Free Love Cult Leaves Behind Haunting Events On Fulton County Farm

Just when you think you’ve heard all of the ghost stories and mysterious tales of the past, you find another one to add to the long list of haunting tales in the Toledo area. I found this one in a 1928 Toledo News Bee about a house that was being tormented by sort some of  phenomenon that most of the local residents were ascribing to the spirit of a scandalous woman who had once lived on this Fulton County farm. 

Her name was Lucinda Poole and the house and farm in question were near the town of Brailey in Fulton where it was said that this young and beautiful Lucinda was running a “free love” colony. A cult that was not taken kindly to by the neighbors. Not only that, but Lucinda Poole was reputed to have been an atheist and anarchist who brought her “cult” to this farm around 1890.  It was there where the “handsome” Lucinda ardently preached and practiced the gospel of “free love” and according to the News Bee article of 1928,  “scores of persons followed her precepts” and that “homes were broken, lives ruined and respectability thrown to the winds” by the disciples of the persuasive Lucinda. The article did note, however, that Lucinda was not without her virtue, but she was also said to be a selfless woman who dedicated much of her life to providing for the sick, needy and hungry of the area.

As years moved on, Lucinda also passed with them. And with her passing, her cult of free love was left to memory and embellishment.  Her daughter and a man by the name of Lutz would eventually marry and stay on the farm and turned it into a dairy operation. By the late 1920’s, they too had passed on to the ages and the family of Ellis Turpening had taken up residence on the old farmhouse. But in the late fall of 1927 and early winter of 1928, they found themselves being victmized by what many believed to be the spirits of Ms. Poole. These events included a mysterious fire in the farm house, a large chunk of wood that hit a young boy in the back, and strange and unexplained hurling of stones and several cases of dying farm animals.  In one such case, a tenant of the farm lost a flock of sheep. Nearly all of them died without an apparent cause. Horses and cows also reportedly died for no reason, while grain and wool and farm tools would come up missing, but no locks on the granary were ever disturbed.

The News Bee reported in its March 28th edition of 1928 that the Turpenings were now reporting that windows were being hit by stones and they were hearing strange rappings on the floor and windows.The situation was unnerving to many of the neighbors who had been standing guard on the farm with guns to provide sentry against the spirits. It was on one of those occassions when a mysterious fire broke out suddenly on the side of the barn.  The News Bee report of 1928 drew no conclusions about what was happening, but wqith several photos and a front page headline, I am certain there were plenty of readers who had their own opinions as to what might account fo these curious events.  I was unable to locate any subsequent reference to this mystery farm in Fulton County. So I’m just wondering if anyone knows if the this farm still exists today, and if so, where it is exactly and do those who live there still have reason to wonder if the beautiful and mysterious Lucinda Poole lingers among us?

 

 

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