In Episode 85, Jeff Belanger and Ray Auger head to an island on the Saco River in Biddeford, Maine. This site is ground-zero for an alleged atrocity that took place in 1675, when three British sailors tossed a Sokokis Indian baby into the river to see if he could swim. The baby’s pregnant mother dove in to try and save him, but also drowned in her frantic attempt. These British sailors didn’t know it at the time, but this woman was the wife of Chief Squando, a powerful sorcerer. And the children were his. Squando placed a powerful curse on the river that gave rise to a legend and monster that took countless lives in the Saco River.
Podcast 64 – The Spectral Moose of Lobster Lake.
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Theme Music by: John Judd
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Rob CarignanApril 5, 2019
I grew up in Saco right along the river. From Junkin’s Point to Thunder Island was our playground. We knew the legend and it was used to keep us away from the moving water. Of course, back in the 70’s the tannery was in full production as well as West Point Pepperell, so the river was pretty nasty below Factory Island.
I never heard of a monster as part of the legend; the child was drowned, the curse was laid and every year we’d be aware of the number of drownings. The story as I knew it came from “Sands, Spindles, and Steeples”, Saco resident Roy P. Fairfield’s history of the town written in 1956. Squando was a real sagamore and is well documented in contemporary accounts. Refer to “A History of the Indian Wars” by William Hubbard, 1807, on Google Books.