The only item which was considered "CURSED" that i had dealings with , was when i was in the army cadet force as a 16yr old cadet sergeant, we had Mk 4 Lee Enfields that were all live firers, two bren guns and a sten gun, one of the Enfields would fire blank rounds, but would never fire a live round, it became a joke about the haunted rifle but it really got to our commanding officer, so he sent the rifle back to headquarters to be looked at by an armourer, it was returned after three different firing pins but it still only fired blank rounds , the boss had the rifle put in a glass fronted case and it remained on the wall in his office for a couple of years, until some little yob burnt the school down, all the weapons were damaged by fire , wooden stocks and butts etc, but the glass case was found on the floor smashed but the rifle was relatively untouched, i believe our officer had the weapon deactivated and bought it from the mod and as far as i know he still has it, now thats what i call weird
I had a German M16 helmet that was given to me by a friend. It had been recovered from the Somme battlefields on armistice day in the 1990's. My friend had been stood outside a local bar with a group of others when a freak storm occurred. A tree across the road was struck by a bolt of lightening and fell to the ground leaving a large crater by the side of the road.
The group walked over to have a look at the hole and spotted the remains of a german soldier - still wearing his helmet and his rifle by his side. I had called to my friends house when he handed me a large white box with the helmet inside. His wife couldn't bear to have it in the house - claiming it give her 'bad feelings.' When I lifted the lid off the box and looked inside, you could see the remains of the soldier's tunic sleeve draped over the top of the helmet. When the remains had been found, the body was curled up with the arm draped over the top of the helmet.
When I lifted the helmet out and looked inside, there were traces of skull which had calcified and stuck to the remains of the liner - along with traces of hair. I kept it for a few weeks or so, but I began to feel very uneasy about having it in the house and returned it to my friend. I have no idea what he did with it after that, But I was really glad to see the back of it.
I've got a slightly unusual story aswell about my relic German K98 Rifle. I keep in inside a carboard tube to protect it, and it then sits inside my drawer lying diagonally. When I first got it, the rifle was the only thing inside that drawer. Now the weird part, I have always put the rifle inside the drawer in the exact same way as it is in the picture below, however after coming back from a holiday with the family the position of the rifle had changed seemingly by itself as the house was empty for a week. I've never mentioned anything about it incase it simply was me, however I can't recall putting the rifle in the drawer in a different way to normal. The red line in the picture below shows they way the rifle was lying when I returned from my holiday.
Theres also some very interesting and spooky stories here
Harry, I think you did the right thing by giving that helmet back. It sounds like it really should have been buried with the remains of that soldier. I wouldn't have felt comfortable with that around either. The soldier died wearing that helmet and should have been buried with it....especially since part of him was still attached to it.
A friend of mine told me about how a British soldier was found on the Somme some years back when a new addition was being put on a house he was staying in. He actually kept a few finger bones and some buttons....I was horrified when he told me this! Something like that is just bad ju-ju......
As has been said, the bullet-holed Fallschirmjaeger's helmet might have belonged to a man shot as he floated down, or the tragic suicide of a man who couldn't take any more of it, maybe a man already badly wounded. Either way, if it's possible for a tortured soul to linger after the body has died, you could see how such a helmet would be affected.
I've never encountered a war relic I believed to be haunted, but I've encountered circumstances on duty (with a humanitarian charity) that made me wonder if such occcurences were real. Things like vehicles, locations and pieces of equipment behaving or just 'feeling' odd following our having casualties who's chances hadn't looked good to us, and who may have later died. (We tend not to let ourselves find out what happened to casualties later, if your attention lingers with the last one you won't be ready for the next one.)
I remember one occasion, where in the daytime I had encountered a person injured in quite tragic circumstances (which incidentally were alarmingly like the circumstances of an incident which had nearly killed me a few years previously) whilst I was off duty and happened to be nearby and offered my help, then in the evening had been training my Cadets, in a church courtyard adjacent to our traning hall, and was repeatedly told my Cadets, who were quite alarmed, that it looked like someone was standing behind me smiling, with his description not unlike the man I had attended earlier!
I never did know what to make of that one, I have some psychological training and tend to put such things down to illusions, suggestion or similar, but in that case I couldn't put out of my head the possibility of something more paranormal.
I realise this isn't War Relic related, but I give it an example from my own experience of a similar circumstance, where if that is what had happened, then a person who 'went before their time' seemed to linger in our world attached to people, places or objects related to their end.
Back when my dad in the Army he got Stationed in Kosovo back in the 90's sometime. And Aparantly their was a Haunted Bradely Tank. I guess the Soldiers that were ridding in the Tank untied the Antena that was tied down to the Tank ( It was so the could get a Better Signal on the Radio for comunications or something) And since they were in a 3rd world country the telephone lines were much lower than they are usualy in other countries.
So they started driving down the Road and the Bradely;s Antena hit a telephone line and it fried everyone in the Tank. So then the Mechanics replaced all the equiment in the tank with Brand new equipment But no matter how brand new the equpiment was The Radio, Antena, And all the comuncations stuff never worked. And I guess the Soldiers had a strange feeling when riding in the tank, And it smelt horrible
Facinating thread as i love reading ghost stories, and watching horror movies.There are people who firmly believe that any artefact which was worn at the time of f dieing will be haunted.I have many relics and many battle damaged helmets , and there msut have been some deaths associated with them, and there is nothing has happened in my apartment.whilst i love the possibility of ghosts ,trust me its the living we should fear,lv
I too find ghost stories fascinating and I there is an explanation for many. My theory being that certain events are recorded somehow when conditions are right and then replayed in similar conditions. Like a natural DVD. But that's for another thread or entire forum.
I have to say I'm with LasVegas on this. Generally I think it's our own unease about something quite that gory is what makes them appear spooky. One of the reasons we like to collect militaria is the context we know they were in at one stage. An unissued or repro item has no experience as it were. But something with battle damage or provenance is fascinating. I only have a few items but I often wonder what tales they could tell if they could talk. War is an intense experience which fortunately now most of us never experience. This is part of the interest in militaria.