The Life After Death of Mainer Elmer McCurdy

Strung up in the corner of a roadside amusement park fun house was the figure of a man, coated so many times with phosphorus paint that it glowed in the dimly lit space, intended to frighten any carnival go-ers who dared enter. It was alarmingly lifelike, and yet in the several years the figure was on display, no one dared question if the display was anything more than a mannequin.

This story begins in Washington, Maine but spans the entire country. It’s a different kind of true crime story about the life and death of a man named Elmer McCurdy. 

Elmer McCurdy was shot and killed, but his death was not investigated or prosecuted as a murder. Elmer McCurdy was a criminal himself in the final decade of his life – a lousy one by most accounts – but that wasn’t what made Elmer McCurdy the center of national attention and intrigue in the late 1970s, 66 years after he died. What happened to Elmer McCurdy in his death, and during the nearly seven decades before he was finally interred… That’s the story here. 

This is the bizarre story of Mainer Elmer McCurdy’s life after death on Dark Downeast. Press play for the full episode wherever you get your podcasts.

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