Sunday, October 29, 2006

A Texas Spooky Story for Halloween

You can't visit Waxahachie, Texas without bumping into the Ellis County Courthouse. A massive structure, built when cotton was king and this little city was the center of the cotton universe. Upon close inspection of this building, there are a series of intricately carved stone faces on each of the four porch capitals, ranging from the sublime to the grotesque. Legend has it that German itinerant stone carver Harry Herley fell in love with the local girl Mabel Frame, whose grandmother operated the boarding house where he resided while sculpting all the courthouse's exterior ornamentation. Herley loved Mabel Frame dearly, as goes the myth, but she did not return his love. The beautiful likenesses of Mabel portrayed on the stone porticoes soon turned into demons. Time and the dwindling love affair are portrayed as one walks around the courthouse. It is also said poor Herley went crazy from too many nights of carving these, and eventually went mad and died in 1899. Supposedly his spirit resides in the clock tower and wanders around banging up there at night. If he does I can assure you I won't be up there after to dark to disturb him.

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