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Old House Woods in Diggs, Virginia
By Whites Creek near Chesapeake Bay in Matthews County Virginia, there is a small area comprised of dense pine trees and boggy terrain near the small coastal town of Diggs. The fifty acre area is commonly known as Old House Woods, also called Black Forest or Haunted Woods by local hunters. The area is known to have been haunted for well over 200 years.
It is believed that at one time long ago, an old house existed in the center of the woods. The house burned to the ground at some point.
Route 704 going east is often called Old House Woods road and can be taken all the way to Whites Creek, although it is not in very good condition at the last.
Many tales of hauntings that include British Redcoats, skeleton knights clad in armor and wielding swords, aggressive headless dogs, phantom pirates searching for their treasure buried on the banks of Whites Creek, and a host of other ghastly entities have been told by the locals for many generations.
Some of the other apparitions reported are ghost horses, lantern lights and green lights through the trees, and even a Spanish galleon that appears before storms sailing over the treetops. Fishermen in the area report a wailing woman in white who hovers above the pine trees when storms are approaching.
There are often reports of ghostly figures glimpsed digging in the earth for a treasure believed to have been lost on a journey to Jamestown in 1651. Charles II was said to have sent the treasure chest from England following the Battle of Worcester in case it was necessary from him to go into exile. The weather was stormy and turbulent, and the ship’s crew journeyed up the wrong creek. The sailors were then attacked by bandits who buried some of the treasure in Old House Woods planning to return for it. Alas, their ship capsized and all were lost in the storm.
Another story of the lost treasure centers around gold and silver coins buried in a graveyard near Whites Creek by order of British General Cornwallis in 1781, following the Revolutionary War.
One legend tells of a time vortex deep in the woods in which people have disappeared and not returned.
Investigators of the phenomenon report difficulty breathing, the smell of sulphur, slamming car doors, and lantern-like lights in the woods.
One witness reported that the spot is ten degrees colder than the surrounding area and is accompanied by a “feeling of dread and hopelessness.”
Belanger, Jeff. Encyclopedia of Haunted Places. Franklin Lakes, NJ: New Page Books, 2009. (Belanger, 2009)
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