Virginia Stories and Tips

Old House Woods

There isn't a great deal in Matthews County now except woods. Or, at least, that's how it appears when you're driving through there. It's hard to imagine it as the bustling port it was during the pre- Revolutionary, Revolutionary and Civil War eras. According to locals, you don't have to use much imagination to catch glimpses of Matthews County history. The ghosts and other strange apparitions take care of that. It is more reportedly haunted than anywhere else in Virginia I've heard of, with the exception, perhaps, of Beaver Dam Creek Battlefield.

Tales of buried treasure and sights of the wood ablaze with lanterns of diggers abound. It is said that it's the ghost of a band of pirates who landed here. According to the legend, they buried their treasure in the woods and set out to acquire more. They were killed in a storm before they could ever retrieve it. Perhaps theirs is the phantom ship reputedly seen both in the woods and in nearby White's Creek.

Another story possible source for the diggers with lanterns is one that takes place after the Battle of Worcester in 1651. At this time, Charles II of England was going to move Virginia. He sent chests of money to Jamestown in preparation.

Instead of reaching their destination, however, the crew & money ended up at White's Creek near Old House Woods. The men were attacked by robbers while unloading the chests. These got away with some of the treasure and buried the remainder of it in the woods. They planned to return for it, but their ship capsized in a storm.

Some have seen a woman with long, flowing hair rising over the trees when a storm is coming. Others claim an army of British soldiers, killed long ago by American Calvary, still march through there. Perhaps the eeriest story is of a man whose car broke down on the road that goes through the woods. As he walked in search of help, he encountered a man in Spanish armour. The driver claims the man raised his sword upon seeing him, asking, 'Is this the King's highway? I've lost my ship.'

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