By Melissa Davies
Hello and welcome to Ohio Folklore. I’m your host, Melissa Davies, and I’m delighted to serve as your guide through some of Ohio’s most treasured, and often misunderstood, folk legends. We’ll explore locations that have inspired a sense of wonder, awe and mystery. We’ll scour historical facts to lay out what can be known. We’ll explore oral histories from local people who’ve had first hand encounters with the places and legends themselves. And, lastly, we’ll consider the unexplained, the unresolved, the missing pieces. What keeps a legend alive is a mix of critical ingredients. You’ve got to have a sense of uniqueness, of being out of place. You’ve got to have an element of significance, of a message that speaks deeply in its universal truth. But lastly, and most importantly, you’ve got to have that feeling of curiosity, of a puzzle with a few vital pieces missing. Our minds want to fill it in, to make it whole. And that, my friends, is where folklore is born. It’s is a collection of stories we humans tell about the places and events that seem bigger than ourselves; that seem too fantastical for history books; that seem too mysterious for museums. Many of the stories we’ll cover in this podcast will say as much about the storytellers as the subject matter itself. The teller and the story cannot be separated. Sometimes, what’s conjured up to fill in the gaps, tells us more about ourselves than we realize. The legends we’ll cover will address our deepest fears, our most heartfelt wishes and our most ardent desire for something beyond our mundane lives.