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The Bell Witch

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Author Topic: The Bell Witch  (Read 262 times)
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« on: April 09, 2007, 10:02:38 pm »

Betsy Bell’s engagement to a neighbour named Joshua Gardner was another focus of the invisible entity’s displeasure, and followed and taunted them whenever they were alone together, leading Betsy to break off the relationship on Easter Monday in 1821.

The disembodied voice continued to communicate its dislike of John Bell, and its intention to kill him. Bell was by then suffering frequent facial seizures, often rendering him speechless. The Bell family blamed John's affliction on the witch, but modern analysis of his symptoms indicates that he may have suffered from Bell's Palsy,[1][2] a paralysis of the facial muscles. The name "Bell's Palsy" comes from Charles Bell, the anatomist that discovered the condition. Charles Bell is no relation to the Bells of Adams, TN. The name is a coincidence, and Bell's Palsy was not identified until 1821, the year after John Bell's death.

John Bell died on December 20, 1820. A small vial containing an unidentified liquid he had apparently ingested was found near the body. When the remaining contents were fed to the family cat, the animal died immediately – at the family said later they heard a voice say "I gave Ol' John a big dose of that last night, and that fixed him." Later, at Bell’s burial, funeral guests reported hearing a voice laughing and singing.

Bell’s death signaled the end of the series of events, but Lucy Bell later said a voice told her that it would return in 1828. During a three-week visit that year, John Bell Jr. reported that a voice communicated with him, predicting such events as the American Civil War, the Great Depression and both World Wars.

According to legend, after the entity last appeared in 1828, it said it would return 107 years hence, in 1935.

Fitzhugh's relation of the Bell Witch legend concludes with a statement to the effect that many people believe that the spirit returned in 1935, took up residence on the former Bell property, and remains there to the present day. He notes that “the faint sounds of people talking and children playing can sometimes be heard in the area,” and asserts that it is “very difficult to take a good picture there.”
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