Secrets will always find a way out. Every family... every person has them. So be prepared to divulge. Often we learn that divulging is a necessary for the world. We all have demons, secrets and skeletons, if only we could discuss with others. Some secrets are crazier than others, that is part of the fun.
Redditor u/wangalex1 wanted to know who was willing to discuss some family tales long hidden by asking..... What part of your family history is interesting, rare, scary or disturbing?
Send the Messages....
My great grandfather fought for the US in WWII and was a member of the guerrilla resistance movement when the Japanese occupied the Philippines. His oldest daughter (my great aunt), at 11 years old, would smuggle messages written on rice paper so she could eat them if she was captured, carrying a gun under her skirt because the Japanese wouldn't search her since she was a kid. TiCup
Not me, but my stepfather. His grandmother kind of lost it when her husband died oh, so she took an axe and murdered several of her children while they were in their beds. Obviously my stepfather's mother wasn't one of them.
We used to go visit his grandmother after she was too old to be in the State mental hospital and was in just a regular nursing home. I never knew her backstory until I was older.
That also made his mother understandably a bit off. After his father, his mothers third husband died she got a bit extreme on the punishment of the children. My stepfather told me that minor infractions such as talking back would result in being locked in the basement with nothing but a bowl of water and bowl of leftovers left at the top of the stairs. The only light would be from under the door. He said they would sometimes be kept there for several days. tchad78
Father's brother was high school kid who was part of partisan resistance during ww2. he participated in huge actions against the occupier, distributing anti-nazi propaganda, planting bombs and eventually burning down football stadium nazis started pulling apart for wood, to build a concentration camp. he was captured, tortured and shot in front of others as an example.
in the middle of our capitol city. he never disclosed names of his comrades, his last words were: you can kill me but you'll never get the names of my friends from me. witnesses said he was always smiling and comforting others, even when he was so beaten up he couldn't walk. there's a movie about this stadium burning and they named a school after him. a high schooler! prodigal_dolphin
My family was the first upper class Mexican family in their part of south Texas. Founded a Mexican border town and only crossed the border to America after my great grandfather murdered someone in a land dispute. Broad daylight, center of town. He owned the bridge across the border, paid off all the guards. Bad hombres. TheProdigalBootycall
Not going too much into details, but a distant relative is a very well known notorious murderer in my country.
What I find disturbing about it though is that during one of the news reels of him it looks like he Is trying to act the victim (he is shaking in sadness that "his legs" are barely able to hold him up. spicypeenie
Time for some DNA searches....
My father might have a half brother in another city because at that time my grandfather might have been cheating. A very old relative actually said that she saw this infant and he even looked like my dad. No one can confirm though, and the baby of course took the other man's last name so he can't be found. My grandfather was quite the character: he was in the army, he used to gamble and he was kinda charming so I wouldn't be surprised if this story is true. -cloudid
My grandfather was a bomber pilot in WWII in the RAF. What's disturbing is he had a perfectly kept log book which I now have, except the pages around d-day have been so perfectly removed we only noticed last year. The MOD won't tell us why/ what the pages contain. alxwx
Russia's is looking....
My great great grandma was an adviser to the last queen of Russia, the queen refused to pay her so my ancestor stole a bunch of stuff from the palace. These items have been passed down in my family and my family's nobility status was revoked after the queen realized that her jewelry, silverware, and a vase were missing. Halfbreed360
The Bad Guy?
My earliest known ancestor was a bandit. He was apparently pretty good at it too, since he managed to feed 11 kids. Around WW1, we also had one guy just randomly find an antique pistol buried in the ground, mishandle it and shoot himself, then die because of his wound getting infected. oreganoli
The Red Army.
My grandfather was conscripted to act as a courier/messenger boy by the Red Army in Stalingrad when he was 13. They gave him a captured German pistol to defend himself with, and when the city was finally liberated they took it back off him and just let him return to his normal life like no big deal.
At the same time the other end of the country, my grandmother was living through the siege of Leningrad and once saw a soldier guarding a dead body because if he didn't guard it then somebody would come along and eat it.
And on the lighter end of the story: my father once drove a tank through someone's house in Afghanistan. BearsBirdsBooks
My grandfather was in WWII and stormed Normandy, survived and went on to help liberate the Gunskirchen Lager concentration camp. He also ran across a field and cut down a German flag while getting shot at so he would have something to give his children. And that's how my dad has a giant Nazi flag that we definitely can't display, lol. Char1ieA1phaWhiskey
back to Joplin.....
When I was 4 years old my family (besides my dad) lived happily in Cincinnati. For the first time in 2 years my dad calls my mom and asks if he can have a visit with me and she agreed. He drove all the way from Joplin (southwest) MO all the way to Ohio. When he got his hands on me he picked me up and drove me all the way back to Joplin.
He kidnapped me from my mom because his girlfriend wanted children and found out he had one. They had money and my mom was poor so the lied their way through gaining custody of me. cuterecluse9999
Maybe one day we'll make up our minds.
I was born in America, but live in Italy. My father and grandfather were born in Italy, but emigrated to America. My great grandfather was born in America, but emigrated to Italy. My great great grandfather was born in Italy, but emigrated to America.
Despite emigrating 4 times, all members of my family for 5 generations have, at one time or another, lived in the same 2 US counties and the same Italian province.
Maybe one day we'll make up our minds. sibuttadopo
Slightly disturbing today, but common historically.
My family has lived in the same area for several hundred years. This means I am generally related to people in my tree more than one way. My parents are 4th cousins, my paternal grandparents are 3rd cousins (twice actually), my maternal grandfather's parents are 3rd cousins, and I have 4 less 6th great grandparents because of in-family relations. My tree is a mess, as a result. unqualified_frickle
An ancestor from my paternal family came to 'Murica on the mayflower, and happened to be the person to fall off and survive so that's cool. CupcakeCrusader2
My great- grandfather managed the invasion of Nazi-germany in Paris in 1940. He was a high ranked officer there, he even has a small Wikipedia note and was executed at the subsequent Nuremberg trials. After that my family pretended to be jewish 'til this day as a precautionary measure against consequences, stigma and so on.
Then my grandfather and grandmother were very important personalities in East Germany (DDR, they worked in a high position at the Stasi) and traded new born children from system enemies to people loyal to the system, who can't have a baby for whatever reason. So yeah, my family is messed up in a lot of ways, but we're not allowed to talk about it and have to pretend being jewish forever or so. InflexusSerafina
"the black angel"
I only found this out a couple of years ago and found it pretty interesting. My mother's side of the family are from the Netherlands and when it became occupied by Germany my great-grandfather became part of the Dutch resistance. He was known as "the black angel" and hid many people, including children, under the kitchen floorboards and smuggled them to London. Eventually Nazi soldiers would come looking for him and he would also have to hide under the floorboards. waldeinsamkeit_1
My aunt got pregnant by her stepdad at 16, had the kid, the whole family broke apart. Her mom went to a mental hospital, her siblings were out of touch with her for 20 years or more. Now they are all fine again and new generations never hear of that story. What bums me out the most is that they broke off contact with a pregnant 16-year-old instead of sending the fool to jail! MinuteJuice
Not me but my best friend
His grandfather was a deputy of DOPS which was the brazilian Gestapo during the dictatorship and it is proven that he was a torturer.... gnarly stuff.
But that's not the end of it, the Nazi Dr. Mengele fled to Brazil after WWI and lived freely for a very long time until he had a heart attack in a isolated beach that is 60km away from where my friend's grandfather worked and lived.
In the official story of course for some totally accidental "coincidence" my friend's grandfather found his body and identified him as Dr. Mengele in a isolated beach.
But yeah, his family put two and two together and they pretty much are sure that he was friends with Mengele, If you want to google my friend's grandfather his name is Aparecido Laertes Callandra. nicowilder
My great grandfather practically lifted the entire family out of poverty, he was a coal miner, but worked as a taxi driver on the side. He also took his kids school from home and back.
My grandfather and Grandmother became one of the first bankers in the region. As such they were known by everyone around town.
If you go there now, it's one of the most educated places in the country, I asked my dad how a coal miner town became this way.
He said "Because a worker knows that, if his children live no better then he does, they'll work the exact same way he has." CamperKuzey