Having objects passed down to you will reveal secrets about your ancestors. They are precious gems since the objects inside are often no longer available for purchase. They can also disclose historical information.
The property that a German woman inherited from her great aunt was full of hidden gems. A big, rusted safe was one of the most common products. It begged to be opened, and the woman did just that. Continue reading to learn more about this profound discovery story.
An Unknown Inheritance.
Inheritances can be unexpected, and this one was no different. A German woman had no idea what was inside the rusted chest left for her by her great aunt. The broad piece of metal seemed to be suspicious.
The woman had no idea why anyone, let alone her great aunt, would need such a large and secure package. The chest seemed to have been around for a long time based on its condition.
Experiencing World War II.
Although the woman had no knowledge of the safe other than its bad state and the fact that she had inherited it, she did have some knowledge of her great aunt’s history. In the 1940s, the late woman had fled Russia.
In the same decade that World War II was raging, she settled in Hamburg, Germany. It seemed like a risky decision, but she couldn’t ask her great aunt why she’d gone ahead with it.
Her Past Is In Her Hands.
If the woman hoped to learn more about her great aunt’s history, she needed to first open the chest. It seemed that just breaking into the chest would be difficult. It may as well have been cemented shut, given how badly it had rusted over the years.
Clearly, her great aunt thought whatever was inside needed to be carefully guarded. Despite this, she had given a key to her great-niece. Even so, there was no way of knowing if the key would function on such an old box.
Prepare to be surprised by what the safe reveals!.
There seemed to be nothing inside.
The woman fiddled with the key, attempting to open the enigmatic safe. The key worked even though the safe seemed to be decades old. Perhaps more amazing, she was able to pry the door open.
Her interest was piqued further when she noticed that there seemed to be nothing inside. Instead, all that was left was a shallow tray with no contents. Her great aunt may have left her an old safe with nothing in it, for all she knew.
Taking a closer look.
Despite the fact that the tray appeared to be empty, the woman couldn’t help but examine the safe more closely. It seemed illogical that her aunt would have something so sturdy and yet refuse to use it.
As the woman examined it more closely, she discovered a trap door. The tray raised, revealing a hidden compartment in the safe. It seemed to be a set of oddities at first glance. They were taken out for further investigation by the woman.
Treasures that have been hidden.
As the woman rummaged through the chest’s contents, she found there were more family secrets than she had expected. Stacks of family photos dating back decades were discovered in boxes and packages.
There were also postcards with notes that were still legible. The woman will be able to piece together more detail about her late ancestors from the pictures and writings than she previously knew. There were also a few books that might provide some insight.
Let’s take a closer look at the books discovered in the safe.
This is a classic novel.
The classic novel Rob Roy was one of the things she discovered. The historical work, written by Sir Walter Scott in 1817, is based on a real person who has been dubbed the Scottish Robin Hood.
Her great aunt had evidently treasured the story of defiance and bravery because she had it tucked away in a safe. According to the appearance of the book, it may be a vintage version that is worth anything.
Another historical relic.
Bernhard Tauchnitz’s Leipzig was another piece of literature that the woman discovered. Bernhard was a publisher from Germany who started his business in 1837. His company published a variety of books, including classics and dictionaries.
The Tauchnitz books were often used as a guide because of their accuracy. Tauchnitz’s company was located in Leipzig, Germany. This book, which was published in 1846, is likely to contain some useful information about the historical town.
A well-known tale.
A classic edition of Lady and the Tramp is one book she discovered that is still applicable today. Many of the Disney stories we’ve grown to love were based on stories created by others years before.
Alice in Wonderland, Beauty and the Beast, The Little Mermaid and a slew of other Disney films were based on stories written by a variety of writers throughout history. The initial Lady and the Tramp was eventually phased out.
The Classic Reveals a Few Things.
The Lady and the Tramp that the woman discovered in her great aunt’s safe in 1953 is not the same as the Disney version. The tale, written by Ward Greene, makes Lady even more spoiled, then noticeably neglected once the baby arrives.
Tramp’s street persona becomes more prominent, and Trusty dies. It’s a fantastic discovery, despite the fact that it’s not kid-friendly. Her version was also in German, making it even more unusual.
Let’s take a look at some of the images that were discovered.
A photograph of the family.
The woman thought the snapshot she found was of her great-grandparents with her grandmother. Long before “tell cheese” became the standard, the family’s straight faces were distinctive.
Given that the photographs were kept in a safe, it’s possible that this was the first time the woman had seen any of her older relatives. It’s amazing just to see a photograph of people from so long ago, but it’s even more incredible when those people are relatives.
Grandpa Riding His Motorcycle.
The woman’s grandfather is riding a motorcycle down a country road in this photograph. The picture conveys how long ago it was to see cows grazing in the background alongside a man on a bicycle.
It must have been particularly eye-opening for the woman to see an older relative who seemed to be so young and carefree. Images like these will help to bridge generations by reminding us that we were all once children.
The War’s Detriment.
This image depicts a house that was demolished during WWII. It may have been held by the woman’s great aunt as a reminder of her ordeal. She may have known the resident of that house.
This picture was significant to the great aunt for some reason. In the very least, it conveys to younger generations the true meaning of a world war. It’s not a pretty sight, but it’s something our forefathers had to deal with.
Let’s take a look at what else the woman discovered.
A postcard from World War I.
The woman also discovered a large number of postcards in the safe. This one, from 1916, depicts a soldier kissing his sweetheart. It’s possible that the woman’s great aunt lived to see both World Wars, or that she inherited this card from a relative.
In any case, it emphasizes the value of holding things within the family. The message on the back of this card was most likely jam-packed with information about who sent it and why.
Another Insightful Postcard.
Another postcard, depicting a soldier and a nurse, was discovered in the safe. It’s likely that these postcards were sent to and received by the same individuals. Each object in the safe, like chapters in a novel, adds to the story.
Perhaps the woman’s great aunt worked as a nurse during one or both World Wars. Only the woman knows what was written on these cards, assuming that they are still readable.
Nivea has a long history.
These old Nivea Creme cans show a lot more than you would expect. It’s not surprising that they’re written in German, given that they were most likely purchased near the great aunt’s home, but it’s noteworthy.
This is due to the fact that Nivea was established in Germany in 1882! Despite the fact that the brand is now ubiquitous, it is one that has likely outlasted many of the other brands in most people’s cabinets. It also goes to show that you never know what little things you have lying around can turn into jewels in the future.
Up next, a curious attic suitcase containing even more ancient relics.
The Attic’s Secrets.
Rudy is the senior gentleman with the orange jumper. During WWII, he and his family fled Czechoslovakia when he was a young child. He uncovered secret jewels in his attic 70 years later.
His father kept the things in a safe place. Rudy knew there was more to see, so he reached out to experts in the field. As Rudy made his great discovery, representatives from a nearby museum and even the mayor joined in.
A Trap Door Is Found.
Despite the fact that many people had visited the attic over the years, Rudy was the only one who had noticed a small but crucial detail. One of the wooden boards had a rope coming out of it. He yanked on it until two of the boards were loose enough to be removed.
Rudy could see a hideout on the other side now that the boards had been removed. The hidden location was brimming with things that had been hidden for years.
Things that have been cleverly hidden.
Rudy was lucky to have a team with him because there were just too many things for one man to handle on his own. In his father’s underground compartment in the attic, there were a total of 70 packages concealed.
There was no way that many packages could be stuffed through a cavity in the wall. Instead, they were put in a vault in the skylight with care. Even though there wasn’t much space left, Rudy’s father managed to jigsaw all of the pieces together perfectly.
Let’s take a look at what was inside these enigmatic packets.
The Packages Are Being Opened.
Rudy was right in that his father had left many secrets behind, but what was inside remained a mystery. When the team started opening the packages, they found a slew of WWII-era mementos.
Among the many things found were the dolls seen here. Some objects were left out in the open, despite the fact that the majority of them were covered in paper. They discovered hats, clothes hangers, and newspapers, among other things.
Inspection by a professional.
Paperweights, umbrellas, school chairs, badges, magazines, sewing kits, and other things were included in the packages. It may seem strange that someone would hide such commonplace objects, but it isn’t unthinkable during a World War.
Each and every item was taken seriously by the experts. They looked over it to see how it was. The products were not rundown in the way you’d expect anything of that age to be because they had not been touched for so long.
Since they were essentially stored in a time capsule, these unusual finds are considered extremely valuable. They are historically significant and may provide insight into the past.
Two participants in Rudy’s discovery hold up an exquisite painting that was recovered in this photograph. It appears to be something you’d find in a modern art museum. The things were obviously treated with great care by Rudy’s father, and they will continue to be handled with care.
What Will They Do Now?.
The objects will be donated to a Czech museum in Usti Nad Labem. The state has the legal right to keep what was left behind during the war because the objects are German property.
Two boxes on the left have the dates “1939” and “1940” written on them, putting them in the middle of the WWII timeline. The museum will be able to restore the objects correctly so that visitors can get a glimpse into the past.
Continue reading to hear the incredible story of a fire department captain who received the biggest surprise of his life when he bought a house.
A Popular Real Estate Transaction.
When John Sims purchased his new home in Tucson’s midtown district, he didn’t expect anything out of the ordinary. But, due to a disturbing story about the house and an insatiable curiosity about it, buying the house turned into one of the most amazing events of his life.
According to the previous owner of the house, there was something hidden in the backyard. John couldn’t sleep at night, knowing there was a mystery hidden somewhere, so he set out to discover it. Continue reading to learn more about John’s quest for answers to a decades-old mystery.
It’s Time To Hand Over The Keys.
John Sims purchased a home that had previously belonged to a neighbor. Knowing that this friend had already lived there and would have told him if there was anything wrong with the house gave John trust in his purchase.
However, after John’s purchase was completed, his friend said something surprising. He told John about strange rumors about the home, rumors about a mystery surrounding something that was allegedly buried in the backyard years before.
What Should I Do With This Information?.
John’s friend, who had previously owned the house John had just bought, had given him an intriguing, but weird, hint about it. However, it turns out that the friend had never taken the time to investigate the rumors.
John couldn’t stop thinking about his friend’s words as he began unpacking and other regular tasks of moving into a new home. All he had to do was investigate what was going on in his backyard.
It was up to him to solve the puzzle.
Now that he’d been a little fascinated with the hints of a mystery surrounding his new home, John knew he’d go to any length to figure out what was going on. He’d been so fascinated by the home’s secret that he’d joked about borrowing a shovel when the friend first discussed it.
He’d soon remember that a single shovel wasn’t going to be enough. Despite the fact that John had no idea what he was looking for, he wanted to look into it.
I’m not sure where to begin.
John relished the opportunity to ponder the mystery that surrounded him in his own backyard. What could it possibly be? He was aware that the rumor might be false and that he would not be able to find something. But he was also aware that he could come across something incredible.
John considered what he would do next, unable to bear the confusion any longer. Later, he could fill in some gaps and repair his grass. The mission at hand was more critical than the appearance of his yard. So he took out a shovel and began digging.
A Triple-Digit Danger.
John was so eager to find the source of these rumors that he was willing to go to any length to do so. Summers in Tucson, Arizona are scorching, with temperatures reaching triple digits. Working in those kinds of conditions is risky.
At this stage, many people would have given up. John, however, was unfazed and went on with his search. He dug with his shovel in hand. And then there was digging. He was hoping that all of his hard work would pay off.
The yard was littered with holes.
When John started his arduous digging, he had no plans in place. In his backyard, he simply began digging hole after hole. John had dug four separate pits, destroying his yard in the process, but he still hadn’t found anything.
He began to be concerned that, if there was anything worth finding out there, he may have lost it with his digging. Disappointment set in, and John gave up hope of solving the mystery in his yard.
The light bulb goes off.
John was temporarily discouraged and took a break from digging, which caused him to reconsider his situation. He had a new idea, one that might finally lead him to the location of his home’s enigmatic treasure.
He went through Tucson’s municipal records, page by page, until he found details about his own house. For all of his hard work, John was handsomely rewarded. He got some more details about what could be lurking under his lawn.
Clues have been added to the game.
The Tucson municipal documents confirmed what John already suspected, such as the year his house was constructed. However, John discovered something new thanks to a rough drawing in the documents.
According to the documents, Whitaker Pools applied for a permit to operate on the property in 1961, which is more than 50 years ago. However, John’s house lacked a tub. So, in 1961, what exactly did the pool company do there? Everyone was taken aback by the response to that question.
The mystery grows ever more engrossing.
Now that he had a sketch and more details, John knew he needed to be more cautious in his search. No more hasty digging with his shovel focused solely on instinct! It was time to get serious, not jokes.
As a result, John recruited a team of consultants, who came with all of the necessary equipment, including metal detectors. Hopefully, they will be able to solve this mystery once and for all.
Is There Something The Metal Detectors Can Find?.
John hoped to find out soon if those old, enigmatic stories about his new house were real as the search became more calculated and concentrated. The metal detectors, however, stayed silent as the team of experts worked on various areas of his backyard.
As it seemed that the consultants would also come up empty-handed in their quest, the stress rose. The alarms, on the other hand, started to go off. John was enthralled by the sound.
What were the results of the metal detectors?.
There are a number of sites to look at further.
John was ecstatic to hear the metal detectors of the experts pinging in the humid Arizona air. And there’s more good news: the computers found not one, but two potential hotspots! After meticulously marking both locations in his backyard, John was able to take a short break and prepare the next phase of his quest.
John’s energies would be more concentrated now, and he wouldn’t have to spend them haphazardly. He couldn’t wait to find out what was lurking under his backyard.
The Shovel is brought out once more.
John snatched up his shovel and returned to the humid and exhausting job of digging. This time, on the other hand, he knew precisely where he needed to concentrate his efforts. He dug at the two locations that the metal detectors had discovered with eagerness.
His efforts were quickly rewarded at the second location identified by the consultants. He didn’t have to wait long until he felt his shovel collide with something solid and heard the familiar scraping of metal hitting metal. John was so close to solving the mystery in his backyard.
Down three feet.
When John first felt his shovel strike the metal object, he was about three feet down in the ground. Although he was relieved to have found something, he became concerned that it was a septic tank.
A septic tank would not only be a disappointment after all of this time and effort, but it would also require John to be extra cautious as he tried to dig around it. It would be disastrous to damage a septic tank or break a pipe.
Is John going to be rewarded for his efforts?.
There are more questions to be answered.
John had finally deduced that the object hidden under the backyard of his new home wasn’t a septic tank. But now that he had discovered a significant portion of the structure and could explore it visually, he seemed to have far more questions than before he began his journey.
John had uncovered a concrete form that looked like an entryway. But what was the end result, and how did you get involved?.
We’re getting closer to getting in.
John was astounded to discover an entryway or portal of some kind hidden deep beneath the ground in his backyard. He was so close to figuring out what was going on!.
He managed to clear the earth and found a hatch with a lid at the entrance. He carefully pried the lid off, but his experience as a fire department captain taught him that entering the opening was not yet safe.
It’s been a long day of waiting.
You can possibly imagine John’s delight at actually learning the truth about his backyard’s hidden mystery. But it was necessary to wait a day. He had learned about the risks of enclosed spaces from his fire department experience.
Mold or toxic gases may be present in the environment, making it dangerous to breathe. When John eventually went underground, he realized he’d need many people to help him if the system collapsed or if he got stuck in any way.
John’s “Moment Of Reality” had arrived.
It was finally time for John to reach the hidden space outside the hatch after what must have seemed like an eternity of waiting. This backyard explorer’s moment of truth had arrived: he was going to find out what was down there.
John sat down and peered into the cavity framed by the metal hatch with caution. The sight that greeted his enquiring gaze was totally unexpected! So, what exactly was it?.
What exactly is it?.
When John looked down through the hatch for the first time, he was totally taken aback by what he saw. It looked like a tangle of razor-sharp metal blades. What could be their goal?.
It didn’t take long for his eyes to adapt and he was able to see what he was actually looking at. The metal blades, which appeared to be random, were actually part of a spiral staircase that led even deeper into the earth underneath John’s house.
A Dangerous Proposal.
John could have hurried down the spiral staircase he’d just discovered in his backyard in his excitement. After all, the answer to the mystery was so close to him that he could almost feel it.
He, on the other hand, did not. John’s experience as a fire captain, as well as his common sense, kept him from exploring the underground room he’d discovered right on his own home. There were just so many dangers.
What were the dangers of actually walking down the spiral staircase that led down into the ground? To begin with, the system was simply not stable. It had been designed more than 50 years before John discovered it, and he had no idea how bad it was.
Second, John knew it would be better if he had company when he actually went down the hatch. If he is stuck or the building collapsed, they could assist him. As a result, he gathered a group of friends to assist him in making the building safe to join.
He devised a strategy.
The pieces of a plan start to fall into place.
With his backyard discovery, John was being cautious. Even though he was giddy with anticipation at the possibility of finally solving the puzzle, he knew that his safety came first.
John devised a plan to safely enter the underground space with the help of his trusted mates. Their long-term preparation was about to pay off in a major, unexpected way. Fortunately, they reported their discovery along the way so that they could share the specifics of their discoveries with others.
The Passageway is being prepared.
After sitting unused for decades, John had no idea what state the structure could be in. As a result, he and his friends realized they needed to reinforce and rebuild the entire concrete entrance.
The spiral staircase that led down into the underground space was also in desperate need of repair. The metal steps were almost rusted through and were not yet safe to stand on. If they were to be used in their current state, they could even fail.
Despite these unavoidable setbacks, John was moving closer to solving the puzzle!.
As stable as a rock.
With new rebar and several layers of concrete, John Sims and his friends expanded and strengthened the entryway around the stairs. This move was completely important to ensure the safety of the contestants. Otherwise, the danger of a structural failure was too high.
As they poured layer after layer of concrete, their curiosity and excitement held them going. Their mission was made all the more difficult by the oppressive heat of Arizona. They erected a tent to help block the sun and maintain a comfortable temperature.
There are a few more tasks to complete.
John is clearly a forward-thinking person. He realized he’d need to be able to see when he was actually able to reach the mysterious structure in his backyard. Many people would simply run forward with a flashlight, but John is not one of them.
As a result, he mounted an electrical line so that the room could be illuminated. When the electrical line was completed, he and his friends could use power tools down there if appropriate.
It’s Like Taking A Breath Of Fresh Air.
As we’ve seen, John’s experience as a firefighter made him acutely conscious of the dangers of cramped spaces. In the 50-year-old building he was about to enter, mold and gas leaks were a major concern.
A pipe was inserted in the entryway by John and his mates. It would force fresh air into the room, making things cleaner until they were eventually allowed in. It was almost time for everyone to discover the long-hidden secret in John’s backyard.
One final step.
Unfortunately, John and his friends were unable to patch the rusted spiral staircase; it would have to be repaired from the inside. It was too dangerous to place any weight on the steps and no one knew how durable they were. So, how would people safely enter the space?.
John had the answer. He went out and got a tall ladder, which he secured in the entryway. He was about to find out what was down there for the first time.
The wait was finally over.
Finally, John learned the truth that he’d overheard his friend discuss. He’d become almost obsessed with discovering the truth behind the rumor and had put in a lot of effort to get to this point.
He was about to descend the ladder and into the enigmatic pit in his backyard for the first time in 50 years! John’s imagination went wild as he descended. What was he going to witness?.
Taking a Step Into Space.
As his enthusiasm increased, John lowered himself down the ladder, rung by rung. He took a step down the ladder and was eventually praised for his efforts.
He was taken aback when he discovered a large room underneath his backyard! It was also in decent condition, with a sturdy base. That wasn’t it, though. There was an entire network of tunnels that formed a complex down there!.
The Rumors Were Right.
John’s friend, the previous owner of the house he had just bought, had told him about a secret hidden deep in the backyard. John had discovered through his study that the system in question had been designed by Whitaker Pools.
This underground cavern, on the other hand, was obviously not a spa. The structure’s intended function was revealed by the year it was built, 1961. And as soon as John saw the room, he knew exactly what it was for.
Years had taken their toll on him.
Despite the fact that the building seemed to be in good shape for its age, John could tell he still had some work to do to make the space safe. The fiberglass ceiling held the key.
Fiberglass can be highly poisonous to humans if breathed in, and it irritates the skin. The fiberglass in the ceiling was also disintegrating, which was not a good thing. Fortunately, it was something that could be fixed. After all, John wasn’t willing to give up on his new discovery after all his efforts.
It’s a Cold War relic.
Despite its size, the structure underneath John Sims’ house was devoid of any furnishings or decorations. The underground bunker’s function as a nuclear fallout shelter was immediately apparent.
Many citizens had become afraid, even paranoid, during the Cold War hostilities between the Soviet Union and the United States, and as a result had constructed backyard bomb shelters. But why had Whitaker Pools constructed a nuclear bunker in the first place?.
Working two jobs at once.
Whitaker Pools, it turns out, had added backyard bomb shelters to its list of facilities in response to customer demand during the Cold War. This was, in reality, fairly popular across the world.
Many pool builders expanded their operations when they discovered that building fallout shelters wasn’t all that different from building inground pool shells. Catalina Pools, a Los Angeles-based company, had constructed 500 shelters by 1961! .
A Brand-New Underground Business Opportunity.
What would you do if you found an immense labyrinth of rooms hidden in your backyard? What would you do with the room if you had it? John’s friends came up with some amusing suggestions for him, such as a cigar bar, wine cellar, or “man cave.”.
Others have transformed old bunkers into stunning new houses, hotels, art galleries, and recording studios all over the world. John, on the other hand, had a different plan for his backyard find.
With backyard bomb shelters, John was able to connect with others.
After announcing his bomb shelter on the internet, John Sims discovered he was not alone. His Reddit post went viral, and he started engaging with other people who have built fallout shelters in their backyards.
His fascination with these shelters, as well as the Cold War era, has developed. In reality, he has big plans to convert his own historical bunker into a museum, which means he’ll have a lot of work on his hands. So, what was John’s next course of action?.
It all began with a GoFundMe campaign.
Setting up a GoFundMe page was John’s next step in returning his bunker to its former glory. “Hi, I’m John, and I’m in need of some assistance restoring a vintage Fallout Shelter that I discovered in my back yard,” he wrote.
He was asking for help re-building the shelter’s entryway, which he wanted to do before he could start working on the renovations and improvements downstairs. “The upper entrance requires a massive concrete pour to protect the entry, and the metal circular staircase must be replaced,” he said. The project is expected to cost about $2,000, according to John.
The Staircase Has Been Completed!.
Despite the fact that John’s GoFundMe campaign gained a lot of attention and several hundred dollars in contributions, his target of raising $2,000 for the stairway reconstruction fell short. Of course, none of this deterred John from carrying out his plans! He also took time away from work to work on the crucial stairwell.
Following a series of project updates, John announced that the entry area was now complete: “Stairs are finished! Climbing in and out is now simple and safe.” He also shared a picture of the finished stairs, which are a lovely shade of blue.
Now that the stairwell is done.
Now that the staircase and entryway are full, John updated his GoFundMe page with more details about his shelter. “My plans are to clean up the interior, repaint it, and transform it into a very cool man cave, HAM shack, and Civil Defense Museum,” says the author.
“Once I began this project, I did a lot of research about the Cold War era and how civilian concerns motivated many people to create these shelters,” he added. The discovery of this bunker has obviously had a major effect on John’s life!.
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