LOUISVILLE, Ky. - Over 100 years ago, witches warned Louisville to beware of the 11th month. That's how the tale of the Witches' Tree begins.
This time of year, crowds of people come out for Ghost Tours led by David Domine. On the tour, Domine takes them through Old Louisville, which is sometimes called America's Most Haunted Neighborhood.
The area is full of spooky stories. A twisted tree at the corner of 6th and Park Avenue is no different. Stopping across from the Witches' Tree, Domine tells visitors a tall maple tree used to be in that exact spot. The story says witches used to meet by that tree all the time.
In 1889, the city planning commission wanted to cut the tree down to serve as the pole for May Day celebrations. The witches warned against doing so.
"The head witch turned around and said 'beware Louisville. Beware 11th month,'" Domine said.
They chopped it down anyway. In the days following, all seemed to be fine, so the story has it people thought they got away with it.
That is until on 11 months to the day a massive tornado ripped through Louisville. That left people wondering if Mother Nature or witches were to blame.
The legend says a bolt of lightning hit the stump that day, sprouting the gnarled tree that is currently there.
Checking out the Witches' Tree now, people will find beads, flowers and other small gifts on it. That's because people leave gifts for the witches. Those who do may get a shout out from the Witches' Tree's Facebook page. Beware, if you steal from the tree, you may get cursed.
If you'd like to learn more about the Witches' Tree and other tales from Old Louisville, the tour runs every night at 7:30 p.m. through November 15.