Supposedly, a witch was buried in Woodlawn Cemetery almost 150 years ago. Upon her stone is a skull. When it rains, the water runs in red rivulets down its face in tears of blood. Many people have sought out her headstone and others have even camped out in the cemetery to see if her ghost may greet them in the night. But the question remains: is the story true? Read on to find out!
The Slaying of Rowland Kightlinger, 1870
It was winter 1870 and men were keeping warm in the Oil Region with two hobbies: drinking and fighting. Both would play a part in the death of Rowland Kightlinger one December night in Hydetown, Pennsylvania.
Who Killed “Bully Tom” Quirk?, 1867
Petroleum Centre, summer 1866. The streets are muddy, the hotels are bawdy, and you just finished a long day of work in the oil fields and are looking for a place to relax for the evening. You saunter into one of the local bars and before you is one of the most fearsome figures of Petroleum Centre, "Bully Tom" Quirk.
Dixmont Asylum for the Insane: Sanity & Insanity in the Oil Region
Towering on a hilltop near Pittsburgh sat Dixmont Asylum for the Insane, later deemed Dixmont Hospital. Though Dixmont no longer looms in the minds of Northwestern Pennsylvanians today, it was both lauded and feared by residents in the late 1800s.
“The Jennings Horror”: A Quack Cancer Doctor Tortures the Oil Region, 1876
n this blog I have covered many foul murders, but none quite so insidious as that of young Mary Jennings of Troy Township. Mary Jennings was a sweet, fifteen-year-old girl who was going to school and growing up all in due time until her life was taken by a quack doctor in February 1876.
The Ashtabula Train Disaster, 1876
The night was dark and the snow fell heavily onto the moving train, slick tracks, and quiet woods along the Lake Shore Railroad from Erie, Pennsylvania to Ashtabula, Ohio. December 29th, 1876 was like many other winter nights, until at approximately 8:00pm, when everything changed.
The Ghost of Mr. Mack
August 5th, 1881. It was an uncharacteristically cool week at the beginning of August, the height of the summer. A ghost was about to chill Warren to its core.
“A Horrible Cutting Affair,” 1874
Despite the constant reports of violence we are inundated with every day, we live in a low-violence society compared to the 1800s in the Oil Region! In particular, 1874 was a very violent year.
Let’s Talk about Anna: Spousal Homicide in the Oil Region
It was the year after the Civil War. Veterans were still recovering. Thousands of Pennsylvanian children were in soldiers' orphanages as a result of the carnage, and three more children were about to be thrown to the winds as a result of their father's actions.