spirit or entity.
In an edit of his original post, Danny wrote that the knocks and bangs only got worse.
“By Wednesday he started waking up in the middle of the night feeling like someone was watching,” Danny said of his friend. “Every time he’d wake up he would smell a really strong scent like pond water.”
At first, he thought his dog could’ve been moving around.
Except his pet won’t go anywhere near the statue has been acting unusual, as well. “He says that she’s actually peed in the house three nights in a row and she’s never ever done that,” Danny added of his friend’s pup.
Later that same week, the friend heard a random knock on the door at 3 a.m.
But, after he heard the knock he literally checked all his doors and windows to make sure they were locked up. The statue had moved itself to the living room and as his friend approached it, he heard breathing — “like his grandpa with the tracheotomy.”
“This is where it gets super f*cked up”
“He says that when he woke up which wasn’t until like 10 it was because his dog was barking like crazy. He said the pond water smell was stronger than ever and when he went out into his hallway he saw all of these muddy footprints everywhere. Not like shoe prints, but barefoot.”
Danny’s friend and dog ended up seeking refuge at Danny’s house.
According to Danny, his friend came over, they went out to the movies, and then they felt a little better about everything. But that didn’t last long.
Of course, Danny believes his friend because this goes way beyond a joke.
In a final plea, he writes, “It must just be a coincidence but I think he’s actually scared. Before we go set thing on fire I wanted to see if anyone knows what it is. Anyone ever seen something like this or heard of a statue causing ghosts?”
Many people in the comments offered solid advice.
Danny and his friend decided to send the statue to one Reddit commenter who offered to place it in his paranormal and occult museum.
They saw a way out and took it.
“The worst thing you can do is just toss it away without making some sort of amends. Either ask it, or sternly command it to remain with the statue and then place the offering and leave,” mcdrunkin replied.
But the story doesn’t stop there.
About six months later, another post popped up on the r/Paranormal subReddit. This one was called, “Remember those hikers who found the ‘Cursed Statue’ in the Catskills cave last year? I’m the guy they sent it to, and yeah, it’s definitely haunted by something nasty.”
This post was written by Greg Newkirk, owner of the Traveling Museum of the Paranormal & Occult.
Newkirk said Danny and his friend witnessed something terrifying.
Newkirk said that Danny confessed in an email that he and his friend had seen a full-bodied apparition just before deciding to rid themselves of the statue. According to Newkirk, it was “an old woman, soaking wet, appeared crouched in the dark shadows of the living room.”
Danny’s email to Newkirk is nothing short of shudder-inducing.
“Today we went back to my friend’s house to get the statue and return it. When we got there, I saw the muddy footprints he was talking about and the whole place smelled like a dog that had just rolled around in dirt.”
“His dog wouldn’t even come in the house.”
“He went to show me where the statue was when he left last night but it was gone. When we found it it was in the hallway and there was a big crack in the wall like it had been thrown there.”
“He swears he never touched the thing and left it in the living room.”
“We did what you said and explained that we were sorry about taking it and that we wanted to give it back to the cave and asked it what we should do. I don’t know if it was the feeling you were talking about but we both just felt like we should never go back to that cave again.”
“He said he like we needed to send it to you.”
“When we were standing in the hallway talking to this thing his dog started barking like crazy outside and when we went to see what was going on, we both thought we saw a woman standing in the dark corner of his living room.”
“She was totally naked, really old, and dripping water, and her eyes sort of glowed in the dark.”
“She was hunched over near his shelves. We both freaked the fuck out and ran outside, and this was in the middle of day. Whoever it was, wasn’t there when we went back in. We grabbed the statue and apologized again, wrapped it in a pillowcase and put it in a box. He’s just going to send it to you.”
Danny went into detail on what else they found in the cave near the statue.
“I didn’t see any jewelry or pictures or anything by the statue but there were a lot of leaves covering everything. There was some broken class and a cup near the fire.”
“My friend says he thinks there might have been some hair on it but he brushed it off without thinking about it.”
Hair, finger nails, toe nails, and bodily fluids are often attached to an effigy, like this statue, as a form of sympathetic magic. If there was hair, it could have been from the intended initial target. Danny also said there were twigs around the base of the statue when they found it.
“Right now it’s sitting in the trunk of his car at his house.”
“Give me your address and we’ll mail it to you tomorrow. If I knew it was going to be this bad I would have never let him take it out of the cave.”
Danny thanked Newkirk for taking him seriously.
“Thanks for not calling us f*cking idiots and telling us how stupid we are like the rest of the thread. This is the whole reason I u sed a throwaway [Reddit account] to begin with.”
Similar to what Danny’s friend experienced, Newkirk found his own home in chaos after letting her in.
Strange things started happening as soon as the statue came into Newkirk’s possession.
In his post, Newkirk confirmed that the statue, which he nicknamed “The Crone,” is absolutely haunted with a “violent entity.”
Within hours of the statue arriving at his place, “it pulled Jesus off a crucifix hanging on the wall, was the cause of phantom knocks, wet footprints on my couch, and we even caught it moving with a motion activated camera,” Newkirk wrote.
“The last straw was when it tried to drop a television on my head.”
Newkirk updated everyone on Danny and his friend’s seemingly sudden departure from the thread. He also shared some disturbing occurrences that had happened since the statue came into his possession.
Newkirk and his wife Dana initially brought the Crone with them on their paranormal travels, only allowing patrons to view her.
They weren’t even allowed to touch her. Still, museum-goers reported smelling stagnant water, feeling a burning sensation in their eyes, and other odd phenomenons while in her presence.
But in July 2017, Newkirk wrote an update post explaining that he and Dana were forced to retire the Crone after “a rash of frightening incidents.”
Newkirk said this involved “rampant sickness, freak car accidents, and even seizures occur to those who had come into direct contact with the haunted object, even though it remained strictly on a ‘no-touching’ list.”
The Crone is still in Newkirk’s possession, yet has remained in retirement from the traveling show.
Newkirk mentioned in his July 2017 update that he intended to return the Crone to her cave, but he seemingly isn’t done investigating the haunt attached to her.
The Crone archetype is typically portrayed as an older woman who malicious intentions.
Newkirk’s chose to relate the statue to an archetype of the Crone. The Crone is part of a three-stage female archetype found in folk lore and fairy tales: Maiden, Mother, Crone. Crone is the final stage of the woman, and she is often a scorned, angry person who uses supernatural powers for evil.
Of course, this isn’t how Crones were always viewed.
Crones, midwives, witches, and hags were, at one point or another, considered healers, sages, leaders, and midwives in their communities. Once society became patriarchal, the archetype of the old, wise woman was no more.
One Reddit user had an interesting theory, and has identified it as possibly being an American variant of a Nkondi.
“Basically it has a spirit bound to it and it has a job to do. That job is probably to right wrongs done against the person who made it,” 73ld4 wrote.
“The nkondi are the most powerful of the nkisi.”
“They were used to identify and hunt down unknown wrongdoers such as thieves, and people who were believed to cause sickness or death by occult means.”
“This explains why the statue is being so aggressive to OP and his friend.”
“Since they technically stole the statue, they’ve committed theft and this spirit is all about punishing thieves.”
“Nkondi are protector spirits that serve households and communities,” they added.
They continued, “Nkondi fetishes were used for generations and kept in houses or in village centers. Their wooden form was their home in the physical world, and had mirrors which could serve as their eyes or as a portal to this world.”
This user’s advice?
“Nothing is worth the pain you’re inviting into your life by acting like a couple white kids in a horror movie,” they wrote. “Ya’ll gotta take responsibility for yourselves. It’s literally too late for anything else.”
Whoever designed the statue, however, might have some rage issues.
The same user suggested, “The nails were sometimes meant to invoke a sort of rage motivation, and driving force behind whatever task the Nkondi statuette were created for.”
kredfield51 debunked this origin, pointing out, “I don’t think it’s a Nkondi as others have said, because all the nails are in the eyes, where the spirits would see from traditionally.”
The user seemed to quote an unknown source saying, “In most nkondi figures the eyes and medicine pack covers were reflective glass or mirrors, used for divination. The reflective surface enabled the nkisi to see in the spirit world in order to spy out its prey.”
Some think it’s all BS.
“That’s really a stretch. you think someone did an elaborate cave ritual to make a doll that would curse the person who stole it from the isolated mountain cave?” seafarer- wrote before diving into some history.
Others asked for evidence.
Wouldn’t you? Redditor TheSasquatchKing put out several possible ways for Newkirk to prove that the statue was actually haunted. They even had an idea as to why Newkirk would fake the whole thing in the first place.
“My best explanation is elaborate hoax in order to boost tickets to your traveling show”
They added that it could also help boost “visitors to your websites, and/or general publicity.” It’s a fairly solid hypothesis. What if this haunted statue from a cave was all an elaborate hoax to make a few bucks?
Newkirk insisted he was telling the truth.
If there is one thing he is in paranormal investigation for, it’s not the money.
“We don’t sell tickets and it’s not a traveling show.”
“We’re invited to other people’s events. Publicity is never a bad thing, because publicity always equals opportunity, but I promise you — this is something we do for the love, because we’d be absolute idiots to do this for money.”
KruskDaMangled believes its origin is perhaps West African and agrees this is no laughing matter.
“Assuming it’s real, and assuming it has anything really going on/an entity (just for the sake of argument, I don’t think it does, but it might? Let’s assume it does) you should respect it, and probably be rid of it as soon as possible,” the user warned.
An atheist pagan offered even more insight to the statue’s unique markings.
“That’s a victim doll, given with the noose around the neck and nails in the eyes. Someone must of really held a grudge on someone else,” Yazkin_Yamakala wrote. “Your friend can put it back out of respect, or he can bury it during a full moon to cleanse it, dig it back up, and keep it as a neat trinket.”
Unfortunately, whoever put this thing in the woods knew what they were doing.
And they had some seriously malicious intent and preformed a ceremony with it. From the looks of it, they knew what they were doing.
Sound like a familiar plot?
donkeylubber pointed to the real story, not the movie plot of the demonic doll Annabelle, from the film The Conjuring.
Supposedly, “Donna got Annabelle from her mother in 1970; mom bought the used doll at a hobby store. Donna was a college student at the time, and living with a roommate named Angie, and at first neither thought the doll was anything special.”
They both had weird origin stories, but Danny’s experience is ACTUALLY terrifying.
And to be honest, this sounds like the start of a horror film.
If you’re looking for a critic, slrarp isn’t buying a second of the story.
“I think you probably made this all up. I think you got a carved piece of wood from a crafts store, pounded some nails into it, and made this story up for [Reddit] karma,” he began. “Even if you didn’t, I’m sorry but you and your friends sound really stupid.”
The user pointed out the dangers of caves and the damage Danny and his friend could have done disturbing natural formations in nature.
Additionally, the user wanted to teach OP and his friends an ethics lesson.
“If you found a lost wallet in a place like that (with no ID inside), it wouldn’t be ethical to take it in case the owner returns for it. The same principle applies here. No matter how weird the object appears to be, you don’t just steal the damn thing.”
But chastising didn’t help Danny.
After all, the damage is done at this point, and it is fair to say that he and his friend learned their lessons.
Is this all a bunch of hooplah?
Perhaps. But honestly, after hearing this story, we have a feeling even skeptics would have a hard time coming face-to-face with The Crone.
Whether you believe in ghosts or not, one has to admit that the Crone is a creepy mama jama.
And she’s not the only creepy entity that has caught the internet’s attention.
One man claimed a ghost baby was haunting his home.
And he documented it all on Twitter. Comic author Adam Ellis told his followers he believed that he was being stalked by “the ghost of a dead child.”
Ellis first saw the apparition during a sleep paralysis episode.
“The first time I saw him, I was experiencing sleep paralysis and saw a child sitting in the green rocking chair at the foot of my bed,” he tweeted. Ellis added that “he had a huge misshapen head that was dented on one side. He drew what he saw:
“For a while he just stared at me…”
“But then he got out of the chair and started shambling toward the bed,” Ellis continued. A creepy child with a misshapen head “shambling” towards you? No thanks.
“Right before he reached my bed, I woke up screaming.”
And then everything was normal, at least for a while. Months after this initial nightmare, Ellis dreamed of the child once again. This time, another entity told him the ghost child’s name.
“I was like, ‘Who?’ And she said, ‘Dear David. You saw him.'”
She continued to reveal facts about this Dear David, saying “He’s dead. He only appears at midnight, and you can ask him two questions if you said ‘Dear David’ first.”
Oh hell no.
Nights later, Ellis once again dreamed of David. “Same situation–I was in bed, and he was sitting in the rocking chair near the window, staring at me,” he tweeted.
“I say, “Dear David, what happened in the store?”
He groaned, “A shelf was pushed on my head,” Ellis wrote. “I’m frozen with fear,” he added. He then asked “Who pushed the shelf?” and David didn’t answer.
Ellis had asked three questions.
And the girl from his dream said you were only allowed to ask Dear David two questions.
He didn’t hear from David for months.
And for a while, Ellis completely forgot about the ghost baby with a dented head known as Dear David.
But then strange things start to happen.
Ellis’s Dear David saga has people wondering whether or not the whole thing is real, but Ellis insists it is. He even posted evidence as the strange occurrences continued. If you’re hooked, see what happened to Ellis with Dear David here.