- Joe Mulhatton: The Appalachian Baron Munchausen
- Classic Mulhattons from the Famous Liar
- Suspected Mulhattons from Unknown Authors
- A Salute to the Liar Mulhatton- The Unbelievable History of Joe Mulhatton
These fake works are often attributed to Mulhatton, but it remains to be verified if they are actually “Mulhatton originals.” As a result, they remain products of unknown authors. For most, they lack the depth and complexity Mulhatton gave to his notable pieces, but that’s still no guarantee they aren’t his.
The Disappearance of David Lang (1880)
David Lang owned a farm and bred horses outside of Gallatin, Tennessee. On September 23, Lang left his porch and crossed the field. His wife and two children watched his progress. His brother-in-law, Jude Austin Peck, approached on horseback. Suddenly, Lang vanished. He disappeared in plain sight. He was swallowed up by the ground with everyone watching.
Months later, the family noticed that nothing would grow within the strange circle that appeared after he vanished. Even insects avoided it.
Note: This is believed to come from the case of Orion Williamson, from July of 1854. The Selma, Alabama man disappeared in the same circumstances with the same outcome.
The Mexican Crowbar (1883)
A meteor the size of a crowbar fell to earth in Vilaldama, Mexico. It fell through the roof of a Mexican family’s house, through the leaf on the sewing machine, and deep into the stone floor below. In total, it sank 18 inches into the earth.
After 48 hours in the ground, the stone still sizzled and popped. Any metal, except iron, isn’t harmed when touching it. Organic items made from wood, paper or other substances either disappears, or melts and disappears, when it touches it.
Locals have moved the rock from the house and into the front yard. It remains bright enough to read by from 100 feet away.
100% Chance of Wheat (1883)
The population of Mead County, Kentucky, has survived the massive shower of wheat straw. The 5-minute fall covered the countryside in hay. Many residents claim the Man in the Moon was doing his threshing and lost a few bales.
Roll Him Up (1884)
A person claiming to be a reporter for the Cincinnati Times Star was in Lexington, Kentucky. He said he was with a posse of U.S. Marshals who scoured the mountains for moonshiners. While they were below Barboursville, they met Hector Davis, a resident of the mountain who had no bones.
Davis sat in a special chair that kept him sitting upright. He was intelligent and well spoken, but the only part of his body that seemed to have any strength was his skull. It was as hard as shoe leather. His neck was as limber as a dishcloth.
The reporter tied his limbs in knots and untied them. They flattened him out and rolled his body up like a carpet. His mother lived with him and she said he had been perfectly normal until 2 years earlier. For some reason, his toes began to soften and eventually, his entire body became limp.
The Highland County Volcano (1885)
Residents of Highland County, Virginia have fled the region. They were terrified when the “Little Mountain” erupted in a flow of lava and thunder. The devastation is only equaled to that of Mt. Vesuvius. Poisonous vapors have eliminated life for miles.
The Ruins (1886)
Workmen in Walikana, Wisconsin, were excavating a sewer and came across a fantastic set of ruins. Eight feet below the surface, they encountered the ruins of a stone building. The stone carries indications of polishing and intricate workmanship. Further excavation produced over 25 bushels of ashes. Below the ash, they found another wall of finely made stones and many had been blackened by heat. It is believed to be the product of a highly advanced civilization that lived centuries ago. A giant elm had grown over where the ruins were.
Note: The story was almost fascinating enough to compensate for the fact that there is no such place as Walikana, Wisconsin.
The Mysterious Lynching (1886)
People in Auburn, Kentucky report a brutal lynching of three black men. The men were accused of attacking and attempting to violate a young lady. An angry mob formed and lynched all three.
Note: There was no such event in Auburn, Kentucky.
Howard Williamson (1887)
Howard Williamson is now the object of a great deal of sympathy and attention. Just six months ago, Williamson noticed that his left leg was harder than his right. He consulted a doctor and received excellent care, but it hasn’t stopped the disease’s progress.
His leg continued to harden and now resembles a piece of sculpted marble. He suffers no pain, but riding a train is difficult. He must be careful; as he fears one of his toes might crack or fall off.
The Séance (1888)
A séance was held in Louisville, Kentucky, by a group of people who wanted to interview George Washington’s spirit. The contact was interrupted as Aesop, Tom Pepper and Baron Munchausen stepped over Washington and one another to shake Joe Mulhatton’s hand.
Mono Lake (1888)
A magnificent lake of natural hair dye has been located near Virginia City, Nevada. The substance turns brunette hair a lovely golden brown and lightens skin. The lake is situated in a cave and scientists are analyzing the chemistry in the colorful water.
Note: The majority of the public was convinced this was one of Mulhatton’s originals, but he said himself it was not his creation. A New York druggist offered him thousands of dollars for the location. Mulhatton eventually had to sign a sworn affidavit stating he knew nothing of the lake.
Holy Toledo (1888)
Charles Martindale was stricken with apoplexy five years ago. To his family’s horror, he soon succumbed to the ailment and died. Yesterday, his parents were stunned when he came home. The young man told them a tale of being exhumed by medical students after his burial. His body was taken to a physician’s office where he finally regained use of his body.
He slipped away unnoticed and remained quiet out west. His parents were overjoyed. He has been identified by many in the community.
Finger-Cutting Duel (1889)
A Mexican rancher and one of his employees, a Native American, got into an argument near Taos. What they fought over is not known, but the two agreed to cut their fingers off in a duel. They wanted to see who would die of blood loss first.
Time passed as they bled and the rancher became nervous. He quickly drew his gun and shot his worker, anyway.
Note: No such duel existed.
Suicidal Animals (1889)
Mr. C. A. Kennedy, of Bourbon County, has a cow that recently lost her calf. It was sold 6 weeks ago. In a fit of depression, the cow drowned herself in the pond. John Deaver, of Paris, Kentucky, had a healthy young colt by Don Carlos. Unfortunately, the colt became depressed. It stuck its head through a hole in the barn and threw its legs out, choking itself.
Hungarian Miners Unite! (1891)
News out of Pocahontas, Virginia, states the miners are the victims of “unimaginable cruelty.” One miner authored a letter that discussed how miners were bought and sold, like slaves. They were guarded like prisoners and their bodies were always covered with vermin.
They always had bitter, black coffee and had to eat bacon 3 times a day. On January 18, 1891, two men tried to escape. A Russian Jew and a Pole had enough. They were caught and beaten until they begged for mercy. They were then chained together nightly so they wouldn’t escape.
Note: This story is particularly funny. A New York writer actually declared he was going to Pocahontas to investigate. He bravely declared he was carrying two revolvers and a letter from the Federal authorities to investigate the claims.
People in Pocahontas were especially amused, as the article actually implied workers were “forced” to enjoy meat 3 times a day. At the time of the story, workers in the mines there received top wages and were not whipped.
The Italian Connection (1891)
Seven members of the Brumfield family in Boyd County, Kentucky, were massacred by a group of drunken Italians. The sheriff and posse were hot on their trails when they cornered them inn an abandoned building. A dramatic fight ensued with a number of Italians killed.
Note: No such encounter every happened.
Digging up Gold (1891)
A farmer near Searsboro, Iowa, recently dug a well. He came across a vein of natural cheese that’s over 3 feet thick. The beautiful cheese is a golden color.
Peebles’ Woes (1893)
Peebles, Ohio, has seen a number of tragedies. Miss Maud Warder has been mercilessly gored by a cow. Adam Bateman’s 3-year-old son drowned in the bathtub. His wife was thrown from her buggy and remains seriously injured.
Note: The article that discussed this actually stated the, “liar is still unhung.”
Archibald Clarke (1895)
A local farmer in Greenup, Kentucky, is also a most remarkable somnambulist. Archibald Clarke has cultivated 4 acres of land in his sleep. He suspected his neighbors for a long time. He thought they were just helping him out. One night, while nailing boards to a fence in his sleep, he smashed his thumb. He then realized what was happening.
He has constructed over 200 yards of fence in his sleep. He has dug ditches as well as delivered butter to the grocery store to exchange for coffee and sugar. The grocer recalled Clarke’s strange behavior that day.
Clarke has employed a young man to help him when he gets in that state.
Webster City Heat Wave (1897)
The weather in Webster City, Iowa is so hot that eggs are hatching in their crates at the grocery store.
The Universal Soldier (1900)
Braxton Carter’s brother was with the American Troops in Lipi [Indonesia]. There they met a soldier who was separated from his troop and surrounded by hostile natives. He hid in a cave while fighting the army outside alone. Three days later, his troop came in search of him. They found 60 bodies outside the cave. The man only had 100 rounds of ammunition when he was cornered. He said he also killed with the butt of the gun and his bayonet.
The Cunning Serpents (1907)
An Ohio man recently survived a freak snake attack. One snake lured him to a cluster of trees while another wrapped itself around him, effectively tying him to the tree. The other snake began lashing him unmercifully with its tail.
Death via Animals (1907)
Clinton Willis bred a parrot and a guinea hen, in San Jose, California. He now has a chicken that can talk.
In Missouri, a frog devoured a portion of dynamite before a small boy found him. He carried the amphibian into his house and sat him atop the kitchen table. The frog leapt from the table and blew the house up, killing everyone inside.
The Magnetic Solution (unknown)
A steamboat carrying a cargo of nails sank just outside of New Orleans, Louisiana. Desperate to recover the lost cargo, the people devised a way to retrieve what was lost. A huge electric magnet was lowered into the water to life the barrels of nails out.
The Greenfield Ghost (unknown)
The Hayes family is a highly respectable family who live near Greenfield. The news centers on their daughter, oddly enough, named “Tintsey.” Tintsey awoke with a roll of cotton around her throat 3 months ago. Her mother was frightened, but she couldn’t say where it came from.
Bits of cotton began appearing around her throat often, accompanied by a choking sensation. The family recalled that before the episodes started, they had found bits of cotton in a number of places.
Tintsey began having episodes. She would see animals bringing the cotton to be placed on her throat. She begged everyone around her to keep the phantom animals from approaching her, but no one else could see them. The animals always carried bits of cotton in their mouths. The stress from the events made her sick. The animals morphed into a lady wearing yellow. No one else could see her.
Doctors were brought in to no avail. They reported they could physically hold their hands over her throat, but the cotton would always appear. The ladies of the community were skeptical at first. They made a deal with the family to strip the girl’s room and examine everything. They examined her bedding, linens, and clothing, but couldn’t find an adequate source for the cotton.
The family tried taking her to another house, but it was more of the same. For some reason, the spells come every 15 minutes on Fridays and Saturdays. Tintsey must be watched so she isn’t smothered by cotton. The family has allowed visitors and doctors from all over to examine her.
The family does not take or request any money.
Note: This one is unknown, but suspected of being a “Mulhatton.”
These quips, lines and “Mulhattons” have lost their details to time.
- Reports from New York state that lightening has killed and skinned a pig on Long Island.
- Joe Mulhatton has been accused of faking insanity to keep in practice.
- Scientists have discovered an invisible moon and rediscovered the Star of Bethlehem.
- Oil has been stuck in Glasgow Junction, Tennessee. However, after only 2 weeks it dried up. The town never recovered from the initial boom.
- A Texas boy has been discovered that can see water 300 feet below the earth.
- A Kentucky distillery recently suffered a rain of frogs. Now, all alcohol produced has an amphibious taste.
- The men from Mars have come to investigate the production of safety pins.
- Ten skeletons were excavated from a single grave in Batavia, Ohio.