Did a witch curse an entire town?
Are such curses even actuality?
In a word, they can be.
Words count. They are spelled with letters. They can cast power (spells).
“And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity,” says James 3:6. “The tongue is so set among our members that it defiles the whole body, and sets on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire by hell.”
We have written about places that seem to be cursed, for instance, by the presence of Indian burial and ritual sites, or the presence of necromancers, such as spiritualists.
There are also witches.
And in this vein was the “witch of Yazoo.”
Her grave is in the middle of Glenwood Cemetery in Yazoo City, Mississippi, and dates at least to 1856. It’s claimed she was a woman who lured sailors to her hut, then tortured and killed them. When sheriff deputies caught up with her, she was hiding in a swamp and sinking into quicksand — not at all happy about their pursuit of her. So unhappy, in fact, that she put a curse on the town, vowing that she’d be back in two decades to burn the town to the ground.
Allegedly, on May 25, 1904, exactly twenty years to the day of this woman’s death, the town of Yazoo caught on fire. “Witnesses of the fire said that it had a strange quality, with the flames jumping, twisting and leaping in a way they’d never seen fire behave before,” says a website. “Many believed that the flames were dancing by command of the witch.”
One could add that yellow fever exacted a terrible toll on this town in 1878, and that Yazoo also was severely damaged by a flood in 1927.
In 1910, two tornadoes hit the town at the same time.
Any area is going to have its share of misfortunes, however. And questions along this line are understandable. Wasn’t this a flood zone? Didn’t the Mississippi inundate the entire delta that year of 1927? And wasn’t yellow fever fairly common? Didn’t an epidemic also afflict Yazoo in 1853 — several years before her death?
Still, the skepticism is not to discount the notion of curses. Similar stories are attached to many cities — parts of New Orleans, Augusta, Georgia, and a town east of Orlando, as just a few examples.
As for the cemetery in Yazoo City, “A simple marker is placed before a large plot near the creek where the bodies of many Confederate soldiers are buried,” notes a city website. “Located not far from a fountain in Glenwood is a grave surrounded by chain links. This is known as ‘The Witch’s Grave.’ The legend of the Witch that burned Yazoo City in 1904 became famous in a book written by Willie Morris.” Several Sisters of Charity are also buried there — but their presence apparently is not enough to ward off bad luck, or so they would have us believe.