Granny's Pear Preserves
A Lad And His Boat

Afraid In The Moonlight


When Pap was about 9 years old, he had a favorite hideout.

(thats him above in the overalls)


Up the ridge from his house he built a lean-to. He would spend his free time there building fires and sometimes baking potatoes in the coals.

Moonlite night

One fall moonlit night, without telling anyone, Pap slipped off after supper, headed to his lean-to.

Creepy trail

Not having electricity at home, Pap was use to the dark and not scared to be out in it.

Moonlite Trail

As he started up the dark moonlit trail, Pap was thinking about his lean-to and was pleased he had managed to sneak off by himself.

Dark Man

As the wind begin to pick up, he saw a tall dark figure walking quickly down the other side of the fence line. It wore a wide hat and a long dark flowing coat. Although the figure didn't seem to see Pap-it scared the beejeebies out of him.

Slip off


Pap made a hasty retreat back home to the light of the oil lamp and the safety of his parents. He didn't tell anyone what he'd seen-for fear he'd be punished for slipping off.

A few days later, after the fear subsided, Pap realized the dark figure was probably someone he knew. There was a young man who lived in the area, with the last name of Frankum, who was often seen wandering the countryside.

Frankum was kinda strange and would often show up at Pap's house close to supper time, knowing he'd be offered something to eat. This was in the days of most families having little food due to rationing and just general hard times. Pap said it frustrated his father-because there was barely enough for them. But like most mountain folks-Pap's parents shared what they had even though it was very little. Frankum seemed to take advantage of their generosity-as often he would invite himself to spend the night, sleeping in the floor until breakfast time.

Not long after this incident Frankum joined the Merchant Marines-where he remained until his retirement.

Ever seen a dark figure in the woods? Glad to say I have not!!


p.s. Remember to comment-the next Acorn Giveaway is on Friday!


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Great story. I liked the photo illustrations!

I have never seen a dark figure in the woods but my brother and I were horrible little trolls and WERE the dark figures in the woods many times frightening the poor boy scouts at a camp across the road from my parents place.

That would have scared the beejeebies out of me, too!

Certainly a creepy tale! Thanks for submitting it to the Carnival of Genealogy!

No sir, no dark figures in the woods at night for me. I was afraid to go out in the night. I was an adult before I got over my fear of the night.
Now that I've confessed that fear let me tell you another. I was always terrified of lightening and thunder! When the Deerhunter was born I came to understand that if I didn't do something about this fear of storms he was likley to grow up with the same fear. It was important to me that he not have this fear of storms so I got over it for him. I did for him what I could not do for myself.
I am happy to report that I am not afraid to be out alone in the dark and I am not afraid of storms. Now I actually enjoy the power of storms!

Hey Tipper!

I came by to thank you for your sweet comments and also to let you know that I just posted another installment of the story. Boy, I am hooked on that thing. I like Helen. She's just spiffy.


What a great story, Tipper! I was too much of a coward to go out by myself at night~I'd see something even if it wasn't there!

I love to hear the old stories about the generosity of mountain/country folks. My grandma said that a lot of times, strangers would stop by and eat with them. There were a few stories she told that were a little scary, but my gr grandpa always invited the strangers inside and made them welcome, even after the 'odd' person or two had shown up.

Great Story!
I'll never forget the screams from a bunch of city girls at a church youth retreat. It was pitch black and the windows were open in the un-airconditioned dorm cabin...We heard the most awful screeching....All of us were in one bunk in a matter of seconds. Later we found out the horrid screeching was a screech owl. We had never heard that before.

Oh, Tipper, I loved this story about Pap as a child! It was perfect to share in October when we start to become "spooked" and I love the accompanying song! Wow, I could almost see it happening, as if I was there myself!

This reminded me of all the wonderful ghost stories my grandmother used to tell us... things that happened to her when she was a little girl... she always had us glued to our seats!! (and to each other!!)

ohh dark figures , i've seen a few. sounds like a good spooky story for halloween brewing!

I've always liked to sneak off by myself & wander around. Luckily I've never seen a dark figure, but once we were riding the horses back home in the pitch dark. I was so scared, you couldn't see your hand in front of your face! The horses brought us back safely.

I love how you told this story and the corresponding pictures!
I grew up on a farm where we had to do morning chores before the school bus picked us up, so we were out in the dark at 5:30 each morning. I never saw a mysterious figure in the woods but instead imagined them lurking behind each and every tree!

Tipper: I actually made a post on being in the mountains and how the dark moves in and covers you like a blinding blanket. The Moon must have been out for Pap to see anything. The fear of being in the dark is accented when in the woods. What is just around the next tree has to be a question that goes through your mind. What was that noise? It can be so spooky.

Isn't that crazy...him walking in the dark like that...because you know back then there were no big lights or anything so when it got dark it got DARK!

Oh, that gives me the chills! I walk in the early a.m. because I am a teacher, and I never stop to worry who might be out there. The dark has become familiar to me. But it's interesting how different people are in the dark than they are in daylight. We just don't know...

I remember figures in the woods, during the day being scary as a little girl! I cannot imagine if it had been night!

It's cool enough here to sleep with the windows open. Last night just before I turned off the lights I heard an animal wandering around outside and for a while after I was in bed I could catch a whiff of his scent - musky and wild. Probably a raccoon but I sure wasn't going to look out there to see! blessings, marlene

You did a great job telling this story. The pictures turned out nice too. I think Pap once took me to the place where the mysterious figure passed him in the woods. It's not far from where we live now--up near the Cook home-place. This post makes me think of the Del McCoury Song "It's Just the Night." Maybe you can find it online and link it to your playlist to set the mood for this post/month. :)

As a kid, I was never scared to be out in the woods at night either, mostly because I knew them so well at the time. I could find my way even without a light. My only concern was the possibility of stepping on a snake. Of course, that was back before we had bears here! Yikes! I think I'd much rather run into a mysterious stranger than a 500 lbs. carnivorous critter with massive claws and teeth.

My brother,sister and I played outside in the dark all the time. We had so much fun trying to scare each other. I don't recall seeing anything or anybody traipsing around tho. Good thing cause I would'nt have gone ouside in the dark ever again,LOL

Can't remember if I have or not. We walk a lot in the early evening hours and I hate it when the bats come out and start darting about. I'm always afraid one is going to land on my head.

I try to avoid the dark and any figures that might be lurking in it.

This reminds me of the stories my Daddy tells about living up in the mountains.

Never saw anyone in the dark woods like Pap saw. I probably would have walked towards it to see what it was. I know, I'm weird like that. xxoo

The woods are full of awful looking creatures at night. Tree limbs, stumps, vines, and deadfalls all change into frightful creatures in the colorless world of the night. Pappy

Growing up, we ran around all the time in the dark in the neighborhood and the woods nearby. Being the times they were and out in the country a bit, we had nothing to fear. These days, living in town, I'm not as brave as I used to be.

I have never actually seen a figure in the dark like that but I used to pretend it with my sister in our fort when we camped out. We'd imagine that scary people and monsters were hiding in the shadows and ready to pounce on us.

We scared ourselves have to death!


A dark figure in the woods? Even now, if I was to run up on such a thing, I think I'd break a world record running!

I bet your Pap had nightmares. I sure would have!

We lived in the country and I was terrified of the dark. We always had electricity, at least I can't remember not having it. But I didn't like the night sounds and stayed close to the house at night.

Hmmmmm, don't think I have either. Good story for October! Isn't it interesting that those with the least to give always end up giving the most? Why is it that the most generous are always those with the least to give? I never have been able to figure that one out ...

No, I didn't go out after dark, by myself. Too chicken. But I've seen the faces of others who have and it was hilarious!
I can just see the wide-eyed look of Pap's young boy face, there in the dark. Makes me giggle. Sorry Pap!

I love these stories and the moon.

What a great haint story. This time of year the boogers are every where lol :o)

Awesome! Thank you fro sharing... :)

You're so fortunate to have had so many of your Pap's stories related to you (even the scary ones), and to now be passing them on, yourself. Storytelling in families is not the common denominator it used to be.

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