Black Annie – The terrifying Boonville, legend of Indiana
Boonville, Indiana is home to one of the state of Indiana’s scariest ghost stories, Black Annie.
Growing up in Boonville, I have always heard of the legend of Black Annie in the woods of Scales Lake. I actually lived right by these woods throughout high school and hiked the trails quite often. However, walking in the woods at night was reserved for the brave at heart. Although it is a beautiful area, the legend of Black Annie was enough to terrify anyone who wandered through the woods.
How the legend of Black Annie began
historian of Boonville, Barbra meyer, detailed the spooky story of Black Annie de Boonville. The story goes back to the early 1900s, when a doctor named Travis D. Scales and his wife, Emma, built a two-story house deep in the woods that is now Scales Lake Park. He and his wife never had children, but they employed paid staff at home. One night the two went to town, and as they were gone, their house caught fire and burned down.
Rumor has it that one of the young girls they employed died in the house fire. According to Meyer, there are also rumors that the girl was murdered before the house was set on fire. The girl’s name is believed to be “Annie”.
Black Annie Hauntings Begin
The Scales sold this property to the state to create an area where families can boating and picnicking, hence the name “Scales Lake Park”. A few years after the fire, around 1920, the inhabitants of this region began to hear the terrifying cries of a woman coming from the depths of the woods. Authorities searched the area over and over again, but there was no sign of anyone in the woods. It’s quite strange, but the story gets even scarier.
In the 1930s people reported seeing a woman, dressed all in black from head to toe, walking along Old Tennyson Road. According to Meyer, her own stepfather had a direct encounter with the woman in black known as Black Annie. Meyer writes:
My stepfather, Buddy Meyer, was driving his old couple late one night after visiting his parents on Old Tennyson Road. As he was driving towards town, suddenly, out of the darkness, a figure clad in black jumped onto the footboard of his car. Just before he jumped, a blast of wind swept the long black veil and he could see that the figure had no face!
The legend continues …
Over the years, several sightings of Black Annie have been reported. Many people still claim to hear screams in the woods at night. Growing up and camping in Scales Lake, you were considered brave to walk one night in the woods in search of Black Annie. I ventured out in high school several times, but never saw anything. However, I have heard some scary stories about encounters my friends and family members have had in this area.
Black Annie has become a very popular legend in County Warrick. There is even a Black Annie Music Festival coming up to Scales Lake which will feature a haunted trail (which could actually really be haunted). But if you are one of those people who like to see things to believe them, you are more than welcome to try and spot Black Annie. All sightings have been reported in the same area, from the old cemetery to what was once called “McLemore Hill”. Venture into this district of Boonville at night … if you dare …
(H / T- Barbra meyer)
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