Phantom Barber of Pascagoula

 Images Front Picture Library Uk Dir 9 Fortean Times 4885 5

Pascagoula, Mississippi is a favorite Fortean town, where the lore involves a mermaid, a "singing" river, mysterious abductions, and, my favorite, a Phantom Barber that terrorized residents in 1942. He apparently broke into ten homes and snipped the hair of sleeping women. Police eventually charged a 57-year-old German chemist but he was never convicted. And according to a feature on the strange case in Fortean Times, evidence suggests he may not have been the culprit. From Fortean Times:

According to one newspaper, a pattern had established itself: the Phantom Barber only struck on Mondays and Fridays at midnight – breaking this habit only once – and gained entry by slitting the window screens:

"Thus, on the Friday following the Monday when he had raided the convent of Our Lady of Vict­ories, he struck again, this time at the home of David G Peattie on one of the town's principal residential streets. Mrs Peattie was in the hospital at the time, a Mrs Walter Henshaw and her husband being on hand to look after the 6-year-old Peattie twins, David and Carol, a girl. Hearing a noise in the children's room late at night, Mrs Henshaw woke her husband and together they went to investigate. At first glance all seemed as usual; both children were sound asleep.

"Then Mrs Henshaw noticed the print of a man's bare foot etched in sand on the white counterpane of the vacant bed by the window. Awakened, Carol sat bolt upright, feeling for the blond locks that ordinarily swept her shoulders. "Why – why!" she stutt­ered, looking dazedly around her. "Where's my hair?"

"The Phantom Barber of Pascagoula"