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Mysteries

10 Hidden Chambers and Passageways

Kjsem78 . . . Comments

Whether for sinister, practical or survival purposes, man has been developing secret passageways, rooms and spaces, virtually since he began walking the Earth. I find the topic to be especially fascinating, because with each one discovered or publicly brought to light, another small piece of history is also discovered. Here we take a look at 10, each one with its own unique past.

10

Mont Sainte-Odile

Mont-Sainte-Odile-Convent

Breathtakingly perched 2,500 feet high in the Vosges Mountains of France, the Mont Sainte-Odile monastery dates back to the 7th century A.D. Its library has, for centuries, housed many rare and ancient books, but in 2003 something peculiar began happening. Many of these books began to seemingly vanish. Since the room was soundly locked and off limits to the public, it was a complete mystery as to where these books were disappearing. After police were called in, they eventually found that a section of bookcase swung back to reveal a hidden passageway. With a security camera then set up, a local teacher, Stanislas Gosse, was arrested soon thereafter. Apparently, he had stumbled upon a map to the secret passage in the city archives and decided to embark on his own adventure. In order to steal the books, he climbed over the exterior walls of the monastery then accessed hidden stairways that snaked toward a centuries-old, long-forgotten medieval passageway which led directly to the swinging bookcase in the library. It is believed that the passage was originally built to allow senior monks to eavesdrop on the younger monks’ conversations, being held in the library. As for Gosse, he commented that he stole the books because he felt they had been “abandoned” and he also wanted a “thrill.” 1,000 of the monastery’s books were found safely in his small apartment.

9

21 Club

21Front

In Prohibition-era New York City in the 1920s, many speakeasies sprung up across the city to offer thirsty citizens illegal alcohol and good times. But one of them, the 21 Club, may have been the most clever of them all. The owners also owned the building next door, and used this as a means to hide their vast liquor supply in its cellar. This secret storage room was concealed by an enormous door that was designed to appear as a simple, cement wall. The door weighed a massive two-and-a-half tons, and could only be opened by inserting an 18-inch length of wire into one of the various cracks in the cement. With some muscle, the door would swing open into the basement next door, which housed hundreds of bottles of booze. Thanks to this secret room, and a system of levers used to tip shelves and drop bottles into the sewers below, neither the owners nor patrons were ever caught, even though the 21 Club was raided by police several times. During Prohibition, many celebrities and important political figures were known to imbibe in the secret cellar – including the mayor of NYC.


8

House of Horrors

R227300 903167

On the picturesque British island of Jersey, in the English Channel, the disturbing secrets of the Haut de la Garenne children’s home were made public, in 2008. After reports of abuse, rumors of exceedingly grim findings followed. An underground network of four, underground chambers were unearthed after an extensive police investigation, and what was discovered inside of them shocked not only the island, but the whole world as well. There were reports of shackles, juvenile bone and teeth remains, and shallow baths with traces of blood. It was down in these subterranean rooms where the children of the home were “punished”. It was stated that such abuse and murder took place from the 1940s to the 1980s, with the bulk of it occurring in the 60s. From various interviews and research, it was determined that “bad behavior” was met with floggings, druggings, sexual assault and solitary confinement in these terrible rooms. As if that wasn’t enough, notorious serial sex attacker, Edward Paisnel, also known as the “Beast of Jersey”, was also said to make visits to Haut de la Garenne to carry out his nefarious crimes. The accounts of abuse and murder now make up a long list, since many victims have come forward years later. The only positive effect to result from these horrors is that the island of Jersey has now taken legal steps to ensure that atrocities like this never occur again even though many of the initial horror stories have since been found to be exaggerations or completely untrue.

7

Colditz Castle

Colditz-Castle

During WWII, a number of British and French soldiers were held as POWs in Germany’s Colditz Castle. It was in the attic of this castle where a notably impressive escape was planned and crafted. Led by British Lieutenant, Tony Rolt, and pilots, Bill Goldfinch and Jack Best, the small team of prisoners constructed a false wall and ceiling out of wooden shutters and mud, which created a hidden room in the attic. It was here that work on a secret glider commenced. Amazingly, their German captors did not even notice this newly-build room whenever they entered the space. Painstakingly, a flyable glider was built from no more than scraps of materials they found around the portion of the castle in which they were held. Able to get onto the roof with their creation, named the Colditz Cock, the escape launch was scheduled for the spring of 1945. However, the POW camp was liberated by American forces just before the planned date of escape.

6

The Coffin House

Levicoffinhouse

Although the name of this edifice sounds malevolent, it actually was a source of hope about 150-160 years ago. Located in Fountain City, Indiana, this was a small, brick home owned by Quaker, and abolitionist, Levi Coffin. The home contained many secret spaces, including a small, hidden room off the bedroom. Although the structure itself was nothing profound, what occurred there certainly was. It was in this diminutive room where Coffin successfully hid 2,000 escaped slaves who were following the path of the Underground Railroad, before the start of the American Civil War. Over the course of 20 years, these fugitive slaves would hole up in the room for, possibly, weeks as they prepared for the next leg of their journey to freedom. One slave’s experience in particular, known only as Eliza, was included in the classic novel “Uncle Tom’s Cabin”, by Harriet Beecher Stowe. Because every slave Levi Coffin assisted eventually made their way to freedom, he became known as the “President of the Underground Railroad”.

5

Passetto di Borgo

Screen Shot 2010-12-05 At 10.22.42 Am

Dating back to 1277, the Passetto di Borgo was a secret passageway, approximately 800 meters long, atop the old Vatican wall linking Vatican City to the Castel Sant’Angelo, or Mausoleum of Hadrian, in Rome. Commissioned by Pope Nicholas III, it provided a crucial escape route for a number of subsequent popes. In 1494, Pope Alexander VI used it to escape an invasion by Charles VIII (It is also rumored that he used it to surreptitiously visit some of his lovers), and Pope Clement VII fled through it in 1527, during the Sack of Rome. Readers of author Dan Brown may also remember that the passageway played a part in his novel “Angels & Demons”. Today, the Passetto di Borgo is not so much of a secret, and is open to tourists. Legend has it that if a man runs 77 times up and down the passageway, he will get his lost virility back.


4

Mexican/U.S. Drug Tunnel

Screen Shot 2010-12-05 At 10.23.39 Am

Discovered in November of 2010, this elaborate passageway spans 2,200 feet long and is equipped with a small rail system, ventilation and fluorescent lighting. It connects the kitchen of a home in Tijuana, Mexico, to two warehouses in an industrial district in San Diego, California. Believed to be the work of Mexico’s Sinaloa drug cartel, which is headed by the country’s most-wanted drug lord, Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman, the passage was used to transport massive amounts of marijuana, cocaine and methamphetamine into the United States. Located off the passage is a hidden staircase leading to a room 50 feet underground which housed an enormous amount of marijuana. Overall, more than 20 tons of marijuana was seized by U.S. and Mexican law enforcement. Many clandestine passages along the two countries’ border have been found since the early 90s, but this recently uncovered one is, by far, the most complex and complete.

3

FDR’s Grand Central Terminal Passageway

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Built in 1913, Grand Central Terminal, in New York City, is the largest train station in the world, in terms of number of platforms. Therefore, it’s only natural that there be various hidden nooks, corners and spaces, such as the network of underground tracks, storage areas and tunnels. Weaved amidst them all is an unlisted train platform, known as Track 61, with a secret entrance and passageway leading to an elevator going straight up to the world-famous Waldorf-Astoria hotel. This furtive passage was what President Franklin D. Roosevelt used as his private entrance into Manhattan. It was a way of avoiding the pesky questions and flashbulbs of reporters and of going straight from his train to his hotel. In addition, it shielded the public from witnessing, in plain view, his polio affliction. Today, the entrance to this long-forgotten passage is welded shut, as millions of people per year scramble just feet away all around it.


2

Indian National Library

Indialibrary2

Another very recent discovery (November, 2010), this hidden chamber lies in the Indian National Library, housed in the Belvedere House, in Calcutta. As the building was undergoing restoration this year, the Archaeology Survey of India discovered the location of a mysterious large room, around 1,000 square feet in size. What makes it so mysterious is that they cannot find an entrance to the room, even after searching every square inch of the ceiling and walls that make up the enclosure. What was found was an arch on one side that was walled up at some point. Since the Belvedere House was home to British Governors then Lt. Governors during British colonial rule, there are some interesting theories as to what may be behind the chamber’s walls. Apparently, it was common practice among the British at the time to “wall up” offenders in “death chambers”, and that’s one speculation, since some sources say the room seems to have the same dimensions that such a chamber would have had. Others say that it may contain hidden treasures since the British of that time were also known to hide their riches in so called “blind chambers”. A colonial Governor or Lieutenant Governor definitely would have been a wealthy man, so it’s a valid hypothesis. Since a wall cannot be demolished due to the historic importance of the building, archaeologists are currently waiting on permission from India’s Ministry of Culture before they bore a hole through the wall to peer inside with a searchlight.

1

Chamber of Horrors

Holmes

He is known as America’s first serial killer. Born Herman Webster Mudgett, H.H. Holmes was an abject degenerate of a human being. Using dirty money he attained from unscrupulous activities, such as insurance fraud and the occasional murder-for-hire, he constructed a large building in Chicago and ran it as a hotel/hostel, in 1893. In addition, he ran a drug store on the same street which helped him become a respected member of the community. However, his ostensible integrity hid a sinister monster. It turns out that, for years, his building was the site of grisly and gruesome murders carried out at his hands. After his ultimate arrest, it was discovered that “The Murder Castle”, as it became known, contained many architectural oddities such as hidden staircases and trap doors, allowing Holmes to enter guests’ rooms. The most macabre hidden area, however, was the dissection room and crematorium, located in the basement into which victims’ bodies were thrown via a chute from upper floors. This room was a “laboratory” of torture devices, tombs and surgical devices and became publicly known as the “Chamber of Horrors”. It is believed that no fewer than 50 women were slaughtered in unimaginable ways there.



  • rain

    I'm lost. :(

    • kubrick

      oh i see what you did

      • rain

        Amazing. . .

  • unstoppabblerimi

    interesting!
    Are these the only ones? or are there notable omissions?

    • kubrick

      there are always notable omissions

  • marye

    #10 is very similar to a childhood fantasy of mine, and I think often about sneaking into the library after hours. To this day I am determined to seize my local library or bookstore by any means necessary if there is a nuclear war/Apocalyptic event or whatever.
    Excellent and intriguing list :D

    • cqsteve

      Influenced by The Twlight Zone episode – "All the time in the world"?

      • kubrick

        no, influenced by frasier

        • captain boredom

          …what?

    • Lolaz

      It’s a shame, because I was born just in a few miles away of this place, and I never visited it… I will as soon as I come back to my native country. Great list!! ( once again )

  • Odessa

    Wow pretty scary especially 8 and 1. Very nice list.

    • kubrick

      none are that scary
      the exorcist is scary

  • name

    i've always wanted to discover a secret passage/chamber in my house. that would be awesome! :D

    • kubrick

      how would that be awesome. there would probably be a dead body in there

  • timothyjames

    Great concept for a list. I am convinced that there are secret passageways in my house, but they are too filled with bugs and webs to go into.

    • undaunted warrior 1

      Take some bug spray and a feather duster, could be some rare antiques and priceless paintings lurking in some dark passage down there.
      If this is the case let me know so I can e-mail you my address.
      Happy hunting.

      • timothyjames

        How cool would that be. Are you a collector?

        • undaunted warrior 1

          Not a collector – the only antique I see everyday is my image in the bathroom mirror every morning !

          • Skata

            There's an underground passage from Emory Hospital Oncology to Atlanta Children's Hospital. There was a Jason Alexander painting hanging in there. Nothing secret or mysterious about it though

  • dok

    Most of #8 is false. The initial reports were overblown. There were no "shackles, juvenile bone and teeth remains, and shallow baths with traces of blood." A single fragment was found which was later proven to be a coconut. The entire investigation was badly handled. Although there were several people charged with child abuse connected to Haut De La Garrene, it doesn't come nowhere near the "house of horrors" this list claims it to be.

    Since the information is readily available on the internet, I think you intentionally wrote falsehoods to make your list more interesting. While I'm aware that this is a site focused on entertainment, I think we should still stick to the basic facts.

    • kubrick

      true sir

    • Julius

      "A single fragment was found which was later proven to be a coconut." If they mistake a piece of coconut for part of a skeleton, than how can you trust the Jersey Police to find the real hidden rooms ;-)

    • Tryclyde

      Do you really think that any untruths were included on purpose to make the list more interesting? If there is information stating that these things are true then you can't really fault the writer. Unless someone spends weeks writing a list it may happen from time to time.

      • isog

        I found the item interesting and decided to read up more on it, within five minutes I had found out that it was largely untrue. A simple search of wikipedia followed by following sources back to BBC news articles. I'm sure the author could have taken time to verify. Took me no time at all.

        • Sinterklaus

          we all look forward to your perfectly written list in the future.

        • Panther

          So you found the left out information because you did a search and knew EXACTLY what you were looking for?! What detective work?!!

          • ach

            Um, all you have to do is look at the article on Haut de la Garenne on Wikipedia to see it's not true. Not that Wikipedia should be anyone's infallible and only source, but it's a pretty good starting point for research into anything. And if it's that easy to find, I don't think the question is an invalid one, despite the attitude of you two about it.

          • Sinterklaus

            My attitude? Listen, I wrote a list for this site a while back. Although it was well-regarded I included one minor mistake and a few people attacked me for it. This seems like a similar situation. We have an otherwise great list but there's always people who have to be all smarmy and a$$holes about it instead of tactfully pointing out the mistake. If this list was riddled with mistakes then I could perhaps see it. But I'm sick and tired of losers sitting home behind their computers ready to pounce on the first person to make a tiny slipup instead of acknowledging the positives. This is the single worst thing about the web because it's littered with people such at these. So again, please direct me to your perfect list here on Listverse.

          • dok

            The reason I mentioned #8 in the first place was because, even though the investigation was heavily criticized, people still believe the initial overblown reports to be true. I wasn't trying to be an asshole. But the fact is, most people read something from one source, decide to believe it and don't bother to verify it. We live in the information age. There's no excuse not to check facts. Yet most people never do that, because they choose what to believe. Which is, I guess, why many Americans seem to think Obama is a muslim. So I get kind of annoyed when people perpetuate these kind of stories on Listverse, a site I love and frequently read, when the information is so readily available. It took me about a minute to find out the real facts. And I did that because the story seemed too insane to be true. And it seemed unlikely to me that someone who did the research for this list would not be aware of the facts.

          • Jay

            "We live in the information age. There's no excuse not to check facts."

            So did you? Or did you look at the Wikipedia entry and start writing? Did you follow a lot of links and end up looking at 20 or 30 sites and think abouyt it carefully before forming an opinion or did you find ONE site that disagreed with the author and run to inform everyone that there isn't universal agreement?

          • Sinterklause

            I didn't realize it, but the author actually explains himself further down in the comments and it seems as if he (she?) did plenty of research but just made an oversight. The rest of the list (90%!) seems to be completely accurate and well researched, so please, give it a rest with your condescending comments.

          • Woyzeck

            Boo hoo. If you don't like criticism, do your research. That's the way the world works.

            Yours,
            Woyzeck.

          • Sinterklaus

            Actually, it's what's wrong with the world. Nothing wrong with correcting others, but don't be a dick about it like people on this site love to do.

          • Johnny Be Right

            Or you could maybe get some friends and not swing your mighty dick on a website? Just a thought.

            -Better at life than you.

          • Woyzeck

            And do you really suppose those two things to be mutually exclusive? You're a twat, mate!

            -Actually, genuinely better at life than you.

    • Derek

      cynical much?

    • I have to support everyone who is slating the fact that alot of this information is false. I am from Jersey (first tower for you beans) and this false information does not look good on our island. If it were just one mistake I wouldn’t mind but Most of this item is false, please change it.

      Kind regards whitestar48

    • Dopamine Addicted

      that’s just one out of ten you dik

  • Ninja_Wallaby

    Fantastic list. Can't believe I had never heard of number 8 considering how recent it was discovered. For those who like the macarbre I fully recommend looking up H. H. Holmes. He is quite possibly the worst serial killer ever, just for sheer inhumanity.

    • kubrick

      why does everyone keep mentioning number 8

    • Ms.Marie

      I think Elizabeth Bathory wins that one , on the inhumanity scale and the body count. However , Holmes was a very smart killer. He was known to sell the victim's skeletons to medical schools , especially since he almost always murdered for the money it could get him.

    • br0ck

      why don`t you marry him if you like him so much?

      • Billy

        That's lame, Brock, even for you. You're losing it.

        • br0ck

          you know i don`t give a fuck what you think

          • Billy

            Of course not, Brock. You don't care what anyone thinks because you're such an insignifant part of society. It just pains you to see people interacting normally and politely, so you try and rip their conversation down. Oh, and the attempt to pretend to be me saying 'I'm gay'? Even lamer than your last 'joke'.

        • Billy

          I am gay,Brock.

  • I think that number 4 doesnt make my city look good :/

    • kubrick

      no it doesn't, chap

      • captain boredom

        And your incredibly atrocious trolling skills don't make you look any better, lad.

  • tripsyman

    Very interesting list which could have been much longer due to there being literally hundreds more passages/hidden rooms all over the place. Not far from me is Rochester Castle in the south of England which has underground tunnels running under the local River Medwaywhich are centuries old. Although they are covered up this doesn't stop the local youths from investigating and only last year some had to be rescued as they got stuck and the tunnels started to flood. We also have more networks of tunnels at a place called Fort Amhurst which people can pay money for a guided tour. Well worth it if you ever find yourself looking for something to do on a wet Kent day.

    • kubrick

      could've been top 100 hidden chambers

  • kubrick

    woody guthrie is probably hidden in one of these
    bless his american soul

  • Noah

    One of the best lists in a long while. (Not bashing on the other lists, as they are excellent too, but this one hits the money.)

    • kubrick

      the parenthesis was redundant. and this list really wasn't that great. i knew maybe 9 of these

      • mom424

        I call shenanigans. 9? hahaha

        • captain boredom

          Haha, ditto!

  • cqsteve

    Hey – great list. When I first saw the heading my first thought was 'how boring'. But Kjsem78, you proved me wrong. Congratulations and well done on showing the good (Underground Railroad) with the bad (murderers). Cheers.

    • kubrick

      when i first saw the heading my first thought was 'how boring'. but kjsem78, you proved me right

  • Matt C

    There are a huge number of hidden tunnels and chambers under Liverpool (England), dug by Joseph Williamson, the so-called "mole of Edge Hill"

    There are various theories as to why he constructed them, although it's certain that at least one reason was to employ men who were unemployed after returning from the Napoleonic wars.

    There are several well-known areas, and more are found every now and then, as no definitive maps were made.

    I remember a whole new series of tunnels and chambers being found about 5 years ago, when a new shopping centre was being built in the city centre.

    When you visit Liverpool, be sure to take the tour!

    • kubrick

      i'll never visit liverpool cuz it's english

      • So was your namesake, dickweed. You're a terrible troll.

        • Woyzeck

          Stanley Kubrick was from New York. He didn't move to the UK until the 60s.

  • Thomas

    Number three is like Platform Nine and Three Quarters…I'm still trying to find it

    • kubrick

      no that platform is fake jk rowling made it up

      • chrom3d

        ohh so that's where harry potter ride the train to his school..

      • hedwig

        LIES!!!!

  • donald

    #1, Read the devil in the white city! great book about serial killer.
    leonardo dicaprio just bought the rights to the book, rumour has it hes playing HH holmes

    • kubrick

      no he's probably directing

      • TeamBanana

        You seem to be having a productive day today Kubrick

    • Ms.Marie

      Really ? That is very interesting

      • kubrick

        donald's comment or mine? i personally think it's mine

        • Maggot

          i personally think it's mine

          Yes, you’ve demonstrated your low standards on numerous occasions.

    • allyb10

      "The Devil in the White City" is an amazing book! I would recommend it to anyone who is interested in US history at all or even just interested in a good mystery novel. The story truly is stranger than fiction, and I look forward to the movie.
      BTW overall a very interesting list. I hadn't heard of most of these!

  • Double o’seven

    An ultraawefantasticsome list man..! Listverse breaths again woohoo… Thumbs up now,just keep it up..

  • Double o’seven

    i’ve heard about paris and amsterdam being built above a large network of secret passage ways… Any french/dutch out there to enlighten me more on this in details…?

  • Haas

    You left out Anne Franks here diary is only the most selled diary of all time which plays almost only in and around a hidden room. Shame on you!

    • C.J. Paulino

      Too well-known. I agree with leaving it out.

    • It was an attic. It wasn't nearly as elaborate or professional as any of the things on this list. Look at number 1 for christ's sakes—it's a whole house.

    • Sinterklaus

      But that wasn't a hidden chamber. It was an attic that people happened to be hiding in.

  • sully311

    No mention of the shanghai tunnels of portland oregon. Oh well.

  • Ms.Marie

    I am so pleased to see you include Dr.H.H.Holmes on this list. He is frequently overlooked , though he was fascinating , as far as serial killers go. I loved the history in this list.
    Although , you should include the numerous labyrinths under various cities , particularly in Europe , in your next list!

  • melnve

    Very interesting list, prompted me to do a little research into a few of these, so thanks for the diversion (I should be working!)

  • The Truth

    Interesting list. Great job

  • br0ck

    haha i will have to visit that drug tunnel

  • Will Trame

    Fascinating and informative list. Glamis Castle in Scotland reputedly has a number of secret rooms and passageways. But, considering it’s haunted, I wouldn’t recommend any tours.

    Then there was Sweeney Todd’s barbershop…..

    • kubrick

      sweeney todd is fiction, chap

  • whitedragon777

    Very nice list, I love it. The idea of secret passageways and hidden rooms has always intrigued me and I've always wanted to stumble upon one!

  • Kjsem78

    Regarding the Haut de la Garenne: Upon further research it turns out that there were no bones or remains found. I includeed this in the entry because I found multiple sources stating that there were. It turns out that those initial reports, even though they jumped the gun, were much more widely-read and reported on than the later ones stating that they were inaccurate and that's why I didn't come across them. The underground chambers were however used to unfortunately abuse and sexually assualt children, and the "Beast of Jersey" did visit the home, so it is still a "House of Horrors" anyway you look at it…Thanks for reading the list.

  • Skata

    #10 is a bibliophile's dream come true. Wonder which books he took.

    • R-Awesome85

      Twilight lol

  • Colleen

    Number 1 and number 8 especially are the things that make me wish that humans never existed. How despicable.

    • kubrick

      Yeah but then I wouldnt exist and that would suck

      • mumps

        yes what ever would we do without you

  • Name

    Back in the seventies a friend of mine owned a house down by the river in Binghamton N.Y. In the living room between the entrance to the kitchen and the dining room there was a built in book case. If you pulled on the right edge of it, it opened to a staircase that led to a secret room that was used for the underground railroad.

    • C.J. Paulino

      That's awesome. How did your friend know for sure that it was part of the Underground Railroad?

  • oouchan

    Creepy but fun list! Number 1 gave me the shivers. Wonder if more "older" hotels have the same thing?

    Great list!

    • kubrick

      I sure hope they have

  • WEL58Y

    What about Fritzl's basement?

    • Moonbeam

      Talk about horrific. Joseph Fritzl had built secret passages and rooms in his house in Austria where kept his own daughter. He held her there for 24 years and forced her to bear his 7 children. Three of the surviving children were never allowed to leave and had never even been outdoors. The whole story was sickening.

      • mom424

        There was also that Garrido creep in California – kidnapped a girl, kept her captive in his backyard/maze. Had a kid, kept her hidden too. Skeevy bastard – and his wife? wtf? Sick-os. And they could have caught him earlier too. http://www.foxnews.com/us/2009/08/28/police-searc

  • peepshow

    What about Neverland?

  • mom424

    Very cool list. Who doesn't love hidden rooms and secret passageways? I swear fully half of all Nancy Drew/Hardy Boys/Scooby Doo installments had them as a plot device. A thin plot device – but still.

    The Coffin House is pretty impressive – been fascinated with the Underground Railroad since I was a kid – my first book report ever was a biography of Harriet Tubman. I now live near Shanty Bay, a pretty well-known destination for the Underground railroad. Ironically, Shanty Bay is now one of the most expensive and exclusive places to live in the entire area.

  • chrom3d

    how about harry potter's school with it's chamber of secrets :D

  • Moonbeam

    #10 reminded me of the Rundel Library in Rochester, NY, USA. In the children's section they have a small room hidden behind a bookcase that is also a door. Adults have to stoop down in order to go through the passage. It's used for special programs, and it houses a Doll Collection.

  • jer-jer

    I knew HHH would be number one! They say he was the american sweeney todd type. He ran the hotel during the worlds fair and many of his guests “left” chicago early. An exellent list!

  • Kat

    What a cool list idea. Very unique and well done.

    • Leatrice

      Fell out of bed feeling down. This has brigntheed my day!

  • vanowensbody

    Outstanding list.

  • Kama

    Oh boy, I will never get why people like torture like in #1…
    But interesting list though, I like secrets passages and stuff, I've made my very own secret room as a child and it was never found until we moved, even thought my mother loved cleaning my room thoroughly (or maybe not but she did it nevertheless). :o)

  • Kelso

    should have included Hogwarts….

  • kubrick

    Please ban me already

  • R3djuan

    first

  • Woyzeck

    Incidentally for #9 – today is the 77th anniversary of Prohibition being repealed in the USA. Hic!

  • sclibrarygirl

    One of the better lists that I've seen up here in a while. Nice mix of the macabre and the historical. For Haut de la Garenne to be so recent, I'm surprised I haven't heard of it.

  • Woyzeck

    Some missing comments again….

    • mom424

      I'll email Jamie right now and get that fixed.

    • You need to register with intensedebate and post using that login – then I can whitelist you.

  • pickledtink

    Brilliant list! More like this please :)

  • Alan

    Great list. A few others:
    – The catacombs of ancient Rome where Christians hid during their persecution
    – Hundreds of hiding places during WWII, including Anne Frank's
    – Other disused subway and flood tunnels under major cities (Las Vegas, etc) where scores of homeless "mole people" live(d) for years at a time in active societies with functioning governments and barter economies.

  • Carole

    Why bother with #8 when you even admit most of the stories were exagerrated or proven false?.

    • monnanon

      The catacombs of Paris should have been included too. Theres the famous bit that yo can visit then there is other tunnels that have been used throughout the years but urban explorers and various teens of Paris. Theres a couple of websites with pics of those tunnels.

      • monnanon

        oops i replied to the wrong comment it was meant for alans comment.

    • deeeziner

      Because it was recent, so somewhat unexpected….scandalous and horrifying. And although it was later discovered that the original fears were somewhat exaggerated….People DID experience abuse in those dungeons. For generations.

    • Brian

      Because abuse took place in hidden chambers. Not difficult to figure out.

  • Konor.S

    Great list man, better than I thought it was going to be. Also, when they are able to find out whats behind those walls of number 2 I would very much appreciate a post of some kind, or maybe an email. :D Thanks :)

  • Sardondi

    #10- "7th century A.D." – today referred to as "C.E", for "Common Era", thanks to the silly yet sad institutionalized fear that someone might hear or read of "God".

    #8 – "An underground network of four, underground chambers" – self-explanatory.

    #7 – "newly-build room" – should be "-built"

    #6 – "hole up in the room for, possibly, weeks" – should be, "hole up in the room, possibly for weeks", or "sometimes for weeks", etc.

    #6 – "One slave’s experience in particular, known only as Eliza, was included in the classic novel “Uncle Tom’s Cabin…” – appears as if Eliza was a historical character, which she was not. Perhaps "The actual experiences of one slave Stowe attributed to Eliza" (which still may not be true.)

    #5 – "not so much of a secret" – should be "no secret", "not much of a secret", etc.
    (BTW, you do realize that 77 times down and back the 800m passageway is 77 MILES!? Perhaps the legend survives because no one ever completed and thus no one discovered if it didn't work! )

    #3 "is the largest train station in the world, in terms of number of platforms" – should be, "has more platforms than any terminal in the world".

    #3 – "Weaved amidst them all" – should be "Woven".

    #3 – "as millions of people per year scramble just feet away all around it." – should be " …per year pass mere feet from it",

    #2 – "home to the British Governors then the Lt. Governors" – should be "the residence of the Governor, and later the Lt. Governor…".

    #2 – "archaeologists are currently waiting on permission…" – should be "archaeologists await permission…".

    #1 made me shudder with fear and revulsion. Ye gods, there were actually secret room entrances and trapdoors leading to a torture chamber! It's like a Poe story, but terrifyingly real. You're sound asleep, but then you are waked by what sounds like a closing door. Shocked to immediate alertness by the terror of the realization you may be in immediate danger, you quickly turn over…to find a man grinning maniacally as he looms over you, a huge butcher knife inches from your face…

    • captain boredom

      Grammar Nazi, much?

    • Brian

      Is your post just one long joke are are you actually serious? You could be the most annoying person in the world. Seriously. Not to mention,most of the phrases you think are wrong just aren't.

    • Bumble

      Please do yourself and the rest of us a favor and drive off a bridge. Much obliged.

    • Bidzi

      oh God…. some water please………….

    • Eric

      There is 1609 metres in a mile. So it wouldn't be 77 miles. If you are going to be pedantic, at least do it right.

  • Le tel

    I'm surprised Josef Fritzl's underground dungeon wasn't mentioned, its recent and horrific and it was used for years and years…

    • Chineapplepunk

      That's a bloody good point!

  • Top Kill

    cool list. Very interesting.

  • stellarr

    awesome list. interesting read for the morning commute.

  • mordechaimordechai

    cool.
    They discovered a whole network of passages and tunnels under my parents's hometown. A wing of this net is under my grandfather's house and carries my family name. Experts are uncertain when the ''cave'' was built but it served as shelter, escape route, st0cking zone and so forth. However there are some interesting features: like a wide room in the shape of an octagon with 8 thrones and a Maltese Cross carved on the ceiling. Yes, and they say it had nothing to do with Freemasonry or Esoterism. The heck do they know?

  • Lifeschool

    Top list – very interesting – well done!

  • redwolfblack

    nice list. this is one of the better lists that ive seen this week.keep up the good work ;)

  • deeeziner

    My dad owned a bed and breakfast in Coulee WA…it used to be the Engineer's dorm rooms from the building of the dam. There were hidden underground passages between his building, the neighboring catering services and the city hall across the street.

    Many a young boyscout got the bejesus scared out of them as my dad would set one of my brothers or my sister at the other end of the tunnel to make ghost noises when he gave a tour of the building. (It was historic, and earned a badge of some sort for the kids.)

  • captain boredom

    Great list, lad. The combination of good and bad was a great read, and sadly, this is my first time ever hearing about H. H. Holmes. Hopefully, some further investigation of my own would lead me to some more tasteful information, but nonetheless, thank you for the contribution!

  • Jim
  • Bidzi

    love the list.
    heard Taj mahal also has some secret passage and closed rooms also. one of the secret passage leds to Red Fort.

  • freckledsmile99

    Cool list. I always wanted a house with a hidden passageway or room.

  • CHARCARL

    "In addition, he ran a drug store on the same street which helped him become a respected member of the community" …. every community needs a good drug dealer to respect :|

  • Oblivion

    What about the “Disney Tunnels”?

  • Mike

    Don't forget Herman Munster's cool staircase.

  • Manfred Allseasons

    Oh yeah, we used to build Death Chambers all the time….and Treasure Chambers too! Why, I'm in a doorless Computer Chamber right now, typing this.

    I think we evil British just executed people in regular hanging/shooting ways back in colonial times, dont you think? The doorless chamber was probably reserved for the Governors Death Star …..

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  • vitali rostoff

    There’s a small town in Saskatchewan, Canada called Moose Jaw where the Mob used to run booze across the border into the states.

    The whole town has secret tunnels and passageways used for the above purpose and was previously used by the Chinese workers brought in to help build the railway so they wouldn’t have to be seen in the streets.

    They now have tours

  • it

    I agree with number one, but it is believed that over 200 people were killed there.

  • Shermaine

    Is it true that H. H. Holmes murdered no less than 200 people?

  • Jazz

    A fasinating list. Levi Coffin reminds me of Corrie Ten Boom. She hid Jews in a secret room in her house. A follow up list would be a good idea.