The Blog is back! Ok, I know it's been a rather long absence but school, work, and real life responsibility along with the fact that I run another completely different blog forced me to put this little pet project on the back burner.  As of now, I don't know how much time I feel like I'll be able to throw into this each week but it's a project that I'd like to keep going.  Virginia is rich with history and with that history comes personal tragedy.  That personal tragedy leads to some damn fine ghost stories, which is where this blog comes in.

As a resident of Southwest Virginia, I have to admit I have never heard of the "Murder Hole," which is a name given to a cave system in Catawba.  For those of you who are geographically challenged, Catawba is several miles outside of Roanoke. 

According to a 2002 Roanoke Times article, the caves are owned by a family with the last name McConnell.  I do not know if that is still the case.

The legend of the murder whole stems from a likely myth told for over 100 years, at least.  The myth goes that an old tinkerer (whatever the hell that was) was traveling through the valley until he met a farmer, who owned the land the McConnells own today.  The farmer, enraged from the fact that Jersey Shore would not be invented for another 104 years, killed the tinkerer and threw his body down Daylight Cave.

Like most myths, they're based on a shred truth but really that truth has been manipulated so many times it's hard to say how accurate it is.

That said, there has been recent tragedies in the cave.  A student from Virginia Tech perished in the cave back in 1958.  David Spencer was a member of Virginia Tech's cave diving team when his rope snapped causing him to plunge off a rocky cliff inside the cave to the floor below.

According to that same Roanoke Times article, several teenagers were trapped in the cave for several hours back in 1969.

"We went a couple of hundred feet in that cave, and everything sort of ended," Hollandsworth recalled recently. "Then there was a hole straight down and a cable tied to a stalagmite." Murder Hole.
 Hollandsworth descended the slick cable first, followed by Fleshman. Hollandsworth "was saying how great everything looked and I should come on down," Parris recalled.

"Before I go down, one of you better come up here," he said. Hollandsworth tried, then Fleshman, but neither could climb back up the slippery cable. They were stuck on a ledge halfway down Murder Hole. To make matters worse, one of the boys dropped their lone flashlight into the hole. Parris went to get help, leaving Hollandsworth and Fleshman in the dark for a few hours.

"It was sort of scary," Hollandsworth said. "I was afraid I was going to fall off the ledge, and I kept thinking I saw things."

 Is the murder hole haunted?  It's hard to say.  Tight, cramped spaces tend to freak people out regardless of myth, history, or lore.  But, if the stories are correct the Murder Hole is certainly a must visit place for any avid spelunker. 


hillbilly said...

the owners do not allow exploration here anymore

Justin Clark said...

I figured that was the case. Thanks for the update!

Larry said...


Maid Marian said...

I am the owner if you want accurate info contact me you must have our permission to come on the property

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