Vehicle bridge over water
There are several different versions of the legend associated with this bridge, each of them involving a couple and their infant child. And just because good ghost stories never die (they just mutate every few years), each version of the legend has variations, too.
In the first version, the husband throws his baby off the bridge, killing it. He then turns his murderous rage towards his wife and kills her. A variation of this story has the husband murdering his wife and child, although he does not throw the baby off the bridge. In fact, it’s never made clear exactly what he does other than “murder” them. In all versions, though, after the murders, the husband commits suicide by hanging himself, either from the bridge itself or from a nearby tree.
There is another version and it is by far the strangest. It involves the three family members enjoying a picnic near (or in some cases, under) the bridge when the devil himself shows up, grabs the family, and “drags them all down to hell”.
Regardless of which version of the legend is told, they all conclude the same way: If you drive your car up onto the bridge and conduct the ritual, you will hear a baby crying. Shortly after that, a ghost will appear in front of your vehicle and then somehow “pass through your car” before vanishing. Of course, this will make it impossible for you to start your car until you manage to push it clear of the bridge, at which point it will operate as if nothing had happened.
**Please do not attempt this ritual. It is dangerous.**
For this ritual, you will need to take your car to the bridge at night and stop right in the middle. Then turn off the engine and lights, roll all the windows down, and wait. Eventually, you’ll hear the baby crying. But keep waiting and then the ghost will appear in front of your car.
The bridge crosses St. Mary’s River near the 11400 block of Palmer Road, just south of Dutton Road in Mendon, Ohio.
Try as I might, I have been unable to track down a single specific about this particular legend. Regardless of the variation, there is never anything concrete to go by. None of the family members are ever named and, concerning the version where the father/husband commits suicide, there are no records verifying a suicide took place on or near this bridge.
This story does score major points, though, for being the only Ohio Crybaby Bridge legend (so far) to incorporate the devil.
As for why the devil was hanging around this particular bridge, that is never fully (or even partially) explained. Old Scratch just sort of pops up, snatches the family, and vanishes.
Of course, one must question how anyone could confirm exactly what happened if the devil managed to whisk away the entire family, leaving no witnesses. But then again, everyone knows that to truly enjoy an urban legend, logic needs to be thrown out the window first.
Got a story to tell about this bridge? Tell me about it!
I grew up in the area. I can’t tell you how many times I went out there with friends, hoping to hear or see something. No matter how many times we drove out there or how long we waited, nothing ever happened. I will say we never did stay sitting in the car with the engine and lights off for too long because we were always scared another car would come along.
–Renee S., Mendon, OH
Freaky place! A bunch of us drove out there one Halloween and we weren’t even at the bridge yet when something white ran across the far end of the bridge. It looked like a woman and was definitely the size of a person. But when we got to the bridge, there was no one there. My boyfriend even got out of the car and looked under the bridge. Nothing. We never heard the baby cry, but seeing that ghost was enough for us!
–Courtney L., Ohio City, OH
Haunted Mercer County
Ohio Exploration Society: Palmer Road
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