Expedition Team: Dave Miller, Rosie Miller, Jacque Kelly

Date: June 4, 2023

At the Vent Haven Museum, there were over 1,300 ventriloquist dummies. With hundreds in each room staring at you it could be quite unnerving. I had read an article about several dummies once belonging to ventriloquist and illusionist William Wood that were haunted. Wood (1862-1908) and his daughter perished under mysterious circumstances in a shipwreck. A 2013 episode of “Mysteries at the Museum” on the Travel Channel also purported this belief. 

Wood’s tragic story is this. Once considered one of America’s top ventriloquists famous for a fantastic levitation stunt with his wife Edna, Wood was traveling on tour with his young daughter. Crossing the Gulf of Mexico in 1908 in a large tugboat with all his equipment, eight dummies and a large sum of money ($20,000), they were lost at sea under mysterious circumstanced. But suspiciously, all the crew survived but Wood, his daughter and the money vanished. Four dummies eventually washed ashore. The four dummies are supposedly haunted since they are the only “survivors” of the shipwreck disaster. It is reported the dummies occasionally move by themselves and a male voice is sometimes heard. Photos of the four dummies are below and a poster of Wood and his wife doing the levitation act are also below.

As for the haunted dummies the case is officially debunked. The Vent Haven Museum curator said that there is nothing paranormal about the dummies. She said the haunted aspect was completely made up by the TV show writers. Plus, she has observed nothing out of place over the past decade. So, there you have it. A made-up historical urban legend.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *