State’s Urban Legends: Indiana – Part 2

Evansville, Indiana is a medium-sized, quaint town nestled at the edge of Indiana on the Ohio River. Many could be forgiven for never having heard of this historic community. Although it once was at the heart of one of the world’s largest canal projects. However, it is home to the Willard Library.

The Willard Library

What is the Willard Library? Only what some experts call the most haunted library in the world.

The Willard LIbrary.

First opened in 1885, the Willard Library now is preserved as a national historic place. This is owing in part because of its unique and grand Gothic Revival architectural style.

The lady in gray, as she is often colloquially referred to, however, is the main attraction. This wraith has been the subject of much media scrutiny. Many posit that the spirit is Louis Carpenter, the bitter daughter of the library’s founder. She is enraged at the fact that her father’s money went to books instead of her.

 

 

Indiana’s Hannah House

Having grown up in Indiana, one of the Halloween favorites was a similar building in Indianapolis called the Hannah House. While this home is terrifying, a different one was eventually demolished by a popular media personality. It also became part of the highly rated Ghost Adventures show.

The Carolina demon house, as it has come to be known, was the site where three children were allegedly possessed by demons. Then things went bad quickly. So much paranormal activity was discovered that the house was razed.

What are some of the urban legends from your state? Did we miss any here or in our original article on the urban legends to be found in the state of Indiana?

State’s Urban Legends: Maine

Stephen King is a native of Maine. Could he be an urban legend all unto himself?

Maine is as far east as you can go and still be in the United States. But it is also home to some eerie urban legends. Maybe that is why Stephen King likes the place so much?

Wood Island Light

Lighthouses are supposed to be navigational aids to ensure safe passage into port for seamen. But the lighthouse on Wood Island does not give off a friendly vibe.

Legend has it the lighthouse is haunted by the perpetrator of a murder-suicide dating back to the 1890s. Fred Milliken owner the lighthouse on the island back then.

But his tenant, a drifter and fisherman named Howard Hobbs, shot and killed Milliken while drunk. After the shooting, Hobbs wandered off a short distance before killing himself.

Since then there have been plenty of reports of strange moaning, shadows that should not be and a host of other paranormal activity. Hobbs is the prime suspect for this.

The Stain On Buck’s Tomb

Colonel Jonathan Buck of Bucksport – yes he was indeed the town’s founder – died in 1795 at the tender age of 76. He fought against the British in the Revolutionary War, owned a sawmill and was even named Justice of the Peace.

An ordinary man of his times, right? So how is he tangled up in an urban legend?

This leg-shaped stain has reappeared despite two attempts to remove it.

Well, it seems while doing his duty as a J.P. he once sentenced a woman to be burned at the stake as a witch. While the sentence was being carried out, one of the woman’s legs exited from the blaze.

Legend says it was this final insult, or possibly the woman’s last act being to curse Colonel Buck’s grave before she died, that led to an unexplainable mystery.

A stain, in the shape of a leg, has appeared on the Colonel’s tomb. Two attempts to remove this stain have been made. The stain has returned both times.

The Specter Moose

We’ll file this one under payback is a… well, you get the idea.

The Specter Moose is a giant, albino ghost moose that legend says is roaming the woods of Maine. Seems he’s not a fan of hunters. He attacks any hunter he encounters in its territory.

Seems fair to me.

Sequin Island Lighthouse

We end where we began our tour of Maine – at a lighthouse.

Legend has it that sometime during the 19th Century a caretaker and his wife lived on the small island. The isolation and the boredom weighed heavily on the couple. So the caretaker bought his wife a piano to alleviate the boredom.

The problem was his wife only knew how to play one song. Between the isolation – and that same song playing over and over and over again – drove the caretaker insane.

Legend says he took an ax to the piano, and the piano player, before killing himself.

 

iZombie Season One Review

I’m currently out-of-town visiting family and have found myself with several hours of free time in the evenings. My plans for rewatching Babylon Five were dashed by the inability to get Prime on the tv’s streaming, so I needed something else.Liv Moore from izombie using a straw to drink from a blue brain.

A quick scan through Netflix and I found iZombie. I’d seen some of the ads on television for it, and since it isn’t a show I’ve been watching with my husband or with my family, I fired it up.

I’m already into the second season, so I’ll hop in with a review of the entire first season of the show.

Premise

iZombie finished its fourth season and has been renewed for a fifth and final season. It is loosely based on a comic book of the same name.

Liv Moore attended a disastrous boat party one night, waking up the next morning in a body bag and craving brains. Now she works at the King County morgue, getting her brains the “legit” way. And a side effect of her feedings, Liv gets visions about the people who have died. She uses this power to help solve murders.

Pros

The characters are what make the show. Liv gets a special shout-out in the Highlights section, but really all of them are engaging and interesting. Ravi, Liv’s boss at the morgue, is warm and funny, and I like seeing a genius type character that isn’t just a complete loser socially. Major has a kicked-puppy look that will break your heart, and his arc is well done.

I like the new angle on zombies. They’re a monster on the downswing in an oversaturated market, but iZombie has managed to do something different with them. While the stereotypical rotting, shambling zombie makes appearances in the show, it mostly deals with fully conscious and engaged zombies like Liv.

Blaine is a great villain. So many shows have mediocre or weak villains, especially in the first season. Blaine has neither one of these issues. A charming, self-absorbed drug dealing rich kid, Blaine uses his newfound condition to build his own empire. He wants to own all of Seattle, and with his ambition and brains (of more than one kind), he might actually be able to do it.

And finally, this is a little weird, but I appreciate the brain food creativity. Both from Liv cooking brains in the morgue to eat and help solve murders, to Blaine’s obsessive drive to produce foodie-brain dishes that even zombies can taste. It’s a flash of color and weirdness that really add to the show.

Cons

Comic book style Liv art pictureThere aren’t too many cons, actually. There is a little too much drama/soap operaness to it, but that’s to be expected from the CW. Almost all of their shows have more than a little bit of that tone. It isn’t too overwrought though, otherwise, it would be a bit much for me to watch.

In the same vein as that comment, especially towards the end of the season, there was a little bit of the Spiderman 2 effect. The show starts to stack so much on Liv that it becomes a bit over the top. It seems to be a game of “let’s see how much we can make Liv’s life suck,” as if being a zombie isn’t enough.

The complete effect of the brains that Liv eats is uneven. At the beginning of the season she seems to have some control over it. The longer the season goes on, the more pronounced the changes are. Liv also seems to have less control over it. I know it is a schtick they want to use for humor and emotional heart-pulling, but its inconsistency bothers me sometimes. And how is Liv ever…you know, Liv? How often does she have to eat? Is there time for each brain to wear off before she’s got to eat another one? These questions may be fleshed out and answered in later seasons, but not so far.

While I like Clive Babineaux as a character, and his repartee with Liv is good, he doesn’t move much beyond the snappy cop persona in Season One. In twenty-two episodes of iZombie, he doesn’t have a lot of backstory reveal or even much of an arc. Hopefully, this is a complaint that the showrunners remedy in later seasons.

Highlights

The television show/comic book aesthetic it has is a lot of fun. I particularly like the opening:

The minor henchmen in this series are great. Most of them have barely any screen time, but iZombie manages to give them a lot of personality and character in the small amount of time they do have.

The biggest highlight in iZombie is Liv, however. So many female characters are bitchy, unsympathetic, and uninteresting to me. And in many cases, they’re not very feminine, either. But Liv is fantastic. Cute, funny, caring. A little broken. The writers manage to bring forward her bitterness, uncertainty, and anti-social tendencies without making her into a complete pain to deal with. She makes the show and is the main reason I continued to watch it at first. Hopefully, she stays as engaging and interesting as she is now.

And finally, despite the subject matter of the show, iZombie isn’t nihilistic and hopeless. It’s not a depressing watch (at least not yet!) and that is definitely something I can get behind.

Have you watched iZombie? Who is your favorite character? Let us know in the comments below!

State’s Urban Legends: Louisiana

Louisiana is the birthplace of gothic horror novelist Anne Rice. And after checking out some urban legends around Louisiana, now we know why she is considered the Queen of her genre.

 

The Vampire Comte de Saint Germain

This legend is centered around a person who actually lived back in the 18th Century but didn’t really become an urban legend until long after his “alleged” death in 1783. And by long after, we’re talking 20th Century start-up here.

Jacques Saint Germain was an alchemist who palled around with some high-end people – Voltaire, King Louis XV and Catherine the Great. After his death is when he really became an item.

Legend says he actually has been around since the time of Christ and merely faked his demise back in the 1780s. He was reportedly seen about Europe throughout the 19th Century before showing back up in New Orleans in 1902…

Louisiana has its vampire legends.

Was this legend the inspiration for Anne Rice’s Interview With The Vampire?

Hey, wait a second. Haven’t we seen this movie? I’m pretty sure we have.

At any rate, Jacques’ gig in the Big Easy these days is to seduce attractive young women and drink their blood.

Just a little something to keep in mind before heading off to Louisiana for Mardi Gras, ladies.

The Brothers Carter

Speaking of bloodsuckers… way back in the 1930s a young woman was found with slashes on her wrist. She explained to local authorities in New Orleans that she had escaped from the house belonging to the Carter Brothers. She further claimed that they were feeding off of her blood.

The house, which was in the French Quarter, was raided and to the shock and horror of the police in Louisiana, more young women with blood draining out of their bodies, were discovered. The vampiric brothers were captured and executed for their crimes.

But don’t breathe so easily. A few years later their coffins were opened. Their bodies were not in there, nor was any trace of human remains found within.

The Rougarou

Ok, I’m seriously starting to think New Orleans is off my bucket list. Because there are some crazy things roaming the Big Easy according to legends.

The Rougarou is a half-man, half-beast lurking on the streets in hunt of any scofflaws he can find. He, like his vampire cousin, has a thirst for blood but appears to let his victims live.

Just one thing. If a Rougarou attacks, don’t tell anyone or you will become one yourself.

The Grunch

No, not the Grinch. The Grinch is green, steals Christmas presents then has a change of heart and becomes a good guy. The Grunch are nastier and apparently completely unredeemable.

Grunch Road isn’t paved. It’s just dirt all the way into the woods where it eventually dead ends. You probably should avoid traveling to this destination. But if you can’t resist, whatever else you do, always remain in your car.

Chances are you’ll encounter what looks to be an injured goat. You’ll be tempted to get out and try to render aid. The instant you are clear of the car, a group of half-human, half-monster creatures will leap out and have you for lunch.

Legend has it these creatures started out as humans who gradually deformed into their present-day form after many years of isolation in the state’s bayou’s.

Laissez les bons temps rouler.

 

 

 

State’s Urban Legends: Kentucky

I spent three months in Kentucky once. It was the longest year of my life. But the Bluegrass State does have a few very interesting urban legends. Check them out:

The Witch Girl of Pilot’s Knob

According to legend, back in 1916 Mary Evelyn Ford and her mother were accused of witchcraft and burned at the stake. Now it seems odd that we’d still have witch burnings in 20th Century America, even in Kentucky. And little Mary’s official cause of death is listed as peritonitis.

The Witch Girl of Pilot's Knob.

Is there something that shouldn’t be allowed to roam free within this Kentucky grave?

But when you check out the photo of her gravesite you start to wonder if the legend is true after all. Her grave lies in a gravel pit – no other grave nearby is so situated – and surrounded by a series of interlocking crosses.

What lies below the gravel – so it is claimed – is a steel-lined coffin that is covered in stone. It seems someone doesn’t want anything getting out of that coffin. And should an escape attempt succeed, the crosses are the last line of defense.

Legend has it that tiny footprints sometimes appear in the gravel and occasionally a very young-looking ghost is seen trying to get past the cross-lined barrier and depart the gravesite. Adding to the legend are that some of the bars that make up the crosses are unnaturally bent.

The Goat Man of Pope Lick

Louiville’s Pope Lick Creek is said to be home to a monster that lurks under the bridge that crosses it. Some legends have him as a circus freak. Others state he was a farmer that served Satan by torturing his goats. He was rewarded by his master by being transformed into a goat-like monster.

The one area where the legends agree is what he looks like. A scary combination of pale skin covered in dark fur with goat-like legs and horns. His choice of entertainment is to lure the unwary onto the nearby train tracks so he can watch them get hit by a train.

Apparently, he doesn’t even need to do that anymore. A woman looking for The Goat Man back in 2016 died during her search. She fell off of the bridge.

Or was she pushed…?

Hogan’s Fountain

A statue of a Greek god, Pan, can be found in Cherokee Park’s Hogan Fountain. Big deal you say?

It is on the night of a full moon when legend says Pan can be seen wandering about the park and stirring up some kind of mayhem and mischievous antics aimed for anyone nearby.

Maybe the people of Kentucky should have picked another god for that fountain?

State’s Urban Legends: Kansas

“Carry on my wayward son. There’ll be sleep when you are done. Lay your weary head to rest. Don’t you cry no more.” Come on, is there any other way to start of our review of urban legends in Kansas than with the theme song to Supernatural? Speaking of…

Stull, Kansas and the Gateway to Hell

Stull, Kansas has never been a big town dating all the way back to its founding in 1856. But some folks say there is the one resident, name of Lucifer, who pops in to visit. His hangout is the town’s cemetery on Halloween. Sometimes he appears on the spring equinox too.

Sam and Dean Winchester from Supernatural.

The Winchester boys really should check out Stull, Kansas.

The site used to be home to a church that was believed to be a portal to and from Hell itself. (Do the Winchester brothers know about this place?)

It was also the site of choice for some good old-fashion witch hangings on occasion. Legend has it a child of Satan lies buried in one of the graves and dear old Dad visits twice a year.

As you can imagine, its a popular place for Satanic cults and a coven of witches to gather and dig new graves. This activity is forbidden, as is trespassing in the area.

But that doesn’t seem to be preventing the activities at all. Nor did tearing down the hanging tree back in 1998.

 

The Devil’s Chair

Apparently, Lucifer has a connection with Kansas. Legend has it that a farmer in Alma told the city to go build its new cemetery on someone else’s land, refusing an offer to buy his farm from him. So someone took the concept of eminent domain to the extreme. That someone pushed the old farmer into his own well.

After a time, someone reported a very foul odor coming from the well. The city checked it out, said the well was empty and boarded it up.

If you happen to stop over in Alma you can actually sit on that boarded-up well. Just one thing to consider. Legend has it that those that have sat on the well mysteriously disappear soon after. And now you know why they call that well the Devil’s Chair.

 

Molly’s Hollow

Legend has it that a certain group of residents of Atchinson, Kanas discovered that young Molly was “stepping out”, as they said back then, with a young man. No big deal, right?

Well, Molly was African American. The young man? He was Caucasian. Molly wound up hanging from a nearby tree and she did not commit suicide.

The hollow where that tree was at the time of Molly’s demise can be found today inside Jackson Park in Atchinson. At night, it is said you can hear Molly screaming in terror. Others claim they have seen a ghost of a young woman hanging from a tree near where Molly was lynched. Legend also has it that others have felt a “presence” and unseen hands grasping at them as they make their way through the hollow.

 

 

 

State’s Urban Legends: Iowa

Okay, I’ve been waiting for this one. I live less than an hour away from the Iowa state line and I want to know just how scary the place can be. I mean, it has all of those cornfields and I’ve watched enough movies to know what happens out there amongst the corn stalks.

 

Iowa’s Black Angel

No touching, kissing or walking under this statue.

Iowa’s Black Angel.

In Iowa City’s Oakland Cemetery stands an eight-foot-tall Black Angel. She towers over the graveyard and has inspired some pretty tall legends as well. The statue started out white but has turned black due to oxidization.

It also comes with two pretty important don’ts. If you are pregnant do not walk under this angel or you will lose your child.

Oh, and no touching or kissing the Black Angel either. Do that and you’ll be a permanent resident of a cemetery within six months.

 

Stony Hollow Road

Hell hath no fury as a woman scorned. Or so goes the old saying. In Burlington, Iowa, they can tell you all about that.

Legend has it that a woman, Lucinda, went out to meet her fiancee one evening. When the young man failed to keep the rendezvous Lucinda took immediate action. She hurled herself off the bluffs.

That’s where Stony Hollow Road runs past and you probably have a good idea what’s coming next.

Since then her ghost has been spotted by many people. Occasionally, she’ll leave a rose at the feet of a passerby. That’s not a good thing if it happens to you. It means the clock just started running on your last day of life.

 

The Ax Murder House

No, these aren’t relatives of Lizzie Borden. At least, we don’t think they are.

Iowa's Ax Murder House

Spend the night here. If you dare.

On June 9, 1912, the sleepy hamlet of Villisca changed forever. Sometime that night, or perhaps during the early morning of the 10th, eight people met their demise.

Six members of the Moore family and two guests were killed by an axe wound to the head. One suspect was tried twice but never convicted and the crime remains unsolved to this day.

So this is more a murder mystery than an urban legend, you scoff. Not so fast.

The house is still standing and you can even spend the night there. There’s a lot of ghostly sightings and legends to keep you up all night. Starting with the ghost hunter that rented a room to do an investigation four years ago.

He was rushed to the hospital at 12:45 in the morning. He’d stabbed himself in the chest several times for no apparent reason.

Sweet dreams.

 

 

State’s Urban Legends: Indiana

Ok, Illinois was weird, right? But what about its neighbor to the east, Indiana? Can the Hoosiers top what we’ve experienced so far? Let’s check it out and see for ourselves.

 

The 100 Steps Cemetery

Head over to Brazil, Indiana and you will find a graveyard that dates back to the 1860s.

Indiana's 100 steps cemetery.

Go ahead, climb these steps. What could go wrong?

If you happen to be visiting at midnight you are required to climb the steps, and count off each of the 100 steps as you go. Once at the summit, you will see the ghost of the original caretaker and he has something for you.

He’ll give you a preview of your own death. But don’t worry. As you head back down, count each step. If you get the same number once at the bottom then the vision will not happen in real life.

And no cheating. If you try something to avoid your fate you’ll get knocked to the ground by an unseen spirit.

 

Bruick Road Lights

Hey there, you’ve survived Brazil, Indiana. Welcome to Ft. Wayne. No visionary caretakers here. Just spooky lights.

Drive down Bruick Road at night and you’re likely to encounter them. First the jump up above the tree line. Next, you get a light show as they change colors, shapes and sizes. Then they chase your car for a bit before disappearing.

Good times.

 

Diana of the Dunes

Along the shores of Lake Michigan back in the 1910’s local fisherman began reporting seeing a woman skinny-dipping. Turns out Alice Gray lived as a recluse in a nearby shack and enjoyed swimming al naturel.

Alice died of uremic poisoning at a young age after marrying a man who was a murder suspect – hers included.

Since then there have been sightings of a young nude woman floating along the shoreline before disappearing into the water. They have taken to call the apparition, Diana, but this could very well be Alice.

State’s Urban Legends: Illinois

Today we pull into Illinois with an eye out for any supernatual legends we can find. And boy are there a few to find in this state.

 

Homey The Clown

Look, I’m not one of those folks that gets creeped out by clowns. My first stuffed toy was a Bozo the Clown doll. (Hey, don’t judge me!)

Damon Wayans as Homey the CLown.

This is the good Homey the Clown.

But in a weird case of life imitating art, some clown took In Living Color’s – a TV show that ran on FOX from 1990-1994, Homey the Clown character portrayed by Damon Wayans way too far. In the suburbs of Chicago in the 1990s legend has it that local elementary schools were under siege.

The culprit? A creepy man dressed up like Homey the Clown, drive about in a white van (of course, the vehicle of choice for this element) and trying to lure children with candy.

Let’s hope no one gets the same idea after watching all of the Hannibal Lecter movies.

 

Illinois Mud Monster

The Murphysboro Mud Monster is a wanted… whatever. No really, since 1973 the local constabulary has been on the lookout for a seven-foot-tall blonde, very hairy and very muddy monster,

Seems the creature went on a two-day peeping monster spree that really put a crimp into two local teens’ in flagrante delicto.

 

The Italian Bride

Dating back to the early 1920s this legend actually has a real grave to point to. Julia Buccola Petta died in childbirth and was buried in her wedding dress. Her

Illinois' Italian Bride.

This is Julia six years AFTER her death.

mother soon after began having a recurring nightmare of her daughter demanding to be let out of her grave.

It took a few years before the mother finally gave into the haunting dream. And when they exhumed Julia six years after she’d been buried, her body was in pristine condition.

A marble statue of Julia in her wedding dress was placed at her grave, along with a plaque that includes a photo of the six-year-old corpse. Since then legend has it that you can smell fresh flowers at the site during the harshest of winter days. Go there at night and you might even spot Julia roaming the grounds.

 

Bachelor’s Grove Cemetery

There are only 82 graves within this cemetery but they appear to be very busy here after the gates close for the night. It has earned the title of “Most haunted graveyard in America.” The two most popular visions you might encounter ar the “White Lady” as a ghostly white farmhouse that won’t be there in the morning.

Abraham Lincon And JFK

Okay now, I couldn’t not do Illinois without trying to work in the best President of the United States this state ever produced, could I?

While many legends surround Lincoln’s ghost in the White House not much appears to be centered in Illinois. But there is a very strange – almost supernatural even – set of coincidences surrounding Lincoln and another assassinated President, John F. Kennedy.

Lincoln was first elected to Congress in 1846 and to the Presidency in 1860. Kennedy was sent to Congress in 1946 and to the White House in 1960. Both men were killed by a bullet to the head and both on a Friday.  Both were killed by Southerners and both were succeeded by men named Johnson who were both from the south.

Now Comes The Weird Stuff

Lincon’s Vice-President was Andrew Johnson, who was born in 1808. Kennedy’s VP was Lyndon Johnson, who was born in 1908.

Oh hang on, now comes the really weird stuff.

The last name of Lincoln’s secretary was Kennedy. The last name of Kennedy’s secretary was Lincoln.

Lincoln’s killer, John Wilkes Booth, was born in 1839. Kennedy’s assassin, Lee Harvey Oswald, was born in 1939. Did you notice both assassins were known by all three of their names? And take notice that each of their three names totals 15 letters. Did you know that both assassins were killed before they ever went to trial for their crimes?

No Really, This Is Really, Really Weird

Lincoln was shot inside a theater called, Ford. Kennedy was shot while riding in a car named, Lincoln, which was made by a company called, Ford. After shooting Lincoln, Booth ran from a theater and took shelter in a warehouse. After shooting Kennedy from a warehouse, Oswald sought to hide in a theater.

And if I haven’t completely turned your brain into a pretzel yet: Seven days before being shot Lincoln was in Monroe, Maryland. The week before he was shot, JFK was with Marilyn Monroe.

What is the takeaway here? Anyone who is a Congressional freshman in 2046, should not run for the White House in 2060 with a running mate born in 2008.

I’m not saying, I’m just saying…

 

State’s Urban Legends: Idaho

We’re back in the contiguous 48 for the remainder of our tour of urban legends and we’ve landed in Idaho. The good news? There’s no potato-relate scare lurking out there. The bad news? The potato-related scares might be less scary than these three.

 

The Phantom Jogger of Canyon Hill

Canyon Hill Cemetery sits in Caldwell, Idaho and yes, it is haunted.

Idaho's Canyon Hill Cemetery

The Midnight Jogger runs within this cemetery.

The most popular legend is the Midnight Jogger. But fair warning, she plays hard to get. If you want to see her you have to park between specific trees. If you find that spot she’ll appear, tap on your window to say hello and then jog off.

Oh, and the creepy part? She doesn’t have any legs.

The Water Babies of Massacre Rocks State Park

Pocatello is home to Massacre Rocks State Park. With a name like that you just know there’s a solid urban legend lurking about.

The area was first explored – at least on record – by the Shoshone tribe as far back as the 16th Century. At one point, the tribe was caught in a severe famine. It got so bad that mothers were drowning their babies rather than having to let them slowly starve to death.

Legend has it, if you take up station at the river near the rocks, you can hear the sound of babies crying. Another legend has it that these babies survived being drowned, grew gills and fins, and are now seeking revenge by luring people to their death in the river.

Water babies are a Native American legend that are found in a couple of different places in America, but most famously in Pocatello at the Massacre Rocks State Park.

 

Idaho’s Direwolves

Idaho's Direwolves are fierce predators.

House Stark shield from Game of Thrones.

So you’ve been watching Game of Thrones and you are absolutely certain you are of the line of House Stark. You could head for the stretch of the Rocky Mountains that runs through Idaho and encounter a pack of very fierce wolves.

They are large, certainly worthy of being on the shield of House Stark, and they have been said to savage any domesticated animal they encounter.

Oh, and should you encounter them, being a member of House Stark will not give you safe conduct. They’ll savage you too.

 

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