For more than 80 years, visitors from all over the world have been lured to a wedding gown shop in Chihuahua, Mexico, to study the spookily lifelike bridal mannequin in the window.
Most are so captivated by the mesmerizing gaze of La Pascualita, that they leave convinced that she is a mummy rather than a dummy.
She was first installed in the window in 1930.
People soon realized that she bore an uncanny likeness to the store’s owner at the time, Pascuala Esparza. They concluded that the apparent mannequin was really the embalmed body of Esparza’s daughter who had died recently on her wedding day after being bitten by a black widow spider.
According to legend, the mannequin is not really a model at all, but the perfectly preserved corpse of the previous owner’s daughter.
Esparza denied the story, but the rumors persisted.
La Pascualita began to take on a life of her own. It is said that a love-struck French magician would arrive at night and bring her to life, taking her out on the town.
“Her hands are very realistic and she even has varicose veins on her legs. I believe she’s a real person.” – Sonia Burciaga
Others say her eyes follow them around the store and that she changes positions during the night.
One shop worker, Sonia Burciaga, who has to change the dummy’s outfits twice a week, says:
“Every time I go near Pascualita my hands break out in a sweat. Her hands are very realistic and she even has varicose veins on her legs. I believe she’s a real person.”
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Sure as hll looks like a real dead person to me….look at the hand and nails, no way to fabricate that.
Lol yes ou can.
Uh plaster cast anyone?
um, from the 30’s?? they were no where close to plaster casting of that magnitude. Silicone, I would believe, but, my argument again..not even close AND 1930 was a year after the stock crash were even ,mexico was hit hard by the recession..no way
This can’t be real. How could you possibly preserve a body for that long? The hands are creepy for sure, but I can’t see how that would be possible.
Actually,there’s a child’s body dating from the 20s that is preserved pretty darn well.We own a real otter’s paw from 1895,35 years before this “mannequin” was put up.
That child’s body is in an extremely controlled environment.
I’m curious, do the hands simply LOOK real, or do they feel real as well?
Since she looks so much like the woman who died, I wonder if there could have been a mold made of her body afterwards. Could also account for why the bodyparts look so limp and lifeless, but still organic. A last way for her grieving family to immortalize her. I admit, if these ARE castings of the daughter’s body, it’s an amazingly well done job. But it’s much more likely than this simply being a case of embalming, even super embalming, especially if she’s being handled on a daily basis for dress changes and in an uncontrolled environment.
In these handlings, they could be giving her embalments.
You can because Pascuala embalmed her and have you ever seen mummies?
There is a child that looks like it is sleeping, in Italy’s famous catacombs this child died at around 2yrs old and in the 20’s or 30’s. the mortician never did another like her and took the secret to the grave with him. As a Forensic student, I am wondering about this bride mannequin as well. Those hands have fingers with printable finger tips. So why would someone take that much time with detail for a dress doll!? We may never know.
That child is sealed in a glass-topped casket, and not exposed to air, humidity, or touch.
waxing with paramelt, and yes..this has been around for a very long time, then plaster mix, even with a bit of porcelain. It is the eyes I have a problem with, eyes lose their pigment fully about 2 hours after death, they turn a pale blue.. ALL EYES AFTER DEATH. there is NO WAY they would still be brown
Glass eyes. Very easy to replace, especially after death.
Actually it is very easy to recreate a maniquinne that looks human. Havent you all seen sculptures? Been to an art museum?watched a movie where they made their own props? So that people think its real just because the artist did a stunning job on the hands is laughable.
You can not preserve a body as perfectly as that for that long…
Not in 1930
Hell even wax museums can have super lifelike sculptures in them , if they’re really worried they could always x ray it lol.
Yes. I agree I think the real question is WHY lol
Sure looks real to me. Reminds me of the Incorruptibles. Saints that are so well preserved they barely have any sign of decay. Creepy indeed. Can they/have they done tests on it to ascertain if its a mummy or not?
Creepy story, but I don’t know if it would be possible to keep a body preserved for 80 years. They must keep it pretty cold in there.
Exactly, Also consider the frequent dress changes. that would be WAY too hard on a body.
Ive seen pics of exhumed bodies that were very well preserved like this. So I believe it is possible, BUT the lady that says she changes it. I think she would notice some odd things while it was naked if it were real.
Only the shop owners and two original employees are allowed to change her.
It is possible that this is real, I mean look at Vladimir Lenin, he died in the 20’s and he looks just about the same as the day he died like 90 years ago…
Can the some do a simple x-ray or something?…Then the results will end the mystery!!!
No because what if it’s taxidermied???
It’s a mystery!
Human skin is too thin to taxidermy, supposedly.
Well, if you think about it, the preserved bodies of many Egyptian nobility are very distinguishable, with hair and skin still being almost completely intact without much decay, due to careful preservation with specific ingredients, some of which with the corpse itself outlasting the linen. Plus look at taxidermy, animals of all kinds are preserved and last a very long time and maybe with a high amount of care could stay almost perfect. Yes it is possible that could very well be, simply excellent artistic craftsmanship, but then again, the word “impossible” has been proven wrong by many people, just saying.
this does look real an i dont think they had ways to make them look real back in the 1930 an they can preserve body for that long .. ive seen other stories before so i believe it
All you need to do to preserve a body like that is to pump it full of chemicals so it dries out from the inside so that it doesnt start decomposing… then you can put rods in the legs and arms so it stands up… looks like some kind of powder of dried flaky lotion on the skin that would help with keeping the skin flexable enough to keep being able to change the bodies position to change the clothes… it is totaly plausible that it could be a corpse and not an anatomicaly correct extremely lifelike doll…
I believe !
Believe me, I’ve seenmany strange and eccentric things, both living and presumeably dead. It is possible and I’m ‘TRUE BELIEVER”.
Its real, I live in México and This history is very old, Isnt a modern manequin
Its amazing….i think its real…my hair crawl….
WoW! man…… This is really weird but too much awesome!
I’m from México (Oaxaca state) and I have heard that people say that Pascualita sometimes cry and watch the people who walks by the store… she/it/whatever looks pretty realistic to me, and even if I agree with the people who have commented about other people who is dead but his/her body is still well preserved I doubt it is the case of Pascualita I don’t know but some parts of her body don’t look like a real human body like her neck, waist and nails but who know….
This is the “Lisette” wax mannequin by Pierre Imans. His 1930’s mannequin studio used molds made from real hands and cast in wax – the transluscence of the tinted wax and the detail make the hands look real – after nearly a century, it is no wonder they also look a little dirty. In this image (https://www.pinterest.com/pin/474355773221165100/) you can see he used the same or a very similar model. There is a picture online of the shop owner’s daughter. She does not bear a close resemblance to this mannequin at all, though she does have light skin and dark hair, which is probably why the shop owner chose this model after her daughter’s death. Here is the “Lisette” brochure illustration from the Pierre Imans studio brochure (http://www.lookandlearn.com/history-images/XE134673/Mannequin-created-by-Pierre-Imans?img=2114&search=horse&bool=phrase).
So sorry, but La Pascual it doesn’t look at all like the mannequin in the brochure you posted. The lips and nose agent the same.
no, just no.
Think you´re right! If the first link you´d shown is from the same Pierre Imans, which looks the same face and features- only one is blonde and the other is brunette- and the waxing technique really existed past this time, well, I believe mistery is solved! But this info doesn´t bring cash and will kill local tourism 🙂
Ok, if this isn’t a mummy (look up ‘the sleeping beauty’ Italian mummy, it is possible to keep a body looking good with heavy chemicals) then it was a death cast of the hands and face taken of the deceased bride very soon after she died. That is the only way I can explain such details on the hands. As for the varicose veins, if it is a mannequin maybe there was some discoloration in manufacturing?
Maybe. Maybe you’ll have to investigate yourself!
The women who changes her clothes every twice week must know if she is real or not, I mean, if the doll has a real vagina and ans stuff like that, then she is real, because they don´t do mannequin with real pussy if its not a sexdoll of course.
What do you think?
Just like one of those porcelain dolls, the details are amazing, but simply put on a larger scale.
Human-sized scale! You can look this on in the eyes!
This is really amazing I am 21 years old and I have alway been fasnated with ghost taking on object like dolls are boxes,stuff they hold on to and this story is really amazing and a great show piece I would like to see it in real life my self
We think it’s great too! Tell what you think of it if you do see it!
Well how surreal this is on looking very closely it certainly looks like a dead body how do you explain the hands it’s so freaky and weird but if the lady did embalm her daughter she kept the secret of the embalming fluid a good secret for years and what a sad and tragic story it tells
I am learning Taxidermy and I have seen Ho Chi Minh’s body In Ho Chi Minh city(Saigon),and his body has got to be sent to Russia to have his body reconditioned or preserved.If she was a corpse they would have to do the same with her if they don’t I would have my doubts
This is so scary. Chihuahua has plenty of mysteries, and this is one of the scariest. Good post !
People, go to this link. Explore this other story. This little girl “sleeping beauty” is nearly 100 years old. Her body is perfectly reserved and is in the catacombs of Italy. The story has been on national television and she is a 2yr. Old embalmed historic treasure. Her body looks the same today as it did in 1920 when she died. The mannequin of question here was “installed” in 1903 shortly after the owners daughter had died. I mean, there may be no proof at this time, but it is very much so possible. Sleeping beauty has 10 years on Cinderella here. So it’s possible. Also, the current day artistry is far more advanced today than it was in 1930…..I’m disappointed in many of you. (Sarcasm please don’t verbally attack me, just trying to add to the realistic facts 🙂 I hope you all enjoy the story of sleeping beauty as much as I did. However sad and morbid it’s very astounding and she is very beautiful.
I agree with you 🙂 I too was going to mention the “sleeping beauty” in Italy.
I’m sorry. I’m mobile here and this phone has some issues with predictive text. Reserved should be *preserved* and 1903 should be *1930* 🙂
I have been there before and it is a real mummy in there i have seen it and i kniw the story of the whole family and how each of them died it is very tragic
Do you mind telling me the stories I’m really interested
Can u share the story?
If you really know anything. Can you please share the story? Many people are interested in hearing it as you can see.
I think she’s real!
It’s possible that it is the actual likeness of the original owners daughter however most likely a casting made of the body.
I’d like to know there stories as well. Please share.
Does she has a vagina or genital parts / boobs? or have they replaced it with plastic? #justCurious #NoPorno
maybe its real? Why would someone do a very realistic mannequin just for a store. If its a museum or whatsoever it wiuld be relevant to be realistic but not in this case.
I think it is a real person because if you look closely t her hands then you can tell the creases are just like ours.Also all you wold need to do is just get the family members who you think know something about it and do a lie detector test to find the truth.
I can’t tell if she is real or not. She has become a part of Chihuahua City’s history. There are too many weird things and stories all over the world, and we all love to listen to them.
I just found this story a couple of days ago, and I’m amazed about it…creepy hands indeed.
I saw several documentaries and investigations on YouTube…this mannequin is a total mystery as people are not able to get close and it’s dressed/undressed apart from the view of clients…but at the same time it’a a total tradition in Chihuahua..up to the point that future brides just want to purchase the dress model “Pascualita” is wearing when they arrive at the store, without even comparing other dress models.
Apparently this brings good luck on their marriage, same as her Mothers and Grandmothers did….
What a strange story!
At the beggining of the 19 century in México there it was a marketing boom, not just because of fair trade with U.S.A (back then), but because of turistic spots in most of the country, Chihuahua its close to the border, so the posibility that they made up a nice urban legend to allure some “gringos” to the store, is not that off place… also by that time also there it was another “gringo” turistic spot in México based in mummies , Guanajuato… so it kind of makes me belive that it was a urban legend. Finally, mexicans back then where remarkably supersticious, they wouldnt allow a corpse without “holy” rites standing in the working spot…it would be like coursing your self…or its the work of a true mayor league psyco…
Those hands thou…
Are the parents still alive?
There is a need to check her death and burial records.
There is an artist named Marc Sijan who makes perfectly realistic and lifelike human mannequins. Go to his website at this address: http://www.marcsijan.com
But they keep Lenin in a controlled atmosphere regularly change his embalming fluids
that is a real corps, things like that cant be replicated. unless sculpted out of clay, its not clay because it has to be movable, even silicone foam or resin cant form those replicated lines like that. and those eyes are not glass, they look to have a film over them but are not glass, she is real.
Ive been down there and saw her its creepy in person i got chills.
I have too 22 years ago.
There is this little girl whos body is still the same from years ago, like ages ago. Not quite sure but it was the early 1900s or so. Her body and face still looks the same. This mannequin’s hands look real but the face looks crafted. I dont know aye.
I am a ghost buster, I confirm that is not real.
Imagine if it’s real. won’t it be odd to not smell the chemicals used to preserve the body.. and also a dead person wouldn’t last that long exposed to air like that.
Ever see the movie House of Wax? It’s a little bit like that.
I’ve studied this on numerous YouTube videos. She is/was a person, in my opinion.
She looks real for various reasons. I noticed that near the hairline at the temple, I see skin-tone clumps, like dead skin. Her hands look like they belong to a dead person. Fingernails usually turn into a purplish colour (with yellowing tips) once the embalming mixture, containing formaldehyde, gets pumped into the body. The hands are very wrinkly (especially with the outline of the skin cells), and they look grey. There are some parts of the hands that have darker pigments than the majority of it, suggesting to me that this women likely had a darker complexion. I also noticed a scab at her ring finger, and little hairs on the knuckles. Her eyes were likely replaced with glass (due to the release of potassium after death and decomposition) and the hair looks real… just like the woman in the photo. I can tell that the mouth looks sewn shut (they’ve sewn through the upper gum line, the septum in the nostrils, and the lower gum line, and they pulled the string to close the mouth. Then they tied it up and recreate the appearance of the lips by moving them) and the lips look crooked. The lips look so wrinkly and dried that the lipstick or whatever they used shows it. Mannequins usually have smoother lips. Also, I see imperfections in her eyebrows as mannequins back then would have the perfect eyebrows drawn on and/or with use of animal hair. Yet in the 1930s, young women’s eyebrows were thinned out and drawn on, like in the 1920s. By the 40s, thicker eyebrows were back in style. Mannequins tend to have a glossy, smooth appearance… even when photos are taken. La Pascualita has a dull, matte-like appearance, just like how the dead appear when they have makeup on. And by using some logic, if the store owner and two original employees change the “mannequin” behind the curtains as the other ones were changed throughout the store, then it’s likely that they knew that the mannequin is indeed a body and they didn’t want the public to know. And like it was stated, a shop worker saw that the “mannequin” had a varicose vein in one of her legs. The only way to determine the truth is to get an x-Ray of the bride. (FYI, my late grandfather was a licenced mortician… he even had his own funeral home).
If however that bride turns out to be a wax model mannequin, then I’m very impressed with the details.
this is the process of “plastination”
hello it real
Yeh, I really don’t get how people believe this is a real human. It’s so obvious that it’s a waxwork. I may see it easier because I’ve seen a lot of corpses, (by occupation), but I think it’s still very easy to notice. Of course, they did a good job on the hands, but the face looks nothing like a real human. Also, some of the best-preserved corpses in the world have suffered wear and tear more than this. It’s not a person, it’s a waxwork. Study the texture of a waxwork then look back at this.
Actually being a qualified embalmer, it is very very easy and common to preserve a body in such a great state!
Really interesting article and pretty creepy. I think she is very pretty and her hands are very detailed, I would love to see her in person.
As someone suggested could be a mannequin made by Pierre Imans. There is a similar one to her in the link: http://www.retailstorewindows.com/2009/06/pierre-imans-figures-discovered.html
It’s totally real when you zoom in you can see how real the skin looks and everything
It looks real yes BUT changing it that often you think would do much damage ? Idk I know they have mummified bodies very old ones at that BUT they aren’t disturbed or re dressed that much if even touched at ALLL . That’s what makes me not believe it . Wouldn’t she start to at least fall apart or weaken ? .
Chick is talking about varicose veins, you changed her, out of anybody else you should KNOW if she is real of not. There are certain areas dummies just don’t need. And even preserved how in the world can they have the body flexible enough to constantly change her into wedding dresses? It is hard enough to change an actual mannequin but to do that with a body that has to be gently dealt with with a wedding dress? Sounds too difficult to me.
Cut it open and see if it’s real
So many stupid comments. There quite a few lifelike sculptures of people right down to individual hairs and fingerprints.
Just look up the work of Ron Mueck for example…
I’d be getting experts in to find out
Two funeral directors – who know real dead bodies, weigh in and say Mannequin. Most likely her hands were moulded from real hands, possibly Pasqualita’s.
Probabbly not the body embalmed but could well be a plaster casting of the actual body…..
Or even slightly more macabre it could be the actual skin mounted on a casting as per taxidermy
Look at the hairline or the forehead and you can clearly see the holes the hair has been pulled through in clusters just like a childs doll… its not natural and not how hair grows… not real… its a very well made mannequin… death masks used to be fairly common so I imagine that the distraught family had a mannequin made that was designed to look just like their daughter/wife and they have managed to keep her “alive forever” by refusing to answer questions and it’s become another conspiracy theory/myth… consider the market for true to life baby dolls people make and it’s not that impossible to believe it’s not real…
I’m an antique doll dealer’s assistant and I’ve seen some truly gorgeous antique wax mannequins in my time. This is definitely one of them. As for the people asking “why go to such effort for a store dummy?”, that I can’t answer except to say that people did. The work of Pierre Iman has been mentioned already in this thread, so I’ll simply implore that you google “antique wax mannequin” and take into consideration that this mannequin is always very carefully lit, in such a way that the normal sheen of wax wouldn’t show. As for why they change her behind a screen- would you be willing to give up a story that draws thousands more people to your small dress shop than would otherwise even know it existed? I’m glad they keep the mystery and debate alive, though. This world could use more magic.
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Only one way to put it to rest. Get permission to X-ray, MRI or CT scan it. That will prove it once and for all.
It’s possible that may be the mom not dealing with her daughter’s death very well got a mannequin made to look like her and maybe the daughters spirit is connected to the mannequin
Formalin, now widely used by embalmers, is a mixture of formaldehyde and water that kills bacteria. Salafia was one of the first to use this for embalming bodies. Alcohol, along with the arid conditions in the catacombs, would have dried Rosalia’s body and allowed it to mummify. Glycerin would have kept her body from drying out too much, and salicylic acid would have prevented the growth of fungi.
But it was the zinc salts, according to Melissa Johnson Williams, executive director of the American Society of Embalmers, that were most responsible for Rosalia’s amazing state of preservation. Zinc, which is no longer used by embalmers in the United States, petrified Rosalia’s body.
“[Zinc] gave her rigidity,” Williams said. “You could take her out of the casket prop her up, and she would stand by herself.”
Piombino-Mascali calls the self-taught Salafia an artist: “He elevated embalming to its highest level.”
The hands look real to me!
hey that does look a real person!!!
more investigation has to be done on the mannequin to prove otherwise.
A great mannequin! Beautiful indeed?
i believe that she is a real person base on her hands …..think??? look at your hands then take a picture of it …..you will going to realize that it has similarities on pascualitas hands
200% she was a human … ?
Uhm damn like why not have someone look at it. Like get a professional to do the exam
She looks like it but I need to see it in person to decide. But for now I’d say it’s true
A saw a YouTube vid where people stated that her hair has grayed over time as nd her nails need to be trimmed. Btw I googled antique wax mannequins as suggested for comparison and while the face did look similar, none hand as ty ms or hands. Either way it’s a mystery.
Ok when we die our hair and nails get longer as our skin recedes. Some one would have had to style them so there would be documents some where. Plus to preserve a body that well for that long you would need to treat the body regularly so bacteria doesn’t grow. It could be done just there would be a lot of documentation
Wow idk I think someone should ask the owner what her daughter we looked like then we’ll really know if this mannequin is real or not
Maybe someone could cut her toe off to see if it’s real?!
It may be just the head and hands legs are real and the rest are not x
Omg this is definitely a real body look at the skin and nails mannequins don’t look like that
the only way to prove is she is human or not is by x-ray… why has no one done that yet?
Strangewas the actual owner never interviewed? Or asked questions.
She wasn’t bit by a black widow spider, it was a scorpion
That’s creepy IDC who you and also very wrong. She needs to be laid to rest not in the window of a bridal store.
Love this story! I’ve heard it before!
I don’t believe the part about the French magician… everything else I believe
The skin looks just like normal human skin. And the finger nails! There’s no way this isn’t a real person.
¡Call the Policia!et Gan x-ray machine in there. That’s a dead body.
STICK A PIN IN HER. IF SHE MOVES THEN …….
This story is old as hell and the woman is as fake as. Not a dead person people.
she’s a real body you can’t just walk up to the fucking thing and say it’s fake well you’re wrong because yes it is real you can tell.
chin features and nose like a girl, nails look like have cuticles, not polished, or fake nails, also more yellowish look in real nail not pure white or polished and lines in palms and knuckles an intuitive if get very close would tell you, sometimes embalmers can do very good work and renew often
there is a rumor that the body WAS in fact real and donated to the museum. The one that was given back was a replica.
I’m starting to write a fictional story based on the magician who brought her to life :).
Lenin’s body is routinely removed from viewing, washed, re-embalmed, maintenance on any issues of deterioration performed. Much of his body has been replace by clay & wax. I’ve seen pictures of the body being worked on. It has Y incision from an autopsy. As for Pasqalita, you’d think the people who change her clothing would know from its anatomy whether or not it is a mannequin. There are some things that cannot be reproduced THAT perfectly. Its beautiful & wondrous but it’s a mannequin.