The Eerie Story of Vermont’s Own Bermuda Triangle
If you find the story of the Bermuda Triangle to be interesting, you may be interested and surprised to hear that Vermont had some eerie similarities years ago.
Between 1945 and 1950, five people mysteriously disappeared in the area of southwestern Vermont around Bennington and Glastenbury Mountain. According to The Vermonter.com, this area, coined the "Bennington Triangle" by author Joseph A. Citro in 1992, had murmurings of strange occurrences long before this string of disappearances.
First up were the disappearances in November 1945. According to Wikipedia, 74-year-old Middie Rivers was out hunting with friends. He separated from them, saying he would return soon. He was never seen again, even after extensive searching.
Then on December 1, 1946, 18-year-old Bennington College student Paula Welden went for a hike along the Long Trail. She, too, disappeared. Despite an extensive search, including the FBI and a $5,000 reward, no trace of her was ever found.
Exactly three years later, on December 1, 1949, 68-year-old James Tedford, a WWI veteran, vanished during a bus ride back to Bennington after visiting family. The bus arrived in Bennington with his belongings still on board, but he was never heard from again.
8-year-old Paul Jepson was left alone in the family truck in October, 1950 while his mother went to feed their pigs. When she returned, Paul was gone. Again, an extensive search found nothing and Paul was never found.
Just two weeks after little Paul disappeared, 53-year-old Frieda Langer was out hiking with family when she fell into a stream. All wet, she told her family she was returning to camp to change into dry clothes. She never made it back to camp. It wasn't until May of 1951 that her body was found in a river, three miles from where she was last seen.
According to Ripley's, in 1943, two years before the disappearance of Maddie Rivers, the body of another hunter, Carol Herrick, was found in the woods. It is said he had been squeezed to death and his body was surrounded by huge footprints. His death was blamed on the "Bennington Monster", a Bigfoot-like creature known to terrorize locals.
The earliest reported sighting of the Bennington Monster was in the early 1800s
when a stagecoach was attacked by a giant creature described as large, hairy, and over six feet tall.
Ripley's also stated that Glastenbury Mountain itself has ancient mysteries of its own. Native Americans felt the mountain was both sacred and cursed. They told stories of a "man-eating" stone. If a person stood on the stone, it would swallow them up and they would simply disappear. No living soul has ever seen the stone.
According to Homespun Haints, stories abound of a "demon-door" to another dimension, UFO sightings and abductions, and even the story of Henry McDowell, who, after going mad in 1892, murdered one John Cowell. He escaped, and folklore holds that he never died and continues to roam the mountain to this day.
According to Legends of America, there are large, ancient, pre-colonial stone cairns near the top of Glastenbury Mountain. Built by Native Americans hundreds of years ago, their purpose is lost to time, but they stand as sentinels to a place that has long been considered cursed, evil, and supernatural.
Although there haven't been any additional missing people reported since 1950, Glastenbury Mountain still has lots of hikers having second thoughts on exploring, especially when hiking alone.
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