Armchair Historians

Mystery History Podcast Hosts Talk about The Radium Girls

October 27, 2020 Allison Blankenship, Jordan Walters, Anne Marie Cannon
Armchair Historians
Mystery History Podcast Hosts Talk about The Radium Girls
Chapters
Armchair Historians
Mystery History Podcast Hosts Talk about The Radium Girls
Oct 27, 2020
Allison Blankenship, Jordan Walters, Anne Marie Cannon

In episode 3 of our special 2020 Halloween series Anne Marie talks to Mystery History Podcast's brother and sister cohosts Allison Blankenship and Jordan Walters about their favorite history, the Radium Girls, female factory workers who contracted radiation poisoning from painting watch dials with self-luminous paint back in the early 1900's 

Mystery History Podcast is a weekly podcast that explores true crime, conspiracy theories, the supernatural, and all of the mysteries in history.  This brother and sister duo lighten the heavy topics with humor and enjoyable banter. 

Artwork, Jordan Walters

Mystery History Links:

Website: https://mysteryhistorypodcast.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/mysteryhistorypodcast
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/mysteryhistorypodcast/
Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/MysteryHistoryPodcast
Email: [email protected]
Linktree:  https://linktr.ee/MysteryHistoryPodcast

Mystery History Podcast episode we talked about
Episode 6: Radium Girls
Episode 19: Pennhurst Asylum
Episode 16: Scary Movie Discussion

More on Radium Girls:
Radium Girls movie trailer
Radium Girls on Wikipedia
The Orbweavers song "Radium Girls"
Radioactive movie trailer

Show Notes Transcript

In episode 3 of our special 2020 Halloween series Anne Marie talks to Mystery History Podcast's brother and sister cohosts Allison Blankenship and Jordan Walters about their favorite history, the Radium Girls, female factory workers who contracted radiation poisoning from painting watch dials with self-luminous paint back in the early 1900's 

Mystery History Podcast is a weekly podcast that explores true crime, conspiracy theories, the supernatural, and all of the mysteries in history.  This brother and sister duo lighten the heavy topics with humor and enjoyable banter. 

Artwork, Jordan Walters

Mystery History Links:

Website: https://mysteryhistorypodcast.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/mysteryhistorypodcast
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/mysteryhistorypodcast/
Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/MysteryHistoryPodcast
Email: [email protected]
Linktree:  https://linktr.ee/MysteryHistoryPodcast

Mystery History Podcast episode we talked about
Episode 6: Radium Girls
Episode 19: Pennhurst Asylum
Episode 16: Scary Movie Discussion

More on Radium Girls:
Radium Girls movie trailer
Radium Girls on Wikipedia
The Orbweavers song "Radium Girls"
Radioactive movie trailer

Anne Marie Cannon:

Hello, my name is Anne Marie Cannon and I'm the host of armchair historians. What's your favorite history? each interview on this podcast begins with this one question. Our guests are people who like history and get really excited about a particular time place, or person from our distant or not so distant past. The jumping off point is the place where they become curious. Then enter the rabbit hole into discovery. armchair historians is a Belgian rabbit production. Stay up to date with us through Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Wherever you listen to your podcast that is where you'll find us. You can also find us at armchair historians.com armchair historians is an independent, commercial free podcasts. If you would like to support the show, you can buy us a cup of coffee through cofee or you can become a subscribing member through Patreon. You can find links to both in the Episode Notes. Happy Halloween friends, it's the most wonderful time of the year. Welcome to episode three of our special Halloween series. And today's episode hits all the bright season high notes, including horror hauntings and a bit of the history for good measure. My guest today are brother and sister co hosts Alison Blankenship and Jordan Walters of the mystery history podcast. There's a podcast about conspiracy theories, true crime, the supernatural, and everything in between, with subtle attempts at humor along the way. To find out more about Allie Jordan, and the mystery history podcast, be sure to check out our episode notes. Alison and Jordan Welcome and thank you for being here today. So I start every interview with the same question. And I'm excited because I don't know what you're going to talk about today. But I love the content of your podcast. So and I like it. I was telling you earlier that I've been obsessed with investigation Discovery Channel, like every day I watched three episodes of something so I know I'm gonna love whatever it is. I listened to your pennhurst podcast last night pennhurst asylum. Yes. So that was interesting. Okay, so what is your favorite history that we're going to be talking about today?

Alison Blankenship:

So we cover not only true crime, but we also cover some history that we decided to pick the radium girls. Have you ever heard of now? freaked basically the radium girls back in 1910. They started using radium in things like a wide variety of things like they put it in water, chocolate, toys, nightlights, they thought that it was kind of the

Jordan Walters:

felt like a fountain of youth, a fountain of youth. So they started putting like water toothpaste any like what anything you could think of they put this chemical inside of it. Yes. before they even really did any research on it. They just the thing about it is like glows. So people were just like automatically intrigued by it.

Alison Blankenship:

So he started using because it glowed they started using this to paint the dials of watches. And they would have girls in 1917 that would they told them to lick the tip of their paintbrush to make it pointing so then they could be accurate with painting the dials. They didn't tell them how dangerous licking and putting radium into your body was.

Jordan Walters:

So they're actually told it was good for them. Yeah. Because if you're shouting is you?

Anne Marie Cannon:

Yeah. You really believe it was good for that for them? Or did they know that it was?

Jordan Walters:

I think at the beginning they thought it was good for them. And then as the years went on, they kind of realized like it wasn't good for them. But they kept telling him it was so yeah, so I don't think they knew at the very beginning but

Alison Blankenship:

right so a lot of the men. So this was mostly women that were doing these dial paintings. They didn't have a separate part of the warehouse where men would actually wear PP gear and try to protect themselves. So on one side you have the men doing this and then on the other side, you got women stick it in their mouth.

Anne Marie Cannon:

They were like, why am I surprised about my like,

Jordan Walters:

they would wear like the radiation vest like if you ever get a x ray that had like those weighted vests on there. Just walk around in those and the other girls are sticking it in their mouth. It's like

Anne Marie Cannon:

yeah,

Alison Blankenship:

so it started out to be where the girls would Go out, if they would be getting dressed and it would be dark, they would pass by a mirror and their whole body would glow. Because of the amount of radium that they had in their system. They would paint their fingernails, they would paint their bodies because they just yeah, their lips. They thought it looked cool.

Jordan Walters:

They're trying to get the attention of people. So they would Yeah, they call them like glowing girls, whenever they went out after work, because they were all just literally glowing. Yeah.

Anne Marie Cannon:

So are these customers or products? Or were these the people that worked in the factory? people that worked in the factory?

Jordan Walters:

Yes. So they would, they finished a shift and then it all decide to go out together and then there'll be glowing? It's Yeah. Like I said, Yeah, like she said she would they would paint their fingernails, just because they thought it looked cool. But you probably did. I'm sure

Anne Marie Cannon:

it did. Yeah, it's really cool. Yeah, I'm bored with that. Yeah.

Alison Blankenship:

So then, after five years into painting these dials grace fryer, who was one of the dial painters started getting really sick. And it got to the point where she started having aching teeth, she had to go to the dentist and they pulled some of her teeth out, she would have yellow ulcers in her mouth that would fill up with blood. And she was just then her limbs started kind of decaying, I guess you could say and she broke body parts. So

Jordan Walters:

the thing about radium Is it your body mistakes as calcium. So whenever you ingest it, it attaches your bones. And it creates them too. They call it honeycombing. So it's like it creates holes in your bones because it's it's taking in the radium instead of calcium. So it's basically just empty spots in your bones. And that's all

Alison Blankenship:

Yeah, and actually, I'm sorry, it was Molly not grace. Grace's later. So Molly is who was having all of these issues. So I just

Anne Marie Cannon:

entered that you can't see me because this is an audio podcast, even though I am going to use a video eventually. But I am making a lot of faces, right.

Jordan Walters:

Yeah, that's, that's a good response. I did the same when I was reading about it. It's

Anne Marie Cannon:

it was touted by this I just want to say that cuz I'm not saying anything, but I'm like, yeah, so go ahead.

Alison Blankenship:

Yeah, so anyway, so Molly is who was having all these issues. She actually had to get her jaw removed the roof of her mouth and some of the bones in her ears.

Jordan Walters:

She that wasn't like an elective thing. She went to get a tooth pulled. Because she was having a toothache and the dentist tried to pull the tooth out and her entire lower jaw came off. Yeah. Because of the honeycombing. So

Anne Marie Cannon:

yeah, okay, I just took a picture of me so that I could put it

Jordan Walters:

That was a good one. It's the same face I made. So yeah, that's.

Alison Blankenship:

So anyway. So after Molly had all this happened to her, it started spreading further through the tissues of her body. And at 5pm. Her mouth flooded with blood, and she hemorrhaged so fast that the nurse that was with her couldn't stop the bleeding and she bled out.

Anne Marie Cannon:

And then it was seven about seven years after they. Yeah, okay.

Alison Blankenship:

Yeah. five to eight. Yeah, let's see. 1922 was when this when she finally in September. So the doctors

Jordan Walters:

really, she's only 24. Sorry. Yeah, but yeah, so older. Yeah, this is

Alison Blankenship:

on her death certificate. The doctors didn't really know what had caused all this. So they chalked it up as syphilis like you do, I guess.

Jordan Walters:

No research there. Just slap a label on this. And

Anne Marie Cannon:

yeah.

Alison Blankenship:

And then quickly after Molly had passed, another coworker soon followed. So these girls started kind of dropping like flies in grace, the one who had actually misspoke earlier, she was the one who was trying to stop all of this from continuing on and trying to protect these girls, the president of the US RCW, which is who was over this warehouse, kept denying and denying that radium was causing these issues. So they they tried to take them to court. They tried to hire all of the bigwig attorneys that they could find to prove that there wasn't any correlation between the radium and all of these health issues that their girls were experiencing and they wanted to kind of try to pin it on the girls that they were just trying to get money. Because at that time, you know it was during the war and these girls are trying to get money to help provide for them their families. So they just thought that this was like a stunt for them. Yeah, they were a bunch

Anne Marie Cannon:

of slots basically had syphilis. They were just trying to get money. Right? Exactly,

Alison Blankenship:

exactly. Grace's friars spine actually had started having issues. And her it was actually crushed to the point where she had to wear a steel brace. Another one of the girls jaws was eaten away to a stump and a woman's leg was shortened and fractured. They were

Anne Marie Cannon:

all experienced side effects. Yeah.

Jordan Walters:

Yeah, that's what grace fire it's that kind of it was crushed kind of sound like she was in an accident. But no, she's just like, walking one day and the weight of her torso crushed her spine, that's how bad her bones were being damaged.

Alison Blankenship:

While the the radium corporations, you know, had the money to have all of these big time lawyers to try to plead their case, Greece was trying to find a lawyer of her own to try to go after these people. And you know, it's kind of like some, you know, lower class citizen trying to go to after like Amazon or something today, you know, if they've got all the money in the world, she was actually able to find somebody who was willing to help her, which was Raymond Berry. He accepted the case and for other co workers actually decided to testify against the the radium Corporation, that they believe that this is what was happening to them was because the poisonous radium Unfortunately, the statute of limitations for Occupational poisoning was two years. But the girls didn't start seeing their sickness until like we talked about five years after they started working there. So the statute of limitations put some trouble in the mix to where they couldn't nail these people. There were some other girls that that came forward to try to help grace with this uphill battle of proving these people were actually at fault. Katherine wolf was one of these people. She actually developed a grapefruit sized tumor that bulge on her hip, and she had lost most of her teeth, and had to pick pieces of her Jawbone out of her mouth because it would just splinter. She constantly had to hold a handkerchief up to her mouth because it just kept seeping blood constantly. She fought for justice in the mid 1930s. And America was gripped by the Great Depression. And Catherine and her friends were shunned for suing one of the firm's left standing this radium Corporation. Basically, this radium Corporation just did appeal after appeal after appeal to keep it tied up in the courts. And a lot of the women died before they got any. But at the end, she finally did when close to her death. The case didn't go to court, Catherine, I'm talking about Katherine ignored her doctors and instead gave evidence from her deathbed in doing so with the help of her pro bono award lawyer, she finally won justice. So they did finally admit that they were doing people wrong. But then she passed away. So why are we talking about this? Why are they so important?

Jordan Walters:

Yeah, basically, the whole this whole situation is the reason that there are, there's OSHA guidelines now, which is Occupational Safety and Health Administration. So that's any time you hear about anything in the workplace, it's because of these women were if they had never stepped up and gone against these big corporation, this probably wouldn't be in effect today. Which is pretty amazing when you think that is amazing. But it's this also says radium has a half life of 1600 years. So these women who died back in the 20s are going to be have this in their bones for 1600 years. And they say if you go to this their grave sites now with a Geiger counter for like you can still see radiation. If you stand above their graves.

Alison Blankenship:

They will still be glowing today. Yeah. So many, many years.

Jordan Walters:

Do you know of people who came into contact with them because they had this radium poison? Were they exposed to it? We didn't see anything really in our research, but I would imagine they would have some sort of effect. I'm sure it wasn't good for you. But we didn't read anything about any of their husbands or others suffering.

Anne Marie Cannon:

After they were exposed and being exposed to this did they generally perish?

Alison Blankenship:

It was about five to seven years.

Anne Marie Cannon:

Yeah, they all passed away.

Jordan Walters:

Most of these women who were in their early 20s when this happened, so it's not like they had weakened immune systems or in their healthy, nothing wrong with them. And then yeah, this just

Alison Blankenship:

and they were trying to recruit people so much to do these dial paintings that a lot of the times they would say oh well you know, back then they had big families. So they're like, oh Yo, bring your sister and every all your family in and they can start so it would it would hurt. Huge groups of families to because they would bring all their siblings in to see

Jordan Walters:

they also the reason a lot of people agreed to it is because they got paid a lot more than the average worker would back then even especially for women back in those days. Yeah, they got paid very handsomely for what they did. But it's, yeah, let's see exactly what the price was. But that's a reason I remember reading about that. They got paid a lot more than

Alison Blankenship:

Yeah, three times more. And that job was ranked in the top 5% of pay for women workers at the time. And a lot of the way and when we know anything about the men who were, you know, get suiting up with the protection and all that. I don't see any death records for them. So they probably made it out just fine. Yeah.

Jordan Walters:

That just blows my mind that in the same building, there's people that are wearing all this gear, and other people that are putting the same thing, they're protecting themselves from their mouth, it's

Alison Blankenship:

Yeah, and they, they, the thing that's crazy about it is, is that they specifically told them to put the brush in their mouth to make it pointy so that they can get these good lines, well, then they can forget that they gave them

Jordan Walters:

a lot of people were complaining about it, because it wouldn't, it's not comfortable to lick something 1000 times. So they gave him like a little vial of water. But they said that it would slow down the process, and they got paid per dial. So they at the end of the day, they just said it was easier to lick it and then do it. So it's they were kind of given an out but at the expense of like you're gonna be punished for almost for not,

Anne Marie Cannon:

right? Well, kudos to them for, you know, Grace gets grace and Molly, right. And everybody else who participated and stepping up and saying the same, right, this is what happened. And they were pioneers, they were pioneers.

Alison Blankenship:

Definitely, but especially with them being women, who didn't have much say back then. And they, um, if it would have been a man, it would have been different that these women, you know, so and like George said to about this creating OSHA standards. before this happened, there were 14,000 deaths on the job every single year. Then whenever OSHA stepped in, those 14,000 went down to 4500, with their standardization of safety. So not only did the radium girls protect themselves and their co workers, but they also protected a lot of people on the job because this, this didn't just happen in one factory. This happened in multiple factories throughout the country. So them stepping up helped those girls and the industry as well. So it's very,

Jordan Walters:

that's 10,000 people a year for 70 years.

Anne Marie Cannon:

Yes.

Jordan Walters:

You've saved that many people. That's pretty amazing. When you tell the story on the surface, it's kind of like, it's not that interesting. But then the deeper you dig into it, it's like they've it's pretty amazing the things they did.

Anne Marie Cannon:

Right. So is this company still in

Jordan Walters:

existence? No, I can't remember when they went out of business. But I think it was shortly after the I think it was during after World War Two. They actually opened that couple after World War Two, which is kind of surprising itself. But then after World War Two, they shut down.

Anne Marie Cannon:

Alright, are there pictures? Do we have pictures of this of the girls? Oh, cool. Yes, awesome.

Alison Blankenship:

Jordan does all of our graphic design artwork for our Instagram, in our podcast, and he's made some really cool posters for the radium girl girls, and then there's some historical photos that we can give you as well, to show they're not pretty

Unknown:

big studio features.

Jordan Walters:

Some of those things, it's almost hard to learn about, like, like, you're saying your face was like, that's just an automatic response to hearing those things. But it's, I think it's very important to learn about these things, because it's they changed a lot of people's lives.

Alison Blankenship:

And is me being a woman. I'm very proud, you know that they stepped up and did this.

Anne Marie Cannon:

Mm hmm. And they just kept pushing and finding allies. And, you know, that is still we're still having to do that today.

Alison Blankenship:

Yeah, it's very relevant. It's very relevant in a different way. But But we still have to make sure we hold people accountable when things aren't right.

Jordan Walters:

And everybody has a voice no matter how small you feel. He still can make a difference. I think that's a good message to spread.

Anne Marie Cannon:

Yeah, and that's a good message that comes out of this story as well. It's inspiring and acts as a kind of our moral compass and why we need to keep giving voice to the injustice in the world. It's very relevant for today this story. It's also going to be part of our Halloween movie hotel ween episode so the pictures will be fine. Yeah. Where do we find this history in pop culture?

Jordan Walters:

Do we? I know they made a movie in 2018? I believe it was. But it wasn't very, like publicized. No, I think I think it was just called writing girls. Yeah, it was a title. But yeah, I never saw any previous photo. There's a movie about it. But on top of that, I know there's a couple books about it. But I've never heard it talked about, which is

Alison Blankenship:

Yeah, to be honest, you know, Jordan, I have a board of everything that we want to discuss on the podcast. And he actually had found where did you find this?

Jordan Walters:

I read about it a really long time ago. Yeah.

Alison Blankenship:

Because I, I've never heard of radium girls before we researched it and discussed it on our podcast. And I just think, I mean, this is something that everybody should know about. It shouldn't be hidden. This is maybe I need to say that something is happening with our, your your like, you'll see your voice is lagging, which is fine. But then there's like this speed up, and then all of a sudden, you're slow motion. And the words are coming out like you're a little drunk or something.

Unknown:

Hey, no judgement.

Jordan Walters:

I see a poor network connection. I don't know what it is. I don't think anything else is connected to the internet.

Anne Marie Cannon:

Am I don't know, maybe it's better if we just you guys click out of the camera, and maybe all the Jews can go into the audio. Okay, y'all do that? Yeah, let's try it. Yeah, even though I do prefer seeing the people I'm talking to. Okay.

Unknown:

Can't What about now?

Anne Marie Cannon:

Well, so far, it sounds okay. So we asked, Where do we find this in pop culture? You said, there was a movie that wasn't very widely publicized. But we'll put a link to the movie and the information about the movie, and I'm definitely going to watch that. So what do you want the listeners to really know about this history? What do you want to leave them with?

Alison Blankenship:

That this is, this is important that if if you are you know, if Big brother is telling you to do something that you feel is wrong, you need to stand up for yourself and, and make sure that your voices heard. I think that a lot of the times, you know, we just do things because we're told to do them. But we don't think about how this affects us. When a lot of the times in corporations, you're just a number, you know, if you would go out and die for whatever reason, they're just going to have somebody to replace you the next day. So really, you have to watch out for yourself and make sure that that what what you think is right is what's happening.

Jordan Walters:

Yeah. And I would say to if you're having those feelings, and you work in a giant company, I guarantee you're not the only person having those feelings. So it's all it takes is a little spark to create, change,

Anne Marie Cannon:

right?

Alison Blankenship:

And change that can happen not just that minute that year, it could happen over a decade. The radium girls.

Jordan Walters:

Yeah, training doesn't always happen instantly. But getting the ball rolling is very important. If you believe it's something that should be changed.

Anne Marie Cannon:

Right, right. Well, I think you're right. And I know for myself, I'm, I'm a little bit older than you guys, I'll just say that I was raised to basically listen to what others said what you know, especially men, you know, that they, they know you don't mansplaining that wasn't a word back then. But that was a big part of my life. And just to kind of piggyback on to what you're saying that shame and discomfort you're, you know, raised to kind of use that as your compass. And if you're feeling uncomfortable, and you don't want to do it nine times out of 10 you need to move out of your comfort zone and just do it and find allies because like you said there is going to be somebody out there who feels the same way and nine times out of 10 in my life, you know as I've gotten older because when you get older, you can kind of say anything you want and get away with it. But I mean, it's not really getting away with it. It's basically calling a spade a spade and yeah, so Oh, I didn't know about this history. Thank you so much for sharing it with me and the fact that it is really the the roots of OSHA that's huge. That is huge.

Alison Blankenship:

Because everybody knows OSHA, but nobody knows the radium girls. It's weird that that's been hidden. I feel Yeah.

Anne Marie Cannon:

Right. And it's very necessary to learn about right. I think it's one of those histories that we need to be to bring to the forefront. I didn't know So not too long ago about Ida B. Wells. And she's another one, she was one of the co founders of the NAACP. And she wrote a book about the Lynch lynching that was going on in the 1800s. And at the turn of the century, but it's like I to be wells, who she, I mean, I think she's more relevant than Washington. But that's just me, but I never heard about her. And so, you know, I think it's cool that we can bring these stories to the forefront through our independent podcasts, which I see you guys doing. And kudos to you for that.

Alison Blankenship:

Well, thank you so much for, for having us and, and letting us share this story. And the more people that know about it, the better will be I think,

Anne Marie Cannon:

Yeah, I agree. Is there anything that I haven't asked you specifically because I would like to talk about your podcast, too. But is there anything that I haven't asked that you think is important or that you want to share? I think we've pretty much touched on everything that that we felt to be very relevant. So I think I think we've covered it all. Cool. I love this story. I love it. And I'm gonna, you know, definitely it will. It's brought me to the rabbit hole of the story. And that's, that's what I hope for other people, like I asked you a couple questions. You didn't know the answer to it. But I can go and look for those answers. And that's, that's what I love about history and this type of thing. And I want my program. I want it to be accessible to anybody who has an interest in history. And, you know, that's how we move forward and find out more information about things. Anyways. I'll get off my soapbox. So tell us about the podcast.

Alison Blankenship:

So we are the mystery history podcast. It's myself, Allison and my brother Jordan. Yeah. We do a weekly podcast every Monday. And we talk about a wide variety of things.

Jordan Walters:

Yeah, history, true crime, conspiracies. supposedly haunted buildings.

Alison Blankenship:

Yes. Yes, we try to hit all sorts of topics in it. We really, I grew up watching horror movies, which I forced him to watch, since he's seven years younger than me watch what she watched. So we've, you know, we have a very high interest in these topics. And it's just really fun to be able to come together and share these stories that people might not know. And then see the feedback from our listeners that also enjoy these stories. So

Jordan Walters:

they're usually serious topics, but the podcast isn't very sick. I mean, it's serious, because we're talking about death and things, but we try to keep it light and

Unknown:

yeah, yeah.

Anne Marie Cannon:

Yes, like, what kind of like my favorite murder fashioned after that? Yeah. Yeah, comedy podcast about murder.

Jordan Walters:

It's a weird concept when you stop and like, just put in a sentence, but it's,

Anne Marie Cannon:

yeah, you gotta have humor about things. It's uncomfortable. There's all kinds of humor. But yeah, I love this shit. I freakin love it. It's great that you're doing this. It's an Amish. Because you're taking all those kind of dark stories and history. And you're, but I like the fact that you're also looking at the historical context. And you're taking that seriously. So I really enjoy that about your podcast.

Alison Blankenship:

Yeah, I'm very big into I'm more of the take it and we'll make not a script, but like notes. I'm very big into timelines, and then he's the graphic person that puts all the pictures on it, and does the editing and I don't know about all that stuff. But, um, but I think you know, I think it's important to have a flow with if you're doing a team podcast, and I think him and I bounce off of each other well, and, and you know, it is heavy doing these topics, week after week after week, so you have to have some sort of comedic outlet. It just gets sad. So

Jordan Walters:

there's been a couple of times where we do a couple murder, like serial killers in a row. And I'm like, we need a I can't do it another week.

Alison Blankenship:

So we we've done some, you know, horror movie trivia we've done where we just talked about what's our favorite Scary Movie to try to break up some of that darkness. Yeah. But you know, we're always very respectful of the victims. And and that's, that's something we always try to

Anne Marie Cannon:

do is

Jordan Walters:

you know, we're not trying to be does not make fun of them. But just, you know, sometimes situations are funny. Yeah. No matter what ridiculous. Yes.

Anne Marie Cannon:

Well, I can relate to that. Because like I said, I bought this new kick because I have this new subscription to investigation Discovery Channel. And there's a show on it. I know you've seen it. It's surviving evil. Yes, Yes, I can. I can watch one of those a day. But I can't like I'm a binge eater. When I get into something I binge I just binge down the umbrella Academy season two. But that is something that I can't I can watch one and it just wrecks me because you have, you have the story of, you know, it's the emotional part of it because you have the victim spoiler alert, they all survive. But you have the victim who basically walks you through every moment of what has happened to them, and they're horrific stories. And I can only like listen to one of those a day, then I have to do a palate cleanser with that extreme forensics, because it's very scientific. I can watch a couple of those, bro but

Alison Blankenship:

yeah, so I go ahead. My it's funny because we on anchor you can tell you what demographic listens to your podcast and we're like, 85% female, that that listen and, and for. For me, that kind of surviving evil is like my bedtime story at night I sleep with the TV on and I and that's my lullaby to go to sleep.

Anne Marie Cannon:

No, see, I'm more of an extreme forensic lullaby. I can't do that. It just it's so emotionally provocative to me that

Alison Blankenship:

it is that I have anxiety anyway, just in my normal life, but, but learning about these stories, it makes you like I think about everything, like what would I do in this situation? And how am I going to get out of this situation? So I mean, while it's very interesting and terrible, it also kind of like, makes you start thinking about what would you do in that situation? How am I going to get out of this?

Anne Marie Cannon:

Well, my dad was a cop. My dad was a cop so I always kind of thought I was very like savvy out in the world but I live in the mountains in Vermont and not Vermont. I used to live in Vermont I live in Colorado so but I noticed now cuz I'm like watching all these shows. I just took up I took up metal detecting and so when your metal detecting by yourself, you're really into it. And since I've been watching and stuff I've been like constantly aware and freaked out

Unknown:

looking over your shoulder the whole time. Yeah,

Anne Marie Cannon:

I was I don't go out by myself unless I'm in a you know, visible place but yeah, I've got a yesterday I was out there and I was freaked out. I was hearing noise. Yeah, I didn't. I didn't know what it was. I had all these like shows in my head. flashback. It's

Jordan Walters:

funny how certain like watching certain things can change your whole mindset. Because if you watch like comedies all day long, you wouldn't be thinking like that. But it's just you put you in a certain place where you heightens your awareness.

Anne Marie Cannon:

Right, right. I know. And I always think now when a metal detecting about oh my god, what if I found a skull or something? which happened right happens?

Jordan Walters:

Sure. Anyways, one of those shows.

Alison Blankenship:

Some, somebody will do a podcast on me one day.

Anne Marie Cannon:

All right. Metal detected in the beard. That's good. Life is too short not to laugh. You know, you gotta make up. Yeah. So um, anyways, we've digressed, which is totally cool. Getting back to your podcast. So how, how did your podcasts come about? Tell me about that process. And why did you start it this April?

Jordan Walters:

Well, we, our family lives in the middle of Pennsylvania. So it's about a six hour drive from where we live. So we used to go back there all the time together. For the past two years, we've been talking about starting this. Yeah, because we'd listened to a couple other podcasts that were they just seemed like they're having fun the whole time. So that'd be fun, just to do it once a week. So then, once all the we've been talking about forever, and then once the quarantine happened, we kind of saw it as a perfect opportunity to take some time and just sit down and actually do it. Yeah. Because it gave us time to actually sit down and prepare instead of all the other times was just life was happening. And yeah, there's stuff to do

Alison Blankenship:

outside and the places to

Unknown:

get out. Oh my god,

Anne Marie Cannon:

Brother, you could congregate indoors without a mask and without worrying about your life. Right? Yep.

Jordan Walters:

Yeah, just kind of a perfect storm of thing. Like we probably should have started this a long time ago. Like I said, we've been talking about it but it's just one we it gets in the way and

Alison Blankenship:

my brother and I have a very we think each other are hilarious. We think we're super funny. Yeah. And we always joke about we should have like a reality TV show follow us around. So so we just essentially created our own And yeah, and it's been going really well. It's just exciting to see how far we've come from, you know, we were excited about our first hundred downloads. Now we're picking up to 5.7 thousand downloads.

Jordan Walters:

There. We're just hit. We're in 40 different countries. Yeah, that's pretty wild.

Anne Marie Cannon:

40 countries have heard her voice. You're ahead of me. We've started at the same time, but you guys are ahead of me. I just hit 1500, which I was really excited about. But

Jordan Walters:

yeah, that's what I was telling her like, a couple weeks ago, once you hit Like, I think the thousands like the biggest hurdle to get to Yeah. And then once you hit 1000, they start it starts, like snowballing. Can we hit 4001? week then by the next time we recorded we were at 5000.

Alison Blankenship:

Yeah. Last week's we're, we're at 5.2. And this week, we're at 5.7. So that's a hell of a jump. And, and we you know, this will be we're recording today for release on Monday. And that's our 20th episode. So it's a big, you know,

Unknown:

whoo milestone. Yeah.

Alison Blankenship:

But then next, it'll be your hundredth episode. Yeah.

Anne Marie Cannon:

And it's, it's slow and steady. And I guess that it's like algebra, because when you think about it, so now you have, you're gonna have 20 episodes out there. And people more people listen to the one that you just dropped. But there's people listening to the other ones. Yeah.

Alison Blankenship:

And I almost wish we could just like lock those episodes.

Jordan Walters:

because we never, we didn't really do like practice episodes, we just like record them and put it out. And I

Anne Marie Cannon:

listen to you a part of your first one. And I always notice and I always notice the same with mine, is that the sound quality is way better. You've got Oh, yeah, your sound quality. But I like that about listening. If you go back and listen to my favorite murder in their first episodes, did you notice the squeaky squeaky couch? Right? Yeah,

Jordan Walters:

it's very raw, the first couple episodes. You're right. It's kind of like endearing. Yeah,

Anne Marie Cannon:

it is, and you just get better. And you know that you're going to get better and you are improving. And a lot of people started podcasts during COVID, which I did, I did the same thing. I've been thinking about this podcast for two years. And then it's like, Oh, I got nothing to do. And I got all the equipment to do it. So I'm going to figure this out. And I did it. And it was, honestly, it saved my sanity. Because otherwise, I was reading the news every day, I was freaking out. You know that all that stuff? So I, it was that helped me. And now I don't know, tell me if this is the same for you. But now I have, you know, a routine. And it's, I know what I need to do. And it's not like overwhelming like it was in the very beginning. And so it doesn't take as long what you guys do is difficult because you do research. And I do a little research, I try to find some people that I think would be interesting presenters. And like I said, I let my guests do the heavy lifting. And it works. But it works. Because everybody has a story to tell. And I want to hear that story. And I draw upon people's passion for what they're interested in. And so that is infectious. And that makes my job a lot easier. But has it become easier for you as time has gone on? Because of you know, your familiar familiarity with what the process is?

Alison Blankenship:

Yeah, I mean, I think that the first couple episodes we had, we only had one mic. So as we were talking to you today on the one mic, it's weird whenever you're talking to each other, but you're staring at a wall, you know, so we got two mics. And then we started looking at each other and we started actually having more of a conversation and not so much reading straight from the notes. We were engaged and went off on side tangents. And I think now it's it's not before to me at least I can't speak for you, but I was more nervous about messing up. And, you know, what if I said the wrong thing, and because we weren't really comfortable with editing, and now I think that's who we are. We are people on the pod people know us as a podcast, who will pronounce wrong names. And they love it.

Jordan Walters:

Every single thing. Right.

Anne Marie Cannon:

Right. That.

Alison Blankenship:

Right? And, and, you know, it's just the notes we've we've kind of struggled in the beginning, since we were researching one topic, how we both could do research on it. So that's when I just, you know, we decided that he would be more the graphic technical side, he would put up the Instagram photos, and then I would deal with the research side of things. And we would share notes and kind of talk about it before and I think that's really worked because we're working off one cohesive piece of information. So

Jordan Walters:

that's why she's a way better writer anyway, so it worked out.

Alison Blankenship:

Yeah, I can. I enjoy writing. So it's in here. The graphic part so it's really a good team work situation.

Jordan Walters:

Yeah, I think definitely we got more comfortable is the thing. It's just at the beginning, it's feels awkward no matter what anything new you start feels awkward, but it's just the more you do it. And then, like she said, you learn like, you're gonna mess up. So it's not gonna be perfect. So it's just learning. That's what makes

Anne Marie Cannon:

podcasts these podcasts compelling is because we're so relatable cuz we're human, and everybody can relate to that.

Alison Blankenship:

Yeah, and you got, you know, you also have to understand that you're not going to be everybody's cup of tea. You know, some people enjoy strictly facts, and no banter. I like to banter.

Jordan Walters:

That's what most our reviews on like iTunes and stuff, say like, they enjoy the just us talking.

Alison Blankenship:

Something some people they don't want that. They just want to know what the facts are. And that's it. So for me also, in my soul, it's hard sometimes whenever we get a one star review, or you know, because we put so much effort into because we enjoy it, but we also want other people to enjoy it. So it's something that I still struggle with, but you know, yo, yo, do what you can do, and not everybody's gonna love you and that's okay.

Anne Marie Cannon:

That's okay. Yeah, definitely. Well, I like your show. And I'm going to continue listening. So I'm looking forward to as we get into the holiday season, I consider Halloween the holiday season. Yes, yes.

Unknown:

We are here.

Alison Blankenship:

Yeah, we've got a good lineup going. We sat down and kind of graphed out how we were going to do it this holiday because it's our first Halloween. So we're gonna try to

Jordan Walters:

make it so we're gonna have five episodes in October instead of the four we're gonna have an extra Halloween special episode.

Anne Marie Cannon:

Yeah, exactly. I know. I've been trying to come up with some ideas for that. And, well, just a little side note about me. I one of the things I do is I run a historic walking tour business and I do go s'mores there are a lot more popular. I'm actually on a documentary on Amazon. It's called ghosts and ghost towns.

Unknown:

Um,

Anne Marie Cannon:

yeah, I, I have some stories. I was thinking about doing maybe an episode or two where I talked to people who have good ghost stories, like maybe have a couple different ghost stories, or I don't know. But yeah, I've had some experiences. I am not necessarily a believer, I always preface my tours with that, that I don't necessarily believe in all this. But at the same time, I have had some experiences. And I think people love to think about this stuff and talk about it. And I always ask, of course, I'm not doing tours now. And I'm really pivoting my vocation. So I'm getting away from it. But people love to talk about their ghost stories and experiences. So

Alison Blankenship:

yeah, and in maybe in a little while, maybe we could interview you, oh, but with some of your ghost, you know, go situations and see what you can you can tell us,

Anne Marie Cannon:

right? Well, I originally started the businesses history because I was straight up history. I curate exhibits, and you know, just stuff like that I work for a couple nonprofits that are historical preservation organizations. When I started the history walking tours, somebody said, Oh, you should do a ghost tour. And I always say my tours are a combination of history and haunting my ghost tours are. So it is steeped in history. And I always try to have something for everyone as far as the tour, but yeah, I would be. I would be a guest.

Alison Blankenship:

That would be awesome. Okay, that'd be good playing that out. Do you believe in ghosts? Yeah, I'd like to believe that I believe in ghosts.

Anne Marie Cannon:

I get

Unknown:

things that happened. But

Anne Marie Cannon:

have you had any unexplained things that have happened are?

Alison Blankenship:

Well, I lived in an apartment in Huber Heights, which is about 20 minutes, 15 minutes from where I live now. I live there by myself. It was my first time ever kind of living somewhere by myself. And it was a townhouse I was on the end and I had a neighbor next to me. And there was some like my bathroom door on the My first floor. I watched it swing shut but by itself, I heard knocking on my back door my lights would flip on and off. And I would hear people like and I don't know could have been my neighbors too because we have both had stairs and they were on the same side. But I swear there was somebody walking up my stairs. So I My only kind of brush with hauntings I

Jordan Walters:

think I've only had one I used to think I was like 18 ish. I was living with my dad at the time. And I was I was up real late, just I don't know why I was up just like summer and I was up like it was like 2am for some reason, I was just watching music videos. And I walked downstairs to grab a glass of water. And when I did, I was like, all the way downstairs and I didn't turn the lights on. So I don't want to wake anybody up. But I heard something whistle the song I was just listening to, like clears day and it was terrifying. So I ran upstairs to like, forget the water.

Anne Marie Cannon:

compelling because yeah, that's crazy.

Jordan Walters:

That was Yeah, that was terrifying.

Alison Blankenship:

And a fun fact about not really fun. It's kind of depressing. But my our step mom's mother passed away in that home in the back room. So which houses were

Anne Marie Cannon:

Whistler?

Unknown:

I don't know. No, no, I don't know. You know,

Jordan Walters:

this whistle all the time. She might, but the house is really it's beautiful. But it's like it backs up against the woods. So when it's you have no lights on. It's pitch black. So it's like it was so dark. And yeah, I heard that was when I was like, nope, don't need the water. It's fine.

Unknown:

Yeah, right. Yeah.

Jordan Walters:

That was the only creepy it was the creepiest moment in my life, probably. But that's, that's unsettling like that. But

Anne Marie Cannon:

I think the creepiest thing now, I won't say it's creepy. But, um, I have friends. So I live in Georgetown, Colorado, which is a National Historic Landmark District, there's over 240 buildings that are from the 1800s. And they're protected. So one of the things I say in my tours is that a lot of people believe that spirits or ghosts are whatever you want to call it are attracted to what is familiar, and the fact that this landscape hasn't changed a whole lot in over 150 years. You know, obviously, if that is the case, then there's a lot of spirits that's that are here. I've a lot of people tell me stories about here about my friends, the maze, they have a house that was built in the 1800s. And they had kind of like a party, but it was also a paranormal investigation where they had a group of paranormal investigators come and I videoed the whole thing. I have to share this at some time on the podcast. And there was one point you watch the paranormal investigator shows? Yes. So I was videoing it. And we were up in a front room. Now this house was on a street that had according to the old maps, a female air quotes, dormitories, which were actually brothels. And they were like this was a house. That was we know, there was a family that lived there. And there was like six kids or something like that. But they were right on that street with the brothels. So there were kids in the house, but there was one room where there was a lot of you know how sometimes it's like tools that they use for investigating go off, they have all the different detectors and they leave and they deliver stuff. Yeah. And sometimes you'll be watching one of those shows. And it's like, it looks like there's an interaction going on with the equipment, right? And other times, it's like, just weird, like something happens in your life? Well, that that might have been something I don't know, we were having that experience in this room where the investigator is talking. And then equipment is going doing what they what it does. And one of the things at one point, he says, and we felt that from the conversation that we were talking to a child up in this front room to solve this stuff is happening, and we'd ask questions and the equipment would respond. And so at one point, they have that. It's like a round box, and then it's got lights, it goes from white to green, and then it gets up to green, it means that they're touching the antenna. Right there, you know, the closer they are to the box. And so time the investigator says, Okay, I'm going to, I'm going to knock on the wall and make like a sentence is how he put it, I think, and he did that. Right. And he said, I want you to finish it. And of course, I'm thinking if this is a kid, they don't know what he's talking about. But this is what I'm thinking because I'm really intuitive. I'm thinking Whoo. And so nothing happens and then he does it again. And all of a sudden the box after he does the the box lights up with green like it's an extended beep that doesn't stop. And then and then it does the beep of the

Unknown:

and it was like oh my god, everybody in the room. freaked out. I get chills.

Anne Marie Cannon:

Yeah, it was crazy. So that to me was the closest I've got to something that seemed real. I have other stories, too. I have some other ones. But yeah, let me know. I'll tell you ghost stories, you know, till the cows come home kind of

Unknown:

younger. Yeah.

Anne Marie Cannon:

Is there anything else that I maybe didn't talk about or that you wanted to add?

Jordan Walters:

to all our episodes are mysteries, your podcast comm we have all of our episodes and we have a link so you can listen to it wherever you listen to your podcast. So we have Yeah, we have several different iTunes, Spotify anchor all that so it's just all available at this treasure podcast calm.

Alison Blankenship:

Yes, I have a store and

Anne Marie Cannon:

merge. Yeah, I'm gonna do merge someday. But I was looking at your merge, you have some cool stuff?

Alison Blankenship:

Well, he he designs at all. If it was just me, we wouldn't have store. I don't know how to do any of that. But my favorite shirt is we did an episode on Elizabeth battery. And her servants called her lady ship. So we have a lady ship shirt, because that's, that is an awesome name. And Jordan thinks that that's stupid. But we've gotten a couple orders. So must not be Tuesday, you know, people bought

Unknown:

in it. So

Anne Marie Cannon:

yeah, I'm done with it. I'll have links to all that in the Episode Notes. Jordan and Allison, thank you so much for being here today. I really enjoyed our conversation.

Alison Blankenship:

Yes, thank you so much for having us. We really appreciate it. And we look forward to seeing what new content you come out with. And hopefully, we can set some time up so we can interview you next time.

Anne Marie Cannon:

Yeah, that'd be great. Yeah, I would love to have you guys back because you're so interesting and funny. So thank you. Okay, guys, bye. What a delightful pair of siblings and the fact that they share my affinity for Halloween is just icing on the cake. Be sure to check out their podcast which you can find a link to in the Episode Notes, as well as resources and more info about the radium girls. I do want to let them know that I have two more special Halloween season episodes coming out in the very near future. A great way to keep up to date with us is through social media. We're on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. Thanks for listening. Have a safe and wonderful Halloween