The Spooky Side of Maine: Hauntings & Urban Legends from the Pine Tree State

Ayers Island – Penobscot Bay – Orono, Maine.

Ayers Island is a 62-acre island located in the Penobscot River in the Town of Orono. (About two miles from the University of Maine Orono campus.) It was named for one of the original settlers of Orono, Joshua Ayers, who constructed the first structure on the island sometime in 1774.  The island has been used for numerous ventures over the years starting with a saw/lumber mill, then a pulp and paper mill, and finally as the Striar Textile Mill until its closure in 1996.

According to local lore, the island has long-been believed to be “cursed earth” by the indigenous peoples of the area. One of their legends tells of an old crone known as “Wooden Lucy” who could bring death to anyone with just one look. – More recent legends say that the island is haunted by the ghost of a man named John Tanner, a foreman who died in a mysterious accident, and now wanders the island seeking revenge, along with the ghost of Margaret Hawthorne a young woman who was accidentally killed by her farther Samuel Hawthorne after a practical joke went terribly wrong.

Prior to the island becoming privately owned, visitors exploring the area reported hearing noises, seeing shadows, and being overcome by feelings of sadness and fear. In 2006, two episodes of VH1’s Celebrity Paranormal Project (titled “John Tanner” and “Wooden Lucy”) were filmed there.

This location is off-limits to visitors. Trespassers will be punished to the full extent of the law.

-Portland Press Herald –

-Bangor Daily News –

Colonel Buck’s Cursed Monument – Buck Cemetery – Bucksport, Maine.

Colonel Jonathan Buck was born on February 20, 1719 in Woburn, Massachusetts and died March 18, 1795 in Bucksport, Maine. Colonel Buck was a very accomplished man: he was a loving husband and father of 9, the founder of Bucksport (known as Buckstown during his lifetime), and an admired town leader/Justice of the Peace. He was the first in the area to develop a saw mill, a grist mill, and a general store, and he was a Revolutionary War hero… One could reasonably think that any of these outstanding accomplishments would earn Colonel Buck great notoriety, instead it is his granite memorial.

This Buck monument (built of Blue Hill granite) was erected in memory of Colonel Jonathan Buck by his descendants in 1852, nearly sixty years after his death. Sometime after its placement an eerie leg and foot-shaped stain appeared on the face of the stone and this is where the story begins…

The legend varies (as most legends do), but the general story is that the boot-shaped mark did not come about by natural means… The tale is Colonel Johnathan Buck sentenced a woman (who may or may not have been his mistress, and who may, or may not have been pregnant with his child) to death for practicing witchcraft. Right before she was hanged (or burned) she cursed Buck and his family and claimed she would dance on his grave. – Whatever the “true” story is, it is undeniable fact that there is a pointy leg/foot-shaped stain on Colonel’s Bucks monument.

Want to check it out for yourself? Colonel’s Bucks monument is located on Main St/US-1 N in Bucksport, Maine. The town has created 6 parking spaces on Hinks Street with a small walking path to the grave marker to ensure the safety of both pedestrians and drivers in the area.

-Atlas Obscura –

Bangor Daily News –

East Wind Inn – Tenants Harbor – Georgetown, Maine.

During much of the 19th century, Tenants Harbor was both a shipping and a ship building center. In 1860, a local businessman named John Fuller felt that the town needed a large multi-use commercial building, and so he built the building that would one day be the East Wind Inn.

Each floor of the three-story building served a different purpose. The basement was used by Fuller’s son as a tin shop, the main/ground floor Fuller used to run a general store, the second floor was used by a sail-sewing business (later a community meeting room), and the top floor was rented to the towns Masonic Lodge until 1894.

In 1921, this commercial building was bought by a man by the name of Charles Rawley who converted the building into the Wan-e-set for tourists (mostly from Boston) arriving by steamer in the summer months. In 1941 the inn was sold to Frank Scrutin who abandoned the building in 1954. The property stood vacant from 1954 through 1974 when local Tim Watts bought it, renovated it, and dubbed it The East Wind Inn.

Guests arriving at the East Wind Inn in Tenants Harbor are advised to stay clear of Rooms 12 and 14. Visitors in those rooms have frequently reported an odd feeling of being held down in their beds by unseen hands. On the main floor, a gray figure has been seen climbing the main stairway and looking out an ocean facing window. And throughout the building there are reports of strange noises (such as eerie wailing and crying), and physical abnormalities like windows and doors opening and closing on their own.

Want to check it out for yourself? The inn is located at 21 Mechanic Street, Tenants Harbor, Maine. For information on rates, accommodations, and reservations you can contact them by phone: 207-372-6366   or e-mail: [email protected]

-Haunted Places to go Blog

-Haunted Places: The National Directory: Ghostly Abodes, Sacred Sites, UFO Landings, and Other Supernatural Locations – Dennis William Hauck

Fort Knox – Prospect, Maine

Located on the west bank of the Penobscot River in Prospect, Maine, in an area known as the Penobscot Narrows, Fort Knox is one of the best-preserved military fortifications on the New England seacoast. The fort has many unique architectural features, as well as a rich history behind its walls.

The fort, named for Major General Henry Knox, (America’s first Secretary of War, who was born in Boston but retired to Thomaston, Maine in 1796.) was established in 1844 to protect the Penobscot River Valley. The fort garrisoned its first troops from 1863 to 1866. These troops were mostly volunteers undergoing training before being sent to their active posts, and included members of the celebrated 20th Maine. Troops were also briefly stationed at the fort during the Spanish-American war in 1898, but never saw military action.

Despite the lack of reported deaths and military action, the fort is said to be haunted. Visitors to the fort have reported a sundry of paranormal experiences, such as feeling cold spots, being touched by unseen hands, seeing ghostly apparitions and strange lights, and hearing voices, laughter, and footsteps. The Fort has been featured on several paranormal TV shows (including SyFys Ghost Hunters and East Coast Ghost Trackers.) Investigators reported recording strange lights, unexplained thermal readings, and even a few EVPs.

Want to check it out for yourself? Fort Knox and the Penobscot Narrows Observatory (the tallest bridge observatory open to the public in the world!) are located at 740 Ft Knox Rd in Prospect, Maine. The Fort and Observatory are open May 1 – October 31. The grounds are open year-round. Feel free to call 207-469-6553 or email [email protected] for more information.

-Fort Knox Website –

-Legends of America Blog –

-Ghost Hunters Blog –

-ECGT’s investigation –

Goose River Bridge – Rockport, Maine

The Goose River Bridge located in Rockport Maine is said to be haunted by the spirit known by many as the “Pitcher Man.” As legend has it during the American Revolution, a man named William Richardson played his part in the war effort by either actively fighting in battle, or aiding American privateer Samuel Tucker (who stole a British ship) by guiding him safely away from the British forces. When the war ended in 1783, the town of Rockport (known as Goose River Village at the time) celebrated. Mr. Richardson (being very proud of the part he played) led the celebrations by rolling out the barrels of ale, passing around the pitchers, and making sure mugs were always full. At some point in the evening, after (more than) drinking his fill, William Richardson wandered away from the party and met his death by either falling over the bridge in a drunken stupor, or running into some Tories/British sympathizers, who having taken it as an insult when he offered them a toast in celebration of the end of the war, struck him on the head with the butt of a rifle and left him to die on the bridge.

It is believed that since his death the Goose River Bridge has been haunted by William Richardson’s ghost. Visitors claim to see a man with pitcher in hand (hence the name of “Pitcher Man”) wandering the bridge, offering ale to startled passersby, before disappearing into thin air. If you are driving, he may even thrust his ghostly pitcher of ale through your car window. By all accounts, Richardson’s ghost is said to be very friendly.

Want to check it out for yourself? The bridge that actually existed during the time that Mr. Richardson’s death supposedly took place is gone, but there are still visible marks of where it once stood. However, Richardson seems to be just as fond of the new bridge, which is located on Pascal Ave right off of Main St. in Rockport, Maine.

-New England Legends Podcast: In Episode 114, Jeff Belanger and Ray Auger travel to Rockport, Maine, to explore the haunting of the Goose River Bridge.

-Seeks Ghosts Blog Spot –

Maiden’s Cliff – Mount Megunticook – Camden, Maine

A huge white cross rises from the Maiden’s Cliff look-out (one of two rock-ledge look-outs) on Mount Megunticook in Camden Hills State Park. Below the cross, a plaque reads: “Elenora French: On May 7, 1864 this 12-year-old farmer’s daughter fell to her death from this cliff. According to legend she was here as a member of a Maying party and fell trying to catch her windblown hat. This cross was erected in her memory.”

According to the Lincolnville Historical Society’s records: On May 7th 1864, 12-year-old Elenora French, daughter of Deborah and Zaddock French of Lincolnville Beach, went ‘Maying’ (after Mayflowers) with her older sister, their teacher, and a young male friend. While no one can say for sure, it is believed that

as the small party were exploring, a gust of wind stole the little 12-year-old girl’s hat, and giving chase, she tumbled over the cliff’s edge in her attempt to catch it. No one even realized she had gone until they heard her screams. Sadly, Elenora did not survive the fall, and a cross was erected at the site to honor her short life.

Visitors of the cliff report overwhelming feelings of sadness and grief, seeing the apparition of a hat and sometimes even the young girl, chasing it and then plummeting off the cliff, and hearing screams carried on the wind.

Want to check it out for yourself? The Maiden’s Cliff trail is a moderate 1 mile out-and-back hike. (For hikers that would prefer a loop, the Scenic Trail [.8mi] can be added.) The hike is described as: quick, but steep and rocky. Please be sure to use caution on ledge and rock areas, especially in wet conditions. – The Maiden’s Cliff Parking Lot and Trailhead are located off of Turnpike Dr./ME Route 52 in Camden, Maine.

-New Center –

-Were Woofs Blog –

Nelly Butler – First documented haunting in the United States – Sullivan, Maine.

In the winter of 1799, in the small coastal town of Sullivan, Hancock County, Maine, began what is known as the first (and most) documented haunting in the United States. During this series of hauntings, numerous residents of the town claimed they saw and heard the ghost of Nelly Butler, a young woman who died three years before.

This phenomenon was recorded by the Rev. Abraham Cummings, a traveling preacher who believed the apparition was a spirit sent from heaven. Cummings collected 31 eyewitness testimonies from town residents, which he included in a book titled “Immortality Proved by the Testimony of Sense: In Which Is Considered the Doctrine of Spectres, and the Existence of a Particular Spectre.”

The story begins in the Blaisdell house near the rocky shore of Taunton Bay. It was in the cellar of that house where the ghost first appeared and most often took shape and spoke, according to testimonies recorded by Cummings. Claiming to be the spirit of Nelly Butler, the ghost sought to orchestrate the marriage of Nelly Butler’s former husband, 29-year-old George Butler, to Lydia Blaisdell, who was 15 years old at the time. Testimonies by members of the Blaisdell and Butler families, as well as Nelly’s family, the Hoopers, state the spirit was relentless, visiting multiple times and answering personal questions to prove its identity.

On May 28, 1800, Lydia and George were married on Butler Point. The next day, the ghost appeared and prophesied that Lydia would bear one child and die soon after. This prophecy, which came to fruition 10 months later, echoed the sad fate of Nelly Butler, who died of childbirth when she was 22 years old. Some in the town saw the prophecy as a sinister curse. Because of this and the meddling nature of the ghost, many suspected the apparition not to be Nelly Butle,r but a demonic spirit. Others thought the haunting to be a hoax and accused the Blaisdell family of tricking George Butler into marriage.

Want to check it out for yourself? Sadly, the house where Nelly appeared frequently no longer stands and the foundation is thought to be overgrown. (

-Marc LiBrizzi an English professor at the University of Maine at Machias along with Culter resident Dennis Boyd researched this haunting examining the original documents written by Cummings to co-write the book “The Nelly Butler Hauntings: A Documentary History ” Library of Early Maine Literature, 2010.-Bangor Daily News –

Old Narrow Gauge Volunteer Trail – Randolph, Maine.

According to the Bangor Daily News Lawrence “Larry” Farrell disappeared in fall 2004 at the age of 55.

Before his disappearance, Farrell lived with 64-year-old Norris Perry, who died by suicide in the winter of 2004 after leaving a voice message with his sister saying he had killed Farrell and that the body could be found in the brook behind their home. Maine state investigators used cadaver dogs and a backhoe to search for Farrell’s body for a month, but no traces of the man or his bicycle were ever found.

Today, it is believed that the trail is haunted by the ghost of “Bicycle Larry,” (so called because he was so often seen riding his bike around town.) Visitors of the trail report seeing orbs and spirits, along with hearing the sound of bicycle wheels and screams of “get out!”

Want to check it out for yourself? The Old Narrow Gauge Volunteer Trail starts beside Goggins IGA (in Randolph) on Route 27. The trail passes through a thin strip of woods with residential houses on either side, and then crosses busy Route 226 before entering a quieter, older forest. In addition to following the old railroad bed, the trail follows a brook.

-Bangor Daily News – &

-Anomalous Events Blog –

Pamola – Mount Katadin – Millinocket, Maine.

Located in Piscataquis County, Maine, Mount Katahdin (“The Greatest Mountain”) rises to a height of 5,267 feet. The central feature of Baxter State Park, Mount Katahdin is the tallest mountain in Maine and marks the northern terminus of the Appalachian Trail.

According to Penobscot (Panawahpskek) mythology Pamola, (also known as Pamolai, P-mol-a, Pomola, and Bmola) a legendary bird spirit, inhabits Mount Katahdin. Pamola is said to be the god of Thunder and protector of the mountain, who was master of cold weather, storms, and snow. He is described as having the head of a moose, the body of a man, and the wings and feet of an eagle. Pamola was both feared and respected, and his presence was one of the main reasons that climbing the mountain was considered taboo. The unpredictable wind, rain, snow, and thunder storms that seem to unexpectedly close in on the mountain’s peak is said to be Pamolai showing his displeasure at people climbing his mountain.

Want to check it out for yourself? Mount Katahdin is situated in Baxter State Park located at 64 Balsam Dr, Millinocket, ME 04462. Hiking Katahdin requires an elevation gain of around 4,000’.  This is a very strenuous climb no matter which trailhead you chose, and the average round trip time for a Katahdin hike is 8-12 hours. Please visit or for more information and planning tips.

-New World Encyclopedia –

-Ancient Origins –

Seguin Lighthouse – Seguin Island – Georgetown, Maine.

The tinkling of a ghostly piano fills the air at Seguin Lighthouse. After a while, the song becomes repetitive, the same melody over and over again. It’s annoying, but not something to get overly upset about, right?

There are 3 hauntings reported on the island, but the most well-known haunting is left behind by a tragic murder/suicide… As the myth goes, sometime in the 1800s a lighthouse keeper bought his wife a piano to pass the time. The instrument came with just one piece of sheet music, which she played repeatedly until the keeper went made and demolished first the piano, then her, and then himself with an axe. Now she is heard playing the piece eternally in death.

Ghostly going-ons isn’t the only thing that Seguin Island/The Seguin Lighthouse Station is known for! It has a long history dating all the way back to 1607, when on August 16, George Popham and Raleigh Gilbert anchored at the island before heading up the Kennebec River to Popham to form the Popham Colony. – Seguin Lighthouse was Maine’s first offshore lighthouse. It is the second-oldest lighthouse in Maine and has the only original Fresnel Lens in the state!

If you’d like to know more about the history, hauntings, or both of Sequin Island, keep an eye out for our up-coming on it!

Want to check it out for yourself? Maintained by Friends of Sequin Island Light Station (FOSILS), Sequin Island is on the Maine Island Trail ( and hosts 5 hiking trails, historical buildings, tram, museum, gift shop, and in-season tours of the tower. To find more information on traveling to Sequin Island, visit:

Lighthouse Friends –

The York Witch – Old Burying Yard – York, Maine

“Near the southwest corner of the old burying-ground is a grave, with head and foot stones, between which and lying on the grave is a large flat rock, as large as the grave itself. The inscription reads thus: – “Mary Nasson, wife of Samuel Nasson, died August 28, 1774, aged 29 years.” The writer of this, when a youth, living in York, was given to understand that this stone was placed there to keep down a witch that was buried beneath it.” (From: The Ancient City of Gorgeana and Modern Town of York (Maine) from Its Earliest Settlement: ‪Also Its Beaches and Summer Resorts (1894) by George Alexander Emery)

As the stone’s inscription implies, the “witch” buried in the Old Burying Yard is Mary Nasson (wife of Samuel Nasson) of Old York, Maine who passed August 28, 1774 at the age of 29. In life, Mary was a devoted wife, a loving mother, and a respected healer in the community, said to be skilled in both herbalism and in performing exorcisms. – Because of her knowledge in healing with plants and dispelling of dark inflictions Mary became known as the “White Witch.”

Mary’s grave is a unique one due to both its location in the cemetery and the stones adorning it. Her grave sits all by itself near a far corner of the cemetery; it is ornamented with both a finely made headstone (with a likeness of her carved onto the tympanum) and footstone, as well as slab that covers the area of the ground where Mary’s body was laid to rest. According to local legend the people of York placed the stone slab across the earth above her body in an attempt at keeping the “White Witch” from rising from her grave. (A more likely reason was that the slab was what is referred to as a “wolf stone” which was a stone placed over the body to prevent scavenging from animals.)

If the stone was placed there in an attempt to keep the witch from rising, it was unsuccessful. According to Joseph Citro’s book Weird New England: Your Guide to New England’s Local Legends and Best Kept Secrets, Mary’s ghost has reportedly been seen at a park close to the Old Burying Yard pushing local children on swings and giving them wildflowers.

Want to check it out for yourself? The Old York Cemetery Also known as Old Parish Cemetery and York Village Cemetery is located at the corner of Route 1a (York St) and Lindsay Rd in York Maine

-Deer Hoof and Rabbits Foot Blog –

-The Yankee Express –

Did you know about any of these Urban Legends/Hauntings? Which one was your favorite? Know of any we missed? Let us know in the comments!!