As the Bay State is deeply historic, with their 1788 admission into the Union, you have to imagine that mysterious myths and unbelievable urban legends are in abundance. Have you ever wondered about how these stories came to be? Now you can find out. Here are 10 Massachusetts myths and urban legends that will satisfy your curiosity!
If you visit the woods near Barnstable—especially late at night—beware of the Pukwudgies. Tiny, human-like creatures living in swampy areas, they have smooth, grey skin and like to play tricks on those who dare invade their space. Leading back to the early Wampanoag tribe, it is believed these Pukwudgies descended from Native American folklore—or did they?
If you’ve ever spotted a hitchhiker along Route 44 West, near the Rehoboth/Seekonk line, you’re not the only one. Since the late 1960s, many travelers claim to have seen the man—dressed in a red flannel shirt and appearing to be a bit down on his luck. When they stopped to give the man a ride, however, he disappeared.
Located just four miles from Pittsfield, Massachusetts, Wizard’s Glen is said to be a haunted spot in the Berkshires where human sacrifices once took place. Native American shamans allegedly carried out these sacrifices on the Devil’s Altar. Since Wizard’s Glen is a rocky hollow known for producing echoes, the area has a decidedly spooky feel. Legend says the area is haunted by the daughter of a Native American chief named Miahcomo.
Located on Cape Ann, Dogtown has long been called a ghost town. First settled in 1693, it was eventually abandoned. Residents of nearby towns starting believing in the 19th century that witches inhabited the deserted town. Babson College founder Roger Babson hired stonecutters to adorn boulders in Dogtown with inspirational messages in order to keep evil spirits away. It is still believed, to this day, to be haunted.
Said to be one of the most haunted forests in the world, the Bridgewater Triangle is a 200 square-mile area inside the Freetown-Fall River Forest in southeastern Massachusetts near the Rhode Island border. Orbs of light are often spotted floating there. Reports of giant snakes and even UFOs have come from this region. Some of Barnstable’s Pukwudgies reportedly roam the forest, too. As recently as 1998, animal mutilations were discovered. Suicides and gang-style murder victims have been discovered here as well. This definitely doesn’t sound like the kind of place the faint of heart should frequent.
A tall figure known as the Black Flash haunted people in Provincetown in the 1930s. Two people claimed they had been assaulted by the unusually thin person, who was described as being at least eight feet tall and dressed completely in black. Sightings of the Black Flash ended around 1945, but stories still abound.
Dungeon Rock Cave in Lynn is allegedly the place a pirate named Thomas Veale buried several treasure chests filled with silver and gold back in 1658. Veale lived in the cave until he lost his life during an earthquake. Even though Hiram Marble bought the cave and lived on the site for several years, it’s uncertain if he ever found the treasure. Marble reportedly moved there in 1852 after receiving directions to the treasure from Veale’s ghost. So, who wants to go to Lynn?
Even more Massachusetts treasure is supposedly hidden inside Tenney’s Grey Court Castle in Methuen. The estate of Charles H. Tenney is reportedly in the walls of the castle. In the 1930s, a rumor circulated saying $20,000 was discovered in one of the castle’s towers, but the find was never confirmed.
Urban legend has it that Danvers and its surrounding neighborhoods are haunted by the angry ghosts of former patients of the Danvers State Mental Hospital. Known as the Danvers State Lunatic Asylum when it opened its doors in 1878, the first pre-frontal lobotomy was performed here. Patients whose ghosts now haunt the area were reportedly terribly mistreated in this spooky looking series of old buildings.
Spooky sounds and apparitions frequent the Hoosac Tunnel, a railroad tunnel that runs between Florida and North Adams. Commonly referred to as “The Bloody Pit,” more than 200 workers died during its construction. It is believed to be these men who haunt the tunnel to this day.
Are you brave enough to check out any of these Massachusetts myths and urban legends for yourself? Or do you think simply reading about them—and wondering how much truth really lies beneath the surface of each one—is close enough instead?