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Hobo Ghost

Ardwinna, Kentucky, USA
October 1998

My Grandmother told me this story and as it happened to her.

My grandmother was born in 1889 and as a child it was not uncommon for men to come to the kitchen door of a house and ask to do chores in exchange for food. The house she grew up in was not far from the railroad tracks and my great-grandmother was known for never turning a hungry man away even if she had no chore for him to do.

One old man came around fairly often and great-grandmother would give him a simple chore, because he was not physically able to do much because he was partially crippled and he would not take a plate of food without working for it. Now, my grandmother was born with a hearing problem. One afternoon when my grandmother was ten, she was walking the railroad tracks on her way home from school. She said she never heard the train whistle and must have had her mind on something else, because when she realized the tracks were vibrating and looked up to see the train behind her, she froze. Out of nowhere, the old Hobo ran up and scooped her up and off the tracks. She was so shaken up he walked her home. Her mother came to the door and took my grandmother inside to fix her a cup of tea and calm her down. When she went back outside to thank him, the old man was gone. A few minutes later another semi regular hobo came by to inquire about chores. When my great-grandmother asked him if he had seen the old man, he told her that he had passed away in the Hobo camp earlier that week. My great-grandmother told the man what happened and both she and my grandmother swore it was him.

Periodically my grandmother would hear stories from other hobo's that would stop by about the ghost of the boxcars or the Hobo who walked the tracks. My grandmother believed it was her Hobo patrolling the tracks.

Ardwinna, Kentucky, USA
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