May 26, 2010 I Micah Hanks

Mysterious Island: For Sale?

When you think of prime real estate, maybe you think about a beautiful piece of property covered in wildflowers and decorated with summer gardens and babbling brooks. Others might envision a desert villa with stucco roofs and adobe walls warmed by the midday sun.

Still there are others who would imagine a secluded island where the secrets of a scandalous celebrity's lifestyle might play out to the wildest imaginings of gossip hounds and paparazzi photographers sneaking around in paddle boats.

If island realty is what you had in mind also, then news regarding the latest piece of US government property to enter the "for sale" market may be a little more than you'd be willing to bargain for. Plum Island, a mysterious locale which became home to an animal disease lab during the Cold War, is now for sale; but before bidding can start it seems the strange property, even with its already legendary status, is bound for more controversy.

In the last few decades, anthrax and other highly dangerous diseases have been studied at Plum Island. However, the island's close proximity to New York City had begun to cause concern after the terrorist attacks of September 2001, especially since the place housed potential for a massive bio-terrorist threat. Therefore, it was announced recently that officials now plan to sell the island, with some activists hoping to utilize its potential ecological value as a future preserve.

And yet, in spite of the strange and mysterious government associations the island bears, perhaps the strangest story in recent times dealt with an odd occurrence which, presumably, came as a surprise even to those who work there. In a particularly Fortean turn of events transpiring back in January, the discovery of a decomposing "mutant" body on the island's southwest shore caused quite a stir for several days. Reported at the WPIX news website, the following description of the corpse was provided:

The body was described as that of a white male about 6-feet tall with a large build and “very long” fingers. According to authorities, there were no obvious signs of trauma.

Speculation involving the island's odd history only fueled reports of the "mutant" discovered there, with little, if any, information about the body made available after the initial reports that received press attention. Was there truly anything inhuman about the body that was discovered, and was any kind of foul play involved? Furthermore, did the stranger's death have anything to do with the kind of testing that had taken place on the island in laboratories for the last thirty years? Having been referenced already in novels and films, perhaps some of Plum Island's intrigue will disappear with the removal of US government facilities being housed there... or maybe the place does in fact house secrets so odd and esoteric that its haunting reputation will precede it for several more decades to come.

Micah Hanks

Micah Hanks is a writer, podcaster, and researcher whose interests cover a variety of subjects. His areas of focus include history, science, philosophy, current events, cultural studies, technology, unexplained phenomena, and ways the future of humankind may be influenced by science and innovation in the coming decades. In addition to writing, Micah hosts the Middle Theory and Gralien Report podcasts.

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