Scary urban legends about Ohio are terrifying and may cause sleepless nights. Each urban legend has its own haunting warning to not go out at night!
When it comes to a creepy frightening urban tale, Lizard Man is one of the scariest stories you don't want to tell right before bedtime. Often called Frogman, this creature is some kind of reptilian urban legend.
The first reported sighting of a frogman was in 1955 when a traveling salesman making his way through town late one night. The man came upon three figures about 3'-4' tall on the side of the road standing upright on hind legs. The froglike creatures were having a conversation when he intruded on them, stopping his car a few feet away. Suddenly, one of the frogmen held something that resembled a wand and waved it over its head and then pointed it at the man. Sparks flew out the end of the wand and the terrified man peeled away as the frogmen ran toward the river.
The next sighting of a Lizard Man happened one night in 1972. A police officer was cruising down a road near the river when he rolled to a stop as something ran across his path. The creature had leathery, lizard-like skin and was traveling on all fours. He slammed on the brakes just in time to see the creature stand up on two legs and sprint over the guardrail, running toward the river. The officer was shocked.
A few weeks later, another police officer encountered the Lizard Man along the same stretch of road. In one version, the officer shot and killed the Lizard Man and dumped the body in the trunk of his car. It turned out to be an iguana without a tail. The news of the lizard man spread, and soon there was a rash of sightings. Eventually, the sightings died down, but now and then, someone claims to have seen the Lizard Man along the Little Miami River.
Cry Baby Bridge
Ohio has dozens of bridges dubbed Cry Baby Bridge. There are different circumstances in each of the stories, but all of them are a tragic tale about a mother crying and tossing her newborn baby off the bridge into the river below. In some versions, she jumps to her death, too.
According to the legend, anyone who visits the bridge late at night can hear the baby crying. In some versions, the mother can be heard crying, followed by a phantom splash in the river below the bridge.
One of the Cry Baby Bridges is located in Fremont. The story of this bridge tells of an unwed mother throwing her unwanted baby from the bridge. Ridden with guilt, the distraught mother threw herself off the bridge. You can hear the baby crying if you venture out onto the bridge late at night. You may even catch a glimpse of the grieving, murdering mother looking out over the bridge in search of her baby.
Werewolf of Defiance
Two railroad workers were out late at night, hooking up trains. One of the men caught a glimpse of what appeared to be a werewolf with large fangs standing on its hind legs. The creature wielded a two by four piece of lumber and cracked the man on the back, sending him to the ground.
Another version of the story supposedly told by the worker claims the man first saw the creature's big hairy feet and looked up to find it standing in front of him with a huge stick resting on its shoulder. The creature took off in a sideways gait.
Immediately, other reports started coming in and another railroad worker reported a werewolf lurking about the tracks. Soon, the police station was swamped with people calling in to report seeing a werewolf. The story made the news, and the town exploded with sightseers. Even today, the story resurfaces with a rash of werewolf sightings.
Ohio Players Recording
The story tells of the band taking an instrumental break while the vocals continued rehearsing when a scream is heard and captured on the final version of the recording. The legend states the scream was that of a female model who posed for the cover. During the photo shoot, she was kneeling on glass while pouring honey over her. Unfortunately, it turned out that the glass was fiber glass and when the honey dripped over her legs, and she found herself stuck to the fiberglass. In her effort to free herself from the fiberglass she was injured.
In pain and furious, the woman marched into the manager's office while the band was recording and threatened to sue the manager. In a fit of rage, the manager stabbed her to death. The sensational story was fabricated by a D.J. and created a crazy buzz about the group's new album. The band merely replied no comment whenever the press asked about the story of the scream.
It was later revealed that the scream was made by one of the members of the band. To this day, the screaming murdered woman is an urban legend that resurfaces every so often.
The story about Hatchet Man started sometime in the early 1800s. A man named Andrew Hellman supposedly murdered his wife by cutting her up with a hatchet. In his rage, Andrew scattered the hacked up pieces of her body all over the road in front of their house.
If you venture down the road at night and are brave enough to stop and turn off your car, you'll be able to see the ghostly body pieces all over the road. If you look up, you'll see the Hatchet Man standing on the side of the road. It will be the last thing you ever see!
Another version of the story is how the Hatchet Man chopped up the cemetery caretaker at Hickory Flat Cemetery on Wehr Road in Trenton. His poor spirit walks around the cemetery trying to pick up all the pieces of his body. Another version is a bit more macabre and tells how the ghost managed to acquire the hatchet used against him, and now he goes after anyone who disturbs the area where his body is scattered.
Portal to Hell!
A tunnel, known as Satan's Hollow, is said to be a portal to hell. Satanists supposedly conducted various rituals that opened the portal. They use the creepy dark drain tunnel for animal sacrifices and worship services of Satan. The tunnel is considered their sacred place, and it's rumored that the tunnel has a passage to a secret hidden altar room.
Located on private property in Blue Ash, droves of curious passersby dub themselves as paranormal investigators and set out to prove the tunnel's scary history. They discover various satanic symbols spray painted on the inside tunnel walls.
Reports of low menacing growls echo from the depths of the tunnel and some terrified visitors claim to have seen a shadow demon. There are other tales of floating apparitions. Warning: The police show up to remove trespassers.
Gore Orphanage is located in Lorain County. The story tells of the Swift Mansion being turned into the Light of Hope Orphanage, but things didn't go well for the poor kids. The legend of the orphanage is gut-wrenching. Supposedly, one of the children started a fire that quickly engulfed the mansion. All of the children burned to death.
There are also tales of bizarre occult rituals being practiced in the ruins of the mansion. People claim to have encountered ghosts of the dead children. It's also said there is an abandoned children's cemetery behind the old mansion ruins.
Historians have disproved the existence of the orphanage, pointing to the name once belonging to the road, but never the Swift Mansion. Still, the urban legend remains a part of the local stories.
This legend began in the 1930s when a car crashed at the Brubaker Bridge in Preble County. The wreck and victims weren't discovered until late that night when a farmer was returning home from a livestock sale.
Getting the local law enforcement and others involved, the townsfolk discovered there were 12 bodies thrown from the vehicle. The victim's bodies were taken to the local funeral home and once identified, the families were contacted.
A few days later, the farmer was driving across the bridge when his car stalled. As he tried to get the engine to turn over, he heard 13 raps on the outside of his car and then an unnerving hissing sound moving closer to his side of the car.
If you cross over the bridge, you may end up like the farmer, stalled out and besieged by the spirits knocking on your car 13 times before hissing at your reluctance to get out of the car to investigate.
Satanist Church of Helltown
Helltown Church is a rather small church with peeling whitewash and is located in the middle of the town. The town and church have long been abandoned due to the rumor of a deadly chemical spill. The legend tells how the church is now used by Satanists for sacrifices and satanic worship services.
An abandoned school bus is nearby. The driver and children lured to a house near the church by when it was flagged down by an elderly woman, claiming a young boy was inside her home in need of help. The driver steered the bus full of children to the house and when he stepped from the bus, Satan worshippers poured out of the house and surrounding woods. They descended on the driver and the children, killing all of them in a sacrificial rite.
Melonheads of Lake County
Residents know not to drive through Lake County late at night or they may come across the Melonheads. Said to travel in packs, these mutated creatures often hide in tall grasses or behind trees along the side of the road.
According to legend, the Melonheads are the result of a government experiment that went terribly wrong. The human guinea pigs were left with swollen head that are elongated and enormous. The poor mutants were discarded and taken to the woods of Kirtland and left for dead.
Tragic Ohio Urban Legends
The urban legends of Ohio all pivot around some dark tale of tragedy. If you want to ensure you don't fall victim to an Ohio urban legend, don't stray from the main highways in your travels.