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Published 2022-01-05
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Is The Eerie La Pascualita A Haunted Mannequin Or A Mummified Woman?

For over 90 years now, the legend of La Pascualita, a mysterious mannequin from the display of a bridal store located in the town of Chihuahua has been circulating in Mexico. Many people are convinced that it is not just a fake, plastic woman, but a real embalmed body around which paranormal events are occurring. Is it possible that the owner decided to display the mummy in a shop window? How was the legend of La Pascualita, referred to by some as the Mexican rotting bride, born? And why has it still not been clarified whether it is actually a mannequin or a person who has died? Read on until the end to find out the story that has had many people wondering for decades.

Mummy Tourist Attractions

Mummies can be a tourist attraction. The best example are the Egyptian ones, which are one of the most fascinating remains from the ancient world. No less popular is the embalmed body of Lenin, displayed in a mausoleum in Red Square, or the mummies from Mexico's Guanajuato museum, where an unbelievable incident is said to have once occurred. One of the bodies is said to have come to life in front of a tourist, but she cannot tell her version of the events because she fell dead on the ground at that moment. However, Guanajuato is not the only place where such dark legends circulate. In the city of Chihuahua in northern Mexico, the story of La Pascualita, a mannequin that supposedly can come to life, still stirs the imagination to this day.

Appearance Of La Pascualita

It was 1930 when it first appeared in the display window of La Popular bridal store. People passing by immediately noticed that its appearance was unlike the usual mannequins of the time, displayed in malls to showcase clothes. La Pascualita had expressive features and human-like skin. Besides, also her hair or eyelashes did not look artificial, and her glassy eyes caused concern, as one had the impression that they were actually looking at curious onlookers. Quite a few people, upon seeing it, decided to enter the store just to get a closer look, and this resulted in further surprising observations. Indeed, La Pascualita had very realistic hands, and one could even see something like small varicose veins on her legs.

How The Owner Acquired The Mannequin

The question arose - where did Pascual de Perez, the owner of a bridal boutique, get such a mannequin? One story argues that it was brought to Mexico directly from France. It then found its way to the El Puerto del Liverpool store in Mexico City, where Perez often bought fabrics and accessories for his business. It is said that when he first saw the mannequin he was so fascinated by it that he asked how much he would have to pay to take it with him. The shopkeepers reportedly refused to sell it, claiming that the woman's figure was too precious to get rid of, and it was only when Pascual threatened to cut all business ties with the wholesaler that they agreed to give it back.

The Resemblance To His Daughter

In the face, La Pascualita bore a striking resemblance to Mr. Perez's deceased daughter, which could also explain his determination, and the reason why when she arrived at the boutique in Chihuahua she was immediately placed in the main display window and dressed in the best wedding gown on offer. This also tied in with the story of the owner's daughter, who died on her very wedding day. Before she stood at the altar she was bitten by a venomous spider, and the poison worked so quickly that the girl went to the hospital instead of the church, where unfortunately she lost her life. The Pascualita mannequin exhibit was meant to be a sort of altar displayed in her memory, but this touching story quickly turned into a rousing one when puzzling incidents began to occur around the mannequin.

The Mannequin Is Alive

There were rumors that La Pascualita, although appears to be a plastic woman, is actually alive and even moving. People passing by the showcase argued that the figure actually has a different arrangement of arms or legs every day, even though the limbs are seemingly artificial. But that is not all. There were people who reportedly saw the mannequin smiling at them from behind the glass, and this happened especially at night when the bridal salon was already closed. The incidents of ginning then were also said to occur during the day and customers visiting the store complained to staff that they felt La Pascualita's eyes following them.

Bad For Bussiness

Such stories frightened many people who, fearful of the enigmatic mannequin, stopped buying from Mr. Perez. Moreover, even the employed saleswomen felt anxious when they came to work in the morning, and one of them said that every time she approaches the main exhibition she is doused with sweat from fear. This makes her unable to touch the mannequin, and when she sees its very realistic hands and the varicose veins on its legs she is convinced that it is not artificial but a real person. Because of this, several workers actually decided to resign from their employment.

Paranormal Dealings?

The Pascualita case became famous throughout Mexico and gave rise to a legend that has survived to the present day. It was believed that what was happening in Mr. Perez's store had an explanation, except that it was very paranormal. According to the stories, the soul of the owner's deceased daughter was supposed to enter the mannequin, because he missed her very much. It was not ruled out that this was also the result of witchcraft or other magical rituals performed by the distraught father, but he himself never confirmed that this was true.

A Real Body?

Over time, however, the legend became even murkier, as a rumor emerged that the mannequin was actually not a fake, but a real person. A large group of people was convinced that the respected salon owner in the entire city did not buy the mannequin at all, but made it from the body of his own daughter. It was said that he did not want it to end up in the ground, so he decided to embalm it, and the effect was so realistic that he had no objections to dressing the mummy in a wedding dress and displaying it in the shop window. The evidence in support of this theory was supposed to be the illusory similarity between the mannequin and the dead girl, and the fact that La Pascualita had surprisingly realistic hair, hands, and skin. The theory fired the imagination of others that not a day went by in the wedding store without calls from angry people. The owner was accused of violating moral principles or God's laws because he had the audacity to make a mannequin out of a mummy. Among Mexicans, the debate over this issue heated up in earnest. While some actually believed it could be true, others argued that it was just a bunch of made-up nonsense. There was also no shortage of people who committed acts of vandalism and, in order to test whether La Pascualita was real, touched her wax skin and even drove their fingernails into it. Even experts spoke out on the matter, most of whom argued that it was impossible for the mummy to have survived years in a store window in such good condition. First, the conditions and temperature were not right there. Second, the embalming would have to be done repaired to a very high standard, which is virtually impossible in small-town conditions. Third, the mummy would have had to be systematically additionally preserved to maintain its good appearance, but over time changes would have been visible on its skin anyway. La Pascualita, meanwhile, presented a pristine image for several decades, bearing no signs of decay.

Still On Display

According to the story, one day Mr. Perez's store was even visited by emissaries of the city government with the intention of checking how much truth there was in the legends. Various accounts circulate about the results of their inspection. One says that it was established that Pascualita was without a shadow of a doubt a mannequin. Another says that it could not be determined because the statue was being bathed at the time of the visit and the officials only saw her face. Asked to come at another time, for unknown reasons they never decided to do so again. The mannequin still stands on display in the La Popular store to this day and continues to arouse curiosity. In fact, no one has presented evidence that there is a mummy, nor has anyone officially confirmed that it is just a mannequin. So this Mexican legend is still alive, but in turn no longer as obscure as it once was. La Pascualita has become a popular tourist attraction in the town of Chihuahua, and the salon in which it stands is the most popular place for wedding shopping in this part of Mexico. What's more, brides-to-be are most likely to choose a dress that is worn by a mannequin because they believe it is like a good luck charm.

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