Fall is such a lovely time of year. The summer heat is finally breaking and there is a chill in the air. The trees are dressing themselves in hues of yellow, red and orange and if you look towards the old church in the evening you just might see the ghost of old Henry Nickelbee, the former bell ringer who died of mysterious causes on Halloween night so many years ago. He seems to be once again beckoning me to follow him to the timeless town of Hauntsville. I love to stroll (carefully) through the little town and see how the villagers are making ready for Halloween 2019. Come with me and lets take in the sights.

Our journey to Hauntsville begins here with the road through the old forest.

Ahead I can begin to see the lights of Hauntville twinkling in the growing darkness. Right in front stands the old church and in the distance on the far left the dark forest stands in front of the Grimsley Estate. In the lower left corner is the mansion of old man Gravely who offered me a summer job tending his corn field (I turned him down, I didn't trust his dog). If you look to the upper right you can see the ruins of the old castle where my neighbor Henry swares he has seen dragons, but that cannot be possible. Dragons aren't real, or are they? Best be perpared just in case. In the lower dark corner is the old graveyard. Since it is Halloween what better place to start our visit than at the grave yard?
In the lower right corner of Hauntsville stands the Forsaken Cemetery. While the graveyard is home to a great many tombs, all the residents are not where they belong. Many of the ghostly residents may be heard howling as they soar through the sky. If you look throughout the grave yard you will note many of the older graves are open.
The Andersons have come to visit the grave of their son Robert but when they arrived the grave has been opened and bones can be seen scattered in the dirt. Wonder why there isonly ONE leg bone? Just above Mr. Anderson's head one of the undead is climbing out of his grave. The brick pathway leads from the Channel Bridge to the church and then on to the Mortuary. As we walk past the church watchout for Mr. Digger, the groundskeeper, he is looking for assistants.
Beyond the church the pathway turns to stone as we approach Mordecai's Mortuary. You can see Mordecai holding his lantern welcoming new clients. The cemetery groundskeeper I.B. Digger has let the cemetery decay quite badly. There are skulls on the ground in front of the mortuary and several coffins appear to be broken and open. There is a ghost rising from a grave and one skeleton seems to be enjoying a ride on an old swing attached to the Dead End Oak.
We can leave the cemetery by way of the bridge and head toward the island. As we cross over the bridge you can see the old pirate ship that has sunk in the channel. We will see it again later on our tour.
Hauntsville has a breakwater island that has housed the lighthouse for many years. About a hundred years ago Bryon and Nan McKeeby built their island farm house and moved in. About the same time the Bones family built their house on the end of the island nearest to the cemetery. I see there are some Trick or Treaters heading to their front door hoping for some goodies. The Bones family rarely come to their door because people say they look too scary but they do enjoy the Trick or Treaters so they leave candy by the door and then watch the children a distance. You can see them standing near the bridge on the right.
Next to the Bones family home is the lighthouse. I see there are three little children dressed as ghosts heading to the door as Trick or Treaters. Since the Lighthouse is said to be haunted I hope they are not met by a ghost at the door.
Small wonder that the little ghostly Trick or Treater is running from the Lighthouse with a real ghost flying out the door!!

To the left of the Lighthouse in the farmhouse of Byron and Nan McKeeby. You can see them standing in front of their home. The residents of Hauntsville always sponsor a hayride to bring children in for Trick or Treats. There have been some problems with this in the past so this year, the townwhere Iive has brought in their own Haywagon. Mr. Henderson drives the wagon and acts as chaperone for the children. They have been warned to stay in sight of the wagon. At the moment Mr. Henderson seems a bit worried as there were 4 boys dressed as ghosts when he started the evening, and now there are only 3. I would be worried about Trick or Treating at a home where you are greeted by a woman with an ax and a man with a pitchfork.

The town parents are quite willing to let ther children go on Mr. Henderson's haywagon ride. He keeps a close eye on them especially with so many spirits out and about on this night.
Continuing along the road we come to the stone bridge that connects the island to the mainland. Below the bridge is the Hauntsville watchman guarding the entrance from his fishing boat. We will have to wait for the couple on the bridge to pass across before we start over.
Immediately after crossing the stone bridge we arrive at the Gravely Estate. Old Man Gravely is standing in fron of his home waiting for us. With him is the large dog that scared me enough that I didn't take his job offer of working in the corn fields this past summer. Have you noticed the various trees with carved gourds hanging in them? Residents of Hauntsville carve these with scary faces to ward of evil spirits. This is where we get our custom of carving pumpkins. If you keep looking there are many punpkins on display throughout the village. You may have seen some of them in front of the lighthouse when we passed by.
Old Man Gravely currently has two hired hands. Jack who works in the cornfields comes complete with scyth in one hand and a ripe pumpkin in the other. The other employee is Winkin' who may be seen hard at work sleeping in a hammock. He was supposed to be cutting the lawn but from the looks of things, that was just too hard.
Mistress Broomhilda is my favorite witch in Hauntsville. She is quite the kindly old lady, as long as you can keep away from her spells. She is known to turn small children into cats and take them for rides on her broom. However tonight she has offered to take anyone who dares for a quick ride to get a bird's eye view of Hauntville. There is just the little problem of being transformed into a cat to make the trip. Care for a ride?
From up here one gets a good view of Hauntsville. Starting at the top you can see the Wizard's castle on the left and the cemetery on the right. Below those two locations is the water channel that creates the front island and the Pirate Ship. In the middle on the left is Witch Hollow and the lighthouse can be seen on the right. If you look carefully in the channel you can see the watchman fishing in his boat and at the very bottom on the left you can see the dark forest that marks the entrance to the Grimsley Manor.
As Broomhilda circles down for a landing we can see the Grimsley family looking up at us through the trees of their private forest.
Back on the ground as we continue our tour we are now passing the Gargoyle Driveway that leads to the Grimsley Manor. You could go up to meet the family if you wish. Brom Bones can be seen lending a hand guarding the entrance. He has his burning pumpkin ready to toss if you venture too close.
Just to the left of the driveway entrance is the Grimsly maintence shed. The foreman in charge of the night work is some guy called Dracula. He says he doesn't like to work during the daylight hours. He does look a bit overdressed just just a part time worker.
If you don't want to walk up the drive and through the dark forest you could take in the long view of the Manor as we pass by.
As the roadway begins a turn to the right taking us toward Witch Hollow we will have to wait a moment while the Hauntsville Haywagon passes by. This is the haywagon that has caused some problems in the past. It is driven by Mr. Grim Reaper who says he will take us to a place where we can have eternal rest. You can take the ride if you wish. I think I'll wait a while.
After passing the hay wagon we come to the Witch Hollow Pub. It is the favorite gathering places for the members of the Hauntsville Coven. A witchy mother can always get a brew or two when she brings her little witch to the flight school for flying lessons.
Mistress Gwendolynn is the pub hostess. You can see her and her cat ready to greet her customers. She has samples of her new brew in a pair of tumblers sitting on a table by the door. She claims the drinks will give you some amazing visions Anyone interesting in giving one a try?
Mistress Hecate has the job of arranging seating and parking for pub guests. She uses her telescope to search the skys to see who is about to swoop in so she can have their table ready when then land.
Here comes one of the customers preparing for a landing now.
To the right of the pub is the village flight school. Flying lessons are under the supervision of Circe who can be seen at the top of the stairs watching and recording the progress of her latest batch of young students. I always thought that ALL witch could fly, but is seems that I've been wrong. That is Agatha who just roared by on her motercycle. It is the hot rumor that she lost her flying licence for having too many crashes. To the right of the flight school is the bridge over Dreadful Creek. We will be going that way next.
Dreadful Creek flows from its source on Mount Doom and empties into the channel. The creek is the home of Swampy who is often seen as he comes from his no so secret home under the bridge. Next to Dreadful Creek is the Forbidden Swamp of the Santee. Only two residents dare to enter the Swamp. Afterall there are all sorts of awful creatures awaiting those who enter. Old Joe knows the swamp and its creatures quite well. He does not seem the least worried about the snakes in the trees, and the gators below.
Old Joe has been poling his johnboat through these swamps for many years. He alwys keeps his pet rat on his shoulder and his raven perches on the bow of the boat to watch for lurking gators. I think there is one approaching from the right. Joe spends most of his time searching for frogs. He claims froglegs make for really good "eats". He claims they taste like chicken.
The other resident of the swamp is Mistress Abby. Some say she was once a beautiful woman who was spurned by a prince. Rumor has it that in a fit of rage she turned him into a frog! Now she lives alone in her cozy home on the edge of the swamp.
I don't see any princes around but there sure are a lot of frogs. Well, I guess she has to keep a large suppy of frogs on hand for Joe and the snakes.
The home of Mistress Abby.
Behind the home of Mistress Abby is the stone stairway that will take us to the upper level. We will come back to this staircase in a few moments. There are two more stops for us to visit on this roadway. However, if you check out the stair you just might see Mr. Henderson's 4th little boy in a ghost costume heading up the stairs. What is he doing up there?
At the end of the shoreside roadway is the Master Mason Tombstone Factory and Mine. All the tombstones used the the Forbidden Cemetery were created here. I see the village taxi is dropping off a passenger.
Here at land's end lies the remains of the old sailing ship the "Flying Dutchman". Captain Ahab is returning from a night at the pub where he sampled some of the local brews. He can be seen here heading down to his ship with his faithful parrot Polly on his shoulder. Also standing at the stern of the ship is John Hook one of the crew members. He is supposed to be finding new crew members. Wonder what he is doing at the cemetery. Could that be why so many of the graves are being opened.
Now that we have seen the pirate ship we can return to the staircase and head to the upper portion of Hauntsville. At the top of the stairs we can either go to the right and the wizards' castle or left to Witch Hollow. We will go left first. As we start down the pathway we pass the village windmills. It is here the grains from the farms we saw earlier are brought to be ground. The very tempting honey cakes that the witches make here are offered to the local children as secial treats.
LOOK OUT!! There goes Mr. Henderson's missing little boy. It looks like his ghost costume didn't fool anyone and now Death, who rides a white horse, is after him. No wonder the little kid is running down the stairs before Death can catch up with him.
As we stroll past the windmills we are in the heart of the Hollow. The rushing waters of Dreadful Creek are to our left and just behind the Misty Bridge we can Mount Doom Falls. I can see that all the witches are getting ready for the big night. Several of the "ladies" are sporting new hats for the evening as they prepare to head for the pub to celebrate Halloween Night. Mistress Esmeralda is busy finishing a few spells in her kettle . She is hoping to win first prize in the potions contest held at the pub at the stroke of midnight.
The Falls of Mount Doom. That is Grendal just crossing the bridge.
The reigning potion champion is Mordred who you can see here. She has at least seven kettles all brewing different potions. You can see her secret ingredients sitting in front of her home. I see she uses dragon brains and spider eyes. I don't think she should be letting that jar of dragon brains be kept out for all to see.
After we leave the Hollow and head back toward the stairs heading toward the castle we pass the home of Doctor Jeckel. He is working on some experiments that he claims will have monsterous results.
ON this night Wizard Magnus Aldorus is standing guard at the mouth of the cave of the Spirits. As long as he can keep his spells working the Balrog will not be able to escape. Aldorus says we have nothing to worry about. In the foreground you can see one of the dragons kept here at the castle. One of her young can be seen just coming out of its shell. She certainly looks like a proud mother. She stands guard from her perch on top of the Tombstone factory.
Best be careful while we are up here. Over on the cliffs about the cemetery one of the wraiths can be seen guarding two new dragon hatchlings. If there is a need to have these hatchlings guarded by a wraith these must be fearsome dragons indeed. I see the cute little guys have just finished their lunch. Wonder where they got that leg bone from?
At the castle entrance the great wizard Rand al'Thor is working with his mighty dragon Smokefang. This is where our tour ends. I suggest you make you way back carefully to village. You should have no problem if you STAY ON THE PATH. Your safety has been assured by the Wizards and you will be watched over by Broomhilda. I will be staying here with the wizards for a little while.
Tonight I have been granted a special honor by the citizens of Hauntsville. For telling their story for so many years I am going to be allowed to ride the great Green Dragon Smokefang and become a dragonrider. Old Smoky looks like he is ready, so I don't want to keep him waiting.

Our tour of Hauntsville 2019 is over. Thank you one and all for visiting this little town that time has forgotten. I hope you enjoyed the visit and will return next year for another visit to this magical town. Since you are all safely back in town there is no longer a need for Broomhilda to watch over you. She will be flying back to the pub for a bit of celebration.

Happy Halloween to each of you. Always stay young at heart.

See you next year.

If you have comments or questions about this village please send me a note at my email address: