People Share Their Creepy Local Urban Legends That Turned Out To Be 100% True

"Which creepy urban legend turned out to be true?"

Over on Reddit, people are sharing the urban legends and neighborhood fairy tales that turned out to be 100% actual truth. From the legend of Cropsey to the Ghost Squirrel, here are a small selection of urban legends that turned out to be anything but myth.

Photo: Warner Bros. / Reddit

  • 'The Green Man'

    Posted by a Redditor:

    Raymond Robinson: The Green Man.

    Dude lost his eyes and nose and wandered the streets at night in Pennsylvania because he couldn’t go outside in the daytime [due to] how he looked.

    People saw him and an urban legend was born.

    From Ranker: The True Story That Inspired The Charlie-No-Face Urban Legend

    In 1919, a boy named Ray Robinson was severely injured and disfigured after accidentally touching a powerline near his home in Western Pennsylvania. The accident caused Robinson to lose his eyes, nose, and one hand, and afterwards he would spend most of his life indoors, going out only for walks at night in order to avoid people.

    Source: The legend of Western Pennsylvania's "Green Man"

  • 'The North Pond Hermit'

    From Redditor u/bodhemon:

    The North Pond Hermit. Things would go missing in this little vacation community, and people attributed it to some mysterious dude.

    Turned out there was one, and he lived out in the woods for 27 years without ever talking to anyone.

    From Redditor u/Devawning:

    The North Pond Hermit in Maine! Incredible story. A man lived completely alone in the woods of Maine for 27 YEARS. There were urban legends [about] him because people in surrounding cabins/camps had random small stuff go missing all the time (batteries, packages of food, flashlights, etc.). He eventually got caught stealing said items when people became determined to figure it out.

    There's a book about him called The Stranger in the Woods. His name is Christopher Knight. Look it up, it's really interesting.

    Source: Why the North Pond Hermit Hid From People for 27 Years

  • The Lake Monsters Of The Hydroelectric Dam

    From Redditor u/RyokoKnight:

    I live near a lake, and there was an urban legend that there were huge lake monsters near the hydroelectric dam.

    Most people thought it was just some fishermen's tall-tales - we all guessed it was just a twist on the classic "the one that got away."

    Turns out divers went into the water behind the dam for a routine inspection to see if there was any damage after months of heavy flooding in the area. Apparently one of the divers got too close to what he originally thought was a large, moss-covered rock/boulder until it moved and tried to latch onto the diver's arm.

    Apparently there are +-200-lb. catfish behind the dam which thrive on the dead fish that go through the hydroelectric portion of the dam ... The agitated water makes it easier for the large catfish to [breathe] and grow past what is commonly found in the area, and the lack of fishers - as all commercial fishing is banned for at least 1000 meters - means these fish are free to grow to truly enormous sizes.

    Source: 7-foot Giant Catfish Clogs Hydroelectric Dam

  • The Legend Of Cropsey

    From Redditor u/morecomplete:

    Cropsey. Sort of like “the Boogeyman of Staten Island." During the '70s and '80s, kids on the island would go missing, and [people] would attribute it to “Cropsey.”

    As it turned out, there really was a [...] kidnapper and serial killer who was responsible. He was caught and convicted.

    There is a great documentary about it (used to be on Netflix, not sure if it still is) called Cropsey, check it out if you get a chance.

    Source: Cropsey: The Terrifying Urban Legend Brought to Life

  • The Underground Tunnels Of Valley Forge

    From Redditor u/Annahsbananas:

    I went to a University near Valley Forge, PA. It used to be a POW camp and a Military Hospital before the college bought the entire property for one dollar in the 1960s (?). Since there are really only three universities near Valley Forge, PA, it will not be hard to deduce which college it was lol.

    Anyways, there was a rumor that underground tunnels and all sorts of stuff [were] left abandoned in the [disused] sections of the college.

    Sure enough, it was true.

    We found a tunnel hatch under our carpet in our dorm room (two hatches on the first floor... furthest most first-floor dorm room of each building).

    It was literally like stepping into 1945. Everything was preserved down there and the tunnels were massive. We eventually ended up in an "underground garage" where there were four Jeeps parked, but all the tires had dry rotted. We realized this was actually beneath our soccer field.

    Anyways, the tunnels lead to the cafeteria, the admin building, every dorm, and then an old, abandoned section of our campus that we had no way of entering top side. We soon realized this was the hospital/morgue.

    When we got out of the tunnels and walked the floor, it was still like 1945. All the hospital beds were still there, the surgical curtains were still there. Hell, even the tools (like the scalpel, saw, plyers, etc) were still on their trays.

    It was like everyone all of the sudden up and left and nothing had been moved since then. The morgue still had its slabs, and sometimes we would dare each other to slide in there for a period of time.

    But yeah, it was an urban legend on campus until three of us decided to risk expulsion to see if it was true. And it was.

  • 'The Real Freddy Krueger'

    From Redditor u/LukeCageCoffeeShop:

    Freddy Krueger is based on a real story.

    Hear me out. There's a small ethnic group local to South East Asia, the Hmong people. They've been oppressed for years by various countries, so they fought with the US during the Vietnam Civil War. As you know, we lost, and the North Vietnamese were gearing up to kill the Hmong people who had fought for the Southern Vietnamese. So the US airlifted a bunch of Hmong families to the US, primarily in California and Minnesota.

    One of the recent immigrants was a young man. He was perfectly healthy but suddenly died in his sleep. No one knew how he died (it's guessed it was a heart attack, but an autopsy wasn't done).

    This sent a panic throughout the community. There is a Hmong legend of a spirit that enters your dreams and kills you. Hmong people were terrified. They were also in a new community without access to some old traditions to protect them.

    Young men started staying awake, trying to avoid the monster. They downed caffeine. They were actually scared enough that it caused stress to their hearts and they died. Eventually, 117 men died from Hmong Sleeping Sickness.

    Source: The Dark Side of the Placebo Effect: When Intense Belief Kills

    Source: Sudden death in sleep of Laotian-Hmong refugees in Thailand

    Source: What inspired “A Nightmare on Elm Street” and Freddy Krueger?