Sunday, February 7, 2021

a cemetery ghost story told in newspaper clippings

The story begins that there is a thrilling sensation of a ghost in Hollywood Cemetery (Alexandria Gazette, June 15, 1870) but sadly while some believe it is a real ghost, it's probably the fiancee of one of the individuals who was at the Virginia Capitol collapse on April 27, 1870, when several hundred people were crowded onto the second floor when the gallery gave way and fell to the courtroom floor, which killed 62 people (including a grandson of Patrick Henry) and injured hundreds others. This article presumes that this woman who keeps returning to Hollywood is the fiancee of one of the individuals killed (The Baltimore Sun, Jun 15, 1870). But real life is more frightening than fiction because this poor woman keeps returning to her lover's grave and even digs a hole making a little bed for herself until the superintendent of the asylum takes her in (Memphis Daily Appeal, Jun 26, 1870). And even a stay in the asylum does not make her better (of course not, it was 1870!) so this poor woman with the last name Smith is taken to the Henrico jail (Richmond Dispatch, August 19, 1870.)

Alexandria Gazette, June 15, 1870

The Baltimore Sun, June 15, 1870

Memphis Daily, June 26, 1870

Richmond Dispatch, August 19, 1870

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