Saturday, June 27, 2009

Ford City Folklore

Photobucket
Hanging Tree image from Vicious Venues

In Shott's cemetery once was a stone that read in part "Reuben, Son of Daniel and Mary A. Briney Died June 2, 1863, Aged 17.Y 17.D - As you are now so once was I, As I am now so you will be; Remember me as you pass by, Prepare to die and follow me."

Pretty spooky all by itself, hey? It gets weirder.

Reuben was a broken hearted teen, and in his pain caused by love gone bad, he rode to a tree near the cemetery on his white steed. He put a noose around his neck, tossed and looped the other end of the rope around a branch, and spurred his horse forward. (Some say he met his fate accidentally, but what kind of spook story would that make?) Goodbye, vale of tears, hello, light on the other side.

If it were only so easy. It's claimed that he can be seen to this day riding on the hillside at night atop his white stallion with flaming red eyes, still searching for his lost love. And woe to those that see him; they're said to be doomed to die a horrible death, just like Reuben's.

Good luck trying to find his tombstone; the memorial was toppled and broken 35 years ago, and eventually hauled away. All that's left now is an unmarked footer, alleged to be near the infamous hanging tree.

So how do we know what it said? Because a photo of the broken stone and its inscription was part of Ford City HS 1974 yearbook, no doubt a reminder of the impetuousness and passion of youth.

"As you are now so once was I..."

(H&H gives big props to LC, his Philly spook sister, who dug up most of the story and the location in ways only she knows.)

11 comments:

LC said...

Well, thanks for the props, my ghostie-loving Pittsburgh brother!

Ron Ieraci said...

I'm sure you've noticed the occasional H&H nod to LC; she's a sensitive and researcher from Philly, and I guarantee you that you can't sneak a Pennsylvania or New Jersey spook past her.

She's also most generous sharing her knowledge of all things eerie. H&H has been working on her to join the blogosphere and share her stories with a wider audience, but so far to no avail (not that we need the competition, lol!).

And thanks for the Dorney Park bit, LC. I heard the old ride was spooked, but that's the first time I've had a name associated with the haunting.

LC said...

Sadly, the Dorney Manor/Gold Mine was torn down like so many awesome haunts. It just wasn't structurally sound.

I am extremely flattered that you think I'm generous and smart. I rarely hold stories, and if I do, it's because I'm not done tracking down a lead, or I don't want to get in trouble for leaking something I shouldn't!

Anonymous said...

Wow! Well, I'm going to go to it with my friends because we're on Newspaper Club at FCHS. Wish me luck! :D

Anonymous said...

I live about a 1/2 mile from the Shotts cemetary and try to frequent there to check out graves. A man who lives by there says he found what he believes is the original stone on the edge of his property. 2 years ago my neighbors and i set up to scare a bunch of teens, she recorded her horses making noises and we had a red laser pointer at we flashed above the cemetary at the tree line and made moaning sounds. Scared the crap out of them, one of which was hysterically sobbing.

Anonymous said...

I have searched the 1974 Ford City Yearbook and have not seen the broken stone or the inscription. Are you sure it was 1974 ford city hs yearbook?

Brett Wilson said...

I was there around 1987 or so, with a group of friends, If my memory serves me, I recall a broken tombstone, that for one reason or another we believed to be Reuben's. I pretended to get possessed by reubans spirit and began speaking to a female friend as though, she was reubans lost love(i was 15 years old). they left me in the cemetery and drove away, this was at twilight and darkbess was coming soon, about 45 minutes later they came came back to get me, it was pretty dark, i was scared and imagined all kinds of creepy sounds and visions, i remember a white building was there also, i believe.

Anonymous said...

Someone said 1976.

Bryan Hilliard said...

I would like more info on this cuz I was always told Reubens grave was in or near the apollo area and there was an old white school house ghost story in the ford city crooked creek area about the school master eating all the kids when they got snowed in I'm pretty sure the lil white school house was still there I was there like 2002 its in the chey area of crooked creek/ ford city. Idk if ppl just make shit up I'm a stickler for accuracy tho so if anyone wants to get together and ghost hunt send me an email to bryanhilliard57@gmail.com I'll gladly g dance on the grave or whatever dares u put me up to... Looking at the map I'm thinking they intertwined the two stories... Let's go I dare ya

Ashlynn N. Bashline said...

I know a ghost hunter. He's got lots of equipment and loves to go. I also heard that a guy shot all his kids. There is another story about a school teacher that put lines on the chalkboard for every kid that she killed

Erik Poorman said...

The school still stands but it's in sad shape and I never head any thing about a guy killing the student but it's even rumored the the teacher and Reuben where in love and he killed ever one once they threatened to tell.......