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Selkirk History Faire perpetuates lore of Baldoon Mystery

Don Robinet Courier Press

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Don Robinet/Courier Press Lauren Gough, left, as Jane MacDonald, and Dawne Mudford, as the woman from the long low house down the road, helped share the tale of the Baldoon Mystery at the Selkirk History Faire. It has long been speculated that a witch was responsible for the mysterious goings on at the home of John MacDonald from 1829 to 1831 in the Baldoon Settlement located along the bank of the Snye River a few kilometres northwest of Wallaceburg. But Dawne Mudford has another theory. Mudford, who lives on a farm just east of the town, has painstakingly researched one of Canada?s most intriguing ghost stories, and believes the source of troubles at the Mac- Donald homestead including fires, bullets and stones throw through the windows into the home, and pots, kettles, utensils and dishes crashing to the floor on their own may have been the responsibility of Jane MacDonald, John?s niece, who was about 12 or 13 years old during the time in question, and who was living there. Mudford has for years dressed up as the mysterious woman in black who lives in the long, low house down the road. That the woman and John MacDonald didn?t like each other has been well established, with the conflict having its basis in that MacDonald bought a parcel of land that the woman wanted for herself. Superstitions and hard feelings combined in the pioneer Scottish settlement to escalate into a situation in which there were accusations of witchcraft, and a good old-fashioned witch hunt involving a school teacher from what is now part of nearby St. Clair Township. It?s a story that continues to fascinate Mudford, who was interviewed for a 10-page article about the Baldoon Mystery that appeared this summer in the British magazine The Fortean Times. CONTINUED > PAGE 2 Visit-us-today! We?ve Got It!

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