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Somerset’s Sinister Secret

Somerset's Sinister Secret

Most of the time, trees are regarded as a vital part of life.  They give oxygen, stabilize the soul, and protect wildlife.  They provide the supplies necessary for many of our necessary commodities and materials for tools and shelter.  In New Jersey however, one tree disregards all those things and is regarded as nothing short of sinister.

Located all alone in the middle of a field off Mountain Road, Devil’s Tree in Somerset County, New Jersey was the site of an early farmer’s death.  After the man gruesomely murdered his entire family on a nearby farm, he retired to the tree.  He fastened a noose around an arm of the tree, extending parallel to the ground, and put it around his neck before jumping to his death.

Other stories circulate that the tree was a common meeting place for early divisions of the Ku Klux Klan.  Because the tree was so secluded and away from the prying eyes of police, members could hold demonstrations and meetings without fear of being discovered.  Unfortunately, that same limb that was used by the farmer to take his own life was also used to take the lives of hundreds of black men and women.

Since the time of the farmer and Ku Klux Klan deaths, the site of the tree has been the home of many other murders and suicides.  Some suggest that the souls of all who have died there have remained trapped in the trunk of the tree, creating some of the most sinister energy that evolved over time.

The idea of the souls trapped in the tree is only heightened by the extreme heat that radiates from the tree.  People describe the tree as being warm to the touch, even in the dead of winter.  Curiously, that unnatural warmth even affects the nearby snowfall.  Each winter, there is an eight to twelve foot radius around the tree where no snow falls or sticks to the ground.

(images:clcphotos/flickr)

(images:clcphotos/flickr)

The trunk of the tree is scarred by the many attempts that have been made over the years to fall it.  Axe and chainsaw marks are vaguely visible but each attempt has failed.  After returning to the tree after one of the many attempts, it appears that the tree has healed most of the damage that was accomplished.  Worse still, many report that anyone who has made efforts to fall it have been punished.  Their curse is usually to meet an untimely and violent death.

Some say the tree is the portal to Hell, guarded by sentinels.  An old black truck is reported to chase people off the grounds when they stay too long at the site of the Devil’s Tree.  Headlights quickly approach and then almost as quickly disappear a safe distance from the tree.  Often, bodies are seen dangling from the “hanging branch” and claw marks have been seen in the area.

It seems even the negative energy isn’t contained as nearby, there is a rock known as the “Heat Rock.”  People speculate this is one way to access the gate to Hell.  Those who have touched it remain with black material on their hands that is next to impossible to get off.

Getting too close to the tree can have dire consequences.  People have reported hearing voices and noises in the tree.  Others have been thrown from the tree after climbing it.  Car issues have been reported after a visit to the tree, most dangerously that the gas pedal refuses to disengage, causing the driver to crash into a section of nearby trees.  All around bad vibes seem to follow anyone having too much interaction with the Devil Tree.

 

Megan Borchert
Megan Borchert
Lover of all things unusual, Megan is a staff attorney for the state of South Dakota. When she's not stuffed in an office writing case synopses, you can find her at home with her army of Schnauzers, snuggled up with some strong wine and a good book.

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