Saturday, November 11, 2006

George Washington Slept Here

It’s almost a tradition in New England, and probably elsewhere on the east coast, that George Washington slept in just about every other house. At least, that’s what you would be led to believe by all the signs on them. “George Washington slept here,” and there, and the next place. Guy couldn’t stay awake, it seems. Or all the motels were filled and he had to find a bed anywhere he could each night.

Captain Kidd, it has been said, buried a fair amount of treasure somewhere on the shore in Long Island Sound, quite possibly in Connecticut, or maybe the North Shore of Long Island. I lived on one of the beaches where that treasure lies, waiting to be discovered – so the story goes. There is good reason to believe it’s there … or a mile or two eastward, or possibly across the Sound and a bit further Eastward on Long Island.

Witches; we had them. Goody Basset was one. Goodwife Bassett was her given name, as far as we know, although she probably had a Christian name but was known as “Goodwife” or “Goody.” There’s a little monument to her memory up the river from us, something to the effect of her demise during the time when witches prowled the Colonies and there were clergy a-plenty with little more to do than flush them out and send them to their eternal punishment.

We supposedly had a witch out where we lived. I think it was handed down from boy to boy, perhaps over campfires on the beach or at Boy Scout camps. Nobody had actually seen her, you understand, but that didn’t mean she never existed.


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