History & Legend

The Bell Witch is an American legend centered on the 19th-century Bell family of northwest Robertson County, Tennessee.

Widely considered by ghost hunters and paranormal investigators as America’s most haunted location, the story of the Bell Family dates back to 1804. John Bell moved his wife, Lucy and their children from North Carolina to Robertson County, Tennessee where he purchased 320 acres of farmland along the Red River. The family lived a peaceful life for 13 years, but in the summer of 1817, the family would experience things that would change their lives forever. What started as seeing strange animals on the farm led to hearing eerie sounds in their cabin. Several accounts varied on who or what was causing the disturbances or why they were tormenting the Bell family. The sounds the family heard escalated to a voice speaking directly to them until it could be heard in every room of the house while especially terrorizing John’s youngest daughter Betsy with beatings that left her unconscious. The notoriety of this unseen force spread throughout the countryside and left the Bell family with people camping out on their farm by the hundreds, hoping to witness this strange phenomenon. This “Bell Witch” as it became known vowed to kill John Bell, and subsequently took credit for his death three years later on December 20, 1820, when a vial was found next to his deathbed with a strange liquid inside. John Bell’s death was attributed to the Bell Witch making Tennessee the only state to recognize a person’s death to the supernatural. The Bell Witch was also known for her accurate predictions of the future and her vows to John Bell’s children of her return in future years. Did the Bell Witch return? Or did it never leave? We will let you decide! 


Legend Of The Bell Witch

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Tennessee Historic Site - Bell Witch Cave & Farm

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