Monday, July 20, 2015

Jilted Bride Bridge

Beaver Creek
In the early 1800s near what is now East Liverpool, Ohio was the small canal town of Sprucevale.

A young woman, Esther Hale lived near Sprucevale alongside Beaver Creek.

He friends knew her as a happy well-adjusted young lady. But her fate would not be a happy one.

Newly engaged to a local boy, Esther was ecstatic. She became more and more impatient as her wedding day drew near.

When the day finally arrived it is said Esther got up before dawn and put her wedding dress on. She stood in front of a mirror admiring her reflection.

As the time for the ceremony arrived Esther was concerned for there was no sign of her fiancé who had promised to accompany her to the community church.

She marched outside and stood on a small bridge that crossed Beaver Creek in hopes of seeing her beloved arrive. But the hours passed and he did not appear.

Bridge today

Dejected, Esther stood on the small bridge well after the sunlight had faded and the darkness of night enveloped her.

It slowly dawned on her that she had been “left at the altar.” She returned to her home and drew the curtains.

Several days later a group of friends concerned they had not seen her, arrived at her home. The knocked on her door but received no response.

They peered through one curtain and were shocked to see Esther sitting amidst wedding decorations still wearing her wedding gown.

They knocked on the door once more and pleaded with her to let them in, she assured them she was all right but she refused to open the door.

From then on Esther remained removed from society. Neighbors saw her in her garden or more often standing on the small bridge looking off into the distance.

Whenever she was seen she was still wearing her wedding dress, which was now stained and tattered.

Several months after her ruined wedding day the area was hit by a series of bad snowstorms. When the locals were finally able to dig out several mentioned that Esther had not been seen in quite awhile.

A small group made their way to her home only to discover a horrible sight. Esther Hale’s decaying body was sitting quietly in a chair. She was still wearing her rotting wedding gown.

Almost immediately after Esther was buried locals began to report a strange sight on the small bridge near Esther’s home.

People stated as they crossed this bridge Esther’s ghost still wearing her wedding dress, would reach out to them from the side of the road.

As the years passed, witnesses stated this strange sight was seen especially on August 12th the day that was supposed to be Esther’s wedding day.

Many accounts stated that her ghost would lunge at passing carriages on the bridge trying to claw her way into their vehicles.

These sightings persisted even after it was cars and not carriages that crossed this small bridge.

With time the story of this haunting included a warning that witnesses to Esther’s ghost should never let her touch them. For if this were allowed she would become young again but the person she touched would suddenly grow old and die.

So people to this day that cross this bridge are told they better beware.

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