Wouter Engler via Wikimedia // CC BY-SA 4.0

Wouter Engler via Wikimedia // CC BY-SA 4.0

7 Spectacular Lost Crown Jewels

Wouter Engler via Wikimedia // CC BY-SA 4.0

Wouter Engler via Wikimedia // CC BY-SA 4.0

Although they frequently include some pretty epic crowns, crown jewels are not necessarily just crowns—they can also include scepters, jewels, necklaces, tiaras, and enormous gemstones. A nation’s crown jewels are used during a coronation ceremony, with the regalia often being used to represent the transfer of power to the new monarch. Over the years, the crown jewels of many nations have been lost or destroyed—sometimes in very mysterious circumstances.


Hawaiian king Kalakaua and his queen Kapiolani decided to hold a lavish coronation eight years into their reign, after witnessing many foreign royals performing such ceremonies. They had two solid gold crowns designed and made in London by Hoffnung and Co., for which they paid £1000. One crown was said to contain 521 diamonds, 54 pearls, 20 rubies, 20 opals, and eight emeralds, among other jewels.

The coronation went ahead on February 12, 1883 and the impressive crown was ceremonially placed upon Kalakaua’s head—the only occasion on which the crown was ever used. Kalakaua died of kidney disease in 1891 and his sister Liliuokalani inherited the throne, but already much of her constitutional powers had been eroded, and by 1893 she was deposed by an American-led military coup. The custodian who took over the provisional government ordered an inventory of royal possessions, but when staff fetched the satin-lined box in Iolani Palace in which crown had been stored, all they found was its twisted and bent remains. Every single jewel had been pried from its moulding and stolen.

Detectives immediately set to work to try and find the lost jewels, and before long one of the guardsmen, George Ryan, was found to have some of the smallest diamonds in his jacket pocket. Ryan was jailed for the theft for three years but no other jewels were recovered. Kalakaua’s crown was restored with glass and paste jewels costing $350 in 1925 and is today displayed alongside Queen Kapiolani’s crown (which had been stored elsewhere and thus remained intact) in Iolani Palace.


Dublin Police via Wikimedia Commons // Public domain

The Irish crown jewels included no crown, but a diamond brooch, five gold collars, and a diamond, ruby, and emerald encrusted star of the Order of St. Patrick, an honor created in 1783 as an equivalent to the illustrious British Order of the Garter. In 1903 the jewels were moved to a special safe in Dublin Castle which was supposed to be kept in a newly re-enforced strong room. However when staff came to move the safe into its new position, they realized, a little late, that the safe would not fit through the door. Instead, the Officer of Arms, Arthur Vicars, allowed it to be stashed outside the strongroom in a library.

In 1907 King Edward VII and Queen Alexandra were due to visit Dublin Castle, intending to use the jewels to bestow the Order of St Patrick on a local Lord, but when the custodians came to check on the jewels the found the safe empty. Panic and suspicion swept the castle—the crime was clearly an inside job, because keys had been used to unlock the safe. All fingers pointed to Arthur Vicars, the person in charge of the keys, but he vehemently protested his innocence and instead accused his assistant, Francis Shackleton—brother of the famous Arctic explorer Ernest Shackleton and later a convicted fraudster. Both men were investigated by a Royal Commission which cleared them of the theft but admonished Vicars for not exercising due vigilance. Vicars became a bitter recluse, blaming King Edward VII for making him a scapegoat and continuing to accuse Shackleton of the crime, even using a statement in his will to take another swipe at his former colleague. Modern historians largely agree that Shackleton appears to have been the most likely culprit, but the jewels have never been tracked down and their disappearance remains a great mystery to this day.


King John the Bad. Image credit: Wikimedia Commons // Public domain

King John of England (known as King John the Bad) had a huge cache of crown jewels. In October 1216, just a year after the famous Magna Carta was signed, King John was trying to suppress a rebellion and made a trip through the boggy Fens of eastern England. He and his large entourage travelled with many carts laden down with supplies, including one holding all of King John’s crown jewels. It's thought that John had fallen ill, and so was in a hurry to get across The Wash, a tidal area criss-crossed with creeks, streams, and treacherous patches of quicksand. The riders got across safely, but contemporary chronicles tell us that the baggage carts laden with jewels sunk forever into the silt. To cap a really terrible week, just a few days later King John the Bad died of dysentery. The legend of the lost jewels has grown over time and archaeologists have sought the treasure in vain—the huge, boggy Fens seem unlikely to ever reveal their resting place.


Getty Images

The Scottish crown jewels are known as the Honours of Scotland and consist of a crown that was remodeled by James V in 1540, a scepter given to James IV in 1494, and the sword of state, which was given to James IV in 1507. The jewels were first used all together at the coronation of all Scottish monarchs starting in 1543, but during the English Civil War, when Oliver Cromwell had Charles I executed, the Scottish crown jewels were spirited away and hidden to prevent Cromwell from destroying them.

The monarchy was restored in 1660, and in 1707 Scotland officially became unified with England under James I. At that point, the historical pieces were placed in storage in Edinburgh Castle for safekeeping. Largely forgotten, they were thought lost until 1818, when the celebrated novelist (and ardent Scot) Sir Walter Scott led a search party through the storerooms of Edinburgh Castle in search of the jewels. Scott stumbled upon a locked oak chest, and there, hidden underneath piles of linen, were the Scottish crown jewels, exactly where they had been left in 1707. Since then the rediscovered jewels have been on display at Edinburgh Castle for all to admire.


The Romanov family ruled Russia for over 300 years: from 1613 until they were overthrown during the Russian Revolution in 1917. The Russian tsars had amassed an amazing collection of crown jewels, and in the chaos following their departure it would not have been surprising had the jewels gone missing. However, despite some revolutionaries arguing that the jewels should be sold as they represented the oppression of the people, historians were able to preserve the collection due to their national importance—or so it was thought. In 2012 researchers uncovered a large photographic record of the jewels from 1922 in the U.S. Geological Survey Library in Reston, Virginia. When they compared this record to the official inventory of the crown jewels from 1925 they discovered at least four pieces were missing, including a sapphire brooch that they later found had been sold at auction in London in 1927. The other three pieces—identified as a diadem, a bracelet, and a necklace—have so far not been traced and their whereabouts remain a mystery. As for the rest of the still extremely impressive Romanov crown jewels, they are on display at the Kremlin in Moscow.


Michael Reeve via Wikimedia // CC BY-SA 3.0

The incredible French crown jewels were last used at the coronation of Louis XVI in 1775 and were thereafter on display in the treasury. They included the priceless Charlemagne Crown, Charles V’s medieval gold scepter, and the coronation sword, as well as an enormous collection of gemstones collected over hundreds of years by the French monarchs.

After the French Revolution it was agreed that the crown jewels should be sold, because keeping them might encourage attempts to restore the monarchy. It took many years for the plan to be put into action, but in 1887 many of the crown jewels were put up for sale (fortunately some of the most historically interesting pieces were preserved for the nation and some can still be seen on display in the Louvre). The auction caused quite a sensation and jewelry fans from all over the world flocked to try and secure a piece of history. The gross proceeds of the sale were put into government bonds for the benefit of the nation.

In 2008 one of the jewels sold at the 1887 auction again came up for sale. The stunning diamond brooch [PDF] had been made for Empress Eugenie in 1855 and was bought by jeweler Emile Schlesinger for Mrs. Caroline Astor at the 1887 auction. When the jewel came up for sale in 2008, it was quickly snapped up by the Louvre so that it might join their collection of surviving crown jewels.


Henry VIII's crown as painted by Daniel Mytens. Image credit: Wikimedia Commons // Public Domain

After the Civil War in England, when Parliamentary forces under Oliver Cromwell defeated the Royalist forces of Charles I, all emblems of the monarchy were ordered destroyed. Charles I was executed in 1649 and the Parliamentarians agreed that the ancient English crown jewels must be melted down, preventing them from being used as a symbol of the lost monarchy. It is unclear exactly what items were in the crown jewels at this time, but they are thought to have included the diadem of St. Edward the Confessor, used at his coronation in 1043, as well as many other crowns, jewels, and plate. Details of the historical vandalism are scant, but it is thought that the golden crowns were melted down and made into coins.

However, one item survived: the golden Ampulla and spoon used to anoint the monarch with holy oil during the coronation ceremony. Today the English crown jewels—created after the Restoration for the coronation of Charles II in 1661—are kept on display at the Tower of London. The Imperial Crown of State includes a sapphire that once belonged to St. Edward the Confessor and was buried with him in 1066. It's said, somewhat gruesomely, that the stone was retrieved from the king’s casket in 1101 and set into a crown for Henry I. It is unclear how the jewel managed to survive the destruction of the crown jewels but it thankfully reappeared at the Restoration and now represents the oldest surviving jewel in the current royal regalia.

Chemung County Historical Society, Elmira, NY
John W. Jones: The Runaway Slave Who Buried Nearly 3000 Confederate Soldiers
Chemung County Historical Society, Elmira, NY
Chemung County Historical Society, Elmira, NY

John W. Jones was as close to a sinless man as you could find—with the exception of the time he lied to his mother.

It was a late June evening in 1844 and the 26-year-old enslaved man, who lived on a plantation near Leesburg, Virginia, told his mother that he was leaving to attend a party. His real plans were much riskier. Jones slipped outside, grabbed a pistol, and rendezvoused with four other enslaved men. With starlight as their guide, they crept through the Virginia woods. Their destination: North.

The men hiked approximately 20 miles every day, dodging slave catchers in Maryland and crossing the Mason-Dixon Line into the free state of Pennsylvania. Following a major route along the Underground Railroad, they needled through Harrisburg and Williamsport and traced a path along what is now State Route 14. When the exhausted men snuck into a barn near the New York border to sleep, Jones kept guard as the others rested: He sat down, laid a shotgun on his lap, and kept his eyes peeled.

“He was serious about getting his freedom,” says Talima Aaron, President of the John W. Jones Museum Board of Trustees. “He understood the danger, and he constantly took responsibility for others. You’ll notice that was a thread for him—responsibility for others.”

Jones never had to use the gun. When the barn’s owner, Nathaniel Smith, discovered the five men on his property, he invited them into his home. His wife Sarah served the group hot biscuits and butter and cared for them until their strength returned. It was the first time many of them had ever been inside a white person’s home. According to an 1885 profile in The Elmira Telegram, the gesture brought the men to tears.

On July 5, 1844, Jones crossed a toll bridge into Elmira, New York, with less than $2 in his pocket. Unlike most runaways bound for Canada, Jones decided to stay in Elmira. It’s here that Jones would become one of the country's most successful Underground Railroad conductors, one of the richest black men in the state of New York, and the last earthly link for nearly 3000 dead Confederate soldiers.


Living in the north did not mean Jones had it easy. He could not vote. He still shared sidewalks with former slave-owners. When he asked to receive an education at the local schools, he was denied.

But Jones had a knack for cracking ceilings. After earning the admiration of a local judge, he was allowed to study at an all-women’s seminary, exchanging janitorial work for reading and writing lessons. He joined a church with abolitionist leanings and become its sexton, maintaining its cemetery. Then he became the sexton of a second cemetery, and then a third. The community quickly grew to respect his work ethic and, eventually, Jones had earned enough money to buy a small house—a house that he transformed into a vital hub for the Underground Railroad.

At the time, the Underground Railroad—an informal network of trails, hiding places, and guides that helped slaves escape northward—was under intense scrutiny. The 1850 Fugitive Slave Act had created financial incentives to report runaways living in free states. “Slave catchers from the south could come up to a place like Elmira and claim that a person of color was a runaway slave, and they could haul them back into slavery—even if that person had been born free,” says Bruce Whitmarsh, Director of the Chemung County Historical Society. There were steep penalties for aiding a person’s escape.

Jones didn’t care. Not only did he join the Underground Railroad, he was openly vocal about it, loudly pledging his opposition to the Fugitive Slave Act in a message that was published in abolitionist newspapers across the region: “Resolved, that we, the colored citizens of Elmira, do hereby form ourselves into a society for the purpose of protecting ourselves against those persons, (slave-catchers) prowling through different parts of this and other States.” Jones committed to resisting the law, even at the risk that “everyone of us be assassinated.”

The Underground Railroad in Elmira was unique: Since the town included the only train stop between Philadelphia and Ontario, it actually involved locomotives. Jones communicated regularly with William Still, the chief "conductor" of the Underground Railroad in Philadelphia, and built a cozy network of abolitionists who worked on trains passing through town. He provided runaways with housing, food, and even part-time jobs. “Runaways usually came in groups of four, six, or 10,” Aaron says. “But he had up to 30 at once in his little house.” Jones arranged hiding space for all of the escapees on the 4 a.m. “Freedom Baggage Car” to Canada, as it was unofficially known.

Over the course of nine years, Jones aided the escape of around 800 runaway slaves. Not one was captured.

During the last years of the Civil War, the same railroad tracks that had delivered hundreds of runaways to freedom began to carry thousands of captive Confederate soldiers to Elmira’s new prisoner of war camp. Once again, Jones would be there.


Of the 620,000 Civil War deaths, approximately 10 percent occurred at prison camps. The most notorious P.O.W. camp—in Andersonville, Georgia—saw 13,000 Union troops, or approximately 29 percent of the prison population, perish. After the war, Andersonville's commander was tried for war crimes. The camp is now a National Historic Site.

Meanwhile, the prison camp in Elmira has been largely forgotten. Today, the riverside site is little more than an unremarkable patch of dandelion-speckled grass; a small, easy-to-miss monument is the only marker. It belies the fact that while Elmira's camp was noticeably smaller than Andersonville's—only one-quarter its size—it was just as deadly: If you were a prisoner at “Hellmira,” there was a one-in-four chance you would die.

Elmira Prison Camp
Chemung County Historical Society, Elmira, NY

Elmira was never supposed to have a prison camp; it was a training depot for Union soldiers. But when the Confederacy began refusing to exchange African-American soldiers—who it considered captive slaves, not prisoners of war—the Union stopped participating in prisoner exchanges. “Both sides started scrambling for places to expand, and that’s how Elmira got caught up in the web,” says Terri Olszowy, a Board Member for the Friends of the Elmira Civil War Prison Camp.

The rollout was ill-planned, Olszowy explains. When it opened in July 1864, the camp had no hospital or medical staff. The first prisoners were already in rough shape and deteriorated quickly. Latrines were placed uphill from a small body of water called Foster’s Pond, which quickly became a cesspool. A shelter shortage meant that hundreds of soldiers were still living in tents by Christmas. During spring, the Chemung River flooded the grounds. Rats crawled everywhere. When authorities released a dog to catch them, the prisoners ate the dog.

The camp grew overcrowded. Designed to hold only 5000 prisoners, it saw approximately 7000 to 10,000 men confined there at its peak. Across the street, an observation tower allowed locals the opportunity to gawk at these prisoners through a pair of binoculars. It cost 10 cents.

It must have been a depressing sight, a scene of men stricken with dysentery, scurvy, typhoid, pneumonia, and smallpox. Many prisoners attempted to escape. One group successfully dug a 66-foot tunnel with spoons and knives. One man fled by hiding in a barrel of swill. Another hid inside a coffin, leaping out as he was being hauled to Woodlawn Cemetery.

It’s said that 2973 Confederate prisoners left the Elmira prison camp in coffins for real. The job to bury them belonged to the town’s sexton: John W. Jones.


The P.O.W. cemetery in Elmira is unique. The dead at many prison camps were buried in mass graves; Chicago’s Oak Woods Cemetery, for example, contains a plot filled with the remains of prisoners detained at Camp Douglas that is believed to be largest mass grave in the western hemisphere. All 2973 of the dead at Elmira, however, received an individual, marked grave in a special section of Woodlawn cemetery. Only seven are unknown. Jones's effort to give each soldier an individual grave, as well as his meticulous record-keeping, were a big part of why the federal government designated the P.O.W. portion of Woodlawn a "National Cemetery" in 1877—a status awarded to veterans' cemeteries deemed to be of national importance, and which has only been awarded to 135 cemeteries nationwide.

Jones treated each dead soldier with superhuman levels of grace. Overseeing a crew of 12, he managed the burial of about six soldiers every day, treating each body as if that person had been a member of his own church. He kept detailed records of each soldier’s identity by creating improvised dog tags: Around each person's neck or under their arm, Jones tucked a jar containing a paper detailing their name, rank, and regiment. That same information was neatly scrawled on each coffin. When the dirt settled, Jones marked each plot with a wooden headstone.

“No one told him how to do that job, he did it in the way that he thought was right—even though the people he buried were fighting a war to keep people like him enslaved,” Aaron says. “He even knew one of the young men who had died, and he reached back to the South and told the parents so they knew where their child was buried. That speaks to his compassion.”

According to Clayton W. Holmes’s 1912 book Elmira Prison Camp, “History does not record anything to challenge the assertion that at no prison, North or South, were the dead so reverently cared for, or a more perfect record kept.” In fact, when representatives of the Daughters of the Confederacy came to Elmira at the turn of the century to consider repatriating the remains, Jones’s handiwork convinced them to touch not a blade of grass. Instead, a monument in the cemetery commemorates the “honorable way in which they were laid to rest by a caring man.”

Aaron sees a second moral in the story. “People always talk about the tension between him being an escaped slave and burying with respect and dignity these Confederate soldiers fighting to keep people like him as slaves,” she says. “But to me there’s a subtext: Here is a grown man who escaped slavery, and the first thing he wanted to do when he reached freedom was get an education. Because of that, he was able to keep these meticulous records that later led to this national designation: It became a historical moment because this man, who was denied an education, got one.”

John W. Jones
Chemung County Historical Society, Elmira, NY

It also made a mark on Jones’s bank account. Jones earned $2.50 for each soldier he buried. It wasn’t much, but by the time he had finished burying nearly 3000 Confederate dead, he had become one of the 10 richest African-Americans in the state of New York. With that money, he bought a handsome farm of at least 12 acres.

It was a bittersweet purchase. Not only is it believed that parts of his home were built from wooden scraps of the disassembled Elmira prison camp, Jones had purchased the home when New York state law stipulated that black men must own $250 worth of property in order to vote. His home—today listed on the National Register of Historic Places [PDF]—earned Jones that right to vote.

For the remainder of his life, Jones continued working as a sexton and church usher. In 1900, he died and was buried in one of the cemeteries that had become his life’s work.

Incidentally, his death also marked the end of a local mystery: For nearly two decades, fresh flowers kept appearing on the freshly manicured grave of a woman named Sarah Smith. Nobody knew why the flowers appeared there or where they originated—until the decorations stopped appearing immediately after Jones’s death. Residents later realized that the grave belonged to the same Sarah Smith who, 56 years earlier, had invited John W. Jones and his friends into her home for butter, biscuits, and a good night’s rest.

Jennifer Young, AFP/Getty Images
An Affair to Dismember: John Wayne Bobbitt's Penis at 25
Jennifer Young, AFP/Getty Images
Jennifer Young, AFP/Getty Images

In the early morning hours of June 23, 1993, Manassas, Virginia manicurist Lorena Bobbitt crept into the bedroom she shared with her husband, John Wayne Bobbitt. While John—who had been drinking heavily—slept, she proceeded to mutilate his genitals with a 12-inch kitchen knife. When a drunken John woke up, the sheets were covered in blood; Lorena ran to her car, knife and lump of flesh in tow. Not quite sure what to do next, she wound up tossing part of his shaft out the window.

The scene was so morbid and so titillating that the news media couldn’t get enough. From the time Lorena performed the amputation to her acquittal seven months later, the story of a marriage so broken it ended in genital disfigurement ran almost around the clock.

But reporters had a major hurdle to clear: The word penis had never been printed or spoken aloud with any regularity in American news coverage.

They tried euphemisms, i.e. male member, appendage. When those ran out, The New York Times finally acquiesced and began using “penis” in their coverage of the criminal trial. According to journalist Gay Talese, the sheer volume of the Bobbitt circus broke one of the last sexual taboos in mainstream culture. Soon after, the word penis began regularly appearing on late night talk shows and in print.

There was really no other choice. While the Bobbitt case raised issues over domestic violence, female empowerment, and even the threshold for celebrity, the story always boiled down to that one lurid moment. John Wayne’s reattached, mostly functional penis was—and perhaps still is—the most famous sexual organ in America.


John Wayne and Lorena first met in 1988, when the burly 21-year-old Marine walked into a club for enlisted men near Quantico in Virginia and spotted the then-19-year-old, who was born in Ecuador and raised in Venezuela. They married just months later and settled in Manassas, where Lorena worked in the beauty industry and John Wayne worked as a cab driver and bar bouncer. Friends and relatives of the couple who would later be questioned on the witness stand described a tumultuous coupling, one that saw the two separated briefly in 1991 before reconciling.

John Wayne was temperamental and physical with Lorena, a fact that her eventual prosecutors would later admit. Divorce was on the table when John Wayne came home the night of June 23, 1993 and when, Lorena alleged, he raped her. (In a separate trial, a jury found John Wayne not guilty of martial sexual abuse in the five days preceding the attack.) After falling asleep, he awoke to a mutilated penis, his wife having excised an inch or more of its lower third portion.

Police retrieved the missing flesh and handed it over to emergency doctors. Before being wheeled in for a nine-hour operation to reattach the severed portion, John Wayne said he considered suicide.

John Wayne Bobbitt testifies during a court appearance in 1994
Pool/AFP/Getty Images

The surgery was more or less successful—John Wayne later recollected calling his mother and enthusiastically telling her he had gotten his first post-operative erection—but attempts to have Lorena convicted for the attack were not. In January 1994, a jury found her not guilty by reason of temporary insanity. The defense argued that Lorena had been so traumatized by abuse that she acted irrationally but not maliciously.

The trial and its outcome seemed to provide metaphorical fuel for ever-present issues regarding gender. Although he had not technically been castrated, John Wayne was certainly emasculated, and in a rather horrific way—punishment, some believed, for his deplorable behavior. In defacing his manhood, Lorena seemed to become emblematic of what some women felt like doing to spousal abusers.

Lorena fielded book, movie, and interview offers but largely stayed out of the spotlight, reverting to her maiden name and trying to disappear. (She was also sentenced to a 45-day psychiatric evaluation to make sure she presented no danger to the public.) It was John Wayne who perpetuated his own celebrity, turning what was a gruesome assault into a story worth monetizing.

First, there was the requisite appearance on The Howard Stern Show in December 1993—one of many—in which Stern attempted to fundraise for Bobbitt’s $250,000 in medical and legal expenses.

Stern and other interviewers were preoccupied with Bobbitt’s sexual ability. As of that December, Bobbitt told Stern, he had not been able to engage in any intercourse; he claimed his penis bore little evidence of the attack aside from a “slight” scar; it hurt a little when he showered. He urinated with use of a catheter for two months following the procedure.

The radio panhandling met with some success, although as some observers noted virtually from the beginning, Bobbitt’s opportunities to cash in on his notoriety were almost inevitably in the red light district of the entertainment industry. In 1994, he signed a deal for $1 million to appear in an adult video distributed by Leisure Time Communications titled John Wayne Bobbitt: Uncut. A kind of pornographic biopic, Bobbitt played himself, reenacting the attack and then proving his restored sexual abilities by engaging in sexual acts with a succession of actresses. In what must be one of the few adult movie reviews published by Entertainment Weekly, critic Owen Gleiberman observed that Bobbitt’s reconstructed penis had “no real stitch marks” but looked as though it “may have lost an inch or two.”

Uncut was a curiosity, but Bobbitt was unable to sustain interest in two follow-up tapes: One was titled Frankenpenis and may have lived up to a viewer’s anticipation of a freakish member, due to a penis enlargement surgery John Wayne underwent following the release of the first video.


Having exhausted his potential in pornography, Bobbitt and his penis sought other venues. First, he tried his hand at stand-up comedy. When that failed to pan out, Dennis Hof, owner of the Bunny Ranch brothel, paid him $50,000 a year to be a bartender/chauffeur/handyman

, not unlike the way aging boxing legends like Joe Louis used to stand near casino doors so patrons could shake the hand of a champion.

At the Ranch, Bobbitt introduced himself to men waiting for prostitutes and sometimes indulged their request to have him drop his pants for a look. Hof didn’t keep him on for long, later calling him a “stupid, low-life creep” and “boring oaf” who couldn’t keep his hands off of Hof’s female employees.

John Wayne Bobbitt arrives for a court appearance in 1994
J. David Ake, AFP/Getty Images

Bobbitt later found a brief home in a carnival, alongside a professional insect eater and a man with a split tongue. Here, too, Bobbitt seemed to fail in realizing his potential, refusing to be a target for a knife-thrower or learn the art of hammering nails into his nose.

He also appeared to have learned little from the consequences of his boorish behavior. In 1999, he was jailed for pushing a girlfriend into a wall. In 2005, he was arrested and charged with battery in relation to an incident involving his new wife, Joanna Ferrell, the third such allegation during their now-defunct marriage. (He was later acquitted.) The accusations cost him a gig facing off against Joey Buttafuoco on Fox’s Celebrity Boxing.

Currently, Bobbitt has settled in Niagara Falls and works as a limo driver and carpenter. Lorena has founded Lorena’s Red Wagon, an organization offering assistance to women victimized by domestic violence. Lorena’s actions in 1993 were largely unmatched until 2011, when a California woman named Catherine Kieu took a knife and severed her husband’s penis following an argument.

The man would not have an opportunity for a Bobbitt-esque reattachment and subsequent victory lap. Perhaps learning from Lorena’s mistake, Kieu didn't merely toss the severed flesh away. She pulverized the penis in their garbage disposal.


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