My Novels

Monday, November 15, 2004

Local Ghost Story

While the war in Iraq rages on, killing and mayhem unabated, life does go on -- after Bush & Company's re-election. No, I'm NOT happy about it, but then again, what can I do? Nothing. And yes, I'm still a bit depressed -- but some of my mood is due to the seasonal doldrums. Ah...that wonderful time of year when we're supposed to remember those we choose to forget the rest of the year. (Sarcasm intended)

Anyhow, I found an excellent article about a local ghost story and want to include it here. This took place in 1939 near a small community railroad crossing -- the SAME place I ride my bike occasionally. The crossing is about three miles away from our house, so I'm planning on including this in my "Time Capsule."

Here's the article excerpt, concerning local ghost stories on Halloween. The "Beeline Highway" also happens to be the four-lane we travel each time we go back and forth to the nearest larger city, so it is also pertinent. Pictures follow of the area too.

The year 1939 seemed to be a year for tragedies, with at least two events that to this day cause some to pause or think twice about getting out of their car on a certain stretch of highway.

Bee Line Highway

For a short period in 1939, Haynes said a number of people were killed on a short stretch of the Bee Line Highway south of the city. "Almost every day or every other day there was a fatality on a certain stretch of this road," Haynes said. What is odd about the deaths, Haynes said, is that most of them occurred outside of the vehicle.

Reports from (newspaper name eliminated) in 1939 reported two such incidents on that stretch of the road where deaths occurred. One woman was killed while standing between a stalled car and a guardrail. Another car struck the one she was standing beside and she was crushed. A boy was struck by a car while crossing Bee Line Highway walking toward the railroad tracks.

"I do know that there are some folks who absolutely will not stop on this stretch of road even today," Haynes said.

Train Wreck of 1939

While's there's been no report of ghostly aberrations, Haynes said he and his brother are suspicious of a horrific train accident that occurred about a half mile north of the (name removed) railroad crossing. Two black men died at the scene of the accident when 23 cars loaded with steel for the war effort crashed after a broken car came apart.

When rescuers arrived at the scene, one of the men was already dead and the other near death, Haynes said reports show. "They dying man claimed that there were 15 others aboard the ill-fated train," Haynes said. "But no other bodies were recovered."

Haynes said he and his brother have come up with at least two theories to explain the fact no other bodies were recovered from the track.

One theory is that the man was confused. "He had just been in a train wreck, after all," Haynes said.

On the other hand, "Why would this man lie?" Haynes asked.

The brothers' other theory is that taking into account the racial mindset of the 1939 Southerner, there's a chance any other bodies might have been buried close by while the steel was collected as quickly as possible to be sent ahead for the war effort.

Haynes said he and his brother recently conducted an investigation at the scene of the accident. "We have evidence of some sort of activity that is attached to this area," Haynes said. "We have recordings of a voice that apparently wants to communicate something to us. We have to conduct an extended investigation in this area before we can go into further detail."

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