Top 10 Strangest Coincidences in History
Do you believe in coincidences? Or perhaps there’s something larger at hand that makes weird things happen the way they do. Whether it’s being there at the right time or even some bizarre events where history repeats itself, sometimes things are just too strange to go unnoticed. We’ve compiled these moments into the top 10 strangest coincidences in history.
Edgar Allan Poe Predicts the Future
One of Edgar Allan Poe’s great works includes The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym, which tells a story of four crewmen who are lost at sea and turn to cannibalizing the cabin boy. Forty-six years later in 1884, an English yacht, the Mignonette, became famous not only because it sank and left four crewmen adrift on a 13-foot lifeboat, but because the four that escaped ended up eating the cabin boy after he fell ill. Not that much of a coincidence, you may think, until you take into consideration that both the cabin boy that Edgar Allan Poe wrote about and the boy from the Mignonette were both named Richard Parker.
Lincoln and JFK
Abraham Lincoln and John F. Kennedy have more in common than the fact they were both against slavery and they were presidents who were assassinated. Additionally to their Civil Rights movements, both presidents were murdered next to their wives while accompanied by another couple. The list of connections gets weirder as Lincoln was assassinated at Ford’s Theatre while Kennedy was killed in a Lincoln made by Ford, both of which occurring on a Friday. If that isn’t enough for you, John Booth killed Lincoln from a theatre and escaped to a warehouse while Kennedy’s alleged killer, Lee Harvey Oswald, killed Kennedy from a warehouse and ran to a theater.
Tecumseh was a Native American leader during the Revolutionary war that was considered a Prophet by his people in 1811. The U.S. had attempted to discredit Tecumseh by requesting proof of him being who he claimed to be. Tecumseh had called for a sunless sky, which arrived shortly after in the form of a total eclipse. Yea, we know, anyone with general knowledge of when an eclipse would occur would know that. However, when one of the tribes refused to join him, he threatened that they would “feel their houses shake down through Mississippi” which lead to an earthquake that was ten times stronger than the one that destroyed San Francisco in the late 1800s. We’ll mark this one off as a coincidence, not to mention the story itself is thought to be a legend.
How often do you find yourself walking down the street when a baby randomly falls onto you? During the 1930s in Detroit, a man named Joseph Figlock was shocked when a baby landed on his shoulders from a 4-story fall. Both baby and Figlock sustained minor injuries and Figlock returned to his job as a street sweeper. However, exactly a year later, Figlock found himself playing toddler catch once again when 2-year-old David Thomas fell from his window. Just as in the event a year prior, Figlock and the child were injured, but the fall wasn’t fatal for either.
Barbara Forrest and Mary Ashford
On May 27th, 1817 the body of Mary Ashford was found in Erdington, England. 157 years later, the body of Barbara Forrest was found within 300 yards of Mary. What may sound like an unfortunate duo of events gets mighty odd when you look at the circumstances behind their deaths. Both women were on their way to a local dance after putting on a new dress and had been raped and murdered before their bodies were dumped. The coincidences don’t stop there, though. The two victims had the same birth date and in both cases the murder suspect that was arrested, and later acquitted, was named Thornton. Perhaps reincarnation or fate isn’t as bizarre as some may think. Or perhaps, it’s just a pure coincidence.
Mark Twain Comet
Every 75 to 76 years, Halley’s Comet is at its closest with Earth. It’s not very likely that someone would live to see it twice. American author Samuel Langhorne Clemens, or as we know him, Mark Twain, happened to be born during a Halley’s Comet passing on November 30th, 1835. The author lived until 1910, passing away on April 21st, which happened to be the day after the comet’s next passing. As if the coincidence wasn’t crazy enough, Mark Twain had actually publicly predicted in 1910 that he expected to die when Halley’s Comet passed next.
Hoover Dam Victims
The U.S. National Historic Landmark called Hoover Dam is located on the border of Nevada and Arizona in the United States, where 112 people have lost their lives during the construction. The first person out of the 112 to die was a surveyor named J. G. Tierney who had drowned on December 20th, 1922 while searching for a location for the dam. His son was Patrick W. Tierney who happened to have died exactly 13 years later as the last individual to die during construction of the massive structure. One could say that the father/son duo was dammed from the beginning. Was that too far?
Twice in history Mongol fleets had come to attack Japan. The first attack was in 1274, the second following 7 years later in 1281. Both attacks were ultimately unsuccessful due to powerful typhoons wiping out the Mongol fleets. During the first attack, the Mongol fleets gained ground against the Japanese until they were pushed back from Hakata Bay. During the withdrawal, the first typhoon devastated the fleet. The second attack was even less successful, with the typhoon striking before the Mongols could attack. Dubbing the typhoons Kamakazi, or “Divine Wind,” popular Japanese myth claimed that the god Raijin was the god who sent the storms after the Mongols to save them.
Deus Ex Twin Towers
In the year 2000, video game developer Ion Storm released the acclaimed first-person shooter, Deus Ex. During production, artists left out one of the most important landmarks for the New York City Skyline: the Twin Towers, due to texture memory limitations. In order to cover this up and give reason for the notable absence, Ion Storm introduced an in-game reason that towers had been leveled in a terrorist attack. A year later on September 11th, the real Twin Towers coincidentally came under attack by terrorist forces, removing them from the New York Skyline forever.
Of all the places to have a heart attack, flying over the Atlantic Ocean isn’t one of them. Unless, of course, your name is Dorothy Fletcher and you happen to be on a flight with fifteen cardiologists. Flying from Manchester, England to Florida to go to her daughter’s wedding, Dorothy started to experience troubles breathing and chest pains. The stewardess used the intercom to ask if there were any doctors on board and luckily 15 doctors were on their way to a conference. The plane landed in North Carolina and, thanks to her dumb luck, Dorothy was still able to make her daughter’s wedding.