Massachusetts August 13, 2016
9 Urban Legends In Massachusetts To Keep You Awake At Night
Massachusetts is one of the oldest states in the nation, and has a Native history that stretches back thousands of years into the past. Naturally, we also have some pretty creepy urban legends.
The folktales, urban legends and ghost stories of Massachusetts are not for the faint of heart.
We’re aware that these uncertain times are limiting many aspects of life as we all practice social and physical distancing. While we’re continuing to feature destinations that make our state wonderful, we don’t expect or encourage you to go check them out immediately. We believe that supporting local attractions is important now more than ever and we hope our articles inspire your future adventures! And on that note, please nominate your favorite local business that could use some love right now:
1. The Hoosac Tunnel
Nicknamed "The Bloody Pit," this railroad tunnel runs between North Adams and Florida. Over 200 people died during its construction in the mid 19th-century. Tales of spooky sounds and sightings in and around this tunnel have been circulating for over 150 years.
2. The Black Flash of Provincetown
In the late 1930s, Provincetown was haunted by a figure known as “The Black Flash.” At least two adult men reported being assaulted by a figure they described as over eight feet tall, clothed in black, and unusually thin. Other sightings of the mysterious man included accounts that he could leap over high fences. The sightings stopped abruptly in December of 1945.
3. The Bridgewater Triangle
The Bridgewater Triangle refers to an area of about 200 square miles around the Freetown-Fall River State Forest in southeastern Massachusetts. It said to be one of the most haunted forests in the world. Supernatural occurrences such as floating orbs of light, giant snakes and UFOs have been reported. There were also several documented instances of animal mutilations in 1998, and the area has been the site of multiple gang-style murders and suicides.
Pukwudgies are creatures from Wampanoag oral tradition. They are said to be tiny, humanlike creatures that inhabit the swampy regions eastern Massachusetts, especially Barnstable. They are described as tricksters with smooth, grey skin and the ability to appear and vanish at will.
5. Gloucester Harbor Sea Serpent
In the summer of 1817, Gloucester locals reported multiple sightings of a strange, elongated serpent-like creature in the waters of Gloucester Harbor. Witnesses actually made sworn statements to a local Justice of the Peace, and the reports were published across the state the following year.
6. Route 44 Hitchhiker
Since the late 1960s, there have been reports of a mysterious hitchhiker along Route 44 West. Appearing most frequently near the Rehoboth/Seekonk town line, the man is said to wear a red flannel shirt and look distressed. The man allegedly vanishes when drivers stop to give him a ride.
7. Danvers State Mental Hospital
First opened in 1878, the Danvers State Lunatic Asylum (as it was once called) was the birthplace of the pre-frontal lobotomy. Overcrowded conditions and rumors of inhume treatment eventually led to the hospital's closure. Local legends suggest that Danvers is haunted by the angry spitirs of former patients.
Dogtown is a ghost town on Cape Ann. First settled in 1693, the town was eventually abandoned in the early 19th century. Locals began to fear that witches had taken up residence in the deserted town, and avoided the area. Roger Babson, the founder of Babson College, commissioned out-of-work stonecutters to cover boulders around town with inspirational messages and moral advice. In addition to being a beautiful place to hike, Dogtown is rumored to be haunted.
9. Treasure of Tenney's Grey Court Castle
Situated next to the Searles castle ruins in the hills of Methuen, Charles H. Tenney estate is rumored to be hiding the Tenney fortune within its walls. Reports began to circulate in the 1930s that $20,000 in bonds was found in the cellar of one of the estate's towers, but the find was never confirmed.
For more unsolved Massachusetts mysteries, check out
this list of hidden treasures and mysterious spots across the state.