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Moving home

5 weird things during renovation

Home renovations are just a part of life, right? Not for these cases, where people started digging down or opening walls and found things they would have never imagined.

1. Witches Potions

It’s said that witch’s bottles full of things such as finger nails, urine and the likes were hidden in the walls of homes to fight off witch’s curses!

In Greenwich in 2009, one renovator discovered a bottle of these sorts inside one of the walls that apparently dated back to the 17th century. Inside the bottle was some urine, finger nail clippings and a small heart shaped piece of leather that was pierced with a nail. Researchers even managed to discover that the urine contained traces of nicotine!

Court records from 1682 say that a husband who suspects his wife to be a witch should ‘boil in a pipkin a quart of her urine, fingernail clippings and her hair.’

2. A living board game

What people get up to in their bedroom is their own business and no one should judge, but one man was very surprised to find this when he pulled up the floor in his California home.

Beneath the carpet was a giant monopoly board, and not some artists creation but an actual replica of the board with everything from the Pass GO sign to jail. There were a couple of extras though, can you spot the naked women silhouette – hey, like we said, no judgement…

User’s quickly replied to the reddit thread trying to get the man to pull up his other carpets to see what other games might be lurking underneath.

We’re hoping for a giant snakes and ladders, although we’re not sure we want to know what provocative twist they could give to that…

3. A Mummified Cat?!

We’re not actually the superstitious kind here at bySTORED, but these findings have got us thinking. Okay, this one isn’t strictly renovation (or not at all) but we couldn’t resist including it!

Ever heard of the Pendle Witches Coven? No, neither had we until this chilling story. Cats have long been associated with witchcraft and magic in general and throughout history witches have been seen in popular culture with a black cat adorning their broomstick or chatting away to them in popular kid’s TV shows.

Inside a sealed room in an almost ruined cottage at the foot of Pendle Hill, archaeologists found a cat bricked up in the walls! It is thought that it was put there, originally alive, to keep away evil spirits, poor thing!

Pendle hill was the scene where 8 women and 2 men were hanged as witches one Good Friday in the 17th century!

Scary stuff.

4. Dollar, dollar bills!!

Now this is the kind of thing we all would like to find stashed away in an empty space behind a wall or under the floorboards, am I right?!

A contractor from Ohio found a staggering $182,000 that was said to be from around the time of the great Depression. Bob Kitts was doing some bathroom renovations when he discovered the large amount of cash but, being the good guy, he gave it back to the home owner – for a cut, of course.

The homeowner offered to give him 10% but Kitts demanded 40% and this was all before the descendants of Patrick Dunne, a wealthy businessman from the time who the cash belonged to, chimed in.

Costly court proceedings over the, money meant everyone laying claim to the cash came away with just a fraction of it.

There’s a reason greed is one of the seven deadly sins after all

5. A Treasure Map

Now this is the kind of thing we all would like to find stashed away in an empty space behind a wall or under the floorboards, am I right?!

What might be better than finding actual cash is finding the map to a much bigger hidden fortune, lost for years.

The ‘Fenn Treasure’ is a fortune that has been somewhat of legend in America for quite some time but a couple in Arizona claimed they have found the clues to its whereabouts during renovations to their kitchen.

They first found a mysterious code hidden inside a kitchen cabinet but didn’t think too much of it other than to keep hold of it in case they came across anything else…and they did!

During the renovations, they came across a safe buried under a couple of the floorboards and using the combination in the cupboard managed to get into it.

Inside was $50,000, a bottle of bourbon from 1960 but also a number of strange clues. There was a book with circled letters, a bingo card with just three numbers and a map of the town, Mesa, Arizona, with a big X over it – was this the location of the famous ‘Fenn Treasure’?

We’re not saying that every renovation is going to have such a lucrative find hidden behind a wall or floor board but don’t let some of the more gruesome ones put you off either. Check out our renovation guides section and see if you can strike lucky, whether that be with a find of cash or just adding those extra zeros on to the price of your house.

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