I was sitting here at my computer one day working on my 60s site, when my mind wandered back to a time when I was a sophomore or junior in high school in Circleville, Ohio. I was thinking about the haunted bridge near a place called Yellowbud close to Williamsport, Ohio.
Yellowbud was a very small town probably with a population of less than 500 at that time. I have no idea what the population today would be, but I would imagine it couldn't be much more than that now.
There was nothing unique about Yellowbud except it sat off on a state highway to Chillicothe. It was a typical farming town. Many of us used its back roads and easy access to park and neck. So when asked what college are you planning to attend we would jokingly say Yellowbud Tech. Of course no school by that name ever existed. That line got so famous that T-shirts were made with a Yellowbud Tech logo.
There was a covered bridge near Yellowbud that many students from high school and other places would go and hang out, park, sneak a six-pack of beer (3.2 beer then, you only had to be 18 to drink but could only buy the lower proof of beer) and enjoy some innocent fun.
I really don't know how they spread, but rumors started like wildfire that the bridge was haunted. Many kids and some adults claimed that they had seen ghosts of a man and woman from the 1800s hanging around the bridge. (I had been there a couple of times and hadn't seen anything but my imagination sure went round with the sounds of the night) Folks claimed that a woman and man who had lived nearby died under suspicious circumstances back in the 1800s and were trying to find their home which had long since been torn down.
It was the talk at school whic resulted in the traffic to the bridge increasing tenfold as everybody wanted to see the ghosts. As the story continued to grow and be stretched beyond believability, so did the volume of people visiting the site. Now there was no privacy for your parking, necking and beer drinking. Everybody was stumbling over each other. This place was becoming a tourist attraction!
This is where the story really gets wild. If you can remember back when you were a teenager, you can really take advantage of this opportunity for some real fun; that's what four classmates of mine did.
On the weekend they would head out to the bridge before nightfall long before others would arrive. These pranksters would dress up in something scary and hide in the rafters of the bridge and make weird haunting sounds and throw things down on cars crossing the bridge and sneak up to parking cars where couples parking and scare the holy crap out of them. You can imagine what that would do to anybody, especially with the rumors of the bridge being haunted.
As I continue to look back, I also remember a sheet being dropped from the rafters onto the windshield of an auto as it was crossing the bridge. What these haunters didn't count on was that this car belonged to a resident of Yellowbud, so the sheriff was called to investigate which for a short period of time created a patrol to the area. Now the pranksters were gone but the sheriff was there and breaking up the parking and necking.
When the patrols stopped, the pranks began once again as the rumors continued to fly from people seeing the ghosts. Many described them as a young couple dressed in amish clothes who actually spoke to them. This didn't stop the pranks until one night all four of these pranksters swore on the good book they saw the ghosts. The pranks stopped immediately.
I never saw the ghosts and I had been there. Did they exist? I don't know. There were plenty of credible people who saw them. What I do know is the bridge is no longer there as this one many like them disappeared over the years. It was just too costly to keep them maintained. One thing is for certain the covered bridges themselves were ghosts of our pasts. It's funny how you remember these insignificant events of our lives. Man what fun we had back in the 60s. Wouldn't you like to re-visit that time for just one more day?