Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Witch of Winnsboro Courthouse

In the warm humid air of South Carolina in 1792, a plague of sorts shook the residents of Fairfield County.  Many folks were thought to be possessed and at the same time herds of cattle began to fall ill.  People began to suspect that a local band of Gifted Brethen were behind it all.  They were known to use hypnosis and entertain unorthodox customs.  Among them, was a well respected German immigrant named Mary Ingleman.  She as well as a few of her brethren friends were accused of witchery.

The Fairfield County Courthouse in Winnsboro, South Carolina is said to be haunted by the ghost of Mary Ingleman, known as the Witch of Winnsboro Courthouse.

Mary and the others were put on trial, if you could call it that.  It did not take place in any courthouse or local with authorities, but in a barn of a local farmer, Thomas Hill.  The accused were put on trial by their neighbors.  One even accused Mary of turning him into a horse.  Something which may seem like it is right out of a scene from Monty Python and the Holy Grail. Mary and her friends were of course found guilty and they were severely beaten and had their feet burned by the locals.

After the incident, Mary Ingleman reported those who beat and tortured her to the authorities.  Those who did the actual beating were put on trial and were found guilty.  However, they received nothing more than a slap on the wrist.  Mary was furious and protested to the authorities that justice was not done and never forgave her neighbors for what they had done.  It is said to this day the ghost of Mary Ingleman can be seen on occasion sitting on the steps of the courthouse, continuing her protest for justice into the after world.  She is affectionately know to those who have seen her as The Witch of Winnsboro Courthouse.

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