Published on May 20, 2014 by Strange Mysteries
Did Rudolph Fentz time travel from 1876 to 1950?
Legend has it that back on a warm summer night in June of the year 1950, a man dressed in fashion that resembled that of the 19th century appeared in the middle of Times Square. The man looked extremely confused and baffled by everything around him. Suddenly, he was hit by a taxi and killed.
Investigators searched his body and found some very odd items.
Approximately 70 dollars in banknotes from the 19th century
A token, made out of copper, that was worth 5 cents which had the name of a nearby saloon on it.
Strangely, the saloon was not known to residents of the area. In fact, even older residents of the area had never heard of it.
A type of old style receipt for the care of a horse and then another receipt to have a carriage washed. The receipts were from a "livery stable," a place that takes care of horses, on Lexington Avenue. The address for the business was not listed in any address book.
Business cards were also on his person. The business cards had the name "Rudolph Fentz" on it and also had an address on Fifth Avenue.
The man was also carrying a letter sent to the address on the business cards. The letter was dated as being sent in June of 1876.
Oddly enough, none of these objects showed any sign of aging.
Investigators checked the address listed on the card the man was carrying. It belonged to a business, but the business had no recollection of the man listed on the card, Rudolph Fentz, at all.
Rudolph Fentz wasn't listed in any address book or phone book anywhere. He was not in any database the investigators searched.
Desperate for answers, the investigators finally found a man by the name of "Rudolph Fentz Jr." in a phone book. This man, whom seemed to be the son of their victim apparently died five years ago at the age of 60. His widowed wife was still alive though.
Upon contacting the supposed son of their victims's wife, she explained how her late husbands father went out for a walk one day at the age of 29 and never returned.
Investigators looked up missing person's from the year 1876 and stumbled upon the man's name: "Rudolph Fentz."
The description of the missing person matched exactly with what their mysterious victim had been wearing.
The case remains unsolved to this day.
Did Rudolph Fentz unintentionally travel through time? What really happened to this man?
Is this story true ?
"Well, Rudolph Fentz (also spelt as Rudolf Fenz) is the focal character of "I'm Scared", a 1951 science-fiction short story ( Published in Collier's magazine) by American author Jack Finney, which was later reported as an urban legend as if the events had truly happened. The story tells of a man wearing 19th century clothes being hit by a car and killed in New York City in 1950. A subsequent investigation reveals that the man had disappeared without trace in 1876, and the items in his possession appear to reveal that the man had traveled through time from 1876 to 1950 directly.
The story of Rudolph Fentz became one of the more significant urban legends of the 1970s and has been repeated occasionally since; with the spread of the Internet in the 1990s, it has been reported more often as a reproduction of facts and presented as evidence for the existence of (involuntary) time travel."
He also wrote "The Body Snatchers", later made into a movie called, "Invasion of The Body Snatchers". It makes for a good Twilight Zone episode, but is not true.
Since 1972, the unexplained disappearance and reappearance of Rudolph Fentz has appeared in books (such as those by Viktor Farkas) and articles, and later on the Internet, portrayed as a real event. The story has been cited as evidence for various theories and assumptions about the topic of time travel.
In 2000, after the Spanish magazine 'Más Allá' published a representation of the events as a factual report, folklore researcher Chris Aubeck investigated the description to check its veracity. His research led to the conclusion that the people and events of the story were fictional. Aubeck found that the Fentz-story for the first time in the 1972 May/June issue of the Journal of Borderland Research, which published it as a factual report. The magazine was published by the Borderland Sciences Research Foundation, a society that addressed UFO sightings with esoteric explanations. The magazine sourced the story to the book published in 1953, A Voice from the Gallery by Ralph M. Holland. Aubeck believed the origin of the fictional story had been found.
In August 2001, after Aubeck had published his research in the Akron Beacon Journal, Pastor George Murphy contacted him to explain that the original source was older still. Ralph M. Holland had either taken the story about Rudolph Fentz completely from either a 1952 Robert Heinlein science fiction anthology, entitled 'Tomorrow, The Stars' or the Collier's magazine from 15 September 1951. The true author was the renowned science fiction writer Jack Finney (1911–1995), and the Fentz episode was part of the short story I'm Scared, which was published in Collier's first. The story describes a character called Rudolph Fentz behaving as described in the urban legend, with the narrator Captain Hubert V. Rihm giving his opinions of the case."
Jack Savage comments:
"A decades-old time travel hoax has been unravelling in Ohio this past week. It started with an article about Chris Aubeck, a researcher who was investigating the case of Rudolph Fentz. Fentz was a man who had supposedly time-travelled from 1876 to 1950, only to get struck down by a car and killed. The story has gained wide credence in many European circles. But Aubeck tracked the source of the tale down to an Akron-based writer, Ralph M. Holland, who wrote a story about this incident in 1953.But when Rev. George Murphy read about Aubeck's research, he recognized that the tale had an even earlier source. It turned out that Holland had lifted the tale from a short story by Jack Finney that appeared in a science fiction anthology titled Tomorrow, The Stars edited by Robert Heinlein that was published in 1951. So a 1951 science fiction story had somehow become accepted as fact by many, until Aubeck and Rev. Murphy debunked it."
However....RETUSAF1995 comments :
"in 2007 a researcher working for the then Berlin News Archive, found a newspaper story in the archives from April 1951 reporting the story almost as it reported today. This newspaper archive was printed some 5 months before the short story sourced as the origin. Whats even odder, a number of researchers have claimed to have found evidence of the real Rudolph Fentz, and proof of his disappearance aged 29 in 1876."
So ,is this story a hoax or true case ??
Mr Bluntforce T comments :
"If the story is true the man could have passed thru a Space/time Warp from a parallel world much like Ours but that took a different direction"
joe danns comments:
"It's possible he went through a naturally occurring time-slip into the future, much like certain episodes of the x-files or the twilight zone classics"
Note :The letter (dated 1944) clearly isn't the letter he's describing in the voiceover. They said it's dated to the correct date (year 1879), and also addressed to the address on the business card. That letter doesn't show either, so it's just a stand in photograph for the video presentation. It is very likely that the picture with 1944 air plane stamp was just an illustration example of an old letter, not the actual one from the story.