American Folklore and Mythology: Indian, Appalachian, History

Various Urban Legends from Folklore and History

Old Legends of an American Town Lightning Bolt

Click for FULL page of Lake Ronkonkoma Legend - Tells about the Princess being from SAYVILLE.

Father Devine of Sayville  The Curse

In 1931 the famous cult leader Father Devine, who claimed supernatural powers, placed a curse on the Village of Sayville. He said "Sayville sowed seeds of its own destruction."


One of the reason that the shows like Sabrina are about witches, and 
another show involves fighting demons is because there is huge belief in urban 
legends and myths among the kids of Sayville. The town is full of big spooky Victorian 
homes, numerous swamps, old cemeteries, and dark woods.

Indian Princess:  There is a lake called Lake Ronkonkoma that is very deep. It is believed by 
kids in Sayville that it is bottomless. Before the white man civilized the area, 
there was a tribe of Secatogue Indians living in what is now Sayville. In this 
tribe there was a princess. She was in love with a Poospatuck  Indian prince from what is now 
Bayport, on the other side of Brown's River where she was forbidden to go. One 
day they snuck off together to Lake Ronkonkoma and took their canoe to a romantic 
spot after dark to make love. The spirits did not approve of this, as people on 
opposite sides of the river should not mix. So the boat sunk, and their bodies fell 
forever and ever down into the bottomless lake. 

    So every year the angry Indian princess kills two lovers and pulls their souls 
to the bottom of the lake. And every year at least one young couple dies. 
Click for FULL page of Lake Ronkonkoma Legend - Tells about the Princess being from SAYVILLE.

Swamp This is an old picture of a swamp in Sayville.

St. Ann's Church of Sayville  A church in Sayville next to a swamp.

Ghost of Harriet Tubman:   The southern part of the town is made up of old Victorian houses that 
looks like the house that Sabrina lived in. There was an old black lady nicknamed 
Harriet Tubman. They said she was the ghost of Tubman. As there are so many old houses there,
there are many ghost stories.

Amityville Hell  House  Amityville is a nearby town, and sports team rival to Sayville.
      Many kids were afraid to go into the dark, spooky basement of the High School. 
At one time there was a High School called the Old 88. It was a big, spooky looking
Victorian building. The kids in the town say that when it burnt down many kids 
inside did not make it out alive. The kids turned into ghosts and demons. Although 
these kids are now ghosts and demons they want to escape to world of the living so 
they can drag people down into hell. There are urban legend stories amongst the kids that there 
are horrible things in the basement and are afraid to go there. On one website a
former student said, "wonder who those strange people are in the basement." According 
a researcher at FIU, " was NOT meant to compare the YEARBOOK  people to vampires at all." 
Thus, the stories of vampires in the basement was not true. 

     In the Sayville cemetery near the swamp is buried a girl that  was killed
by her boyfriend. According to the legend, she died horribly. One of the dares among teenagers is to go visit her grave at mid-night since that is when the ghost is around.
haunted Mansion
The Roosevelt Mansion is Supposedly Haunted
A popular belief is that the Roosevelt estate is haunted. The mansion is set 
back in a swamp, and up into recently was in disrepair and overgrown. There was a 
crazy man that use to roam the swamps, protecting the house. Kids would be dared to 
go into the house at midnight. Supposedly President Roosevelt would wander the swamps.

The Noodleman: The Noodleman is a particularly scary urban legend of Sayville. The noodleman visits elementary school children at night when they are asleep. He looks like actor Peter Lory with the body of a donkey. What is does is tries to break into kid's houses when they are alone at night. He comes by way of nightmares.

Jack and the Giant: A popular story that has been told down through the years is about Jack and the Giant. Jack was the smartest kid in the village and was the first kid in Sayville to go to Harvard. But when he was younger his mother would scold him for being lazy. One day he went north of the North Woods, which is now built-up Sunrise Hwy., to go to the market. There he came upon the Sachem Giant. The Sachem Giant was a football linebacker, but not just any football linebacker. He was the biggest, meanest one in the county, and was the number one ranked linebacker in Suffolk, and was considered the "School Hero" in Sachem. Unlike the average football linebacker who was satisfied with just hitting kids, he was also committed murder. The Sachem Giant was with a crowd of admiring Sachem kids and noticed there was someone from Sayville on his territory. So the Giant made an insult. A large crowd of cowardly Sachem kids quickly grew to over 30 and they called for the Giant to "Kill him." Then Jack made his attack on the Giant. Within seconds the Giant was a bloody mess. The crowd was in shock. From then on in Jack was known as "Sayville Jack" throughout the land.

Opaque Man: There was an old farm along Broadway Avenue leading out of town. Supposedly there was a ghost of a farming that would use a hoe to till the soil late at night. He was white and semi-transparent, known as the Opaque Man.  
The Murderous Fisherman: One popular legend is of a fisherman that wears a black rain suit with a big round hat. He goes around killing people to avenge the death or his daughter, who was ran over in a car.

Teacher Pulls Up Mangled Dead Body in Bay: The most popular urban legend is about a teacher. Many years ago one of the High School kid's father disappeared while clamming on the ice. The man disappeared off the face of the earth. But 6 month's later someone who later became a Sayville teacher was clamming on the water and pulled up what looked like spaghetti. It was the kid's father. He fell asleep on the ice on the bay while clamming because he was drinking.

Old Houses "Salem Village" No one is really sure exactly why Sayville is called Sayville. One theory is "Sayville" is a contraction of "Salem Village," the original name of the place of the Massachusetts witch hunts. Many of the original Puritan families in Sayville came from there.

Salem = Say ; Village = Ville ; = Sayville

Old houses in Sayville. Looks similar to like Salem, MA.

Old Mansion Creepy old Victorian houses are common in Sayville.

Sayville Grave This is an actual grave near swamp in Sayville. It is the grave of Philippe Regis Denis de Keredern De Trobriand who fought in the New York Infantry in Civil War. It's located in the graveyard of the old stone church pictured above.

Civil War Veteran

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Folklore is the body of verbal expressive culture, including tales, legends, oral history, proverbs, jokes, popular beliefs current among a particular population, comprising the oral tradition of that culture, subculture, or group. The academic and usually ethnographic study of folklore is known as folkloristics.
The concept of folklore developed as part of the 19th century ideology of romantic nationalism, leading to the reshaping of oral traditions to serve modern ideological goals; only in the 20th century did ethnographers begin to attempt to record folklore without overt political goals. The Brothers Grimm, Wilhelm and Jakob Grimm, collected orally transmitted German tales and published the first series as Kinder- und Hausmärchen ("Children's and Household Tales") in 1812.
The term was coined in 1846 by an Englishman, William Thoms, who wanted to use an Anglo-Saxon term for what was then called "popular antiquities." Johann Gottfried von Herder first advocated the deliberate recording and preservation of folklore to document the authentic spirit, tradition, and identity of the German people; the belief that there can be such authenticity is one of the tenets of the romantic nationalism which Herder developed. The definition most widely accepted by current scholars of the field is "artistic communication in small groups," coined by Dan Ben-Amos a scholar at the University of Pennsylvania, and the term, and the associated field of study, now include non-verbal art forms and customary practices.


 Indeed according to US Census 2000,about 64% of Asian Indians in The United States have attained a Bachelor's degree or more. Many Indian Americans in the popular media have explored the extent to which these positive group attributes can blur into stultifying stereotypes, most famously in the lowbrow comedy Harold and Kumar. The U.S. Congress passed a resolution on April 26, 2005,  to honor the Indian American community and Indian Institutes of Technology graduates. Many individuals, particularly those in the fields of medicine and technology, consider Indian Americans to be the epitome of the model minority. According to the U.S. Census Indian Americans have the highest median income of any ethnic group in the U.S. ($60,093). In addition, Merrill Lynch recently revealed that there are nearly 200,000 Indian American millionaires. According to the American Association of Physicians of Indian Origin, there are close to 41,000 Indian American doctors.