August 13, 1913/1958

On THIS DAY IN TWISTED HISTORY in 1913, Otto Witte, an acrobat was crowned King of Albania. In 1913, when Albania broke away from the Ottoman Empire, some Albanian Muslims invited Halim Eddine, a nephew of the Sultan, to come and be crowned king. Noticing his own resemblance to Halim Eddine, Witte said, he traveled to Durrës with a friend, the sword-swallower Max Schlepsig. He claimed that he had succeeded in being crowned king by the local troops on 13 August 1913. He also claimed that, over the next five days, he enjoyed a harem and declared war on Montenegro before his ruse was discovered. His claims also include that he took a substantial portion of the kingdom’s treasury, and along with Schlepsig he managed to escape the palace with the aid of the harem, and eventually made their way out of the country. While his claims were never substantiated, the German government did allowed his identity card to bear the artistic pseudonym ehemaliger Konig von Albanien (former king of Albania). I wish I had made this up. Otto Witte (b 10/16/1872 and died 8/13/1958).

About Joel Byers

Born in North Georgia and educated at some very fine public institutions. Real education started after graduating from college and then getting married and raising two boys. Has the ability to see the funny and absurd in most things and will always remark on it, even if it means getting the stink-eye from his victims.
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