The Philo Bridge crosses the river where I have made my home. If I want to go to town or go just about anywhere, I am going to cross that bridge. There are a lot of spooky stories that say the bridge is one of many “crybaby bridges” in Ohio.
On one side of the bridge, the locks that controls the flow of the water and the damn. When it rains the river can rise quite rapidly with little or no warning. It is something the local residents here are accustomed too.
On the other side of the bridge are two plots of land. They look like islands floating in the middle of the wide river. Usually those plots are covered with water and not visible. A few of the trees might poke out of the water as if they are markers for the spots. They are open to see in full sight right now due to the lack of rain and the river is much lower than normal.
As the stories go, young siblings were playing or possibly living on one or both pieces of land in the water. How did they get to the middle of the river? They may have been playing a game and built a make-shift boat with pieces of logs and debris.
On a night long ago, the children that these ghost stories are about, were on the plots of land. While hiding out on the islands, the rains suddenly came. Without warning the waters flooded everything, they all were trapped and drowned.
According to one tale, after the boys’ mother passed away the boys ran away from their abusive father. Some of the cries heard are hers as she cries for her lost boys.
Another version states they were neglected by their mother. When the boys were never found and thought to have drowned, the mother killed herself by jumping off the bridge.
The old house sits to the left of the bridge when crossing from old river road. Currently the old house and grounds are being used for maintenance of the locks. Years ago someone actually lived there.
It is possible a family lived there. Maybe a mother and her children. Perhaps one day or evening those boys wandered away, getting lost in the river water. The locks letting go and roaring with water gushing over the damn. The mother would not have heard her boys scream for help. Before anyone could have known that anything was wrong, the river could have taken their young lives.
No one knew, they were gone.
Three boys, missing.
Today cries are heard, on the bridge,
And by those fishing.
The river has taken their young lives,
With no chance for them to grow.
Their child spirits are left behind.
A somber lesson, for us to know.
The bridge is haunted.
People can hear their cries.
Reminders to the living.
Of their tragedy and demise.
My daughter Ashley and I took a drive to the bridge today and she got these shots for me. The bridge is in pretty bad condition and will be closed down soon for a few months. We wanted to get the pictures while we can and Halloween is the perfect time to tell this story.
Inspired by The Domestic Witch 2015 Halloween Party