38 of the most popular conspiracy theories in the US

An abandoned ghost town in New Jersey became one of the internet’s earliest conspiracy theories when people theorized the town was the site of a group that practiced interdimensional travel.

Pine Barrens in New Jersey
Pine Barrens. Brendan McInerney/Insider
Ong’s Hat is an abandoned town in the Pine Barrens of New Jersey. The town dates from the 17th and 18th centuries, but the population dwindled dramatically in the 20th century, ultimately making it a ghost town. Some believe the town became populated again a few decades later.

In the 1980s, a pamphlet was published saying Ong’s Hat was home to a group of people that practiced interdimensional travel. The pamphlet claimed that the group started when two scientists from Princeton University moved into the abandoned town and eventually made “The Egg,” which allowed people to travel to alternate universes. According to the pamphlet, the machine transported the entire group to a different dimension to escape police investigation. The theory spread throughout the internet.

Although some people have come forward to claim that they were part of this group at Ong’s Hat, there is no evidence that this group existed.