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- Robert Currey
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- 8 Indian Astrology in: Religious Transformation in Modern Asia
- Astrology: True or False – Program 2
The witch replied with his grandmother's accent, "Hut tut, what has happened now? On remarking on his family overseas, the witch suddenly began to mimic his English parents. Again at early morning, the witch woke him to voices of his parents worried as they had heard his voice as well. The Englishman quickly left that morning and later wrote to the Bell family that the entity had visited his family in England. He apologized for his skepticism. At times, the spirit displayed a form of kindness, especially towards Lucy, John Bell's wife, "the most perfect woman to walk to earth.
Referring to John Bell Sr. The story climaxes with the Bell patriarch being poisoned by the witch. Afterward the entity interrupted the mourners by singing drinking songs. Subsequently, the entity told the family it was going to leave, but return in seven years in The witch returned on time to Lucy and her sons Richard and Joel with similar activities as before, but they chose not to encourage it, and the witch appeared to leave again.
Several accounts say that during his military career, Andrew Jackson was intrigued with the story and his men were frightened away after traveling to investigate. In this tradition, the spirit falls in love with the central character 'Mary', leading to her death. This account is reminiscent of vampire lore. In the manuscript attributed to Richard Williams Bell , he wrote that the spirit remained a mystery:.
Whether it was witchery, such as afflicted people in past centuries and the darker ages, whether some gifted fiend of hellish nature, practicing sorcery for selfish enjoyment, or some more modern science akin to that of mesmerism , or some hobgoblin native to the wilds of the country, or a disembodied soul shut out from heaven, or an evil spirit like those Paul drove out of the man into the swine , setting them mad; or a demon let loose from hell, I am unable to decide; nor has any one yet divined its nature or cause for appearing, and I trust this description of the monster in all forms and shapes, and of many tongues, will lead experts who may come with a wiser generation, to a correct conclusion and satisfactory explanation.
This Week's Features
There are three human characters in the account, Mr. Bell, his daughter Betsey Bell, and Joshua Gardner. The author stated that the voice, which spoke freely about the house from all directions, would not manifest itself until the lights were extinguished at night. The phenomenon attracted wide interest.
The author claimed to have become well acquainted with Mr. When the ghost was asked how long it would remain, it replied, "until Joshua Gardner and Betsey Bell get married. The author states that Ms. Bell then used her skill to attempt to convince Joshua Gardner to marry her. When they did not marry, the apparition disappeared.
About the Saturday Evening Post , published either at Philadelphia or New York, printed a long sketch of the Bell Witch phenomenon, written by a reporter who made a strenuous effort in the details to connect her with the authorship of the demonstrations.
Powell was so outraged by the publication that she engaged a lawyer to institute suit for libel. The matter, however, was settled without litigation, the paper retracting the charges, explaining how this version of the story had gained credence, and the fact that at the time the demonstrations commenced Betsy Bell had scarcely advanced from the stage of childhood and was too young to have been capable of originating and practicing so great a deception.
The fact also that after this report had gained circulation, she had submitted to any and every test that the wits of detectives could invent to prove the theory, and all the stratagems employed, served only to demonstrate her innocence and utter ignorance of the agency of the so-called witchery, and was herself the greatest sufferer from the affliction. The article reported that Smith claimed the powers of witchcraft while working near Adam's Station, chopping wood on a farm with the defendants.
The article stated that Smith claimed to use these occult powers on Clinard and Burgess, leading to the conflict between them. The jury of State vs. Clinard and Burgess returned a not guilty verdict. Ingram published an interview with Lucinda E. Rawls testified that the Bell Witch was a frequent topic of conversation during her lifetime and pointed to a murder of a man for witchcraft as evidence for this claim.
The Bell Witch was, and is still, a great scapegoat. Every circumstance out of the regular order of things is attributed to the witch.
It has not been long since a man claiming to be the witch was waylaid and murdered by two men who were cleared, on the plea that the murdered man had bewitched them. Ingram appended a date of or to the bloodshed, but connected the Rawls recollection with the death of Smith:. Smith came into the community a stranger, and was employed by Mr. Fletcher, where Clinard and Burgess were also engaged on the farm.
Smith professed to be something of a wizard, or rather boasted of his power to hypnotize and lay spells on people, subjecting any one who came under his influence to his will, and it was reported that he claimed to have derived this power from the mantle of the Bell Witch. However, the writer interviewed Hon. John F. House , who was council for the defense, on the subject, who says that no such evidence was produced in the trial, but that the lawyers handled the Bell Witch affair for all that it was worth in the defense of their clients, presenting the analogy or similarity of circumstances with good effect on the jury.
On April 24, an article was published regarding a ' haunted house ' in Springfield, Tennessee where knocking underneath the floor was heard. It is an actual fact that several hundred intelligent people of Springfield and vicinity have been so excited over the noise as to go night after night to listen to it About thirty years ago Robertson county had a sensation similar to this known as the "Bell Witch," and people came from all parts of the country, even as far as New York, to hear or see her.
The Springfield floor knocking occurred at the residence of John W. Nuckolls, a prominent physician. Nuckolls was recently married to Laura Hopkins Jones, a union opposed by her family. The phenomenon created a domestic disturbance between the couple, as a local carpenter, Gill Walling, accused Laura Nuckolls of creating the noise with an iron ball attached to a rubber belt hidden under her clothes. Robertson County historian Yolanda Reid states, "they came to the conclusion that the wife was tying it into the bottom of her skirt to make the sounds, nobody ever proved it.
That August, John Nuckolls retrieved his infant child from his wife, running through town with his estranged wife following in anguish. Afterward the child was returned to Laura Nuckolls who was living with her father, Asa Hopkins. John Nuckolls, in February , confronted Laura's father, over his desire to see the child, and threatened his father-in-law's life.
8 Indian Astrology in: Religious Transformation in Modern Asia
During the argument, the subject of 'ghosts' between the men was reported by an eyewitness as Nuckolls attempted to shoot Hopkins but was restrained. Hopkins, traveled from Nashville and shot John W. Nuckolls with a double-barreled shotgun , causing his death. The circumstances of the shooting were contested and S. Hopkins was acquitted of murder. Cross cites a column from the Nashville Banner where it mentions the paper had sent a reporter to Robertson County in the s, John C.
Cooke, to investigate reports of the possible reemergence of the Bell Witch phenomenon. A several page account of the Bell Witch legend was included in a sketch of Robertson County and was reportedly written for Nashville's Centennial Exposition in The sketch was published in by the Tennessee Historical Society. The author of the sketch is unknown and the article is undated. Dates in the sketch end at The writer stated the source of the first portion of the narrative from "F.
Miles, William Pride, W. Gooch, Ben. Batts, and many others. The witch could speak in several languages and would "set the dogs" on unsuspecting victims. In the Centennial account, the Bell entity did not explicitly poison John Bell. At one time a vial of poison was found in the flue of the chimney, and being taken down, Dr. George B. Hopson gave one drop to a cat, causing its death in seven seconds.
The witch claimed to have put the poison there for the purpose of killing Mr. Being asked how it was going to administer the poison, it said by pouring it into the dinner pot. It is remarkable that, although he enjoyed good health up to the time of this event, Mr. Bell died within [ ] days after the vial was found, being in a stupor at the time of his death. From this time the people visited the house less frequently, although the witch would now and then be heard.
In the Ingram account, attributed to Richard Williams Bell, John Bell was already suffering from an unknown affliction and bedridden for some time. John Bell's son, John Bell Jr. The family called for Dr. Hopson, while the Bell Witch exclaimed she had fed the poison to John Bell. Alex Gunn and John Bell Jr. The Centennial sketch stated the witch could appear as a rabbit, bear or black dog , and imitate various animal sounds. The sketch described the entity as one of seven spirits with three names given by the author: Three Waters, Tynaperty, and Black Dog.
In addition to Kate, the other members of the 'witch family' had the names of Blackdog, Mathematics, Cypocryphy, and Jerusalem. Blackdog was described as the apparent leader of the group. Goodspeed Brothers' History of Tennessee , recorded a short account of the legend that identified the spirit as female and stated that interest in the phenomenon was widespread in the region at the time.
A remarkable occurrence, which attracted wide-spread interest, was connected with the family of John Bell, who settled near what is now Adams Station about So great was the excitement that people came from hundreds of miles around to witness the manifestations of what was popularly known as the "Bell Witch.
Astrology: True or False – Program 2
It was invisible to the eye, yet it would hold conversation and even shake hands with certain individuals. The freaks it performed were wonderful, and seemingly designed to annoy the family. It would take the sugar from the bowls, spill the milk, take the quilts from the beds, slap and pinch the children, and then laugh at the discomfiture of its victims. At first it was supposed to be a good spirit, but its subsequent acts, together with the curses with which it supplemented its remarks, proved the contrary.
A volume might be written concerning the performances of this wonderful being, as they are now described by contemporaries and their descendants. That all this actually occurred will not be disputed, nor will a rational explanation be attempted. It is merely introduced as an example of superstition, strong in the minds of all but a few in those times, and not yet wholly extinct. An article was published February 3, describing a series of events from Adam's Station, Tennessee. At dusk, January 27, , Mr.