HAUNTED MICHIGAN: The Night I Heard Scratches Coming from a Grave
It's that time of year again...and time to re-live one of Jackson’s most famous ghost stories: the one surrounding a little girl who was prematurely buried in the 1800’s, Little Mary McNaughton.
Born in 1884, Mary was said to have passed away in 1892 due to a ruptured appendix. She was buried in what is now known as the Hillcrest Memorial Cemetery. One night, her mother woke and began screaming that her daughter had been buried alive; eventually, the coffin was dug up and opened; scratch marks were found on the inside of the coffin lid where Little Mary evidently had been desperately trying to claw her way out.
The legend continues to this day that her spirit has been seen hovering over her gravestone and scratching sounds coming from the ground. Years later, thanks to vandals & late-night trespassers, the cemetery keepers moved her body to an unmarked grave but kept the gravestone in it’s original place.
In the photo gallery below, there are video stills of Mary's original gravesite; as I looked at these I noticed something odd. The camera is set on one particular site when a shadow --- that looks human --- appeared. Then it just disintegrated...NOT moving out of frame, but DISINTEGRATED. You'll see the photo comparisons below.
Okay, now here’s my story. Many years ago, I, like many others, had to go there after midnight and find out all this stuff for myself. I went there with two others; we discovered the site of her original burial and then proceeded to wander around some more.
Then, as we walked by a few flat gravestones, I heard a scratching sound coming from the ground. I shined my flashlight down in the sound’s direction but saw nothing. The scratching sound continued and I stooped down to look closer at the flat unmarked gravestone from which the sound was coming from. Was a leaf blowing across it? NO. Was some sort of bug crawling across it? NO. I was looking straight at this stone while the scratching continued…”where is this coming from?” I kept asking the other two. I got down on my hands & knees and put my face INCHES FROM THE STONE and saw absolutely NOTHING as the scratching sound continued. It was a definite scratching and we never determined the source…..we saw NOTHING.
I have no rational explanation for the scratching and I tried to find one...but the scratching sound was definitely coming straight from that flat grave marker and nowhere else. That was one of the weirdest things that ever happened to me…and it occurred around Halloween time a few decades ago.
A few months later, we went back and talked with the caretaker. He told us that years ago, Mary's remains were moved to an unmarked grave in the cemetery's new section...which was where we were when I heard the scratching on the gravestone.
The cemetery is located at 1425 Seymour Street, Jackson.
To read mlive's complete tale & legend of Little Mary, CLICK HERE.
***ALWAYS GET PERMISSION TO ENTER LOCKED CEMETERIES TO PROTECT YOURSELF. MANY SELF-CALLED “GHOSTHUNTERS” HAVE BEEN APPREHENDED THAT DID NOT GET PERMISSION.***