Mysterious Lights

Kingwell By Kingwell, 1st Jul 2014 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL http://nut.bz/2cdng7ba/
Posted in Wikinut>Writing>Folklore

Mysterious lights were often seen in Newfoundland and usually before a tragedy.

"Jacky Lantern"

Mysterious lights have been seen in Newfoundland and Labrador for centuries and were still being reported as late as the 1940’s. There are numerous stories from around the province of an eerie light that would appear in times of danger and was usually followed by a tragic incident. Such lights have been often reported flickering over marshy ground, and, it is said, over churchyards. Sometimes they were seen at sea, especially just before a storm. No one was ever able to get close as when someone approached the light it moved further away. This strange phenomenon is known most commonly in Newfoundland by some version of the name “jacky lantern,” “jack the lantern,” and “jack o’ lantern. In the Capital City of St. John’s it was called a corpse candle, and in the community of Harbour Grace, a corpse light. It has also been referred to as a baker’s light in more northerly parts of the island. The light however, was the same no matter the name.

An exception to the rule.

The story is told of a man from Pilley’s Island who saw the light when returning home in his boat late one evening and determined that he would catch up with it. The light however, had other ideas and always kept ahead of him. He eventually gave up and continued on his way home. It may have been just as well, as the light often seemed to appear for no other reason than to lead travellers astray. As in all folklore however, there is often an exception to the rule, and one such example can be found in the Harbour Grace corpse light. The event took place around the beginning of the twentieth century and involved a local clergyman and his wife. It seems the couple had taken their horse and sleigh to a blacksmith several miles away but being delayed, a storm had already started by the time they left for home. The storm quickly became a blizzard and they soon found their horse bogged down in the deep snow. The good Reverend and his wife soon realized that they had no idea where they were. It was then that they saw a bright light moving around and believing it to be rescuers began shouting for help. The light approached them and passed by, but there was no sign of a person carrying it. The frozen pair walked in the direction of the light, which led them to a stone fence, and in turn to a house where they found shelter for the night. When the owners of the house were told of the strange light, they expressed no surprise. The corpse light was no stranger to the citizens of Harbour Grace. It had been seen many times before, generally before a tragedy. For some reason however, the ghostly glow had decided that this time it would protect the reverend and his fair wife instead of leading them to their doom.

Tags

Clergyman, Corpse Candle, Corpse Light, Harbour Grace, Horse And Sleigh, Jack Of The Lantern, Kingwell, Mysterious Light, Newfoundland And Labrador, St Johns

Meet the author

author avatar Kingwell
I am 75 years old and retired.I like writing short stories, poetry as well other articles of interest.

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Comments

author avatar C.D. Moore
1st Jul 2014 (#)

Fascinating story, Kingwell!

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author avatar Kingwell
2nd Jul 2014 (#)

Thank you C.D.

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author avatar Phyl Campbell
2nd Jul 2014 (#)

Some phenomena defy explanation. Good write!

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author avatar Kingwell
2nd Jul 2014 (#)

Thank you Phyl.

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author avatar cnwriter..carolina
2nd Jul 2014 (#)

oh oh oh how fascinating...there are definitely more in God's kingdoms than meets the eye...good one my friend...

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author avatar Kingwell
2nd Jul 2014 (#)

Thanks Carolina.

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author avatar Utah Jay
2nd Jul 2014 (#)

It makes one wonder...Good post.

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author avatar Kingwell
2nd Jul 2014 (#)

Thank you Utah Jay. There are certainly things that we do not understand. Blessings.

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author avatar Sivaramakrishnan A
7th Jul 2014 (#)

Every rule has an exception and in this case too for the lucky couple. Well narrated Kingwell, thank you - siva

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author avatar Kingwell
7th Jul 2014 (#)

Thanks Siva.

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author avatar Delicia Powers
15th Jul 2014 (#)

lore is an important part of a place's and people's history...thanks Kingwell...

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author avatar Kingwell
15th Jul 2014 (#)

Thank you my friend. Good to see you back.

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author avatar Sherri Granato
4th Oct 2014 (#)

Tragedy appears to stem around the unexplained. Good story.

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author avatar Kingwell
4th Oct 2014 (#)

Thank you Sherri.

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author avatar Fern Mc Costigan
2nd Jun 2015 (#)

Thanks for sharing this interesting post Kingwell!

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author avatar Kingwell
3rd Jun 2015 (#)

Thank you Fern. Pleased that you read and enjoyed it. Blessings.

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