Friday, January 24, 2014

Maine: The Catherine Hill Legend


This story was originally told in the 1860’s in the downeast area of Maine. It has become one of Maine’s most enduring legends. It is said that for years an apparition of a female ghost on dark nights--sometimes without her head--is seen stalking the Black's Woods Road. This area is located between Franklin and Cherryfield on Route 182 .

View from north end of
Fox Pond
The short stretch of road where she is seen is very picturesque for it winds around Fox Pond and then climbs to the top of a small mountain named Catherine’s Hill.

This hill is named after Catherine because it is said she lost her life in a horrible carriage or car accident-- depending upon which decade the story was told in.

As indicated, several versions of this story have been shared over the years but all state that passing motorists best take heed of her presence--for if they don’t they will be cursed and die.

To drive this point home the story of Catherine’s haunting includes a part about a traveling salesman who saw Catherine’s ghost walking near the woods by Fox pond but was so terrified by her headless appearance that he sped past where she stood.

He lived to regret this decision for within moments he saw in his rearview mirror that she now sat in his backseat. Panicked, he lost control of his car--it crashed and he was killed.

One University of Maine professor, Marcus LiBrizzi while during research about Catherine’s ghost for his book was surprised to discover that many witnesses even today claim they have seen this strange specter.


Another Maine college professor whose students were doing a project on the Catherine Hill legend accompanied her class to the area several times. When interviewed after she stated that she had never believed in ghosts but this project had definitely made her wonder if something unexplained is active in the area.

Her students and her picked up some eerie electromagnetic patterns during their research and she concluded that she felt the space was “dangerous” and must be treated with the upmost respect.

A local reporter who was doing a story about the legend also experienced something she hadn’t bargained for. As her cameraman followed her through the area she felt as if they were not alone. Unsettled, she described that something the whole time was pressing against her back.

This legend is similar to a story I shared in another post about Pennsylvania’s The White Lady of Wopsy Mountain.

Here is a link to a video that has an interview with Marcus Librizzi and the reporter.

Updates: a local Maine newscast highlighted this legend in 2014, you can read their story and watch their video here

The Weather Channel also shared this story on their Super Natural series that airs Sunday nights.

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