A Supernatural Journey

Nifty Buckles Folklore Podcast on Crossroads: A Supernatural Journey

Have you journeyed onto the crossroads at night?

It has been a supernatural experience for some folks, you never know who or what you may meet there.

Crossroads are flooded with dark folklore and urban legends, from deals with the devil, summoning deities to paranormal activity.

Let’s begin our supernatural journey to the crossroads to discover some mystical, frightening creatures who lurk in the shadows.

England and Ireland share the same custom of burying criminals, suicides and witches at the crossroads since the Medieval times. This custom was finally, banned in 1823.

Gibbet was used to hang criminals image in public domain

Executions of criminals such as hanging a criminal on a gibbet or from a dule tree

The crossroads marked the boundaries of the village or town coupled with a desire to bury the lawless outside of the settlement. Suicide was considered a crime to the Church and State so burying them under the Crossroads which has several roads, was done in order to confuse the dead.

Faust Summoning the Devil at the crossroads (Wikipedia.)

The Devil at The Crossroads

In Western folklore, crossroads were used to summon a demon or the devil in order to make a deal to make the summoner rich and famous.

An example of this legend is mentioned by author Rosemary Guiley in her book The Encyclopedia of Witches, Witchcraft and Wicca she mentions,

“it can be found in the 1587 Historia von D. Johann Fausten, which describes the character Faust inscribing magic circles at a crossroads in order to summon the devil”.

Odin of Norse Mythology

Scandinavian, German and Anglo Saxon pagans believed they could summon Odin the Æsir god of Norse Legends. He is a god of wisdom, poetry, death, magic and crossroads.

“The Grey God, Odin” by

Hecate Goddess of The Crossroads

Hecate is the Greek goddess of the crossroads, her followers left sacrificial animals to her there.

Hecate was known to appear on a clear, calm night with her entourage of black hounds and spirits.

Hecate’s connection to crossroads was more ritualistic.

‘Suppers of Hecate’ were left for her at crossroads at each new moon, and one of her most common titles was ‘goddess of the crossroads.’

In her later three-fold depictions, each of the three heads or bodies is often associated with one of three crossing roads and three phases of the moon exhibited in the triple goddess.

Relief triplicate Hekate marble – The Goddess Hekate resides at crossroads. (Wikipedia)

Blues Music

Twentieth century blues songs, such as Sold It to the Devil by Black Spider Dumpling (John D. Twitty), may be about making a deal with the devil at the crossroads. Several listeners believe that the premier song about soul-selling at a crossroads is “Cross Roads Blues” by Robert Johnson.

According to legend, Johnson himself sold his soul at a crossroads in order to learn to play the guitar. Johnson died on August 16, 1938, at the age of 27.

Did the Devil come to collect early? We may never know for sure.

Alleged grave site at Payne Chapel near Quito, with one of Johnson’s three tombstones. (Wikipedia)

Folklore from Haiti Vodou mentions a strong spirit named Papa Legba.

 Papa Legba: The Crossroads Loa

Papa Legba is a Loa (Spirit of Guineé) in who serves as the intermediary between the loa and humanity. He stands at a spiritual crossroads and gives (or denies) permission to speak with the spirits of Guineé, and is believed to speak all human languages.

A painting of the lwa Damballa, a serpent, by Haitian artist Hector Hyppolite. Wikipedia.

Next, in Brazilian Folklore the crossroads are linked to the devil, the headless mule and the Besta Fera,  (Brazilian version of a Centaur with a bad attitude)

Besta Ferra in public domain

During the Celtic Samhain (pronounced Sow-Ween) it was the Druidic New Year, it was traditional for Druids to sit down cross-legged on the crossroads. Druids would sit silently, listening to the wind howl in order to foretell future events in the coming year.

Druid at crossroads in forest

Urban Legends

Some paranormal activity happens to drivers at night on the crossroads.

Gregory’s Four Corners Burial Ground, a cemetery established in Trumbull, Connecticut in 1761, is located on Spring Hill Road at the crossroads. According to one urban legend, drivers would discover their vehicles suddenly stalled on them for no apparent reason. Next, the tired motorists would vanish before their tow truck arrived, attacked and taken by Cryptid “Melon Heads.” 

There is also a Witch that haunts the cemetery at the crossroads Hannah Hovey, nicknamed “Hannah Cranna.” Allegedly she curses people who have crossed her.

The grave of Hannah Cranna, the Wicked Witch of Monroe, in 2007
Gregory’s Four Corners Burial Ground in 2007

In American folklore Melon Heads are described as small humanoids sporting bulbous heads who emerge from hidden, shadowy places assaulting people walking alongside the road or a driver whose vehicle has stalled out.

There are different theories on how these cryptids originated into Melon Heads.

Urban Legends mention escaped children having been experimented on by a mad doctor. They escaped their torturer by running into the woods hiding in caves and eventually they succumbed to cannibalism. Another tale mentions patients escaping from an old Psychiatric Hospital.

Remember to use caution when entering the crossroads especially at night and carry a flashlight. You just may meet one of the many supernatural spirits and creatures waiting there. Whether you want to or not.

Art by Dominique Ferland

Written and podcast by Nifty Buckles


  1. History Extra Online:
  2. Guiley, Rosemary, The Encyclopedia of Witches, Witchcraft and Wicca, New York
  3. . Laister, Richard, Looking for Mr. Legba p. 12.
  4. . Reverend Samuel Orcutt, A History of the Old Town of Stratford and the City of Bridgeport, Connecticut, Volume 2, Fairfield Historical Society, 1886
  5. Featured print of the Crossroads by Brent Cotton

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