2019 Oak Level Road Halifax, Virginia 24558

434-476-2550

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We will not be having a Haunted Trail this year.

2008 Annual Halloween Carnival Saturday October 25th At the Station beginning at 5:00 PM.

 

 Story Of "Aunt Tabby"

When the Oak Level Volunteer Fire Department sponsors a haunted trail ride in October, you may be in for some REAL haunts.

The ride, located on the Anderson Plantation in the Oak Level vicinity, (better known of old as LickSkillet), will not only entertain you but also educate you on some local history.

The ride will be leading you to the Anderson plantation in route to the Anderson homeplace, the home of Tabaitha Whitworth, better known as "Aunt Tabby" the Oak Level witch.

Aunt Tabby was born in 1810, and was raised on the plantation. She would later marry John Anderson in 1830 and have a son, Joe. They owned and lived on the large plantation in the Oak Level area. Her son Joe would grow up and be drafted into war. He was not pleased by this and did not show up before the board. He concealed himself in a gully behind the house and Aunt Tabby, feeling quite ashamed of the fact that her son did not want to serve, told officials when they arrived at her home as to the location of her son.

When they brought him back, he cursed his mother and stated he would haunt her to her dying day, if he should perish in battle. Joe in fact did die in the Civil War, in the Seven Days Battle around Richmond in June of 1862. He succumbed to infection after losing a leg in the battle.

Shortly after his death, strange things began to occur at the Anderson home. Aunt Tabby then decided she must go retrieve the body of her dead son to bury him at the homeplace.

When the family arrived, officials advised them where to dig and to look for the man without a leg. They dug up three bodies before finding one that was missing a leg. She then brought the body home and buried it in the Anderson Cemetery. She planted a Red Bud tree in the middle of his grave which represented blood and tears and every year when it bloomed, it was said to have dropped real blood from its' leaves.

Around this same time the people of Oak Level witnessed some very strange occurrences. Large rocks would fall on top of the house and then objects would appear underneath the doors. The cupboard doors would open and shut at intervals and the furniture would move around the room. The door leading upstairs would open and shut at intervals on its' own and was actually witnessed by an Oak Level man.

Washing would fly off the line and blow into the trees with no wind blowing. Heavy chains could be heard dragging across the loft floor with no one upstairs. Joe's clothes would fly out of the trunk, out the window and into a nearby tree. Hunters beware to this day if you treasure your dogs. The dogs have been known to tree something and then return to their masters as if they have been whipped.

 

Aunt Tabby was said to have a little slave girl who was killed after the plow horses broke free and drug her to death. To this day, they say you can see the little girl walking with a lantern in the fields on the plantation, only to fade from sight as you approach.

Farmers who have farmed Aunt Tabby's land in the later years would put their horses in the stable with the doors fastened tightly at night. In the morning, they would find the doors still locked and the horses inside wet with lather and their manes and tails tied in witches' knots. The farmers would say, "Oh well I guess Aunt Tabby's been riding again."

When Aunt Tabby was hungry, she is said to have enjoyed ham and would wish for it and a ham would appear in the cupboard upon the doors being opened. One day when she was out walking with a friend, a chilly breeze began to stir, she wished for her shawl...and the shawl appeared and wrapped around her shoulders.

 

On September 14th, 1886,Aunt Tabby's husband died and was buried in the Anderson Cemetery. Later Aunt Tabby would be frying food in a pan over the fire and nails would fall into the pan. She would remove the nails and place them on the mantle. Soon the nails would disappear.

Aunt Tabby died on August 8th, 1887 and was buried with her son and husband in the Anderson Cemetery. Some hunters have been brave enough to hunt the land at night and the dogs would tree something. Upon their arrival, there would be nothing in the tree to find.

The people of Oak Level still have great respect for Aunt Tabby, the Oak Level Witch, and pass down the legends of the Anderson Homeplace to their children.

The Fire Department would like to thank the local citizens of the Oak Level community for sharing this information and helping with this fundraising project and we hope to see y'all there!

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GOD BLESS AMERICA

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