Friday, January 14, 2011

The Legend of Booger Hollow

Every town has its share of haunts. And everyone has their own version of the ghost stories of these haunts.

Following is an account of my personal dealings with a place in my hometown known as Booger Hollow.

Let me preface with some of the facts of Booger Hollow. Its real name is the Reeves-Askin Cemetery. It’s located off a rural road in southern Lamar County down, what appears to be, an old logging road.

There are 17 graves enclosed in a stone fence with wrought iron gate surrounding the final resting place of the Reeves and Askin families. The earliest legible stone in the graveyard is marked with a death date in 1850. The latest is 1947.

As a boy, I heard many tales from the locals of their trips out to Booger Hollow. The stories ranged from the appearance of a spectral woman in white to a hangman’s noose dangling from a tree limb dripping with blood.

My first trip to Booger Hollow came in the fall of my freshman year in high school. Three friends and football teammates and myself were going over to Jackson to see our next opponents, the hated Red Devils, play on our off Friday night.

It was mid-October and the conversation amongst us boys was about our unbeaten season so far and the upcoming Halloween. We were all just past trick-or-treat age but we still liked to hang out and would usually volunteer to take our younger siblings out so we could get first pick of their goods.

We talked of the carnivals and spook houses we’d visit and whether or not the local “witch” was really just that.

Finally we got around to Booger Hollow. None of us had ever been but we’d all heard the stories and we made it our mission to visit this place before we went home that night.

After the game, we headed back to town in anticipation of our pending journey to the hollow. None of us knew how to get there so we found a group of older guys hanging out and asked if they knew the way. Some of them did and told us but declined our invitation to go along with a resounding “No!”

So the four of us set out to see the hollow much like the four boys in the movie “Stand By Me” when they went on a quest to find the body of a dead boy. Except we had a car.

The night was cool and crisp with clear skies and a pre-harvest moon. Perfect for seeing an old cemetery in the middle of nowhere.

After a long ride down a winding country road, we came to the dirt logging road that we believed to be the one that led to our destiny.

We sat there a few minutes to see if any of us would chicken out and talk the others into just going home but we all seemed bound and determined to see this place and having our wits scared out of us.

Although none of us would admit it until later, we were all scared enough to soil ourselves as crept down this road to the hollow.

Finally we came to a clearing and saw the stone fence surrounding the old cemetery. We saw the eerie old tree next to the graveyard but no noose hung from it. We could make out the silhouettes of the tops of some of the grave markers with the headlights of the car.

Even though the moon was shining bright, it seemed pitch black dark in Booger Hollow.

We sat there silent for the longest time with windows cracked just listening. No one ever so much as even mentioned exiting the car to get a closer look.

We waited and waited for the woman in white or some other apparition to appear but nothing.

We finally started to head home as it was getting really late and most of us had parental curfew.

About a quarter of a mile down the road, we came upon a large limb in  the middle of the road. It was not there when we came in and we couldn’t drive over or around it. Someone had to move it.

Now remember, there were four high school varsity football players in that car and this should have been an easy task for us but no one wanted to get out of our safety zone.

It was finally decided that, since the car was a two-door and the guys in the back would impede progress if something happened and we had to quickly re-enter the vehicle, the two guys in the front seat would have to do the deed.

I just happened to be lucky enough to be riding shotgun.

So me and the driver reluctantly get out and approach the road block and give it a good heave. It was pretty heavy and not easy to move. The guys back in the car were cheering us on because they did not want to have to get out and help.

After a few minutes of pushing and pulling and lifting and cussing, we were just about ready to summon our compadres when, in the distance, we hear what sounds like a horse galloping.

The sound got closer and closer.

Now there were several farms in the area and this very well could have been a horse trotting along in a pasture, but to us it sounded like the headless horseman coming to get Ichabod Crane in Sleepy Hollow.

The fear of what we believed was about to happen to us kicked our adrenaline into high gear and we hoisted and heaved that tree limb out of the road way as if were just a toothpick.

We dove into the car and hauled it out of there, the driver having no regard for his beloved car or what damage the rough terrain of the old road might be doing to the undercarriage.

When we reached the main road, we all breathed a collective sigh of relief and began to talk about what we had just experienced. By the time we were being dropped off safely at home, we were all laughing about the whole ordeal and agreed that we couldn’t wait to go back.

We never did as a group. I’m not sure if any of them ever did or not.

I returned twice. Once at night with a different group of guys and once in the daylight to look at the grave markers. Both trips were uneventful.

I rode out there recently on my golf cart with my daughter to see if I could remember where it was. I found the road but it was gated and posted.

I hope to go back again someday soon with friends. Possibly the group that I went with that first time for a little reunion.

If any of you have any stories of Booger Hollow, feel free to share them in the comments section below. I'd love to read them.


  1. I am ashamed to say that I have never made a trek to Booger Hollow. I've spent plenty of time in Snot Valley with the two offspring of mine and that was scary enough.

    Keep up the good work! I'm enjoying reading your posts

  2. So you like to take groups of young boys to dark secluded places? Hmmmm. Are you thinking of running for congress?

  3. I was younger than the guys I went with so maybe they are "running for congress."