We’ve compiled a special collection of Vermont oddities, myths and legends along wth a ghost story or too. If you think the weirdest experience you’ve had in Vermont is strolling down Church St., think again. Some of the articles below are sure to curl your toes. Also, when truth is stranger than fiction, there are quite a few skeletons hidden in Vermont’s closet.
One man’s Insurance against premature burial in Vermont
Things are looking up…for someone who’s been dead for over 100 years. Discover Evergreen Cemetery in New Haven, Vermont, final resting place of Timothy Clark Smith, whose 1893 crypt includes a window to help him escape in case he was buried alive.
Curse of the Brunswick Springs
Ripley’s Believe it or Not called it the “Eighth Wonder of the World” in 1984. To Abenaki American Indians, it is a sacred spot with natural healing powers. Over the last two centuries, people with enterprising ideas have envisioned it as a place of business. Four hotel fires later, they were left to wonder: was it coincidence that led to their failure, or the curse of Brunswick Springs?
Where is Ethan Allen Buried?
In life, Ethan Allen was a controversial Revolutionary War hero that history often describes as fiercely independent, a bit crude, brash and undoubtedly, daring. But where is this legendary figure resting now?
A farmer’s work is never done – even in death, “…at least that is what I like to joke about when I tell people about the old farmer who lived in my farmhouse several decades ago. I’m fond of telling people that he still roams the halls of the two and a half story farmhouse. During the early months of 2005, something happened that made me think, at least for a moment, that my joke wasn’t a joke after all.” By Scott Wheeler.
Ghosts still visit the Cahoon Farm in Lyndon
“My children swear I didn’t tell them about the ghosts before we settled into what I’ve come to learn is one of Lyndon’s most famous haunted houses. Maybe that’s true. Their father had died, and I was eager to move from Connecticut, and didn’t feel that a few spirits lingering about should deter us. But in truth, I didn’t put much stock into the stories the realtor told me anyway.” By Denise Brown.
The Hope Cemetery, Barre, VT.
This is the only cemetery where I have actually seen tourists go and take photos next to the monuments. Probably for good reason as this is one of the most fantastic displays of granite that you’ll ever see. Monuments such as the huge soccer ball, airplane, the trucker and perhaps the most unusual of all…two people side-by-side, holding hands in bed. Plus, life size statues and more. Take a look for yourself as a whole gallery of Hope Cemetery photos are now available.
The Pipe-Smoking Fisherwoman of Newport, VT
During the first thirty years of the twentieth century, fisher-woman Maggie Little was the most photographed person in Newport, VT, on Lake Memphremagog.
Devil Cats of Vermont
Some folks call them devil cats while others call them a beautiful creation of nature. Vermont history is full of accounts regarding mountain lions prowling the woods and forests of Vermont.
Legend of “Johnny Seesaw”
Johnny Seesaw’s was built in 1920 by Russian logger, Ivan Sesow. It’s located in Peru, Vermont and has quite a unique history.
Slipperyskin – Bear, Bigfoot, or Indian?
In the 1700s the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont was (and still is to a certain degree) frontier country. It was inhabited by woodsmen, hunters, trappers, and fishermen extended families, mostly Wabanaki, but also a few sturdy others. It is told that it was also the haunt of Slipperyskin, a bear, which is supposed to have caused a general misery among the settlers. His name Slipperyskin was because he managed to elude every trap that was ever set for him. The Indians knew him and called him Wejuk or Wet Skin
The Battle of Bennington?
The odd thing about this celebrated battle is that it didn’t actually take place in Bennington, VT but around 10 miles away in Walloomsac, NY.
Willoughby Lake Monster and other Oddities
Willoughby Lake is a scenic body of water located in the northern Vermont town of Westmore, nestled between two mountains, Mt. Hor and Mt. Pisgah. In earlier years, the region was a well known and popular destination with several large tourist hotels and much to see and do.
Vermont’s Deep Frozen Folks
Vermonters are a frugal bunch and have been for many generations. In order to save energy during a long, cold Vermont winter, the truly ingenious old-time Vermont natives would find a way conserve food and heat….by freezing their old folks, for the duration of winter, and thawing them out in the spring time!
The Town Named After A Cheapskate
Barton, Vermont is named for Colonel (later General) William Barton, who later spent fourteen years in jail in Vermont for refusing to pay a public fine, although people that knew him believed he could have easily paid for it.
The Toughest Town in Vermont
The Boston Evening Transcript headline proclaimed the news on July 29, 1931: “Vermont’s Toughest Town Moves to Rid Itself of Gangsters.”
The Brookfield Floating Bridge.
Brookfield is located just south of Williamstown, in Orange County, VT. It is the site of the famous Floating Bridge, buoyed by 380 barrels – the only floating bridge in Vermont. The 300-foot bridge spans Sunset Lake, which is too deep to support a pillared structure. In 1820, the bridge was made up of floating logs but the logs had to be replaced each year. Tarred barrels then became the solution for a number of years until modern times when they were replaced by plastic barrels filled with Styrofoam.
A Library Straddling Two Countries
If you visit the Haskell Free Library and Opera House in Derby Line, VT you may want to have your passport in order. A line of the floor marks the border of the United States on one side and Canada on the other.
A Dual Purpose Coffin
Lysander Barnes was a huge man. He towered six-foot plus in his stocking feet. “Lys” was somewhat of a carpenter. During the 1850’s, he was the “Mr. Fix It” of the north end of Stamford, VT.
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