Many years ago, a man settled in this area of Clay County, bringing with him a pregnant wife, and a servant girl, who cooked and cleaned for the family. Shortly after their arrival, it became quite apparent that the young girl who cooked and cleaned for them was also pregnant.
Rumors began to spread in the small community that the man, who appeared quite wealthy, had fathered both these children. These rumors only worsened after the wife became ill, and the servant girl, very much with child herself, could no longer care for her.
The man turned to the local physician, who recommended a local girl with nursing experience. This young girl was hired immediately, much to the chagrin of the community. She moved in with the family in order to provide care full time, but soon after HER arrival, it was rumored that she was no longer caring for the ill patient. Instead, she was often seen around town with the husband.
She finally admitted that the woman she had been hired to care for had died, yet she would not be returning to her home. She and the man were married, and lived on the ridge, with their servant girl and her child.
Several months later, the newly married nurse also gave birth to a child...unfortunately this child was stillborn. Over the years this nurse and her husband had many pregnancies, but she was never able to fully carry a child to term. The local townspeople claim that this was her punishment for helping her husband murder his first wife.
There are several ghost stories attached to this area of Clay County, two being directly tied to this story. Shortly after the husband and the nurse married, locals began seeing the apparition of a woman in white who seemed to vanish before their eyes. The ghostly woman was noticeably pregnant, and her swollen tongue protruded from her mouth, giving her a deformed look.
The small, now abandoned cemetery located on the ridge is also said to be haunted. It is here where the nurse's stillborn and premature babies are laid to rest, among a grove of pine trees. The cries of infants can be heard throughout the cemetery, and the pregnant apparition is also seen here from time to time.
In addition to these stories, there are at least two others associated with the ridge. One involves an elderly lady who so angered her neighbors that they stoned her to death. Her cabin was sold, but the family that moved in would often find piles of stones throughout the home and property, many times propping open the front door in the mornings. Sometimes, the stones could actually be heard falling onto the roof. Needless to say, not many stayed in the cabin for any length of time.
Not far from the cabin, there is said to be a hanging tree, where criminals were hung in the early days of Clay County history. Balls of light have been seen hovering around the tree, which is in a swampy area, and the sound of a body falling to the ground can be heard. Are these balls of light just swamp gas, or the restless souls of those who lost their lives here? My Aaron owns a home in this area, so hopefully this summer I'll be able to answer those questions for myself!