A member of the Relic Radio forums brought this article to my attention, and, since reading it, it’s had a terrible grip on my imagination:
The brothers first heard about Duffy’s Cut from their grandfather, a railroad worker, who told the ghost story to his family every Thanksgiving. According to local legend, memorialized in a file kept by the Pennsylvania Railroad, a man walking home from a tavern reported seeing blue and green ghosts dancing in the mist on a warm September night in 1909.
“I saw with my own eyes, the ghosts of the Irishmen who died with the cholera a month ago, a-dancing around the big trench where they were buried; it’s true, mister, it was awful,” the documents quote the unnamed man as saying. “Why, they looked as if they were a kind of green and blue fire and they were a-hopping and bobbing on their graves… I had heard the Irishmen were haunting the place because they were buried without the benefit of clergy.”
Two weeks ago, a new piece of evidence came up from the ground at Duffy’s Cut: A skull with a perforation that could be a bullet hole. “In fact, we can see some nice cracked edges that do look very much like a bullet hole,” Monge observed. – CNN
Maybe this is just a ghost story ingrained in family tradition – I do love the idea that some kernel of truth wrapped in an oral history carried on data that was unknown to the stacks of documentation every modern zoning, purchase or construction creates – but my mind can’t get over the fact that it might be something darker.
What if it does turn out these men were murdered? What if a fun family custom actually originated when Great-Grandfather Watson began spinning tales to commemorate the graves he himself had dug?
What if the self-aggrandizement of a long dead serial killer now leads to the discovery of his previously undocumented crimes?