Connect with us


Spearfinger: The Smoky Mountain Stone Witch



The Cherokee Legend of Spearfinger. Photo: Blue Ridge Blog

Spearfinger is a witch who can change her shape at will, and is said to have skin as hard as stone. But perhaps her most terrifying feature is the obsidian knife that replaces one of the fingers on her right hand.

Other Names for Spearfinger

The Cherokee word U’tlun’ta is sometimes used to refer to Spearfinger. It translates as “she had it sharp”, which is an apt description. She is sometimes known as Nûñ’yunu’ï. This moniker translates to “Stone dress,” a title that was inspired by her skin, which was said to be as hard as stone.

The Cherokee Legend of Spearfinger

The story goes that Spearfinger earned her stone clothes after building a rock bridge, called the “Tree Rock,” that spanned up through the air toward the Higher Beings’ place of residence.

Her arrogance upset them, and they struck down the bridge with a powerful bolt of lightning, causing it to crumble down upon Spearfinger and cloaking her in a body made of rock and rubble.

Today, the ruins of the Tree Rock are said to be located in Blount County, Tennessee, and the area is known as Nantahala, or “The Spearfinger Place,” in Cherokee.

Spearfinger, the shape-shifting witch, had a forefinger on her right hand that was known as her “sharp finger.” This deadly digit, which resembled a spear or obsidian knife, was used to cut her victims.

Her mouth was often stained with the blood of the livers she ate, making her a terrifying sight that sent chills throughout the mountains.

Spearfinger’s evil heart was hidden in her right hand, which was also her only weak spot. Therefore, she kept it tightly clutched to protect it from harm.

Her body, being made of stone, required her to ensure her heart was never exposed to danger.

As she walked, her stone body made a sound like rolling thunder, crushing rocks and boulders into the ground. Her voice would bounce off the mountains and echo down the valleys into the villages, sending the birds flying into the sky. The villagers would take this as a warning that Spearfinger was on the move.

Spearfinger had a range of terrifying abilities beyond her deadly spearfinger.

One such skill was the ability to transform into the family members of her child victims, making it easier to get close to them. Once she took on a different shape, she was unable to shift back into her stone form if she was in sight of another person.

Spearfinger’s default shape-shifting form was that of an old lady who was known and trusted by the children she hunted. Being made of stone, arrows couldn’t pierce her skin and would simply bounce off, falling harmlessly to the ground or shattering into tiny pieces.

Spearfinger also possessed immense physical strength, allowing her to effortlessly lift and manipulate rocks and boulders to cause havoc and destruction.

To aid her search for victims with fresh livers, Spearfinger would use the Cherokee customs to her advantage. In the fall, the Cherokee would set brush fires to roast chestnuts, and the smoke and flames would guide Spearfinger to the villages where she could hunt.

The witch also utilized the swirling fogs that rose from the valleys, which gave the Smoky Mountains their name. These clouds provided cover for Spearfinger to hunt children who were picking strawberries or drinking from streams on the mountainside.

The combination of her supernatural abilities and her knowledge of the local terrain made Spearfinger a formidable opponent to anyone who dared to cross her path.

Spearfinger’s Decption

Spearfinger’s greatest power was her ability to deceive. She would hide her sharp finger beneath her robes and then strike out, piercing her victim’s liver. Her favored method was to disguise herself as an older woman of the tribe, gaining the trust of her intended prey before luring them to sleep and attacking.

The unsuspecting children would then become her meal. The Cherokee, aware of her tactics, were cautious of strangers entering their camp and were suspicious of those who went into the woods alone. They feared that Spearfinger could take on the disguise of a family member and enter the village unnoticed.

Spearfinger was also skilled in the art of shape-shifting. She would sometimes assume the form of her victim, hiding the body if it passed away soon after she took their liver. She would then wait until the family was asleep and take all their livers.

Parents warned their children not to go into the woods at night, for fear of encountering Spearfinger. They would tell stories of how the monster could take on the appearance of their grandmother or aunt, making it impossible to know whether it was a family member or the monster in disguise. Spearfinger was the ultimate boogeyman, striking fear into the hearts of all who heard of her.

Spearfinger and the Stone Man

Spearfinger’s sole adversary, aside from the humans she preys upon, is the Stone Man. As both are made of stone, they have a natural ability to detect each other’s presence. They are rivals because they both crave the same delicacy – livers.

The Stone Man is said to possess greater powers than Spearfinger, and he doesn’t need to manipulate rocks to construct things. Instead, he wields a staff that enables him to create bridges that span from one mountain to another.

The Death of Spearfinger

The legend of Spearfinger

The Cherokee convened a council to devise a plan to eliminate Spearfinger once and for all. Representatives from surrounding villages gathered to discuss the matter. Being aware of her modus operandi, they decided to create a trap that would lure her in.

They dug a pit and camouflaged it with branches, then lit fires in the usual way to harvest chestnuts, hoping the smoke would attract her as she searched for fresh livers.

As expected, Spearfinger saw the smoke and made her way down the mountain, leaving a trail of destruction behind her. Disguised as an old woman and hiding her deadly finger under her cloak, she tried to trick the men into helping her.

But when they saw through her disguise, they were unsure of how to defeat her. Their arrows proved ineffective as they shattered upon hitting her stony skin.

Enraged, Spearfinger charged at the Cherokee, her sharp finger slashing at them. Despite falling into the pit, the stakes lining its interior shattered upon contact with her stony skin, failing to pierce her.

The tribe fired arrows at her, but they proved useless as she swatted them away effortlessly. In a moment of desperation, a titmouse came to their aid, singing “heart, heart, heart” to indicate where Spearfinger’s true weakness lay. However, the hunters mistakenly aimed for her chest instead of her hand, where her heart was hidden.

As a result, the arrows did not harm her but cut off the titmouse’s tongue instead. From that day on, people believed that titmice were liars because of the incident. The little bird flew back to the sky and never returned.

After the chickadee revealed the secret location of Spearfinger’s heart, the hunters took aim at her right hand, which protected her heart and held the spearfinger.

As they shot an arrow at her wrist, separating her heart from her body, Spearfinger trembled with fear. She fell to her knees and then collapsed into a pile of stones, bringing an end to her curse.

Stone Man, who also fed on livers, heard the cheers of the hunters as Spearfinger fell. He looked down from the mountainside and saw her right hand mounted on a post as a warning to him. However, he knew that the villagers didn’t know his weakness, so he ignored the warning and continued to hunt for livers and sing his song of war.

Do you know of any other cool Native American legends like Spearfinger? Let us know in the comments.

If you enjoyed the story of Spearfinger you might also be interested in the story of El Sibon or the legend of Loana the bloodthirster.

Continue Reading


Crisis Apparitions




Can we communicate with our loved ones telepathically during times of crisis?

In the early 1800s, Pastor John Frederick Oberlin moved to the town of Bande-la-Roche, France, hoping to educate the residents and relieve them of their superstitions. In the end it was Oberlin who was educated, becoming convinced that the apparitions residents saw in times of crisis were real.

Pastor John Frederick Oberlin and the Crisis Apparitions of Bande-la-Roche

John Frederick Oberlin, a well-known pastor, teacher, and philanthropist from the 18th and 19th centuries, completely changed the way of life in the Bande-la-Roche valley in the Vosges Mountains of Alsace. When he arrived in the area, he didn’t like the superstitions of the locals, especially their stories about seeing their dying family members appearing to them in spirit form before their deaths. Despite his efforts to educate them and speak against these beliefs, the reports of such sightings continued.

A significant turning point in Oberlin’s attitude towards the apparitions occurred in 1806 when a devastating avalanche struck Rossberg, burying several villages in its wake. The aftermath of this catastrophic event was marked not only by the physical destruction but also by an increase in the number of villagers claiming to have witnessed visions of their deceased loved ones.

As these accounts multiplied, Oberlin, the steadfast clergyman, found himself grappling with a growing sense of doubt. The sheer volume of testimonies and the intensity of the experiences described by the locals led him to reconsider his earlier dismissal of the supernatural. The tragic circumstances surrounding the avalanche seemed to challenge his previously held orthodox views.

In the face of mounting evidence and the profound impact of the disaster on the community, Oberlin began to believe that the villagers were indeed be perceiving spirits of the departed.

What are Crisis Apparitions?

In most supernatural encounters, the spirits involved are usually belonging to people who have passed away. Sometimes, however, the spirit seen is belonging to someone still living. What does this mean?

One idea regarding crisis apparitions suggests that when a person dies, their soul is released from their body. This liberated soul can then move freely across space and time. The belief is that the individual’s soul might want to make a final visit to say goodbye or provide comfort to loved ones.

In some cases, crisis apparitions involve a person who is still alive. For instance, someone might hear the voice of a loved one delivering a message or warning during a vision. According to a theory, when a person is in physical pain or danger due to illness, they might unconsciously project psychic energy to their loved ones. This projection could happen without the person being aware of it, driven by the challenging situation they are facing.

This type of crisis apparition resembles visions of those who have passed away. As the energy is sent to the receiver, their brain interprets it as an image of the sender. Researchers believe that some individuals may be more sensitive to this energy, increasing their likelihood of having paranormal experiences.

Other Notable Examples of Crisis Apparitions

A woman having an out of body experience is seen by her husband who was hundreds of miles away

According to Rosemary Ellen Guiley’s book, The Encyclopedia of Ghosts and Spirits, (affiliate link) in 1863, a man named S. R. Wilmot and his sister, Eliza, sailed from England to New York. They faced a severe storm that lasted nine days. Wilmot, feeling seasick, stayed in his sleeping area for several days and nights. On the eighth night, after the storm eased, he dreamt that his wife, Mrs. Wilmot, visited him in a white nightgown, kissed and caressed him, and then left.

The next morning, William J. Tait, who shared quarters with Wilmot, mentioned seeing a lady visitor. Wilmot was surprised because Tait’s description matched exactly what he had dreamt. When asked, Eliza denied being the visitor.

Later, Mrs. Wilmot asked her husband about his dream, describing her own experience of going out during the storm, finding the ship, going to the stern, and entering the cabin. She hesitated at first when she saw Tait but eventually kissed and caressed Wilmot, just like in his dream. Mrs. Wilmot shared this vivid experience with her mother, insisting it felt too real to be just a dream and that she believed she had actually been on the ship.

A Man Sees His Wife’s Dying Sister-in-Law

“In the higher part of the door was a glass window, and I all at once, in the darkness, saw a face looking through that window. The face was very well known to me, though for the instant I did not associate it with the original, as she was 300 miles away. I instantly opened the door, found nobody there, and then searched the ivy with which the porch and house are covered. Finding nothing, and knowing it was impossible anyone could have got away. … I at once knew the face was that of a married sister-in-law of my wife’s. I told all our family of the circumstance directly I got home, and judge of our dismay when we had a letter to say she died at the very hour I saw her. Monday was the evening I saw the face, and on Wednesday, when we were at dinner, the letter came.”

W. Goodyear.

Apparitions of the Living Vol 1 p. 523

A Man Sees His Brother During a Near Death Experience

“It was either in 1874 or 1875. My brother was third mate on board one of Wigram’s large ships. I knew he was somewhere on the coast of Australia  …  I looked up, and, to my astonishment, saw my brother coming towards me from the outside door of the kitchen. … I noticed he was in his sailor uniform with a monkey jacket on, and the wet was shining on his jacket and cap. I exclaimed, ‘Miles, where have you come from?’ He answered in his natural ‘For God’s sake, don’t say I’m here.’ This was all over in a few seconds and as I jumped towards him he was gone. I was very much frightened, for I had really thought it was my brother himself; and it was only when he vanished that I realised it was only an appearance. … About three months afterwards my brother came home, and….I asked him in a casual manner if he had had any adventures, and he said, ‘I was nearly drowned at Melbourne.’ He then told me he was ashore without leave, and on returning to the ship, after midnight, he slipped off the gangway between the side of the ship and the dock. There was very little space, and if he had not been hauled up at once, he must have been drowned. He remembered thinking he was drowning, and then became unconscious. His absence without leave was not found out, so he escaped the punishment he expected. I then told him of how he had appeared to me, and I asked him the date. He was able to fix it exactly. … He had no recollection of thinking specially of me at the time, but he was much struck by the coincidence, and often referred to it. He did not like it, and often when he went away said, ‘Well, I hope I shan’t go dodging about as I did that time.”

Apparitions of the Living, Vol 2, p. 141

Billie Holiday Sees Her Mother at the Time She Died

Billie Holiday wrote in her memoir of a strange incident occurring at the time of her mother’s death. Her mom was very young when she had her, and they were close. In the middle of the book, Billie talks about a strange moment in a hotel room with her boyfriend after a show:

“I don’t believe in ghosts, but something weird happened that night… We were just sitting there when suddenly I felt my mother behind me, touching my shoulders. And I knew she was dead. I told Joe, ‘Mom just left, and she’s dead.’

‘You’re crazy,’ he said. ‘You must be losing it.’

‘Listen to me,’ I said, ‘you better be good to me because you’re all I’ve got now.’

Her mom wasn’t sick, and she was only 38, so nobody expected her to die. The next day, people acted strangely around Billie. She went up to the road manager and “told him Mama was dead and what time she died the night before…He blew his top, raised hell with everybody backstage. He swore somebody must have told me. But nobody had told me nothing.” The crew knew about Billie’s Mom but didn’t want her to know as it might impact her performance.

Knock Once for Yes Podcast covers the topic of Crisis Apparitions

Have you ever had a crisis apparition experience? Tell us about it in the comments. If you enjoyed this article you might also be interested in the phenomenon of paranormal apathy or twin telepathy.

Interested in Talking to Spirits? Try one of our paranormal communication apps!

Continue Reading


MacKenzie Family Omens




The MacKenzie family received various omens to warn them of death that was about to occur in the family.

In the early 1900s, the MacKenzie family line in Scotland experienced several different paranormal omens, warning them about deaths that would soon occur in the family.

These stories have been gathered from 1934 book “Family Ghosts and Ghostly Phenomena,” by Elliott O’Donnell.

The Prophecy of the Face

One evening, young Sylvia MacKenzie was alone in her small house, sitting in the living room. She heard a tapping sound at a window facing a small garden. When she looked, she saw a strange face with a long, narrow nose and no nose at all. The eyes were very pale, set at an angle, and far apart. The face seemed to be looking at her in a menacing way. As Sylvia stared, scared and unable to move, the face slowly disappeared. When her parents came home, she told them about the scary vision. They were really upset because, as they explained, their family believed this ghostly face showed up only when something bad was about to happen.

The next day, Sylvia’s brother Robert, who was in the Canadian forces during World War I (between 1914-1918), was killed on the Western front.

Miss MacKenzie and the Ghostly Arm

One morning, another, unamed member of the Mackenzie family went upstairs to get something from her bedroom. While leaving, she heard something fall behind her. When she turned around, she saw an old-fashioned silver candlestick on the floor next to the chest of drawers. Curious, she went to pick it up and noticed a “beautifully round” arm, from the elbow up, coming out of the wall beside the drawers. The skin was very white, and the hand had long, slender fingers and filbert nails, like a woman’s hand. As she watched, the arm slowly faded away and disappeared.

After it was gone, she remembered her family’s stories about a phantom omen—a strange hand seen only by family members that predicted death and misfortune. She worried that her vision foretold her mother’s death, who was very sick at that time. Fortunately, her mother recovered fully. A few days later, the family received news that a cousin had died tragically. It made the young woman wonder if her vision had predicted this sad event.

Mr MacKenzie and the Cold hand

One night, Mr. and Mrs. MacKenzie were at a cinema in Glasgow. While watching the movie, Mr. MacKenzie suddenly felt a cold hand touch his cheek. Annoyed, he thought it was the people around him playing a prank. A little later, he felt the cold hand on the back of his own hand and got really scared. He knew his family believed in a ghostly hand that showed up before someone’s death. Unable to enjoy the movie, they left right away.

When they tried to sleep that night, Mr. MacKenzie felt someone moving in the room. He lit the gas to check, but the room was empty, and the door was locked. As he went back to bed, the cold hand touched his forehead. He grabbed the arm, describing it as soft and slender, and felt it up to the elbow where it suddenly disappeared. The next day, they got a telegram telling them that one of Mr. MacKenzie’s sisters had died during the night.

Here is another gripping ghost story recounted by Scotish author Elliot O’Donnell

Have you had any similar experiences with in your family? Tell us about it in the comments.

If you enjoyed this article you might be interested in other omen phenomena such as Our Lady of Fatima or Katherine Hobbs predicting her own death

Continue Reading


Generated by Feedzy