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Urban Legends that Continue to Haunt New Jersey

By Lependorf & Silverstein on February 14, 2014

New Jersey Landmarks and LegendsThere’s no doubt that New Jersey has quite a notable reputation among the nation’s 50 states. From the famous boardwalk along the coast of Atlantic City to the Princeton University, The Garden State is well-known for more than just a once-famous MTV show.

But some of the most peculiar cultural icons of New Jersey date back to the 1700s and even earlier. Here are some of the creepy urban legends that live on today in New Jersey.

The Devil’s Tree

Countless stories surround an ominous looking oak tree located in a barren field in Bernards Township, each claiming that the tree is cursed. Some say the tree was the site of numerous suicides and murders, while others warn that anyone attempting to cut down the tree will not only fail to do so but die shortly after. Several visitors say that the tree is so unnaturally warm that it remains untouched even during the dead of winter.

Flemington’s Union Hotel Ghosts

Built in 1878 and closed in 1950, this four-story hotel is rumored to be haunted by former guests, particularly young children, who roam the halls. The hotel’s spooky reputation is also linked to the infamous trial against the man who allegedly kidnapped and murdered Charles Lindbergh’s son, which took place at the courthouse just across the street.

The Jersey Devil

One of the oldest and most popular legends to come out of New Jersey is the story of the Jersey Devil. According to the three-century-old tale, a woman from Pine Barrens, known as Mother Leeds, became pregnant with her thirteenth child. Knowing that she and her inauspicious husband could not afford another mouth to feed, Mother Leeds cursed the unborn child to become a devil. When the baby was born it transformed into a monstrous bat-like creature that immediately killed its own mother, father, and siblings before going on to terrorize neighboring homes and towns. Even today there continue to be sightings of the Jersey Devil throughout the state.

Do you know any other NJ urban legends? The legal team at Lependorf & Silverstein, PC would love to hear them! Visit our Facebook page and let us know!

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The firm’s principals, Gabriel R. Lependorf and David E. Silverstein, have each been representing injured victims in the State of New Jersey for over twenty years.

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