Blair Witch
The Blair Witch Cult

Original copy of "The Blair Witch Cult" in a bad state.

The Blair Witch Cult was a book published in November of 1809. Though believed to be true at the time of its publication, it was after commonly considered fiction by scholars. It told of an entire town cursed by an outcast witch, Elly Kedward, full of witchcraft, paganism and lots of bloodletting and gore.

By 1991, only one copy was known to exist, which was on display at the Maryland Historical Society museum in Baltimore. The book was badly damaged, with little of the writing still legible.

Bill Barnes of the Burkittsville Historical Society later possessed the book in his private collection, but it had belonged to the Maryland Historical Society and they eventually took it back, despite the fight he put up.

During the weekend of September 4-5, 1999, the copy being kept by the Society was damaged in a rainstorm. It was then sent out to be restored, a process which was expected to reach two months.[1]


It was testified, that at the examination of the prisoner Kedward before the magistrates, the bewitched was extremely tortured.

. . .was the Shape of the Prisoner, which was whipped with Iron Rods, to compel her thereunto. . . .about Sun Rise, he was in his Chamber assaulted by the Shape of this Prisoner : which look'd on him, grinn'd at him, and very much hurt him with a Blow on the side. . .and. . .Shape walked in the Room where he was, and a Book strangely flew out of his Hand, into the. . . six or eight Foot from him. . . .he wak'd on a Night, and saw plainly a Woman between the Cradle and the Bed-side, which look'd upon him. He rose, and it vanished : tho' he found the doors all fast. . .he saw the same Woman, in the same Garb again ; and said, In God's Name, what do you come for? He went. . .The Child in the Cradle gave a great Screech, and the Woman disappeared. Blood was. . . . . .with the doors shut about him, he saw a black Thing jump in at the window, and come and stand before him. The Body was like that of a Monkey, the Feet like a Horse, but the face much like a Man. The Day after, upon inspection, Hair of Horse lay in. . . . . .did in the holes of the said old Wall, find several Poppets, made up of Sticks and Rags and Hogs-bristles, with headless. . .

The Blair Witch Cult

A page from the book.

. . .the awful hag wrenched the boy's head from his wriling body and defiled the church with his warm blood. . .

. . .she controlled the animals of the forest even the trees seemed to do her bidding. . .

She was indicted for Bewitching of several Children in the Neighbourhood, the Indictment being drawn up, according to the Form in...pleading, Not Guilty...

That the Shape of the Prisoner did oftentimes very grievously Pinch them, Cloak them, Bite them, Prick them with Pins and Bleed them...

That it was Elly Kedward, or her Shape, that grievously tormented them, by Biting, Pricking, Pinching and Choaking them.

This poor Child is Bewitched ; and you have a Neighbour living not far off, who is a Witch.

...but besides this, a Jury of Women found a preternatural Teat upon her Body : But upon second search, within 3 or 4 hours, there was no such thing to be seen.

...that she had seen the prisoner at...and that it was this Kedward, who persuaded her to be a Witch. She confessed, that the Devil had Relations with Kedward and...