Irreplaceable Cultural Treasures (Destroyed By Stupidity)

Whether it's priceless works of art getting cooked in an oven or historical landmarks being demolished by angry homeowners, people always find a way to undercut our greatest achievements with pettiness, vanity, or downright idiocy. (click for full article)
  1. A Guy Risked Death On D-Day To Get Combat Photos, And An Intern Ruined Them
    Upon hanging the film to dry, Banks was practically shitting himself at how utterly soul-crushing the photographs were. But then -- perhaps due to his excitement, but probably more because editors were incessantly screaming deadlines at him -- he cranked the heat up too far in an attempt to dry them faster. Of the four rolls of film that Capa had gone to hell and back to capture, Banks melted three and a half of them.
  2. A Priceless Leonardo Da Vinci Ink Sketch Was Erased By Overzealous Historians
    No sooner had restorers gotten their hands on it than they plopped it into a solution of alcohol and water. The problems with this technique were twofold. First, the restorers utterly failed to follow the common protocol of testing any restoration technique on a small, minimally noticeable area first, rather than basting the entire work in solution. Second, da Vinci used delicate vegetable-based inks, and dipping said inks into an alcohol solution is just no good.
  3. A Man Demolished Shakespeare's Final Home Because He Was Tired Of Tourists
    The crowds of people that would frequent his house were obsessed with a large mulberry tree that had been planted in the garden by The Bard himself. Gastrell, completely fed up with droves of tourists gathering around the tree and drawing selfies with quill pens (or whatever the hell 18th-century tourists did), chopped the fucking thing down and used it for firewood. The townsfolk responded by running the reverend clean out of town.
  4. Winston Churchill's Widow Destroyed An Irreplaceable Portrait Of Him Because He Hated It
    See, after Churchill's death, his widow Clementine conspired with her private secretary, Grace Hamblin, to rid the world of the much-hated portrait once and for all. Hamblin recruited her hulky brother to lug the massive painting to his van, drive it to his house several miles away, and burn it in his backyard. So now, rather than an honest portrait of an octogenarian who'd weathered decades of Nazi blitzkriegs and multiple strokes, we're left only with the images of an angry British man.
  5. An Art Thief's Mother Burned Near-Priceless Paintings In Her Oven
    Dogaru and Co. were arrested for the heist based on security footage, but prosecutors were missing a key piece of evidence: the stolen (and subsequently buried) paintings. Mama Dogaru soon became nervous for her overly art-appreciating boy when the authorities came a-knockin' in search of said evidence. Risking a severe haunting, she went out to the graveyard, dug the paintings back up, and burned them in her oven.