Investigating Milford’s Greatest Mysteries

Every school has its own history and weird little quirks that make it unique from any other. Milford is a great school, but it too has an abundance of strange details—some interesting and some just downright confusing. With some investigative journalism, we set out to uncover the hidden secrets and the history hiding behind these halls.

#1: The “Shower”

The small nook next to the little theater has been a source of discussion amongst Milford High Students for many years now. Reminiscent of the “Chokey” from the movie Matilda, it is a small alcove with lines of holes covering the walls. The shape and weird cut-out on the ceiling of the nook have prompted many students to speculate that it’s a shower. The spot has been baffling students for at least 10 years, as Milford Messenger alum Mitch Talaki actually wrote about it in 2012. Talaki solved this mystery for us though; he found out that the nook used to be a phone booth. The payphone was taken out as cellphones gained popularity. Principal Kevin McKenna said he wasn’t sure what year the phone booth was taken out, but it hasn’t been there since he started teaching in 2002.

#2: The Joker 

For at least five years now there has been a Joker playing card balanced perfectly on the edge of one of the upstairs windows looking into the media center. This card is in a spot impossible to reach from the ground so it must have been thrown from the library. Chris Eichbauer and Rob Hamilton both agree that it’s been there for at least five years, but neither know who threw it or why.

#3: Jack the Ripper

Inspiring red quotes are found on many of the hallway walls in Milford, including quotes from philosophers Francis Bacon, Bertrand Russel and Nietzsche. But there is one quote attributed to someone you might not know by name: Walter Sickert. The quote reads “Nothing links man to man… like a good book” and it is found near the Publications room in the 200 hallway. This wouldn’t be that unusual of a quote if it weren’t for the fact that Walter Sickert is rumored to be the 19th century serial killer “Jack the Ripper.” The infamous murderer terrorized the streets of London in 1888, killing at least five women. English painter Walter Sickert has been the center of a few “Jack the Ripper” conspiracy theories, especially because one of his paintings “The Camden Town Murder” depicts a man who fits the description of the serial killer. The quotes were painted before McKenna was on staff here, so we were unable to identify their origins.

#4: Pickled Toes

A strange etching on the windowsill above the benches upstairs has baffled students for at least 4 years now. The words “pickled toes” are scratched into the red paint in shaky handwriting. Senior Emma Allen said, “I really don’t understand why anyone would write that, it’s so weird…and kind of creepy.” Is it just strange graffiti or is it some sort of deeper message? This is one mystery we couldn’t solve, but it is just one of those strange details that make Milford special.

#5: Ceiling Tile 

A broken off piece of ceiling tile was found sealed in a Ziploc bag, and hidden behind one of the vending machines near the stairs. The strange package seemed to have been hidden very purposefully, but for what reason? The name Amy Scripture was written on the outside of the bag in black marker; did Scripture have anything to do with this weird discovery? No. Scripture said, “I am very flattered that someone is so enthusiastic about my name that they decided to put it on a ceiling tile and then Ziploc it,” but she has no idea who was behind it. The ceiling tile mystery is a peculiar one as it was definitely hidden on purpose, but why?

#6: Basement 

There have been a lot of rumors throughout the years about a basement under Milford High School. Some have speculated that the school sits on a maze of tunnels, others believe that there’s an old bowling alley down there. We set out to find the truth and gained exclusive access to the real basement of our high school. Covered in graffiti from years past the basement is filled mostly with pipes. However there is an unusual small tunnel leading away from the main basement area that has no lights in it. Supposedly this tunnel is just for plumbers but there is more graffiti going through it from past students. There also seems to be some trap doors throughout the school leading to more tunnels and crawl spaces but these areas were too dangerous for us to explore.

Suspicious quote by Walter Sickert located across from the Publications room. (Christen)
Stairs leading down into the dark abyss that is Milford High school’s “basement”.
(Christen Broughton)
Joker card lodged in Media Center window.
(Christen Broughton)
Senior Christen Broughton stands in place of old phone booth.
(Christen Broughton)
Mysterious etching that can be found just inside the Media Center window on the second floor.
(Christen Broughton)
Exclusive look inside Milford’s basement.
(Christen Broughton)
2008 Ski Team Graffiti found in one of the tunnels beneath the school.
(Christen Broughton)