I may have seen my first light of day in the southern pseudo-paradise of sunny Ft. Lauderdale, Florida but I grew up and have lived most of my life in the mountains of Virginia where there is no shortage of tall tales and legends. Hell, you’ll find mysteries everywhere on this argumentative land of lore called America, no matter what state, commonwealth, or republic you find your ass sitting in.
As for the commonwealth my ass is sitting in, Virginia had some strange sightings that started way back in 1882. It seems that a lot of folks were seeing a half man, half-beast running around in the shadows in the area of Petersburg. It alarmed and stared people so much that citizens started requesting that the police escort them whenever they had to travel around town and the surrounding neighborhoods at night. Talk about mass hysteria.
Three years later the people of Lynchburg, Virginia began reporting sightings of the same beast…well, mostly. Only in this case the description was of a beast that was half-man and half-dog like. For your information, Lynchburg and Petersburg are approximately 100 miles apart. My initial thought was that if the being was a lycanthrope, the police in each town could have determined who moved from one location to the other and formed a narrow list of suspects. However, that was in the late 1800’s. Communication and cooperation of this sort wasn’t easy, probably not even possible. In both cases the local newspapers scoffed at the stories, blaming the rumors on local uneducated rubes. Sightings have continued well into modern times.
As if the half-man, half-dog beast isn’t enough to get your attention, allow me to introduce you to the Dismal Swamp Monster. The Great Dismal Swamp is a large swampy area in the coastal plains region that stretches from Norfolk, Virginia down to Elizabeth City, North Carolina. It’s a place I want to go fishing for monster bass and come back with tall tales, legends and other assorted lies to tell my friends and family. The only thing keeping me from that trip is the tall tales and legends about human sized mosquitoes that can drain your body until you look like an unused blow up doll.
Sightings of the Dismal Swamp Monster, an animal that has been described as being much larger than a wolf with shaggy yellow hair, an elongated head, and sunken eyes that were such a glowing red that they can only be described as devilish, date back to as early as 1902. This is about 20 years after the dog-man beast. Could it be the same creature? People reported that this freakish thing came from the Dismal Swamp and devoured people’s dogs and livestock. After a few of these incidents many of the locals claimed that they hunted it down and killed it. Not long after another sighting took place. A farmer bared witness that it stalked around his neighborhood and actually killed seven of his dogs. He said he chased the beast with his pistol but it attacked him and ripped his clothing to shreds, but left him alive. Tall tales and legends, indeed.
When you think of the macabre past of New England you automatically think of witches and the Salem Witch Trials. However, there’s no need to be so narrow minded. Hell, in modern times people have claimed to have seen UFO’s, Bigfoot/sasquatch, the Moth Man, werewolves, hobbits and honest politicians! See what I did there? I made a funny. There’s no such thing as an honest politician, so let’s get back to the serious business of weird stuff.
New England also has a history of vampires! A quick web search of the Mercy Brown Incident will tell you all you need to know, but let’s dish out the basics right here.
In Chestnut Hill Cemetery in Exeter, Rhode Island you’ll find the grave of Mercy Brown, a young woman who died at the age of 19. You see, her entire family died mysteriously. First the mother. Then her sister. Mercy had been buried for a couple of months and her brother fell ill. The Brown family had been decimated. Only Mercy’s father and brother remained.
In 1883 the folks of Exeter suspected that the life force of the young man was being drained by a vampire in the Brown house. Not knowing who the vampire was, they were forced to dig up the graves. All the bodies were decomposing or already decomposed with the exception of Mercy Brown. She was laying dead in a crypt. There was even some blood left in her heart. The fact that her body was still fresh and had blood left in her was the tell tale sign of vampirism! The cut out her heart and burned it to ashes on a rock by the crypt.
This crazy act didn’t save her brother. He died not long after. The entire family had actually died of tuberculosis, also called ‘consumption’ by the folks back then. The fact that her body seemed fresh was probably because of the cold winter that they were experiencing that kept her from decaying.
This incident pretty much ended the vampire panic in New England.
AKA: The Cajun Werewolf
We’ve all heard of the wolfman. We’ve seen countless movies about werewolves and read novels about the mystical fictional creature. But some claim that the werewolf really exists, that they have seen this elusive beast with their own eyes! If you are fan of all things weird, like me, you’ve probably seen documentary style shows about the werewolf on channels like SyFy, Destination America, or the Travel Channel.
When I was in my early 20’s I went on a road trip to visit my sister in Louisiana. It was then that I heard about the Cajun werewolf known as the Rougarou. At first I was confused about the creature because of the different names people would call it. If you’ve never been to Louisiana, especially the area of New Orleans, you must consider that we are talking about a melting pot of cultures. So, as was explained to me, the word Rougarou was from a Frankish word, but the French language is enmeshed into the language, and the other pronunciation for the Cajun werewolf is Loup-garou.
The history of the rougarou has a few different origins, but most agree that the legend of this beast goes back a few centuries to medieval times in France. We’re talking about the time when people were terrified of witches and warlocks, feared the devil was walking among the woods at night, and the plague was ravaging the region. Whenever a crime was committed, especially the more heinous ones, people blamed the Loup-garou. Kids went missing from a village, the Loup-garou did it. Someone was brutally murdered, yep, you guessed it…that damned Loup-garou.
And just like they did with suspected witches, villagers would chase down people they thought to be a Loup-garou and put them on trial. Even if you were having a bad day and acting strange, you were considered to be a potential Loup-garou. So, as the French migrated to Canada and then to America (Louisiana), the legend of the rougarou came with them.
You’ll find the legend represented everywhere in Cajun Country. Ask anyone down there. They’ll tell you that the beast lurks around the swamps in the area around New Orleans. So how does one become a rougarou? If you ask a practitioner of voodoo they’ll tell you that the person is under a spell or a curse. That curse eventually wears off, but it can be transmitted to another person. Kind of creepy, huh?
It’s a fun kind of legend to read about. Take some time to check it out online and make sure you catch the documentaries about this creature whenever they are on.
You Do Voodoo?
We’ve all seen the curses of voodoo and the horror surrounding it in Hollywood movies. It’s certainly scary enough, despite that it is an actual religion. It has been made famous in such movies as the Pirates of the Caribbean series, The Serpent and the Rainbow, Child’s Play, and even the comedy movie Weekend at Bernie’s II.
Beyond the Hollywood veil, voodoo is a real religion, mostly practiced by people of Haitian or African descent. However, over the decades it has spread. Don’t believe me? Take a trip to New Orleans and wander out into the dark recesses of that city and into the bayou and swamps. You’ll see that it is very much taken seriously.
One of the most infamous instances of a voodoo curse took place in the early part of the 20th century. A woman, a priestess, by the name of Julia Brown from Frenier, Louisiana, was a person in high demand in the town. She was considered by the townsfolk to be a magician and a healer. She was called on by the locals more and more for her services. Eventually the pace of her work was overwhelming and the people she helped became more and more ungrateful for her help. Over time she grew tired of this and began to push back against the demands of the townsfolk. If you were one of those that took her for granted or were ungrateful for her healing efforts and magic, she would whisper a curse to you or make a terrible prediction about you. In other words, she put a voodoo curse on them!
Julia Brown died in 1915. However, a few weeks before she died she put a voodoo curse on the entire town of Frenier. She said that when she died she was taking the entire town with her! Well, when she died the entire town showed up for her funeral to pay their respects. Mostly they showed up to pay their respects out of fear, not for appreciation for all that she had done for them over the years.
Just as they began to nail down her coffin a hurricane ripped through the town and killed everyone but two survivors. The town literally died with her!
Some say the curse is still over the area. Land developers have tried to rebuild in the area several times over the years but none have been successful.
The Witches’ Tree of Louisville
Witches have long been a part of the history of the United States. No legend or history is more referenced than the Salem Witch Trials when it comes to the treatment of women feared to be witches. However, witches found persecution all over the colonies and long after the United States grew into what it is today. Even modern day witches are treated with scorn in most instances; even though they are a far cry from the naked women dancing around pagan idols and worshipping the devil as many still believe.
In the city of Louisville, Kentucky there is a legend that goes back over a hundred years. On 6th and Park there used to be a tree where witches would gather in secret and practice their craft. Then one day in 1889 a local committee decided to chop the tree down and put up a ceremonial pole for a May Day celebration.
To say that this pissed off the witches would probably be an understatement. They gathered up their things and they left town. Before they left, however, they expressed their discontent and put a curse on Louisville. They said “beware the 11th month, Louisville, you’ll be sorry!” And wouldn’t you know it. Eleven months later a tornado rolled through killing dozens of people and destroying property all over the city.
The storm was powerful and a bolt of lightning struck where there old tree was, sending sparks and flames into the air. The crazy thing is that another tree began to grow from the same spot, and that tree still stands today. It is known as the infamous Witches’ Tree. People from all over visit the spot and leave personal tributes. Word to the wise…try not to piss off a witch if you can help it.
There are kinds of odd and crazy things going on in Kentucky. Don’t believe me? Give this site a glance and have some fun with these entertaining oddities. https://kymysteries.com/mysteries
What’s Happening In Our National Parks??
As I was writing my most recent book (The Chronicles of Barry Dick), I wanted to incorporate some odd things in the story. Well, alien abductions are certainly in that category. The Lizard Man of Scape Ore Swamp (a legend surrounding a creature in the area of Bishopville, SC) also fits in that category of odd legends. However, I also made some mention of what people in conspiracy theory circles call Missing 411. Never heard of it? Me neither, until about a couple of years ago when I stumbled upon an article online.
Missing 411 refers to the rising number of unexplained disappearances that have been taking place in national parks across America and (I think, if my memory serves me correctly) in Canada. I found several articles that all say (correctly or not) that the National Park Service does not keep an accurate database of the number of people that have gone missing in the parks. On any given day, according to a couple of articles (https://www.outsideonline.com/2164446/leave-no-trace), there are between 80,000 and 90,000 people that are listed as missing in this country. I’m not sure what that number is for Canada. The majority of those that have gone missing are in populated areas. It has been estimated that as many as 1,800 have gone missing from national parks. So, where did they go?
Those that have been following the Missing 411 topic estimate that the number could be much higher. These aren’t just missing people under normal circumstances like getting lost and later found, or remains of them found. These are cases where people have gone missing under mysterious circumstances, according to theorists. Supposedly they are cases where reasonable explanations do not hold water or they defy reasonable explanations.
It’s food for thought the next time you wander alone in a national forest. I’m sure your imagination can come up with a few odd theories. You’ll certainly find a few with a simple web search or by searching the topic on YouTube.
Giants Among Us?
Found this image through National Geographic. Did giants once exist?
Did giants once walk among us? Is it possible that they still exist? These are certainly odd questions and most people would discard the possibility as something irrational, worthy only of consideration in Hollywood. That sort of nonsense only belongs on the movie screen along with ghosts, aliens, and crazy conspiracy theories. Well, maybe that’s true. However, in a world where we discover new species every day, and where leading minds are making progress in science and technology that is absolutely awe inspiring, is it so farfetched that giants once existed? After all, haven’t we made an entire segment of our entertainment based on gigantic dinosaurs that existed millions of years ago, filled entire museums with the relics and remains, and discovered that thousands of other planets do exist when only thirty years ago we learned in school that Earth was only one of nine planets in the galaxy?
And then we stumble upon the infamous photo provided by National Geographic of a giant human like skeleton being discovered at an archeological dig! Well, there’s something that should move even the most skeptical person into the direction of believing that it might actually be possible that giants once walked among us. There have been a few documentaries about the subject over the years, but the topic has been largely ignored. There have even been some YouTube videos to pop up making claims that the U.S. military encountered one of these giants during the war in Afghanistan. Well, that’s certainly not proof and could be completely fabricated.
However, most people do have some sort of religious belief. In the Bible, in the book of Genesis, we read that angels walked among people. However, they went against God’s will and lusted after women and had children with these women. The offspring are referred to as the Nephilim, or men of renown. They were godlike in their being. The book of Genesis doesn’t go into much detail about them. That’s curious, don’t you think? The book of Enoch talks a lot about these giants but was left out of the Bible. Also curious.
A quick web search on the topic and you’ll find so many wildly different opinions as to who these Nephilim were. Some consider them supernatural, some think they are aliens that will return some day, that their job is to monitor the Earth from above and are also referred to as the Watchers. Even Carl Sagan was fascinated by this topic as he studied Sumerian history. Curious yet?
Elberton, GA–A Roadtrip
- Georgia Guidestones (also called America’s Stonehenge)
- Elbert County, Georgia
- Thursday, April 5, 2018
- 11:15 AM EST
Georgia Guidestones (America’s Stonehenge)
I woke up the sleepy town of Elberton, Georgia around eight o’clock that morning. Now, when I call Elberton a sleepy town, take my word for it. The folks there seemed incredibly laid back. It is a very small town, and this particular town seemed to stand still in time, to some extent. A quick trip downtown and you find some very unique local owned shops in the town that prides itself as the Granite Capital of the World. Granite is the main business in Elberton. However, many of the storefronts in the small downtown stood empty, probably a victim of past recessions. The same story that many small towns still struggle with once the small manufacturing businesses started to close up shop and move elsewhere a couple decades ago. Elberton is small, cozy, far off the beaten path, and life moves slowly. I liked it.
I checked out of the hotel and began my drive down what the locals call Hartwell Highway. After about 8 or 9 miles I spotted the enormous monument off to my right, standing all by itself in the middle of a field. I turned up the old road and pulled into a gravel parking area that was maybe big enough to fit a dozen cars. I could tell that the monument wasn’t the tourist attraction that the designer of it had hoped for. Well, maybe in years past.
I let my fingers trace the carved granite. It was 11:15 in the morning and there wasn’t a cloud in the sky. I stood there in wonder at this monument that I travelled hours to see. This place truly was in the middle of nowhere. Anyone coming here had to either be coming here for specifically to see the Guidestones, or just another local stopping by to take a look. It was just me and a few cows. Some houses sporadically down the road a piece. The closest Interstate was probably at least a couple hours away. This isn’t the kind of place you just stumble upon. You have to be searching for these sparsely populated towns and counties.
For those of you that aren’t familiar with the Georgia Guidestones, this monument weighs over 247,000 pounds and stands close to 20 feet tall. It is a series of four huge granite slabs (made locally in Elberton and transported to this location) that has a series of commandments, or guidelines for a “new age of reason” as the designer described it. “Guides for the conservation of mankind and for the earth.”
- The guides (or new 10 Commandments as some call it) are:
- Maintain humanity under 500,000,000 in perpetual balance with nature;
- Guide reproduction wisely – improving fitness and diversity;
- Unite humanity with a living new language;
- Rule passion – faith – tradition – and all things with tempered reason;
- Protect people and nations with fair laws and just courts;
- Let all nations rule internally, resolving external disputes in a world court;
- Avoid petty laws and useless officials;
- Balance personal rights with social duties;
- Prize truth – beauty – love – seeking harmony with the infinite;
- Be not a cancer on the earth – leave room for nature – leave room for nature.
Now, one can see how conspiracy theorists would latch onto such a mysterious and expensive monument in the middle of nowhere that points to a new age of reason for mankind, insisting that a reasonable population level is one that require eliminating 7.1 billion people from the planet and talks of a world court (possibly eluding to a one world government) and a new universal language. Perhaps it was put here as a testament to that one world vision and a rigid population control system that requires killing off most of humanity. Maybe it was meant to be a reminder that we should be good stewards of the planet, just like it says. Not every guide seems harmful. Maybe it was put here just to make us discuss these principles and take some local action to make our world a better place. I don’t know the motivation of R.C. Christian, the man that supposedly commissioned this project on behalf of a group of individuals that wanted to stay anonymous. The secrecy of this group has only fueled suspicion and speculation.
Take some time to do a quick Internet search of this notorious location. It’s fascinating stuff. I’m glad I made the trip and spent some time here.
Black Friday–A Great American Frightfest!!
In my humble opinion, there is nothing more horrific than attempting to enter a Walmart anywhere in the country the day after Thanksgiving. Hell, it’s bad enough trying to shop there during the middle of the week in June, much less during the holidays! It’s full of trolls, demons, and people that still think the mullet is a cool look. Don’t believe me? Or maybe you just love Walmart so much that you hate to admit it.
If you have to venture into that pit of Hades this weekend make sure that you’ve got everything squared up with the big man upstairs before you try your luck. If I were you, I’d enter slowly and keep a bottle of holy water in one hand. I also recommend that you keep a Bible handy, and a copy of the Necronomicon if you can find one. A replica will do. I imagine the original is probably held safely and securely in Al Franken’s secret lair, right next to the missing Hillary Clinton emails and hard evidence of him groping a few dozen women.
In fact, I hope America will make a new holiday tradition this year during the Black Friday event. Everyone has a cell phone with a decent camera. Take photos, lots of them! Everywhere you hear shouting and argueing over the last T.V. on the shelf, the hottest X-Box game, or that last tube of PreperationH, run to that scene and take a photo. Hell, take some video! There’s nothing as satisfying as sitting on my ass on Black Friday scouring the television news channels and watching skirmishes happening in every state at the Walmart closest to a trailer park. This is the only time during the year that a white person and a black person can literally beat the shit out of each other without it being made into a political and racial issue that runs at least twice during every hourly news cycle. It is the only day that people can attack those of another race and NOT be called a racist for it! So, let’s have at it, folks! I’m tired of hearing about Russia and Hillary and how much Colin K. hates America on such a slow news day.