Thursday, October 18, 2018

Ep. 279 - Ferry Plantation House and the Virginia Witch

Moment in Oddity - Flaming Hole Opens Up in Arkansas

There is a curious hole in Arkansas that opened up in September of 2018. What makes this hole in the ground so bizarre is the fact that it had 12 foot flames shooting out of it. The phenomenon lasted for only 40 minutes and in that time, several people witnessed this flaming hole. The hole opened up on someone's private property and it has stumped investigators. Some have reasoned that it was space junk that fell from the sky and made a hole, while others think it was a gas leak. None of these theories seemed possible since the hole has actually been around for over ten years. So I guess we're left with the only plausible explanation, could it be Satan?  Baxter County Judge Mickey Pendergrass told the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette that he had ruled out Satan stating, "As far as the spiritual Satan goes, we've ruled that out. ... He didn't come up and stick his pitchfork in the ground and blow that hole out." Investigators are sending out soil samples to see if they can find any answers. One thing is for certain, a mysterious flaming hole opening up in Arkansas, certainly is odd!

This Month in History - William H. Eddy Dies

In the month of October, on the 25th, in 1932, William H. Eddy passed away.William and his brother Horatio were born in Chittenden Vermont and even though they had humble beginnings, they would soon become famous for their abilities as mediums. Henry Olcott was sent by New York's Daily Graphic to investigate the amazing reports about the Eddy Brothers. He spent ten weeks living with the brothers and was present at multiple seances where he claims to have seen extraordinary things. Olcott told the story over fifteen articles. Olcott claimed that he saw about 400 apparitions of all sizes, sexes, and races come out of a cabinet the brothers used during seances. He tested everything, measured everything and looked for all forms of trickery and could find nothing. He was convinced the Eddy Brothers were the real deal and said that William Eddy had a real knack for producing apparitions. The two main spirits William would produce were a Native American chief named Santum and a Native American woman named Honto. Many believe Olcott was gullible and the Eddy Brothers were just good tricksters. William broke away from his brother Horatio and had nothing to do with spiritualism again. He never married and when he died in October of 1932, he was 99 years old. To hear more about the famous brothers, check out Episode 191.

Ferry Plantation House and the Virginia Witch

The site where the Ferry Plantation House stands in Virginia Beach was once the scene of a trial for a woman accused of practicing witchcraft. That woman was Grace Sherwood and it would be her neighbors that claimed she was a witch who had bewitched their land and animals. She underwent the test of ducking to see if she was, indeed, a witch. Over the years, several houses stood on the site, falling victim to fires. The most recent house is a great example of Federal architecture and features a glimpse of Colonial life. This home also features ghostly activity produced by reputedly many apparitions. The Ferry Farm is said to be one of the most haunted locations in Virginia. Listener Whitney Zahar joins me to discuss the life of Grace Sherwood and the history and haunts of the Ferry Plantation House!

Rabbit hole on bikes: Some historians credit the invention of the pedal bicycle to Kirkpatrick MacMillan. He was a Scottish blacksmith who added pedals to the bicycle in 1839. Before that, people did the Flinstones thing, propelling forward with their feet. The Boneshaker Bike - Many historians credit Pierre and Ernest Michaux as being the true inventors of the modern bicycle. These two were carriage makers who were father and son and they first assembled a two-wheeled vélocipède, or what came to be known as The Boneshaker, around 1867. This bike was propelled like a tricycle, with its cranks and pedals connected to the front wheel. The design to the U.S. in 1863.

The Ferry Farm sounds like a wonderful place to visit and it is nice to hear that Grace Sherwood finally got her deserved pardon. Is there some kind of energy left over from this superstitious time that feeds into the paranormal activity at the site? Are there really nearly a dozen ghosts here? Is the Ferry Plantation House haunted? That is for you to decide!

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