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What was the Bell witch?

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posted on Jul, 4 2020 @ 05:21 PM
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Greetings fellow Mulders and Scullys, and to all of the ghostbusters out there please don't cross the streams.

Now many of you would be familiar with the story of the Bell witch, many may not, however no one has read cakes' view, which could go anywhere. In 1804 John Bell tied a brown onion to his belt-which was the style at the time-and purchased a three hundred acreage in Adams, Tennessee. It was a seemingly a nice place at the start, but what would follow would prove so intriguing it garnered the attention of a very important person.

This is the charming abode in question. where the horrors began.


It was named 'teen slasher film location'

So now things start to get strange. After settling down a bizarre set of occurrences started, you would think it's just a run of the mill poltergeist story; general nuisance like scratching, rattling, psychokinesis, then a skinwalker might have made a cameo



Before too long, a critter showed up that they couldn’t identify. It was described as half-dog, half-rabbit, and it definitely didn’t belong there.


Now applying occam's razor misidentification is a normal thing which we do at least once in our lives, but what would follow was apparently not the case. There were voices that grew in intensity, which were mainly insults and violence directed at John. He was pelted with stones that came out of nowhere, his family were also targeted as well




Elizabeth Bell, the daughter of John Bell, received the worst of the abuse and was slapped and pinched until her body was covered in bruises. John Bell decided at first to keep the strange events quiet. Eventually, he confided in a friend and a committee was formed to investigate the strange happenings.

The spirit identified herself as Kate Batts, a neighbor of the Bells with whom John Bell has some bad business dealings. The ghost quickly became known as “Kate.”


Bubble bubble toil and trouble. Was this a curse placed on the Bell's because of a shady dealing with a witch? however there is another weird twist, apparently this witch didn't approve of John Bells daughter Betsy's upcoming nuptials



Over time, Betsy Bell became interested in Joshua Gardner, a young man who lived not far from her. With the blessing of their parents, they decided to marry. Everyone was happy about their engagement. Well, almost everyone. The entity, for reasons unknown to this day, repeatedly told Betsy not to marry Joshua Gardner.


However 'Kate' apparently was a match maker, as she gave some what appears to be very insightful marriage advice.



Betsy and Joshua's former schoolteacher, Richard Powell, had been noticeably interested in Betsy for some time and had expressed interest in marrying her when she became older. By some accounts, Powell, who was eleven years Betsy's senior, was a student of the occult, although it has not been proved.


Now that's an interesting insight, but however we must remember the puritans, who would burn you at the stake if you ate a pineapple, but it is still and a nice twist or a fascinating coincidence. Now we enter stage left with the Very Important Person that i mentioned earlier, who looked into the case, a former general and soon to become the 7th US president, Andrew Jackson.

Bell's sons served under Jackson so hearing of this news he rode out with a few men to inspect the situation, and apparently this happened




Part of the folklore says that on his way to the Bell farm, Jackson said he did not believe in ghosts, at which point the wheels of his carriage fell off for no logical reason.

Another version said Jackson's carriage stopped in road and refused to move until Jackson exclaimed "By the eternal, boys, it is the witch." To which, the witch replied "All right General, let the wagon move on, I will see you again tonight."

Once Jackson and his entourage arrived in Adams, they were treated to the ghost in full force. She recited prayers, imitated people, argued meanings of the Bible and even beat up a self-proclaimed "witch killer." The spirit told Jackson that she would "uncover another rascal" the next night, but they chose to leave instead.


Now there are campfire stories, and there are not. The good thing about mysteries is it makes you think, so what do you think?





posted on Jul, 4 2020 @ 05:30 PM
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a reply to: Thecakeisalie

Thanks for the cool read.

S & F



posted on Jul, 4 2020 @ 06:13 PM
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a reply to: Thecakeisalie

The kind of thread we need to keep things rolling on ATS.


edit on 4-7-2020 by Trueman because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 4 2020 @ 09:08 PM
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Wife knows the whole story and we stopped there to do a tour last year, but it was closed.



posted on Jul, 4 2020 @ 10:00 PM
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i don't know anything about any of this old timey stuff but i can tell you for sure that Mirror Reaper is an incredible record if an 84 minute long funereal dirge is your sort of thing



posted on Jul, 4 2020 @ 10:36 PM
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originally posted by: Thecakeisalie
Greetings fellow Mulders and Scullys, and to all of the ghostbusters out there please don't cross the streams.

Now many of you would be familiar with the story of the Bell witch, many may not, however no one has read cakes' view, which could go anywhere. In 1804 John Bell tied a brown onion to his belt-which was the style at the time-and purchased a three hundred acreage in Adams, Tennessee. It was a seemingly a nice place at the start, but what would follow would prove so intriguing it garnered the attention of a very important person.

This is the charming abode in question. where the horrors began.


It was named 'teen slasher film location'

If you’re from Tennessee, you know of the Bell Witch. I’m 67 and learned of it as a young child. Someday I’ll share my story of Granny Susong and the “lying rings”.

So now things start to get strange. After settling down a bizarre set of occurrences started, you would think it's just a run of the mill poltergeist story; general nuisance like scratching, rattling, psychokinesis, then a skinwalker might have made a cameo



Before too long, a critter showed up that they couldn’t identify. It was described as half-dog, half-rabbit, and it definitely didn’t belong there.


Now applying occam's razor misidentification is a normal thing which we do at least once in our lives, but what would follow was apparently not the case. There were voices that grew in intensity, which were mainly insults and violence directed at John. He was pelted with stones that came out of nowhere, his family were also targeted as well




Elizabeth Bell, the daughter of John Bell, received the worst of the abuse and was slapped and pinched until her body was covered in bruises. John Bell decided at first to keep the strange events quiet. Eventually, he confided in a friend and a committee was formed to investigate the strange happenings.

The spirit identified herself as Kate Batts, a neighbor of the Bells with whom John Bell has some bad business dealings. The ghost quickly became known as “Kate.”


Bubble bubble toil and trouble. Was this a curse placed on the Bell's because of a shady dealing with a witch? however there is another weird twist, apparently this witch didn't approve of John Bells daughter Betsy's upcoming nuptials



Over time, Betsy Bell became interested in Joshua Gardner, a young man who lived not far from her. With the blessing of their parents, they decided to marry. Everyone was happy about their engagement. Well, almost everyone. The entity, for reasons unknown to this day, repeatedly told Betsy not to marry Joshua Gardner.


However 'Kate' apparently was a match maker, as she gave some what appears to be very insightful marriage advice.



Betsy and Joshua's former schoolteacher, Richard Powell, had been noticeably interested in Betsy for some time and had expressed interest in marrying her when she became older. By some accounts, Powell, who was eleven years Betsy's senior, was a student of the occult, although it has not been proved.


Now that's an interesting insight, but however we must remember the puritans, who would burn you at the stake if you ate a pineapple, but it is still and a nice twist or a fascinating coincidence. Now we enter stage left with the Very Important Person that i mentioned earlier, who looked into the case, a former general and soon to become the 7th US president, Andrew Jackson.

Bell's sons served under Jackson so hearing of this news he rode out with a few men to inspect the situation, and apparently this happened




Part of the folklore says that on his way to the Bell farm, Jackson said he did not believe in ghosts, at which point the wheels of his carriage fell off for no logical reason.

Another version said Jackson's carriage stopped in road and refused to move until Jackson exclaimed "By the eternal, boys, it is the witch." To which, the witch replied "All right General, let the wagon move on, I will see you again tonight."

Once Jackson and his entourage arrived in Adams, they were treated to the ghost in full force. She recited prayers, imitated people, argued meanings of the Bible and even beat up a self-proclaimed "witch killer." The spirit told Jackson that she would "uncover another rascal" the next night, but they chose to leave instead.


Now there are campfire stories, and there are not. The good thing about mysteries is it makes you think, so what do you think?



If you’re from Tennessee, you know about the Bell Witch. I’m 67 and heard about it as a young child. Sometime I will share the story of Granny Susong and “the lie with rings”. Happened to me and my future wife...spookiest event of my life—-in close competition with the ghosts at Snake River Lodge in Taos, NM.













edit on 4-7-2020 by azvol because: Omitted info.



posted on Jul, 4 2020 @ 11:38 PM
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a reply to: Thecakeisalie

I think the Bell Witch started the same way the Salem Witch started. It was superstitious gossip stemming from some bad blood between neighbors.

John Bell had a few legal issues with various neighbors which started quite a bit of gossip. He hosted church at his home and there are records where he tried to head off some local gossip regarding a broken contract with the Batts family who didn't even attend his church. This probably started more gossip especially because his wife attended a different church as well. At some point around a year after this happened John Bell was censured by his church and stopped attending which probably didn't help the gossip.

The timing of Betsy being involved also is suspect because she was 11 when this started and no where near courting age. It was several years after her father's death that she married Powell.

I think this was nothing more than a game of telephone, local gossip, and pass the blame which over the years has taken on more life than it ever had in 1820.


edit on 5-7-2020 by Identified because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 4 2020 @ 11:46 PM
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Sometime I will share the story of Granny Susong and “the lie with rings”. Happened to me and my future wife...spookiest event of my life—-in close competition with the ghosts at Snake River Lodge in Taos, NM.



Hope to hear about it here sometime.



posted on Jul, 5 2020 @ 12:14 AM
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a reply to: Thecakeisalie




Very Important Person that i mentioned earlier, who looked into the case, a former general and soon to become the 7th US president, Andrew Jackson.


Old Hickory was an important person for sure; took great pride in the extermination and genocide of 5 - 20 million Americans, those who were here before and well understood the nature of what the white man called a witch, those Native Americans.

Too bad that important person — along with small pox provided free-of-charge — robbed the family an opportunity to accept, and possibly live with, an understanding already provided vis-a-vis Americans had understood for centuries.



posted on Jul, 5 2020 @ 02:33 AM
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Star and flag for you sir, you brought a much needed thread to ATS, and a tear to my eye.. We don't get good threads like this anymore on here. Most on here are political bashers, or nay sayers, this site aint what it used to be... Me personally have a theory on the Bell witch. wondering if its not like something at Skinwalker ranch messing with them in a certain area.



posted on Jul, 5 2020 @ 08:08 AM
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a reply to: Identified

Hmmm..good point, chinese whispers could be at play, purple monkey dishwasher.



posted on Jul, 5 2020 @ 12:12 PM
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"tied a brown onion to his belt-which was the style at the time"

I got a Simpsons flashback for some reason. lol

Interesting read any way. My money is on mis-identification for most things or mental illness.
Main problem is humans used to expose themselves to some pretty bad stuff in the 'good old days', not just onions on belts.

I wonder how many toxic things contributed to many of the stories we have heard from times past. I mean it wasn't that long ago people were drinking irradiated water as a health/vitality aid. Lead paint. Ingesting arsenic.
That's without all the religious and superstitious nonsense that was still rampant back in those days that no doubt had an effect on peoples states of minds. (and sadly some are still like that in modern times)

But yeah, 200+ years ago I can imagine many believing it if some eccentric old crone told them they were a witch and they had put a curse on them or something, unlike in 2020 where most people would laugh at such statements.

Then there's things like rats and possums in walls. Gotta keep the era, lifestyle and mindset of the time in mind when dwelling on such matters.

This is why I would love a time machine. Go back and see for myself. Probably find a rat nest in the wall, radon gas in the basement and lead paint on everything.
Lead poisoning can cause neurological changes.

So much more to investigate and look at around such cases than just the story told.
edit on 5-7-2020 by AtomicKangaroo because: typo



posted on Jul, 5 2020 @ 02:58 PM
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I don't live far from Adams, TN. I've actually been wanting to visit specifically for the purpose of checking out the Bell Witch lore, but to check the place out you have to pay to take a tour.

The people that run the place don't take kindly to independent investigators I suppose.

And I was told they're not doing tours at the moment.

Ya know what? I'll head up there and see what I can do regardless.
edit on 572020 by AutomateThis1 because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 5 2020 @ 06:36 PM
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Interesting reading. About 20 years ago my son became interested in the Bell witch story. He and his friends traveled the 200 miles Or so, to Adams Tennessee to study the phenomenon. I expect this was more a trip to go camping, drinking and chasing frightened college girls, than to do any real study of poltergeist.

It is a story with everything, a ghost, a skin walker, accusations of a witch, a schoolteacher trying to sleep with a student, A frightful young girl, and a President. What could go wrong? You could rip this one straight from todays pages of Yahoo news.

Perhaps if John Bell and Old Hickory had consulted a real witch, perhaps a Cherokee witch woman for help, then the Bell family could have had some peace. Unfortunately by then Jackson was trying to exterminate all of the Cherokee. May he rot in white man’s hell.

You see, I know the current Bell family, Jon Bell is a friend of mine. Jon is a big, strong, tuff guy, but 200 years later he and his brothers are still afraid of the dark. Normally I could make a suggestion of a helpful, witchy acquaintance of mine, but Jon being a strong member of the methodist faith would have none of it.

The Bell witch is probably more like. The Bell Skin-walker as the similarities between the two stories are strong even the native Americans connection. There is also a strong connection of haunting to the Wife, daughter, grand daughter, great grand daughter throughout time. I have heard that a Skin walker may follow you home. My son was having troubles and we preformed a sage and salt ceremony at his home and it seemed to help him immensely.


Perhaps next time we meet for drinks, I’ll bring up to Jon, the story again and offer him a life line from the dark side. The mind is a powerful thing.



posted on Jul, 6 2020 @ 02:58 AM
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a reply to: AutomateThis1

Please let us know how it goes.



posted on Jul, 6 2020 @ 08:17 PM
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I used to live 25 miles from there and have been to the property.

I don't know that I believe in her but I believe something is happening to the family as recently as 30 years ago. People of reputation have reported incidents including the local University I attended 50 miles south of there.





originally posted by: Thecakeisalie
Greetings fellow Mulders and Scullys, and to all of the ghostbusters out there please don't cross the streams.

Now many of you would be familiar with the story of the Bell witch, many may not, however no one has read cakes' view, which could go anywhere. In 1804 John Bell tied a brown onion to his belt-which was the style at the time-and purchased a three hundred acreage in Adams, Tennessee. It was a seemingly a nice place at the start, but what would follow would prove so intriguing it garnered the attention of a very important person.

This is the charming abode in question. where the horrors began.


It was named 'teen slasher film location'

So now things start to get strange. After settling down a bizarre set of occurrences started, you would think it's just a run of the mill poltergeist story; general nuisance like scratching, rattling, psychokinesis, then a skinwalker might have made a cameo



Before too long, a critter showed up that they couldn’t identify. It was described as half-dog, half-rabbit, and it definitely didn’t belong there.


Now applying occam's razor misidentification is a normal thing which we do at least once in our lives, but what would follow was apparently not the case. There were voices that grew in intensity, which were mainly insults and violence directed at John. He was pelted with stones that came out of nowhere, his family were also targeted as well




Elizabeth Bell, the daughter of John Bell, received the worst of the abuse and was slapped and pinched until her body was covered in bruises. John Bell decided at first to keep the strange events quiet. Eventually, he confided in a friend and a committee was formed to investigate the strange happenings.

The spirit identified herself as Kate Batts, a neighbor of the Bells with whom John Bell has some bad business dealings. The ghost quickly became known as “Kate.”


Bubble bubble toil and trouble. Was this a curse placed on the Bell's because of a shady dealing with a witch? however there is another weird twist, apparently this witch didn't approve of John Bells daughter Betsy's upcoming nuptials



Over time, Betsy Bell became interested in Joshua Gardner, a young man who lived not far from her. With the blessing of their parents, they decided to marry. Everyone was happy about their engagement. Well, almost everyone. The entity, for reasons unknown to this day, repeatedly told Betsy not to marry Joshua Gardner.


However 'Kate' apparently was a match maker, as she gave some what appears to be very insightful marriage advice.



Betsy and Joshua's former schoolteacher, Richard Powell, had been noticeably interested in Betsy for some time and had expressed interest in marrying her when she became older. By some accounts, Powell, who was eleven years Betsy's senior, was a student of the occult, although it has not been proved.


Now that's an interesting insight, but however we must remember the puritans, who would burn you at the stake if you ate a pineapple, but it is still and a nice twist or a fascinating coincidence. Now we enter stage left with the Very Important Person that i mentioned earlier, who looked into the case, a former general and soon to become the 7th US president, Andrew Jackson.

Bell's sons served under Jackson so hearing of this news he rode out with a few men to inspect the situation, and apparently this happened




Part of the folklore says that on his way to the Bell farm, Jackson said he did not believe in ghosts, at which point the wheels of his carriage fell off for no logical reason.

Another version said Jackson's carriage stopped in road and refused to move until Jackson exclaimed "By the eternal, boys, it is the witch." To which, the witch replied "All right General, let the wagon move on, I will see you again tonight."

Once Jackson and his entourage arrived in Adams, they were treated to the ghost in full force. She recited prayers, imitated people, argued meanings of the Bible and even beat up a self-proclaimed "witch killer." The spirit told Jackson that she would "uncover another rascal" the next night, but they chose to leave instead.


Now there are campfire stories, and there are not. The good thing about mysteries is it makes you think, so what do you think?

















posted on Jul, 6 2020 @ 08:52 PM
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The story seems to be right out of a Stephen King book and if was real then I would not have wanted to be within 300 miles of it as it occurred. I would guess that by now whatever was there is probably gone. I do believe that with the power of minds and so many unknowns there are places that will draw evil to them although I am not sure why. Past debts and pain most likely when someone has wronged someone. Be careful what you wish for. Creepy stuff bad mmmmmk .



posted on Jul, 6 2020 @ 09:26 PM
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Where did you learn history? You should know it wasn't even Jackson who sent them on the Trial of Tears. He did discuss it as necessary since Indian leader Tecumseh sent 10 of thousands of warriors to their death supporting the Brits in the war of 1812. Thus making it unsafe for any non Indian in the entire United States.

Had Jackson not fought the British with a volunteer Army of ALL RACES and creeds, at Pensacola, Mobile and New Orleans from 1812 to 1813 there would have been no USA to stop Hitler. Same thing if Lincoln didn't refuse to accept the South seceding.


originally posted by: Cravens
a reply to: Thecakeisalie




Very Important Person that i mentioned earlier, who looked into the case, a former general and soon to become the 7th US president, Andrew Jackson.


Old Hickory was an important person for sure; took great pride in the extermination and genocide of 5 - 20 million Americans, those who were here before and well understood the nature of what the white man called a witch, those Native Americans.

Too bad that important person — along with small pox provided free-of-charge — robbed the family an opportunity to accept, and possibly live with, an understanding already provided vis-a-vis Americans had understood for centuries.




posted on Jul, 6 2020 @ 11:15 PM
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I grew up in Middle Tennessee listening to the Bell Witch story. We used to have a copy of the "Red Book" by John M.V. Ingram laying around the house. Stories of haunts and haints and wampus kitties were common. Not hard to do when seeing Fox Fire in the woods on long dark nights, or knowing that Civil War battles went through your backyard.
I gave a talk about the Bell Witch several years ago to the London Ghost Club. Did quite a bit of research on it. What I think happened was they did have a poltergeist case. With the usual hair pullings, objects being moved around, scratching noises, apports, That's when small objects appear or are thrown from nowhere. Other common elements the case has with others is large Animals appearing like Black Dogs etc. Similar to what happened on the SkinWalker ranch.
As far as the talking goes I'm not so sure about that. The only other case of a poltergeist talking is with Gef the talking mongoose case in 1930s on the Isle of man. There is no historical proof that Andrew Jackson visited the Bell Farm. If he had I'm sure it would have made the local papers at the time.
I think what happened was more and more outlandish claims were laid onto the story as the years went on. Compare the Bell Witch case to other poltergeist cases and find the common elements and you may start to get an idea of what actually happened.


. a reply to: Thecakeisalie


edit on 6-7-2020 by mash3d because: Spelling



posted on Jul, 7 2020 @ 02:24 AM
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originally posted by: AtomicKangaroo
a reply to: AutomateThis1

Please let us know how it goes.


I will. I'm planning on going during the day to scope it out. I'm not too keen on trespassing, so I'll scope what I can, and see if I can get in touch with the people who own the land to get a closer look if I'm lucky.

I do not do night time investigations solo as there is an increased chance of danger even from non-paranormal sources. If I could get a small group of people to tag along with the permission of the owners that would be great.

Ideally I would like to do investigations when no one knows that I'm going to be there as that allows for a lowered chance of people trying to stage paranormal activity, but I would only do that at abandoned or remote locations.

Regardless, I'll take photos and videos and share what happens. It'll probably be next month though. I'm still busy helping my dad finish his new shop, and that takes priority.

If ATS is shutdown by then I'll probably be posting it over at RN3.




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