Virginia Beach, Virginia: Witch of Pungo Statue
Grace Sherwood was tried for witchcraft, failed the test, yet somehow survived. A sympathetic bronze statue of her, along with her raccoon sidekick, stands on the grounds of the local hospital.
Sentara Bayside Hospital
- N. Witchduck Rd, Virginia Beach, VA
- On the north side of N. Witchduck Rd just east of its intersection with Independence Blvd. On the grounds of Sentara Bayside Hospital.
- RA Rates:
- Worth a Detour
Statue of a Witch
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Grace Sherwood was the infamous "Witch of Pungo." She was tried for witchcraft in 1705-1706, and as a test the court ordered her to a "trial by water." Her hands were tied to her feet and she was thrown in the Lynnhaven River. If she floated she was a witch, if she sank and drowned then she was pure of spirit. She survived and lived to be 80. Witchduck Road, which runs right past the statue, is named for her ordeal. It's interesting that the statue is on the grounds of a hospital, as witches were considered to be healers. A nearby historical marker explains the witch trial story. There's also an 18th century Anglican church within eyesight of the statue.
[Shepherd Johnson, 07/28/2012]
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