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New England Legends Podcast

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Each week, folklorist, author, and historian Jeff Belanger and radio host Ray Auger explore the ghosts, monsters, folklore, history, and legends of New England. If you give us about ten minutes, we’ll give you something strange to talk about today. The bizarre is closer than you think!

Each week, folklorist, author, and historian Jeff Belanger and radio host Ray Auger explore the ghosts, monsters, folklore, history, and legends of New England. If you give us about ten minutes, we’ll give you something strange to talk about today. The bizarre is closer than you think!

Location:

United States

Description:

Each week, folklorist, author, and historian Jeff Belanger and radio host Ray Auger explore the ghosts, monsters, folklore, history, and legends of New England. If you give us about ten minutes, we’ll give you something strange to talk about today. The bizarre is closer than you think!

Language:

English

Contact:

6174449683


Episodes

The Legend of New England Legends

6/17/2021
In Episode 200, Jeff Belanger and Ray Auger break format just this once to present an audio documentary exploring the movement that has become the New England Legends television series, podcast, smart phone app, calendar, Facebook group, and family of people sharing weird legends from all over the northeastern United States. You get to hear from those behind the scenes and from a bunch of our legend seekers who called in.

Duration:00:40:47

The Witch of Pepperell

6/10/2021
In Episode 199, Jeff Belanger and Ray Auger search for the lost village of North Pepperell, Massachusetts. Once a bustling center of commerce back in the early 1800s, all that’s left today are a few cellar holes and former foundations sinking into the woods. The reason the village disappeared is because of a witch’s curse placed on the town after the locals drove out a peculiar old woman by branding her face.

Duration:00:12:12

The Ghost Who Built a Bridge in Burlington

6/3/2021
In Episode 198, Jeff Belanger and Ray Auger take a drive up Lakeside Avenue in Burlington, Vermont, searching for a train bridge built by a ghost. In June of 1900, Mary Blair was killed crossing the train tracks in front of the Queen City Cotton Mill. The event triggered a haunting that made the newspapers, with reports coming from inside the mill late at night, and out on the tracks where the accident occurred.

Duration:00:12:26

The Strange Legends of Mt. Moosilauke

5/27/2021
In Episode 197, Jeff Belanger and Ray Auger hike the Appalachian Trail up to Mt. Moosilauke near Benton in the White Mountains of New Hampshire, in search of three hikers who went missing in a ravine long ago, and an immortal mad doctor who abducts the unsuspecting to perform ungodly experiments.

Duration:00:14:34

The Haunted Homestead of Daniel Benton

5/20/2021
In Episode 196, Jeff Belanger and Ray Auger check out the haunted Daniel Benton Homestead in Tolland, Connecticut. This three-centuries-old home has seen a lot of human activity, but it was a tragic event that took place in the winter of 1777 between two star-crossed lovers caught between a war and a deadly virus that still haunts us today.

Duration:00:14:42

Nerve Tonic that Launched a War

5/13/2021
In Episode 195, Jeff Belanger and Ray Auger explore Union, Maine, tracing the steps of Dr. Augustin Thompson, a local man who developed a nerve tonic in 1876 that would eventually launch a war that continues to this day. After moving to Lowell, Massachusetts, Dr. Thompson added a key ingredient that turned his medicine into a New England staple, and eventually introduced the world to a new word that’s synonymous with guts, spunk, grit, and determination.

Duration:00:13:08

A Haunted House in Portsmouth

5/6/2021
In Episode 194, Jeff Belanger and Ray Auger head to Union Street in Portsmouth, Rhode Island, to search for the long-lost location of a haunted farmhouse that made the newspapers back in 1887. Though it was reported to be haunted before a tragic event left a final scar, after a child was lost inside, the building rotted away to nothing except a spooky story almost lost to the ages.

Duration:00:12:39

A Boston Book Bound in Human Skin

4/29/2021
In Episode 193, Jeff Belanger and Ray Auger explore the Boston Athenaeum in search of a rare book -- the 1837 memoirs and deathbed confession of thief and highwayman James Allen, alias George Walton (among others). Allen’s dying wish was to have one copy of the book bound in leather made from the skin of his own back. That one copy is embossed with the Latin: Hic Liber Waltonis Cute Compactus Est. - This book is bound in the skin of Walton.

Duration:00:21:42

The Monsters and Mysteries of Lake Willoughby

4/22/2021
In Episode 192, Jeff Belanger and Ray Auger dive into the legends of Lake Willoughby in Westmore, Vermont. From Devil’s Rock, to a giant serpent, to a mysteries underwater tunnel that may connect to another nearby lake, Willoughby is home to many strange legends. Devil’s Rock is still here, and we found newspaper articles related to the killing of the giant serpent, but could a descendant of that giant beast still be lurking in these cold waters?

Duration:00:11:53

The Ghost of Nancy Barton

4/15/2021
In Episode 191, Jeff Belanger and Ray Auger explore the woods around the Notchland Inn in Hart’s Location, in the White Mountains of New Hampshire, searching for the ghost of Nancy Barton. In the winter of 1788, Nancy left her boarding house in Jefferson, New Hampshire, to trek 30 miles through the snow to chase down her faithless lover who had stolen all of her money the previous morning. Not only are the nearby brook, pond, falls, and mountain named after her, but her ghost is still said...

Duration:00:11:34

A Witch, a Rock, and a Pirate’s Treasure

4/8/2021
In Episode 190, Jeff Belanger and Ray Auger hike into the woods of Kent, Connecticut, in search of Molly Fisher Rock, a boulder with strange petroglyphs, with ties to an old folk healer from the late 1700s, and a possible connection to a cursed pirate treasure of Captain Kidd.

Duration:00:15:00

The Slaying of Old Bet

4/1/2021
In Episode 189, Jeff Belanger and Ray Auger visit a memorial off the side of the road in Alfred, Maine, that marks the site where America’s first elephant was gunned down in cold blood back in 1816. The elephant named Old Bet had toured throughout New England for eight years before a jealous farmer named Daniel Davis gunned her down as she approached the town of Alfred. Old Bet was part of one of America’s earliest circuses, and if not for the tiny memorial along Route 4, her legend may be...

Duration:00:12:16

The Druid’s Chair and Witch’s Altar

3/25/2021
In Episode 188, Jeff Belanger and Ray Auger explore the woods of Narragansett, Rhode Island, in search of a strange configuration of stone monuments locals call the Druid’s chair and Witch’s Altar. In the 1880s, these monuments and the house across the street were built by eccentric Spiritualist Joseph Peace Hazard. Though Hazard built these structures, he would tell you the design was dictated by spirits, but for what purpose? He never knew.

Duration:00:13:32

A Banned Beard in Massachusetts

3/18/2021
In Episode 187, Jeff Belanger and Ray Auger head to Leominster, Massachusetts, in search of Joseph Palmer and Silas Lampson, two men who were persecuted and even jailed for wearing a beard in the 1830s. Though they were both devout Christians, they were attacked, mocked, and even accused of being in league with the devil, all for sporting facial hair. Though both men would live to see the times change, these non-conformists suffered due to the ugliest and most judgmental aspects to society.

Duration:00:13:58

The Demon Vampire of Manchester

3/11/2021
In Episode 186, Jeff Belanger and Ray Auger lurk the streets of downtown Manchester, Vermont, searching for a demon vampire. In 1793, the body of Consumption victim Rachel Harris Burton was exhumed after three years in the ground. Her vital organs were cut from her chest and burned in a nearby forge. Those ashes were then fed to Isaac Burton’s second wife, Hulda, in an effort to break the vampire’s spell. When there’s a plague, monsters are never far behind.

Duration:00:13:24

The Deerfield Booms

3/4/2021
In Episode 185, Jeff Belanger and Ray Auger head to Deerfield, New Hampshire, in search of a 175-year-old mystery thundering from below ground. Between 1834 and 1846, a series of explosions emanating from below ground were reported in the southern part of town. The sounds were as loud as cannon fire, and the concussion could knock over a stone wall. The only problem is no source was ever found, and earthquakes don’t behave this way. The events made the local papers for years. Scared locals...

Duration:00:20:12

The Strongest Man in New England

2/25/2021
In Episode 184, Jeff Belanger and Ray Auger don their gym shorts and pump some iron in Voluntown, Connecticut, while they search for Elmer Bitgood: the strongest man in New England. Bitgood kept himself in the newspapers between 1909 and 1916 by performing various feats of strength, including lifting 2600 pounds in front of reporters! But when you make bold claims, others will come gunning for you. Enter Bartello the Great for a potential showdown.

Duration:00:13:45

The Haunting of Nordica Auditorium

2/18/2021
In Episode 183, Jeff Belanger and Ray Auger explore the haunted Nordica Auditorium on the campus of the University of Maine, Farmington. Lillian Nordica was an opera singer from Farmington who rose to international fame in the 1880s. Unlucky at love, but adored by millions, she’s considered the first American Diva. They say her ghost can still be heard warming up in the auditorium named after her.

Duration:00:12:57

Should Have Been the Wife of Simeon Palmer

2/11/2021
In Episode 182, for Valentine’s Day, Jeff Belanger and Ray Auger visit a Little Compton, Rhode Island, cemetery in search of the grave of Elizabeth, whose epitaph reads: Should have been the wife of Simeon Palmer. Elizabeth died in 1776. Was her epitaph an indication that she’s still pining for Simeon, the guy who got away? Or is there something else behind the strange message?

Duration:00:12:38

The Haunted Schoolhouse

2/4/2021
In Episode 181, Jeff Belanger and Ray Auger stroll down Charles Street in Newburyport, Massachusetts, searching for a haunted schoolhouse. Back in 1870, the schoolhouse ghosts kept this building in the newspapers for years to come, drawing in the curious and the skeptical. Much was published on the details of this on-going haunting that rattled the students and the poor teacher.

Duration:00:13:57