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Urban legends of the United States: who fear the inhabitants of different states

Halloween is a celebration of fun, absurdity and, of course, fear. A selection of tales - urban horror stories that American Boy Scouts still tell each other around the fire - will help you not feel like a stranger at this holiday, because the immigrant was frightened by completely different characters as a child.

Road Riverdale, Colorado

Why is it creepy: The Riverdale Road near Thornton, Colorado stretches 11 miles (17 kilometers) and is literally teeming with legends that can scare even the most experienced paranormal researcher. Here we met a ghostly runner, a variety of demons and even a ghost Chevrolet Camaro. But the strangest place here is the "Gates of Hell." So called the entrance to the old estate, in which, according to legend, the distraught head of the family burned down his wife and children alive. The gates themselves have long been demolished, the mansion has turned into ruins, but the ashes are still in place. On it the woman in white wanders. And the ghosts of slaves, allegedly hung on a tree here. And even a pack of ghostly dogs! Some believe that there is a portal to hell, so in such a small area so much horror is concentrated.

Where did it come from: It is not known exactly when numerous local legends arose. Given the story of the spirits of slaves, it is logical to assume that the terrible things happened here since the 50-s of the XIX century. Every time something terrible happened, a legend about it added to the list, which eventually became like a horror show in a provincial amusement park.

Mr Chih, Delaware

Why is it creepy: In colonial times, Samuel Chu (Chew) was a respected person - the chief judge of the state. However, even at that time and in his position, the people around him laughed at his last name, pronouncing it like “Sneeze” (“apcha!” - ah, chew!) This infuriated the judge so much that even after death he could not calm down, and his spirit still haunts the descendants of his offenders. The ghost appears before his victims in a judge's mantle and a starched wig. Most likely to see him among those to whom his name still seems funny.

Where did it come from: Samuel Chu really served as the Chief Justice of the three districts until his death in 1743. Legends around him so disturbed residents of Dover Green County that the ghost was even “buried” in a richly decorated grave. It is said that after that he calmed down, but he could still frighten the presumptuous lover of phonetic jokes.

Skunk Monkey, Florida

Why is it creepy: The Florida Everglades swamps are known for a whole series of nightmarish creatures and phenomena — cannibal alligators, cannibal snakes, car accidents and road robberies that also cause people to die. However, in these places we met something really strange: a “skunk monkey”. The height of this snowman is from 1,5 to 2 meters, and the weight is about 200 kilograms. Understand that the skunk monkey is somewhere nearby, can be on the disgusting smell, reminiscent of rotting meat. Skunk monkeys are said to feed on berries and small animals, but there are cases when they attacked wild boars and ravaged farms. Recently, in the Everglades appeared headquarters on the search for this mysterious creature. Of course, it is designed primarily for tourists: in the headquarters you can book a safari in the marshes. Who knows, maybe it will be you who will be able to prove the existence of this beast once and for all.

Where did it come from: No one really knows. Some believe that this is a snow man, who, because of the invasion of civilization, has gone from the mountains to the southern marshes, in which it is easier to hide from the hunters and find food. Others think that this is a fairy tale that the pioneers invented to scare aliens from their lands. It doesn't matter what you believe, but if you go camping in the Everglades and you smell a strong smell, you should be on the lookout. It may be a skunk monkey.

Curse of Lake Lanier, GA

Why is it creepy: The huge artificial lake north of Atlanta is frightening for several reasons at once. Abnormally many boats and swimmers drown on the lake, and inexplicable killings regularly occur on its shores. At the beginning of 90's, a car was found at the bottom with the skeleton of a woman trapped in it who had disappeared in 1958 year. Since then, eyewitnesses have reported a ghostly female figure, which can sometimes be seen above the surface of the water. They also talk about a giant catfish that lives in the depths of the lake. According to rumors, it is large enough to swallow a dog and even drown the diver.

Where did it come from: The creation of the lake was accompanied by a host of problems related to the eviction of families and businesses from the territory, which was transferred to the development of the Army Engineering Corps. The ruins of the old buildings remained at the bottom. It turned out to be flooded and the old cemetery, partly the reason for the terrible reputation of the lake. Of course, most of the incidents on the lake are due to the well-known combination of “drinking + bathing = tragedy” (they go to the lake to have fun first). However, many deaths remain inexplicable, forcing one to believe that there is something ominous behind them.

Phantom Runner from Canyon Hill, Idaho Cemetery

Why is it creepy: There are a lot of rumors about ghosts in the old Canyon Hill Cemetery in Caldwell, Idaho. The most famous of them is the Midnight Runner. This is a legless woman who is, if you park between certain trees near the cemetery. She knocks on the window and then continues her “run,” which looks more like a flight. It sounds scary, but this is not the most terrible legend of the ghostly runners. What about the spirit that shits on the lawns?

Where did it come from: The origin is unknown, but given another conspiracy legends, according to which the state of Idaho does not exist at all, it can be assumed that this is another fiction of the government.

Man-goat, Maryland

Why is it creepy: The infamous Maryland Man, as they say, does everything you can expect from a crazy half-animal: kills teens, eats dogs, screams goats, etc. But the most terrifying aspect is how repulsive this legend is. The USDA was even forced at some point to publicly deny the accidental creation of such a creature at its research center in Beltsville. Another story about the appearance of a goat-man tells about a goat breeder who, having learned that a group of teenage row-goers interrupted his flock, went crazy and turned into a monster.

Where did it come from: For the first time a journalist Karen Khosler from a newspaper wrote about a man-goat Prince George's County News in 1971 year. The material was devoted to the study of urban folklore in Maryland and was accompanied by a story from a local family about how someone chopped off the head of their puppy. Of course, the family - not without a hint from the journalist - blamed the man-goat for everything. A month later The Washington Post published a great article on this legend. Man-goat instantly became known throughout the country. The legend about him remains one of the most popular in the USA. The goat man is “met” regularly, and notes about him, sometimes incredibly detailed, appear in the Maryland press even now.

Vampire Saint-Germain, Louisiana

Why is it creepy: When it comes to scary things, Louisiana relies not only on voodoo, ghosts and Woody Harrelson's accent on the show T. Jacques Saint-Germain, like any self-respecting vampire, seduced young girls and drank their blood. According to one version, he was born at the beginning of the XVIII century. According to another - lived since the time of Jesus. After his "demise" in 1783, he appeared here and there throughout Europe, until he moved to New Orleans in 1902. It is rumored that he is still engaged in his bloody affairs in the French quarter of the city, but now calls himself Jack.

Where did it come from: Comte de Saint-Germain was a real man, an alchemist and a real snob from high society who was friends with all the celebrities of his time. He spoke with Louis XV, Catherine the Great and Voltaire. The latter called him "an immortal man who knows everything." He was even suspected of a series of murders. In addition, he never ate in public. In 1970, French showman Richard Chanfrey stated that the immortal Saint-Germain is him. True, in less than 10 years, Chenfrey died of a drug overdose. Or not?

Canine Boy, Arkansas

Why is it creepy: Perhaps the name of this character sounds silly. However, you will not be amused if in the town of Quitman, Arkansas, you suddenly see in the window of the 65 house on Mulberry Street the silhouette of an 140-kilogram half-man-half-horse with luminous eyes. In this case, it is better to get out of there as soon as possible, because he has a habit of chasing people on the street, biting his legs like a dog.

Where did it come from: The real story behind this legend is much darker. Gerald Bettis, the only son in the Bettis family from 65 home on Mulberry Street, has always been a problem child. But not like in the film "Difficult Child". As a child, Bettis tortured animals (so he was called a dog boy). When he grew up, his sociopathy spilled out on elderly parents. He did not allow them to leave the house. According to rumors, he killed his father. In the end, Bettis was arrested for growing marijuana in the backyard. He died in a colony of drug overdose in 1988.

Hell's Bridge, Michigan

Why is it creepy: The Michigan legends about the Red Dwarf of Detroit or the dog-warriors are no match for the story of Elias Friske, a crazy old preacher who, according to legend, tortured children in the forests, in the place of which the Algoma settlement is now located. He kept his victims bound and killed one by one. The remains were stoked in Cedar Creek. When his parents killed him, he said that he was possessed by demons. This did not prevent the parents to hang it. Hell Bridge is a narrow passage across a stream in the middle of forests. Those who dare to cross him at night can hear the cries of the victims of a mad preacher, and sometimes even see his black figure with luminous eyes.

Where did it come from: There are no records of Elias Frisk in state official documents, although it is known that such a family lived here at the beginning of 1910. However, everyone who has been on the bridge agrees that there is something there - and it often makes itself felt at night.


Zone-51, Nevada

Why is it (still) creepy: The story about Zone-51 was retold (sometimes in a humorous vein) so many times that it was forgotten how disturbing the whole situation looked at the very beginning. However, the government’s silence, dead aliens and ominous experiments in desert Nevada look more disturbing than a movie about it. There are a lot of assumptions about what really happens in Zone-51. They talk about time travel, and genetic experiments, and autopsies of aliens. However, no one except the authorities knows the truth.

Where did it come from: First of all, it’s worth remembering that Zone-51 really exists. This is a well-equipped military base in southern Nevada. Moreover, its purpose is not known to anyone. At the very beginning of the Cold War, in 1950, President Eisenhower approved a plan to build the first aircraft based on stealth technology - U-2. The laboratories and the test airfield were located in the area that later became known as Zone-51. The experimental aircraft resembled a UFO. Locals who saw his flights, of course, built theories about his extraterrestrial origin, which immediately hit the press. The scandal further fueled the news of the "UFO crash" in Roswell. Since then, Zone-51 has been the center of conspiracy theories around the US government.

Watermelon Heads, Ohio

Why is it creepy: The name "Watermelon Heads" might be suitable for dessert. However, the legend behind this name is much darker: it refers to pale, sick children, on whom genetic experiments were carried out. It is believed that they have huge heads and sharp teeth, perfectly suited to tear babies (and possibly you). It does not sound like dessert.

Where did it come from: Similar stories exist in Michigan and Connecticut, but the Ohio version is the darkest. According to this legend, “Watermelon heads” are the adoptive children of a certain doctor who tested new surgical and pharmaceutical agents for them. It turned out not very well. Now the test subjects hunt in the forests of Kirkland, ready to tear off the skin of any bystander. In other versions, at the sight of strangers, children simply run away. Finally, some consider them ordinary ghosts. One thing is for sure: according to this legend, one super-low-budget horror has been filmed.

Tramp Sam, South Dakota

Why is it creepy: In December, a wave of suicide attempts swept across the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota on 2014 — the 103 incident occurred. The incident is associated with the legend of Wander Sam. Teenagers who tried to commit suicide, told that they were a tall and thin figure who called herself Sam, and demanded to kill herself. A year earlier, five members of the tribe of Oglala-Siou committed suicide. In 2015, the head of the tribe published in Facebook Photos from the local forest with already prepared loops in the trees. So the plan of mass teen suicide was revealed.

Where did it come from: Sam the Vagabond figure still refers to the legends about the Boogeyman, who are still working now - all you have to do is recall the hysteria of Slenderman in 2008. The idea of ​​a “shadow nation” is also so old that it is difficult to find its origin. However, Sam Tramp itself is a relatively new local legend of the Lakota and Dakota Indians. For the first time, journalist Peter Mattisen wrote about Sam in 1980 in his article The Spirit of a Crazy Horse. According to the material, Sam was first seen by the Indians of the Sioux and Little Eagles. Sometimes the Tramp is called taku-he or "Bigfoot in a straw hat."

Rabbit Bridge, Virginia

Why is it creepy: This legend is fun to retell at night around the campfire, but the real events behind it really scare you. In 1970, the police repeatedly reported people threatened by a man with an ax, dressed in a rabbit costume. Some witnesses said that he threw his ax in them. Dead rabbits, which are found in the forests around Fairfax Bridge, also known as the Rabbit Bridge, are still often reported. They also talk about a man in white who was seen under the bridge.

Where did it come from: According to legend, in 1904, a group of prisoners was transported by bus from the mental hospital in Clifton, Virginia, to the nearest prison. On the way, the bus overturned, many prisoners died, but some managed to escape. The next day, the police began to search for the fugitives, and caught everyone but one. In the course of further searches, the police began to find in the woods near the Fairfax Bridge gnawed carcasses of rabbits, but they failed to catch the one who ate them. A year later, on Halloween night, a company of teenagers went under the bridge to spend time away from their parents. The next morning they were found hanged on piers of a bridge. Since then, it is believed that anyone who will be under the bridge on this night will face inevitable death.

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