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This page serves as a clearinghouse for the reader submissions I receive about The Bell Witch phenomenon. As I'm not an expert on the subject I cannot vouch for the veracity of the contents of reader submissions. The Story "The Bell Witch" haunted the Bell home in Tennessee in the early 1800s.
An artist's etching of the Bell home, originally published in 1894. The Bell Witch or Bell Witch Haunting is a purported poltergeist legend from Southern folklore , centered on the 19th century Bell family of Adams , Tennessee . Paranormal researchers [ who? ] have determined that there is no credibility in the "hauntings" and that the story is only folklore. [ citation needed ]
The most complete version of the Bell Witch story is contained in a book written by entitled: . This book was first published in 1894 and is the earliest and still the best account of the legend. The original 1894 edition appeared in a white cover; this original edition is extremely rare and is quite valuable. Even the Tennessee State Archives has lost its copy (undoubtedly stolen) of the 1894 edition. In 1961 a reprint was issued with a red cover.
Blankets were pulled from beds , family members were kicked and scratched and their hair pulled. Particularly tormented was young Elizabeth Bell, who was slapped, pinched, bruised and stuck with pins. At first, John Bell was determined to keep the events secret, but soon confided in a friend, who then formed an investigative committee. John Bell's friends soon learned that the strange force in the house had an eerie intelligence. It soon found a voice and from that day on was seldom silent. The spirit identified itself as the "witch" of Kate Batts, a neighbor of the Bell's, with whom John had experienced bad business dealings over some purchased slaves.
The events reported to have occurred at Adams Station between 1817 and 1820 are far more dramatic than any comparable haunting. An entity identified as Kate is said to have freely spoke with numerous people and to have killed John Bell.