Pictured above Tennessee: The Bell Witch according to AI. An entity that is said to have haunted the home of John and Lucy Bell.
Every state has a ghost story or a legend
Cookeville – Happy Halloween.
Every town has a ghost story, a tale everyone knows by heart but tries to forget. Tennessee’s most famous tale is of the Bell Witch (pictured above). The Bell Witch is a centuries-old story out of Robertson County where the evil spirit of a witch haunted farmer John Bell and his family in the early 1800’s. That story has been told across centuries and made into numerous books and movies. They say if you enter the Bell Witch Cave you will see her, waiting, poised and ready to be released from her prison.
That’s what they say.
Who are they?
In celebration of the spookiest night of the year, Vivint.com asked AI to create renderings based on the spookiest legends, myths and tales from every state in the union. The Upper Cumberland Business Journal has compiled that list in hopes of giving you a scare this Halloween. After all, everyone is entitled to one good scare.
Now, let the journey into America’s scariest lore begin.
Alabama: The Legend of the White Thang. Roaming the woods of Northern Alabama, the White Thang is a large, white, and extremely quick creature with glowing red eyes and an eerie screech.
Arkansas: The White River MonsterThis mysterious aquatic creature was first spotted in the White River in the early 20th century. Nicknamed “Whitey,” the monster has its own legally protected refuge.
Florida: The Skunk Ape A foul-smelling, Sasquatch-like creature rumored to inhabit Florida’s Everglades.
Georgia: The Legend of the Altamaha-ha A serpentine water creature with the large-toothed snout of a crocodile is said to inhabit the waters around Georgia’s Altamaha River.
Kentucky: The Legend of the Kentucky Goblins. Short, extraterrestrial beings with long arms, large eyes, and pointed ears supposedly attacked a Hopkinsville farmhouse in 1955 but were fought off by the owners.
Louisiana: The Rougarou. A werewolf-like creature from Cajun folklore is said to roam the swamps around Acadiana and New Orleans.
Mississippi: The Witch of Yazoo. Upon her death, she vowed to return 20 years later and burn down the town of Yazoo City. Exactly 20 years after her death, a fire in Yazoo City destroyed hundreds of homes and businesses.
North Carolina: The Beast of Bladenboro. A large, predatory, cat-like creature that targeted several animals in Bladen County in the 1950s.
Oklahoma: The Oklahoma Octopus. A giant freshwater octopus that allegedly inhabits various Oklahoma lakes and snatches unsuspecting swimmers.
South Carolina: The Legend of the Lizard Man of Scape Ore Swamp. A reptilian humanoid creature with green scaly skin and red eyes that vandalizes cars around Scape Ore Swamp.
Texas: “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre” (movie). A group of friends on a roadtrip meet some unfriendly townsfolk in this classic slasher movie.
Virginia: The Richmond Vampire. The Richmond Vampire is an urban legend stemming from a 1925 train tunnel collapse in Richmond, Virginia, where witnesses claimed to see a blood-covered creature with jagged teeth and leathery wings flee from the wreckage and seek refuge in the nearby Hollywood Cemetery.
West Virginia: The Mothman. The Mothman is a 10-foot-tall winged creature with glowing red eyes. Sighted before many disasters, some believe it’s a creature of destruction, while others believe it’s a protector, warning humans of impending danger.
Alaska: The Kushtaka. Shape-shifting otter men lure victims into the wilderness to turn them into Kusthtaka, preventing their souls from reincarnating. Kushtaka are especially dangerous in groups.
Arizona: The Skinwalkers. Beings capable of transforming into animals, especially wolves, who can travel between worlds.
California: The Billiwhack Monster. In Santa Paula, legends speak of a half-man, half-beast creature that resulted from secret government experiments. It’s said to roam the area near the Billiwhack Dairy and scream or throw rocks at those who venture too close.
Colorado: The Ghosts of the Stanley Hotel. With a long history of paranormal sightings, Stanley Hotel inspired Stephen King’s “The Shining” after King and his wife stayed just one night.
Hawaii: The Legend of the Green Lady. This lady is a grieving ghost mother who roams Wahiawa Gulch and Botanical Garden in search of her missing children.
Idaho: The Payette Lake Monster. Sharlie, also known as the Payette Lake Monster, is a legendary creature said to inhabit Payette Lake in McCall, Idaho. Sharlie is often described as a large, serpentine creature resembling a prehistoric plesiosaur. Witnesses claim it has a long neck, a humped back, and flippers or fins. The creature is said to be quite large, with some reports suggesting lengths of up to 30 feet or more.
Montana: The Haunting of the Moss Mansion. The Moss Mansion is said to be haunted by the spirits of the Moss family. Visitors have reported seeing ghostly figures and hearing footsteps when no one else is around.
New Mexico: The Chupacabra. The Chupacabra is a legendary creature from Latin American folklore, often described as a blood-sucking beast that preys on livestock, particularly goats. Its name, derived from the Spanish words “chupar” (to suck) and “cabra” (goat), literally translates to “goat-sucker.”
Nevada: Area 51. This infamous top-secret U.S. military installation is at the center of many UFO and extraterrestrial conspiracy theories.
Oregon: The Bandage Man. The victim of a logging saw accident, wrapped in mummy-like bandages, who haunts Highway 101 near Cannon Beach.
Utah: The Bear Lake Monster. A serpentine creature that swims incredibly fast and carries away unsuspecting swimmers.
Washington: The Legend of the Thunderbird. A colossal bird from indigenous legends that creates thunder with its wings and shoots lightning from its claws.
Wyoming: The Platte River Ship of Death. This phantom ship, complete with a ghostly crew, emerges from the Platte River fog to foreshadow the death of an onlooker’s loved one.
Illinois: “Halloween” (movie). Michael Myers, a masked killer who escapes from a sanitarium, returns to his hometown to terrorize a babysitter.
Indiana: The Legend of the Crosley Monster. A Bigfoot-like creature roaming the Crosley Fish and Wildlife Area, chasing off campers and scaring wildlife.
Iowa: The Legend of the Van Meter Visitor. This half-bat, half-human creature is said to have terrorized the town of Van Meter in 1903. Residents reported seeing this mysterious creature as recently as 2020.
Kansas: The Legend of the Albino WomanThis creature is a stark white, harmless female spirit haunting Rochester Cemetery in North Topeka.
Minnesota: The Smiling Man of Brainerd. An eerie figure recognized by his wide grin. Known to silently watch or follow unsuspecting residents at night, his haunting presence serves as a chilling reminder of the town’s darker legends.
Missouri: The Legend of the Momo. Short for “Missouri Monster,” Momo is a Bigfoot-like creature most often seen in the small town of Louisiana, Missouri.
Nebraska: The Legend of the Radioactive Hornets. After the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster, giant radioactive hornets with venom 2,000 times stronger flew to central Nebraska and killed several people with their stings.
North Dakota: The Legend of the Miniwashitu. The Miniwashitu is an aquatic demon, reminiscent of a bison, said to live in the Missouri River.
Ohio: “A Nightmare on Elm Street” (movie). Freddy Krueger, a spirit with a bladed glove, terrorizes teenagers in their dreams in this nightmare on Elm Street.
South Dakota: The Orpheum Theater Ghost. The Orpheum Theater in Sioux Falls is rumored to be haunted by the spirit of a former janitor named Larry. Visitors and staff have reported mysterious cold spots, unexplained noises, and occasional sightings of his ghostly apparition.
Wisconsin: The Legend of the Rhinelander Hodag. This mythical beast has spikes down its back and teeth sharp enough to easily take down a full-grown bear.
Michigan: The Legend of the Dogman. The dogman is a 7-foot-tall monster with the head of a dog and the body of a man that roams the woods of Northern Michigan.
Connecticut: The Melon Heads. These beings are said to live in the woods and survive by eating stray animals. Many believe they’re the descendants of asylum and prison escapees.
Delaware: The Ghost Ship of Delaware Bay. A spectral ship is said to appear in the fog, forewarning of upcoming storms or disasters.
Maine: “It” (movie). A shape-shifting entity, often appearing as Pennywise the Clown, preys on the fictional town of Derry in the movie “It.”
Maryland: The Legend of the Snallygaster. This dragon-like half-bird, half-reptile creature supposedly wanders about Maryland targeting livestock.
Massachusetts: The Salem Witch Trials. In 1692, mass hysteria in Salem led to over 200 accusations of witchcraft, resulting in the execution of 20 innocent people.
New Hampshire: The Legend of the Wood Devils. Tall, shadowy creatures in the woods that vanish behind trees when spotted, evading human interaction.
New Jersey: “Friday the 13th” (movie). At Camp Crystal Lake, a masked killer named Jason Voorhees takes revenge on camp counselors in this slasher series.
New York: “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow.” This legendary short story is about a headless horseman who haunts Sleepy Hollow, often seeking to decapitate any who cross his path.
Pennsylvania: The Legend of the Bus to Nowhere. A phantom bus that roams Philadelphia, picking up hopeless souls and wandering endlessly until passengers find peace and are ready to return to real life.
Rhode Island: The Legend of Mercy Brown. In 19th-century Exeter, men from the village exhumed the body of Mercy Brown, believed to be a vampire, and burned her heart to stop her from sucking the life out of any living soul.
Vermont: The Phantom of Coventry. In the quiet town of Coventry, Vermont, legends speak of a mysterious figure known as the Phantom of Coventry. Dressed in black and often seen on horseback, this enigmatic specter is said to haunt the town’s roads, leaving a trail of unease and whispered tales in its wake.
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