Friday, December 9, 2022

The Goatman’s Bridge

 Author: Sonya Villarreal

In 1887, Old Alton’s Bridge was built in the city of Denton, Texas. Shortly after, there were strange encounters within the bridge that raised the question of Old Alton’s Bridge being haunted. Since then, there have been exchanges of different versions of how the paranormal activity came to be. Shaun Jex, frequent guest author of The Moonlit Road, depicts the life of Oscar Washburn, the suspected ghost. Jex claims that Washburn, an African American farmer, was attacked by Klu Klux Klan members because they were jealous of a black man maintaining a successful farming business. The Klansman began their scheme by aggressively beating Washburn’s goats, knowing that he would immediately react by coming out of his home in an attempt to save his animals. With a successful distraction, the Klansman attacked the farmer and hung him over the side of Old Alton’s Bridge. Since then, Old Alton’s Bridge was newly introduced as The Goatman’s Bridge because of the possible ghost encounters. As said by Caroline Thrift of Atlas Obscura, “Some locals have claimed to see glowing eyes staring at them on the bridge, while others have claimed to hear splashing in the creek directly below, followed by unsettling laughter.” 

Goatman’s Bridge - Denton, TX 
(Angelo State University Advance Video Production class 2013)

Becky Vickers, a respected paranormal investigator, had a fond interest in traveling to the Goatman’s Bridge. She shares her experience through her written novel, “The Secret’s of Goatman’s Bridge”, where Vickers states Goatman’s Bridge to be “one of the most haunted places I have ever investigated.” Additionally, on the website, Vickers shares a trailer in the name of  “The Secrets of Goatman’s Bridge - The Trailer '' where she showcases her real life encounters. She provides many intriguing photos that leave ghost enthusiasts wondering what they can discover themselves at the Goatman’s Bridge. 

The story behind the background of Goatman’s Bridge still remains a mystery. Darcie Nadel writes  “The Goatman: Maryland’s Axe-Wielding Monster” on Exemplore where she expresses her input on the different origins of the Goatman. Nadel’s article states “the experimental myth is the most persuasive of them all” and “resembling a Bigfoot creature.” In other words, it still remains in question how the Goatman’s Bridge came to be. 

Works Cited:

  “Goatman’s Bridge - Denton, TX.” YouTube, uploaded by Advance Video Production class at Angelo State University, 5 Dec 2013, Accessed on 25 Oct. 2022.

 Vickers, Becky. “The Secrets of Goatman's Bridge: True Tales of Chilling Paranormal Encounters at One of the Most Haunted Bridges in America.” Bowker, 12 Dec. 2018.

 “Old Alton Bridge.” Wikipedia, 24 Sep 2022, Accessed on 25 Oct. 2022.

 Thrift, Caroline. “Goatman’s Bridge.” Atlas Obscura, 11 June 2018.

Jex, Shaun. “The Goatman’s Bridge of Denton, Texas.” The Moonlit Road, 2017.

Nadel, Darcie. “The Goatman: Maryland's Axe-Wielding Monster.” Exemplore, 31 July 2022.


Links for Further Research:

       “Alton, Texas and the Haunted Goatman’s Bridge.” Legends of America, June 2021.

This article written by Kathy Weiser-Alexander, a lover of creativity, serves as an in depth glance at the background of the haunted Goatman’s bridge. In addition, being that the last edit of the article was June of 2021, it has very recent details of how the bridge has developed overtime.

      Thrift, Caroline. “Goatman’s Bridge.” Atlas Obscura, 11 June 2018.

This article is written by Caroline Thrift who appears to be deeply involved in  traveling the world to find unique experiences she can write about on the popular website Atlas Obscura. In this article, Thrift summarizes basic information on the historic landmark of Goatman’s Bridge in Alton, Texas.

      Jex, Shaun. “The Goatman’s Bridge of Denton, Texas.” The Moonlit Road, 2017. This short story written by Shaun Jex, frequent guest author for The Moonlit Road, digs deep into the background of the death of the Goatman and its significance in 1930’s racial violence. Jex depicts the life of Oscar Washburn, an African American farmer, and how his success through a small farming business threatened the ego of the Klu Klux Klan society.

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