In this creature feature, Bill tells us the story of the mysterious cultists and cryptids who haunt the Bennington Triangle and Glastenbury Mountain in the Green Mountains of Vermont, addressing important questions like “is the Glastenbury Monster just a Bigfoot?” “How does a rock eat a person?” And “how is that runaway bludgeoner still alive after more than a century?”

Episode Summary

An abandoned town. Sightings of cryptids. Strange disappearances. And weird rock structures that no one can explain. It sounds like the start of horror fiction, but there’s a place in New England called the Bennington Triangle where this is all true. Today, we talk to repeat guest Bill Presley, who has collected some interesting folklore from his family’s home in Vermont. After you listen to the strange tales from this area, perhaps you too will have your own theory about what’s really going on.

Episode Show Notes

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About Bill Presley

We interviewed Bill in April, 2022, but since then he has written another collection of stories. This time, about folklore from Vermont, in Death Reflects, soon to be published by Little Demon Books. By day, Bill Presley is a geneticist who studies the molecular basis of pathogenesis in Mendelian diseases. This type of research helps patients with new and mysterious inherited medical issues.

Bill Presley, whose family has a history of inherited psychic gifts
Bill Presley, our guest for today’s episode

Bill straddles the line between skeptic and believer, analytic and creative. He grew up in a family where many members have “the gift”. The true story of demonic oppression he told us earlier this year is part of an anthology published by Timber Ghost Press. He also crafted the story into his fictional novella Aniela, which serves as the prelude to the series entitled The Apprentice’s Notebook, published by Little Demon Books and available on Amazon. He’s also written a follow-up novella. Follow Bill on Twitter @AnotherPresley for release updates.

What is the Bennington Triangle?

Well, you know the story of the Bermuda Triangle, right? This is the same basic idea, but on land, and in Vermont. While we haven’t heard a lot of spooky stories from Vermont yet (except we keep hearing about witch windows), but apparently that’s about to change.

Here are some of the strange things the locals know about Glastenbury Mountain:

  • A local cryptid called the Glastenbury Monster might roam this mountain.
  • There’s a demon door somewhere.
  • Tales of a man-eating rock date back to before the Mayflower landed.
  • Henry McDowell, who went mad in 1892 and murdered John Crowell by bludgeoning at the behest of the voices in his head, might still be alive somehow.
  • For years, there’s been a wilderness cult that nobody can find.

Also, wait until Bill tells us about an ongoing series of inexplicable disappearances linked to wearing a red hoodie.

Not that kind of speculum.

Bill has an enviable collection of antique medical and funerary equipment on display in his home, to his girlfriend’s delight. So when he started talking about a speculum, we just assumed…but actually, in this case, the word means “mirror,” much like the word spectrophilia means both a fetish for ghosts and a fetish for mirrors.

We don’t know (yet) how the medical tool got its name. But a speculum/mirror refers to not only a simple mirror, but any sort of device used for insight. In medieval times, the word speculum used to broadly refer to scrying devices. Bill was talking about witch balls (scrying devices made from glass fishing net bobbers). I have a feeling we’re going to have to do a bonus episode on the topic of speculums, what do you think? In my scrying device I see us both having a spooky day.