Revisiting Some Wacky 2015 Prophecies

Much crazier than Back to the Future's vision of a Chicago Cubs World Series victory.

No matter how bad you think things recently got on social media with #TheDress, it could be much worse. If a futuristic novel published in 1906 had turned out to be correct, we would all today – from the safety of fortified bunkers – be hashtagging Team #PaintedPeople, #HousePeople or #Doomsmen.

The Doomsman was the title of the novel, by [William Gilbert] Van Tassel Sutphen. It’s recently been re-issued and per a New Yorker piece, was favorably reviewed in the New York Times that original year. From the New Yorker item:

The city formerly known as Manhattan was, it seems, one of the few places not torched during the Terror; instead, it attracted “an army of human rats” flooding in from abandoned prisons – ancestors of the Doomsmen. (The city’s wealthy, having commandeered the best rides out of town, were last seen fleeing by sea in the direction of Antarctica.) And so it is that a strapping young Houseman, Constans, drawn equally by a kidnapped sister and sheer curiosity, ventures into intrigues amid Doom’s ruins, and then must fight his way back out.

It gets better. Due to the “Terror” of 1925, the author – who on the day-job side edited Golf magazine and at one point author Theodore Dreiser – envisioned a 2015 Financial District run by owls. Read the rest of Paul Collins’ piece here.
 
[Photo of Financial District’s Charging Bull: Stuart Monk/Shutterstock.com]