Monday, July 11, 2011

The Ghost of Shell Mound Park

The Beaches of Southern Alabama are littered with ghosts.  The shifting sands store untold tragedies and histories that collect ghosts like children collect coins.   Dauphin Island is no exception to this rule.  In addition to Fort Gaines, which is notoriously haunted, Dauphin Island is also home to Shell Mound Park.
Shell Mound Park holds old ghosts.

Shell Mound Park is the location of an ancient Indian archaeological site.   The site is from the Mississippian Period and dates back to 1100 AD.  The mounds were built over time.   Archaeologists believe that the Native Americans came to Dauphin Island periodically during the year to collect oysters.   It is believed that the natives came from the Bottle Creek site further North and gathered the oysters.  Oysters were a rare delicacy and worth the long journey to collect.  The mounds built up over centuries as the natives came, feasted upon oysters at this site, and then left their debris behind.  Over the centuries the oyster shells became large mounds.  When the natives stopped their feasting, nature took over and grew on the mounds.  Trees and grass grew on the shelly remains of the Indian's dinning site turning Shell Mound Park into what it is today.

There is an area amongst these mounds, that is devoid of trees.   Nature seems to avoid reclaiming this area and there is a desolation to it.   It is said that this is where the natives buried their dead.   Many locals and visitors to the park say that if you wander this area on a lonely night you can see a native woman standing in the middle of this quiet place, looking out.  Sometimes she can be seen dancing and the sounds of native music can be heard drifting out over the park. 

5 comments:

Lewis Powell IV said...

Glad to see a more specific report of activity from Shell Mound. When I wrote my piece on it, I didn't find anything beyond an odd energy that is felt there. Do you know if anyone has investigated the park?

Tim Kent said...

Jess,
Do you have any ghost stories on Cherokee Chief Doublehead? I am a direct descendent, believe it or not. You can't tell by looking at me, but you'll have to get a copy of the upcoming book about Doublehead by Indian expert Butch Walker. I'm interested in this because the man was rather fierce. Thanks Tim.

Jessica Penot said...

Lewis... I haven't heard of any official investigations there. Everyone seems focused on the Fort. I would love to see one, however.

Tim.... I haven't heard any ghost stories on him, but I will look him up. Sounds interesting

Adsila said...

Another great story. I think the native music floating throughout the trees would give me chills.

Tonya said...

My husband and I both heard what we thought was a dog panting. We both independently heard it and both started looking around thinking there was a dog right by us. We thought the family near us brought a dog. But we quickly looked around and found nothing. My husband says he smelled a dog but I did not. Very odd.....