Showing posts from December 1, 2013

The Bridgewater Triangle's Devil's Footprints

The Devil's Footprints can still be seen today imprinted in a large boulder in Norton, Massachusetts. Photo by Kristen Good “As he turned up the soil unconsciously, his staff struck against something hard. He raked it out of the vegetable mould, and lo! a cloven skull with an Indian tomahawk buried deep in it, lay before him. The rust on the weapon showed the time that had elapsed since this death blow had been given. It was a dreary memento of the fierce struggle that had taken place in this last foothold of the Indian warriors.” The Devil and Tom Walker, Washington Irving, 1824. Who needs the tales of Washington Irving when you have the history of the “Leonard Family of Taunton”? The Leonard family history sounds like a Washington Irving tale, with its themes of pacts with the Satan, devil's footprints, buried bones, a man on galloping on horseback through the woods carrying a severed head…even sacred Indian land. Washington Irving, most famous for spinning the

Hockomock Swamp

“On still nights the evil glitter of fox fire or the demonic cackle of a barred owl sent chills up the spines of the early settlers. Hordes of crows rose each morning for the guts of the swamp to ravage farmers corn. And from time to time, young girls merrily picking blueberries along the fringes found themselves ‘drawn farther and farther along unfamiliar paths seduced by the increasing size of the berries until at last they were lost and claimed by the swamp forever." Native Americans named the swamp “Hockomock” hundreds, perhaps thousands of years ago. Hockomock in the Algonquin word for “place where spirit’s dwell.” The Indians had tremendous respect and awe for the swamp and regarded it as a “magical” place. There being no swamps in England, the colonists had a different take on the swamp. They were terrified by it. The fear that Hockomock Swamp instilled in the colonists of the 1600s inspired the nicknames “The Devil’s Swamp” and “The Devil’s Bowl.” Hockomock Sw