The Haunted Honky Tonk

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The Haunted Honky Tonk

Haunted Honky Tonk


Bobby Mackey’s Music World sure doesn’t sound like a place of murder or terror.  Currently, Bobby Mackey’s palace is a night club and honky tonk bar, located in Wilder, Kentucky.  Bobby Mackey owns the bar and is a country singer.  Music and beer aren’t the only things you’ll find here as the site is a common source of hauntings, murders, and suicides.

Promoted as the most haunted night club in America, Bobby Mackey claims that in the early nineteenth century, the site was used as a slaughterhouse.  The slaughterhouse and meat-packing facility had a lower part of the building that maintained a well.  The well housed the blood, gusts, and waste from the slaughtered animals.  Rumors circulated at the time that Satanic cult activity took place in the building around the well for ritualistic activity.  The building was later torn down and rebuilt as a roadhouse, the condition he finally purchased it in 1978.  Some have interesting stories about the rebuild, which happened during the Prohibition era and speak easy times.  Three primary stories follow the site’s sordid past.

Haunted Honky Tonk

(images:[email protected]/flickr)

First, many claim that there is a portal to Hell located in the Well Room.  People firmly caution that the portal allows demons to transcend between the mortal realm and the depths of Hell.

Second, the site was the spot of the gruesome death of twenty two year old Pearl Bryan in 1896.  Pearl Bryan was a pregnant woman who was found decapitated in the late nineteenth century.  Her lover Scott Jackson and his friend Alonzo Walling lost their heads too, when they were hanged for Pearl’s murder.  Some say her murderers were Satanists who had been attempting to perform an abortion on the young girl when it went terribly wrong.  They removed her head in attempt to discourage identification of her body.  Either way, the two cursed the location on her death and vowed on their own deaths to haunt everyone associated with the prosecution and eventual sentencing in the case.

Seemingly a dangerous site for young pregnant women, the third story is of a pregnant dancer named Johanna.  Johanna committed suicide by poison in the fifties after falling in love with a singer at the club she worked at.  Her angry father, having learned of the pregnancy, hanged Johanna’s lover, Robert Randall, in his dressing room.  Discovering Randall’s death, she could not see past her broken heart and Johanna took her life and the life of her unborn baby.  Bobby Mackey even wrote a song about Johanna and her haunting of his establishment.

Haunted Honky Tonk

Bobby Mackey’s Music World

Many visitors of Bobby Mackey’s Music World have stories that give chills.  Clergymen and psychics have been called to the facility in an attempt to rid it of some of the seemingly lingering bad ju-ju.  Often dubbed “the steps to nowhere,” stairs near the slaughterhouse are commonly a source of footprints, with no source.  Stories of demonic possessions and resulting exorcisms have circulated in the area.  People have experienced extremely hot or cold sources throughout Bobby Mackey’s Music World, and even seen apparitions or objects floating or flying without explanation.  Bobby’s wife refuses to enter the club after being pushed down the stairs and held down while hearing screaming, despite being the only one there at the time.  One one particularly spine chilling occasion, the bar manager states that after closing up for the night, before stepping out, she did a sweep to make sure lights and equipment were turned off.  The next morning, she found all the lights on, the front doors unlocked, and the juke box playing.

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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