People have been hiding valuable secrets from another since we’ve been able to keep secrets. Even well-known people do it! What? Don’t you believe me? Well, let me show you a few.

Johan Bessler


Despite being deemed impossible at the time, Johan created a self-spinning engine able to lift weights back in 1712. It’s said his wheel spun for 54 days without an energy reservoir. In his paranoia, he finished the machine without telling anyone how it was made.

Antonio Stradivari


If you remember violins, you know Stradivari. His violins were so different that we still haven’t been able to replicate them – despite our greatest struggles. He never shared his production design with anyone, so we still have no hint why his violins really blow so much better.

Pope John Paul II


Popes have the right to appoint cardinals “in pectore”, which is essentially in secret. While John Paul II appointed four of these during his lifetime, only three were made public. Which means there’s still a cardinal out there who technically isn’t a cardinal anymore because no one knows he’s a cardinal.

Benjamin Franklin


Benjamin Franklin was rumored to have a son, William Franklin, that no one knew about.

Maurice Ward


Combining all kinds of non-toxic heat-resistant plastics back in the 1980s, Maurice Ward found a substance with marvelous heat resistance. It was able to withstand blowtorches and was called “starlite”. Despite being asked many times, he never gave away his equation. He passed away in 2011, taking the mystery with him.

Captain William Thompson


In 1820, Lima had to keep its treasure safe and decided to migrate it to Mexico. Captain Thompson was appointed for this work, but – don’t act too shocked – went rogue and seized the treasure which was worth about 208 million dollars. The place of the treasure was never recovered.

Jerome of Sandy Cove


This guy was seen on a beach without the ability to speak. He had both legs amputated to the knee, but they were bandaged. He died in 1912 without ever revealing his tale to anyone. It’s assumed his legs were cut off because of a mutiny on his ship.

Ludwig Von Beethoven


After his death, a love letter was found for his beloved. While there’s been much (too much, really) thought about who the letter was addressed to, only Beethoven will know.