Bradford College, MA, Ghosts – 6. Tupelo Pond

On the path to Tupelo West, passing by Tupelo Pond

I was still nauseous as we walked through the rapidly-falling snowflakes towards Tupelo West.

Since I had not expected any serious manifestations, I had completely forgotten that the ghost hated to be talked about on campus. Jane, whom we met at Tupelo West, reminded me of the ghost’s aversion to gossip. I can only repeat that I had not expected any serious manifestations, and took the ghost hunt far too lightly until it was too late.

As we walked to Tupelo West, I tried to recover my self-control, and also get my stomach to settle. I was only slightly aware of the surroundings.


Moments before we left for Bradford, something odd had happened at my home. I didn’t realize that it was a warning of what was ahead.

Alan had arrived at our house and we chatted for a few moments as we prepared to leave for Bradford.

I was in the living room and noticed a stench like rotting potatoes. I knew that there were no potatoes in the kitchen. It occurred to me that the smell might be coming from a philodendron I’d repotted in a closed container. I’d liberally filled the bottom with charcoal and gravel, so there was no reason for the odor. However, it was the only explanation for this truly awful smell.

I took the pot out to the kitchen, to see if I could banish the stench. I figured to repot the plant when we returned home.

I expected the putrid odor came from an over-watered plant with no drainage. Instead, the soil was bone dry.

I thought, “Okay, maybe it’s dry on top, and there’s stagnant water in the bottom.” So I put the pot in the kitchen sink, turned on the water, and braced myself for an awful odor.

Nothing happened. Even saturated with water, the soil and the plant smelled fine.

Back in the living room, I could still smell the potato odor, but it seemed to be fading quickly.

I didn’t think about it again, until we were on our way past Tupelo Pond.


When we were walking, I was not aware that we were next to the legendary Tupelo Pond. For some reason, I’d envisioned some large, reservoir-type pond, with some cat-o-nine-tails surrounding it, creating a vast pastoral scene.

The pond is quite small. The odor around it, as I walked past it, was stomach-turning, made worse by my literal “gut reaction” to the ghost at the theatre building.

It was the exact same putrid odor I’d sensed in my house, before we left for Bradford. I describe it as “rotting potatoes,” but others referred to it as stagnant swampwater, marsh smell, and so on.

I didn’t remember this earlier incident until after we’d returned home and discussed the Bradford ghosts.

We concluded our ghost hunt at Tupelo West