No Proper Burial
By M.P. Pellicer | Stranger Than Fiction Stories
In the vicinity of Sheepcotes Wood, in the parish of Little Waltham, strange sounds were said to be heard and mysterious lights seen in the woods "when spirits walk, and ghosts creak up their graves."
November, 1831, Essex, England
Those living close by assembled at night hoping to see the spirit that made the sounds, which were described as the screams of a woman. Some said it was foxes or birds, but not everyone was satisfied with that explanation.
Then some workers at Sheepcote Farm that belonged to Mr. Darby were hunting a rabbit in a field near the wood. It hid under a log and they found a sack containing the skeleton of a human being. The sack crumbled and the bones dropped out. The remains were taken to Mr. Darby's house where the surgeon from Little Waltham arranged them to form a perfect skeleton. Not one bone was missing.
Dark hair was still stuck to the skull, which by its length indicated the bones belonged to a woman.
There were some ocher marks on the sacks, that were not indecipherable.
During the previous fall a shovel was found under the same log, and this indicated the body was placed there by "resurrection men."
Two body snatchers visited the area in 1824, and were taken in 1828, with a horse and cart near the field where the bones were discovered.
The men admitted they concealed a body but refused say where they hid it.
Since the discovery of the skeleton the mysterious sounds were not heard again.
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Stranger Than Fiction Stories by M.P. Pellicer