Dark Histories

Dark Histories

Ben Cutmore

Bi-weekly narratives on the unsolved and the unexplained, mysteries, historical true crime, touches of the paranormal and cultural peculiarities.

Categories: Education

Listen to the last episode:

1938 saw one of the world's most famous media hoaxes terrify a nation of unexpecting listeners when the original War of the Worlds radio broadcast was sent out across the airwaves unannounced, leading many to believe it to be a genuine news item. Somewhat more obscure is the tale of its precursor, when 103 years earlier in August of 1835, daily New York newspaper The Sun ran a week-long series of articles concerning the discovery of life on the moon. The paper’s “Lunarians” were a bizarre species of temple building man-bats living in perfect harmony with the animals that surrounded them. It was a humbug to match the audacity from any of the exhibits in P.T.  Barnum's American Museum and as unbelievable as it may sound today, at the time there were many who firmly believed it, fueling debates that raged across all levels of society.


Goodman, Matthew (2008) The Sun and The Moon. Basic Books, NY, USA.

Adams Locke, Richard (1835) Great Astronomical Discoveries Lately Made By Sir John Herschel, LLD FRS &c At the Cape of Good Hope. New York Sun, NY, USA

Allen Poe, Edgar (1846) Some Honest Opinions at Random Respecting Their Autorial Merits, With Occasional Words of Personality. The Literati of New york City - Vol VI. USA.

Liverpool Mercury (1835) Alleged Discovery of Men, Animals, Vegetables Etc. In The Moon. Friday 25th September, 1835, p.8. Liverpool, UK

Herschel, John F. W. (1834) A Treatise on Astronomy. Carey, Lea & Blanchard, London, UK.


For extended show notes, including maps, links and scripts, head over to darkhistories.com

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The Dark Histories books are available to buy here: http://author.to/darkhistories

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Or you can contact us directly via email at contact@darkhistories.com

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The Dark Histories Butterfly was drawn by Courtney, who you can find on Instagram @bewildereye

Music was recorded by me © Ben Cutmore 2017

Other Outro music was Paul Whiteman & his orchestra with Mildred Bailey - All of me (1931). It's out of copyright now, but if you're interested, that was that.

Previous episodes

  • 169 - Biped Beavers & The Man Bats from the Moon 
    Mon, 27 Sep 2021
  • 168 - The Many Confessions of Alfred Packer 
    Sun, 05 Sep 2021
  • 167 - Somerton Man With Professor Derek Abbott 
    Tue, 27 Jul 2021 - 0h
  • 166 - The Barnes Mystery: Kate Webster’s Best Dripping 
    Mon, 12 Jul 2021 - 0h
  • 165 - The Disturbing Kingdom of Batavia's Gravyeard 
    Mon, 28 Jun 2021
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