Bell Witch is a paranormal legend about the Bell family who lived in Adams, Tennessee. According to this historic legend, in 1817, John Bell, Sr. encountered a weird animal, having a rabbit’s head and dog’s body, in his farm. John Bell shot the animal several times which vanished suddenly but he didn’t give any further thought to it. Later that evening, during the dinner, the Bell family heard strange knocking noises on the outside walls of the house. These noises soon moved into the house and the family experienced the paranormal activity in the house. One day, the youngest daughter of the family, Betsy Bell was brutally assaulted by the witch who pulled her hair and slapped her several times leaving the marks behind.
The family believed that these events were the mischief of an invisible witch who soon started moving the objects from their place and increased paranoia of the family members. Soon, the whispering voices of the witch became loud and the hymns and scriptures of the witch echoed in the house. The witch introduced herself as “Kate Batts”, a neighbor of Bell’s whom John had once upset in some way. Though John Bell intended to keep these events a secret but the tension in the house escalated to such a point that John Bell had to share his trouble with his closest friend, James Johnston.
Johnston came for a night stay, at John’s house, along with his wife. They both were subjected to same disturbances and torture, having their bed sheets and pillows pulled away and being slapped continuously. The word of this supernatural phenomenon soon spread outside and reached the ears of Major General Andrew Jackson in Nashville who took keen interest. In 1819, Jackson decided to visit the Bell farm.
Jackson insisted some men to come along with him and set for the Adams. As the wagon reached the Bell’s property, the horse suddenly stopped and could not move any further. This was the first encounter of Jackson and his men with the witch who, after several minutes, told them that they could proceed further and be prepared to meet her later that evening. During evening, the witch started terrifying the men who begged Jackson to leave but he remained firm on his decision of staying. It is not sure what happened later but Jackson, his men were seen next morning heading back for Nashville, and the paranormal activity in the house continued to haunt the family.
Later in his life, John Bell Sr. suffered from facial seizures, which often caused him to become speechless. After slipping into coma, John Bell breathed his last breath the next day, on December 20, 1820. A small vial of unidentified liquid was found near his body. When this liquid was fed to the house-cat she died instantly which proved that the liquid was a poison. The witch then told John Bell, Jr. joyfully that she was the one who fed him the poison.
On his funeral, the witch sang loudly and joyfully until each and every person had left the graveyard. The witch’s existence after John bell, Sr. was almost nonexistent as if its purpose had been fulfilled.