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The Haunting of Cry Baby Holler | Crybaby Holler | Cry Baby Hollow | Crybaby Hollow
Hartselle, Alabama

Posted by Hauntings Admin on 01/28/2011

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About Cry Baby Holler | Crybaby Holler | Cry Baby Hollow | Crybaby Hollow

Hartselle, Alabama

Cry Baby Holler

Cry Baby Holler, also known as Cry Baby Hollow is a famous Hartselle, Alabama haunt, known for causing goosebumps and perpetuating chilling stories. Hartselle, Alabama is a small city of about 14,000 people in the northern part of the state about 10 miles south of Decatur. According to reports, the bridge is located on Kayo Road off of Highway 31 N going toward Decatur.

Hartselle was founded in 1870, but burned to the ground in 1916. At an unspecified time in the past, a woman was said to have been driving with her young infant in a car over the narrow bridge now known as Cry Baby Holler when she lost control of the vehicle and it wrecked. The woman survived the crash but the baby perished. Now Hartselle locals claim that the ghost of the baby haunts the bridge. Those who have stopped on the bridge and listened quietly claim to have heard the sounds of a baby crying.

Some locals also claim that if you leave candy on the bridge and then walk away, a few minutes later it will disappear mysteriously. The Cry Baby Holler haunt in Hartselle is famous for its creepiness and lots of people in the area know about it, but few people realize that the bridge you can drive across is not the actual “haunted” bridge. If you really want to see some Hartselle, Alabama ghosts, you should find the bridge that you can drive across and then look for an old trail nearby leading to a rickety bridge that you should not drive across.

There are additional, spicy elements to the Cry Baby Hollow story that you must know about it you plan to visit the location. Franklin Hammond was an important character affiliated with the haunted bridge. This man was purported born in the late 1920’s and probably never attended school. He was not an intelligent man. Some reports say that he was in a cult that met regularly at Cry Baby Hollow to try to raise spirits from the dead.

In the 1940’s some say that Franklin Hammond murdered a number of victims, one right after the other. These people would turn up missing and police were unable to track down the killer. Hammond was said to have slaughtered a young boy and dumped his body in the Cry Baby Hollow Creek. He also purportedly murdered a pregnant woman in 1943, dumping the woman’s car in a pond in the woods, apparently.

One day, Franklin Hammond purportedly arrived in the town of Hartselle with blood stained clothes. He bought a rope and hack saw in this state and then returned to the woods (with the police tailing him). He had been living in an old bar where he had nailed human skin to the walls. The police observed him for about an hour before going ahead and arresting him.

After Hammond refused to talk to the police for some time, he finally decided to open up and tell his story. He said that a mother, father, and a young boy and their dog were fishing by Cry Baby Hollow Creek. He lured the dog to him and smashed its head. When the family came looking for it, he killed the father first, strangling him with barbed wire. The mother’s foot got caught in a rabbit trap as she tried to run. He drove nails into her body to finish her off. The boy watched his parents die and ran away, but then returned to the barn later. Hammond said, “I didn’t do nothing fancy with him.” He said that he just tied him up to the wall and then beat him with a hammer. Later, he dumped his body at Cry Baby Holler Creek. It was never found.

Hammond’s wife had been tied up in an old shack for some time. Every now and then, he would feed her until finally she was on the brink of death. Then, he decided to beat her to death using barbed wire attached to a stick. Loretta May Hammond’s body (Franklin Hammond’s wife) was later found under the floor of the old barn along with other mutilated bodies. Doctors speculated that the others had been beaten with a sledge hammer. Hammond removed these victim’s teeth and stored them in a jar.

Hammond spent time in a Georgia state prison. In 1950, on a dark and stormy night, he took his own life leaving a suicide note to the effect: “: For all the families I've hurt. This is for you. Now you cant see me die in the chair. The evil is ready to go home. and get you all. It's never over. It's just begun.”

This story is used to explain the crying and sobbing so often reported at the Cry Baby Holler bridge. This story in tandem with the familiar tale of the woman with her infant with her in the car make sense, in a way. If the story of Franklin Hammond is indeed true (we have not been able to verify it yet), then the story of woman in the car with the baby may be derived from the death of the pregnant woman. Often, when big tragedies happen in small communities, really twisted tales are all that get passed down as the people with first hand knowledge of the event try hard to forget about it. On the other hand, perhaps it is all entirely fabricated. Who knows? (Any hardcore evidence that someone could offer would be valuable).

People have reported haunting experiences at Cry Baby Holler including, of course, the disembodied sounds of someone crying. They have also seen things like white apparitions or mists moving about on the old path. Some have also reported hearing an eerie drumming sound.

Resources:

AngelFire.com (n.d.). Franklin Hammond. Retrieved July 18, 2012 from http://www.angelfire.com/al3/HaddonFieldHorrors/Hammond.html

GhostHauntings.org (n.d.). GhostHauntings.org Message Board. Retrieved July 18, 2012 from http://nocs.websitetoolbox.com/post?id=4666569

Shadowlord (1998). Haunted Places Index: Alabama. Retrieved July 18, 2012 from http://www.theshadowlands.net/places/alabama.htm

StrangeUSA (1901-2012). Haunt in Cry Baby Hollow. Retrieved July 18, 2012 from http://www.strangeusa.com/Viewlocation.aspx?id=1281

Wikipedia (2012). Hartselle, Alabama. Retrieved July 18, 2012 from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hartselle,_Alabama

Comments

Raven Posted: 02/04/2013
There were Civil War battles near this bridge. About 600 people died in a battle along the Tennessee River near Decatur in 1864.
jnypop Posted: 09/02/2013
one bridge is on a road called Red Bank Road.it is close by but actually has nothing to do with cry baby hollow.and the trail to the old rickety bridge is really a bird watching/hiking trail at red bank not cry baby hollow.the other bridge with no guard rails is the one everyone is scarred of.a lot of us locals drive up there around halloween to scare each other by stopping on the bridge and cutting all of the lights off.i have heard everything from killer stories to satan worshipers to aliens.i don't believe it but it is fun to think about.
jnypop Posted: 09/02/2013
oh yeah....i don't think i have ever seen a squirrel that didn't like a bit of candy

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