the devil on horseback

March 10, 2020

A Legend of Frederick County (MD)

“In 1835, a strange, lanky man in black appeared out of nowhere and departed as suddenly as he had arrived, after causing three days of utter confusion. He had come to see Singleton Burgee who owned Addison, a large stone house in Centerville, a community between Urbana and Monrovia.”

This story come from Spirits of Frederick by Alyce T. Weinberg.

not my art!

Singleton Burgee was a wealthy gentleman farmer who owned many acres and wanted to be able to brag that he owned 100 slaves. He could never be able to quite reach this goal, as every time he acquired 98 or 99, something would happen. He became cruel and frustrated… the slaves were mistreated and were always running away. Many were beaten and many died, being buried along the fenceline of the plantation. To this day, many people all the land is haunted.

The slaves hated him and told ugly stories about him. They called him the meanest man in Frederick County. The account of his death is/was still remembered.

A dark man on a black horse came riding furiously up to the front porch of Burgee’s house one day before daylight one morning. He was wearing a hooded black cape that covered him from head to boots. He was told that the master was in bed and would see no one…the rider sprung from his horse, brushed the houseboy aside, and, taking the steps three at a time, he went and stood over Burgee loudly intoning, “Are you ready, Singleton, are you ready?”

It was said that for the next three days, the last three of his life, the angry stranger – or his shadow – blocked the stairs leading to Burgee’s bedroom. The slaves gathered in the yard, hats in hands, shaking and quaking…some fell to their knees and prayed, others sang mournful spirituals, but not one of them would try and cross the dark intruders path.

After Burgee took his last breath, the stranger bounded down the steps, jumped on his snorting horse and disappeared down the dusty lane, his black cloak flying behind him.

Hope you have a great day!
Thanks for stopping by!!

AMAZON: Secrets of Catoctin Mountain: Little known stories and hidden history of Frederick and Loudon Counties (Vol.2) by James Rada Jr.; available on kindle and paperback book; 204 pages, published by Legacy Publishing (April 7, 2017); “These are the stories that history textbooks won’t tell you, but they give Catoctin Mountain its character. Collected from the writings of award-winning author James Rada, Jr., these fascinating stories and dozens of photographs tell some of the hidden history of Catoctin Mountain. Midwest Book Review calls Rada “a writer of considerable and deftly expressed storytelling talent.” He had written about Catoctin Mountain in Frederick, The Thurmont Disptach, The Catoctin Banner, and Maryland Life.” (AMAZON) I am an Amazon Associate and may make money with qualified purchases. Thank you!!

to see what photos/art I have available, click on any link below…


legend says. . .
when you can’t sleep at night
it’s because you’re awake in some one else’s dream

6 Comments on “the devil on horseback

  1. This story has inspired me to write one of my own. Something happened here in Denver about 20 years ago. It took place in a nightclub in front of at least 100 witnesses, and it terrified all of them.

    Have a great day Holly!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Pingback: Spirit of Frederick – Holly'sWorld

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Murray Robertson (photography & poems)

I make photographs and poems to please myself (and share them to please you).


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