spacecrafts, ghosts and buried treasure
are not only found on the pages of
fiction books, but also within Denton
Chad Lewis, a paranormal researcher and
author, compiled bizarre headlines from
Texas newspaper archives to create his
book, "Hidden Headlines of Texas."
The strange stories that he uncovered,
many of which took place in Denton, were
written between1860 and 1910.
"I think the book combines not only the
weird and the paranormal, but also Texas
history," Lewis said. "There are things
like strange deaths and strange
creatures but also weird characters like
the well-known hermit that lived in the
area or the heaviest man in the world
who walked around a Texas street. Just
all kinds of oddities."
The book is part of his Hidden Headline
series, which includes similar books
he's published about the strange
Lewis has also written a series called
the Road Guide to Haunted Locations with
his research partner Terry Fisk on
Fisk met Lewis several years ago at a
conference. Together they founded a
company called Unexplained Research.
"When we do our research, we try to find
eyewitnesses to collect as much history
and information as we can," Fisk said.
"We spend a lot of time going through
old records to see how much truth is
actually in these stories."
Lewis and Fisk spoke to many historical
and genealogical societies while writing
their books to see if people and places
from the stories were still in
"Chad and I
work well together because we have
personalities that compliment each other
and we come at it from two different
approaches," Fisk said. "Chad's
background is more in the sciences, like
psychology, and my background is more in
religion and philosophy."
Fisk said he usually brings in mediums
or psychics to see what kind of
information he can gain from a haunted
location while Lewis uses scientific
equipment like electromagnetic field
The team was
recently on the Discovery Channel show A
Haunting and ABC's World's Scariest
Places to talk about their research and
discoveries. Lewis said they also shot a
weeklong video with South Dakota public
television in summer 2007.
While researching haunted locations,
Lewis said he began uncovering many
strange headlines and thought it would
be a good idea to put them all in a
In Lewis' Texas Headlines book, there
are about 250 stories along with photos
from the era and other small facts to
help guide the reader.
"I think that the book provides somewhat
of a time portal for what it must have
been like to live in Texas back then,"
Lewis said. "You get a feel for how they
wrote back then, the different language
they used, the different writing style
and their sense of humor."
Lewis said he republished the articles
as they were originally printed, and, as
a result, many of them are racist,
bigoted and/or sexist.
"I wanted it to be like you just picked
the paper off of your porch," he said.
"I wanted it to be exactly the way it
would have appeared back then."
Denton's archives contained several
interesting newspaper headlines,
including a nearly seven-foot-tall mule
and a meteor that cast a shadow over the
"One of the things that we wanted to
check out was an old story of a buried
treasure near Denton, which the whole
town was in an uproar to find," Lewis
said. "We had to try to contact
researchers to see if anyone ever found
the treasure or to see if maybe we
should bring a shovel when we come."
Lewis will be talking about the story of
the buried treasure and many others from
his book at 3 p.m. Saturday at the Emily
Fowler Central Library at 502 Oakland
"I'll be giving more details on the
location as to where these treasure
hunters believed it was so many years
ago," Lewis said. "And to the best of
our knowledge, the treasure is still out
there waiting for someone to find it."
Lewis said he and Fisk are always
looking to collect new stories about the
paranormal and the strange.
"People love the weird and the unknown,"
Lewis said. "If people are interested,
they should come out on Saturday to hear
stories or tell stories. Either one is