The Antique Box

Cheryl was browsing an old antique store in Sanford, Florida. The place specialized in antique dolls — old figurines, stuffed animals, porcelains. But that’s not what caught her eye that day.

It was upstairs, on the floor, lying on its side behind an old book shelf. A dusty box. She asked the store owner if it was for sale.

“You know, I’ve never seen that before,” he said, picking it up. “But if you buy something else, maybe I’ll let you have it.”

So she picked out a doll and the owner parted with the strange box.

It was an unassuming box, really. A yellow stripe on top, locked with an old rusty nail, twisted in place. It was its contents, however, that Cheryl found so haunting. When she got home, she investigated.

“It was locked with a old rusty nail that was twisted. I did manage to get it open,” she wrote. When she did, what she found were two curious items: a strange handmade doll and a gold ring with an inscription inside that was difficult to make out. A date on the outside of the ring read 1969. “Could be an old class ring,” she thought.

Image: eBay
Image: eBay

But things got even stranger when she put the ring on. She began to feel odd, unsettled. When she took it off, she felt fine again. “There’s a reason these items are together inside this box and it was locked,” she wrote, deciding to auction the box and its mysterious contents on eBay, “I really just want the box gone.”

However, before it successfully sold for $51.00 on October 26, 2012, Cheryl had it packed away in her shed, ready to go. Her dog wouldn’t stop barking at it, and she suffered bizarre nightmares.

“I’ve been having these strange dreams, over and over,” she wrote, “That old box is always in it with a woman dressed in white. She is carrying the box in her hands but she seems to be moving across the floor but not touching it.”

In her dreams, the woman in white is always holding the box, carrying it through an old-fashioned home filled with antique items. “There is a staircase, and she gracefully floats up the stairs, and then she’s gone. I don’t understand.”

Cheryl also received an intriguing email, just before the auction ended:

“Sadly I don’t have the money at the moment to spend on it. However, just for your health sake until you DO get rid of it, as I’m sure someone will buy it before I have the money, I do have some recommendations. Wrap it in a cotton heavy black cloth, And salt. Place salt around it in a ring, and you could also sage it, but Sage can be a bit expensive.My concern is it getting worse as Halloween approaches. The time when the veil is thinnest. The reason children wear costumes to protect, the reason for jack’o lanterns, and the birth of dia de los muertos…

Just thought I’d share this information with you. And I don’t know if you can do this, but one charm to keep spirits away is a bottle of salt and water from a natural element be it a lack, a river or even rain but you can also use tap water is necessary just let is run for a while before using the water and have it set out on the night of the full moon. It’s kinda like the witches holy water. Hanging it from a tree also wards.. I hope the info I am sharing with every one will prompt someone with more experience with this type Item will purchase it…”

A strange box. An old, stuffed doll. A golden ring. Three objects that may — or may not — be perfectly ordinary. One can only wonder how they ended up in that box, locked with a bent, rusted nail, and if its new owner will have any stories to tell.


Rob Schwarz

Writer, blogger, and part-time peddler of mysterious tales. Editor-in-chief of Stranger Dimensions. Might be a robot.

Read More