Somewhere along the Eastern side of Texas, in the heart of the Piney Woods Region, stands the oldest town of the whole state.
Nacogdoches, known for being founded by Spanish settlers more than 200 years ago, back in 1779, has been a human home for even longer: the Caddo Indians had already established communities 1,200 years before the Spanish people arrived, during pre-historic Texas.
The Long-Forgotten Cemetery In The Woods Of Nacogdoches
The forest is closer to town than you would imagine, offering access to hiking trails and gardens right beside the SFA University´s apartments, a few blocks east of downtown. The woods are extensive and have over 8 miles of marked trail for Nacogdoches´ hikers and bikers.
But is it really all bird sighting and cleared paths?
There is a rumor, told amongst the locals, that an unmarked exit almost at the end of the Lanana Creek Trail leads to an old cemetery that is now abandoned and forgotten, hidden between the cottonwood and large oaks.
The 6-mile trail used to be an Indian footpath over 500 years ago, so it is no surprise that those few people who have come across the cemetery tell that most tombs belong to deceased Native Americans, long before the town was settled.
However, there are also a small number of graves where Spanish people were buried, and it seems that it is their spirits roam restlessly among the tombs.
Nothing good will happen if you find your way into this cemetery, as your presence makes the dead edgy and upset. Those who have been in it report that they were not only followed by ghostly manifestations but also harassed to the point of being pulled violently from the hair and clothes.
Angry voices also whisper to people´s ears, demanding, in an outdated Spanish, that they leave the place immediately.
Violent Ghosts Will Wait For You In The Graveyard
It is difficult to know exactly who the Spaniards buried here are but an old memorial monument in a corner of the cemetery depicts a Spanish man wearing a battle uniform with a sword in hand, which explains the ghost's wrathful behavior.
A second, bigger sculpture represents three hooded women, holding hands.
Joseph (name changed for privacy), a middle-aged man who followed the hidden entrance to the old graveyard, tells how he feared getting hurt before finding the way back to the main trail.
“I was really surprised to see all those graves and tombs. It is a big place, and I didn't know I was lost until terrifying things started to happen to me. I began hearing several men threatening me in Spanish. I even felt hands on my back, pushing me with a lot of strength”, the man remembers.
He got scared enough to want to leave the place, and might not have been able to if he would not have received help.
He tells he “saw, or think I saw three women standing in the distance, wearing all black. For some reason, their presence made me feel safe, and as I ran towards them, they disappeared, only to show the exit that led me back to the trail to never come back”.
Although this man was lucky, you could be less fortunate than him, so if you find the way into the abandoned Nacogdoches cemetery, you might want to ignore it and keep walking the marked path.