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?

About the author

Richard Paolinelli