Human tongues were found preserved in a set of jars in a crawlspace underneath a Gainesville, Florida residence last month. We have the details on this macabre discovery.
Imagine that you are getting ready to make some improvements to your house. Your excitement level is high. Eager to do all the right things, you hire a contractor to inspect the foundation of your residence.
Of course, you would expect everything to go as planned. Instead, the contractor finds six-gallon-sized jars full of human tongues being stored in your crawlspace. Pretty creepy, right?
Well, unfortunately, this happened in Gainesville, Florida last month. According to The Washington Post, this isn’t the work of a demented serial killer. Authorities are stating that the remains were for a research project that was conducted at the University of Florida.
Professor Emeritus, Robert A. Baughman who is an oral pathologist, placed the tongues in the crawlspace of his home to preserve them. However, when he divorced his wife, he had forgotten all about the specimens.
The reason why he had the body parts in the first place was to study thyroid conditions. Apparently, the collection came from various sites in Virginia, Illinois and Indiana. Baughman transported them to Florida when he became employed by the University. In the 1960’s, when Dr. Baughman procured the tongues, there were no academic regulations against keeping a few research samples in a private residence.
Today, this is not a practice that is condoned by any academic institution in the United States. According to Steve Orlando, speaking on behalf of the University of Florida:
"“There are very strict federal and state laws as well as university policies that prohibit that. It would be neither appropriate or legal for a faculty member or researcher to bring something like that home.”"
At present, Baughman’s ex-wife who owns their former residence corroborates the professor’s story. In the meantime, the police have sent the tongues to their medical examiner’s office for identity verification and also to prove that the specimens were for research.
Do you have a weird tale to tell? Let us know in the comments.