Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Katy's Church Millvale, Pennsylvania

Nestled on a desolate hillside in the small community of Millville, lies a small church with enough legends to make your blood curdle. For decades locals have been daring each other just to pass by this holy house.

Katy’s church is named for Katy Vandine, a woman whose legend would live on for many years after her passing. Yet it’s her death that seems to be causing the most mystery. All the small town urban legends are attributed to this woman. The most popular belief was that Katy was an unmarried pregnant woman who was run out of the local community and ostracized. Being unable to deal with the shunning, Katy took her own life when she slid a noose around her neck. Others say she was to marry a soldier who was off at war and never returned. Having lost the love or her life, Katy mourned by hanging herself from a tree in her wedding dress. An even darker tale tells of witchcraft and sorcery.
Some had claimed that Katy was actually a witch, mainly the married man who was apparently having an affair with Katy while she was carrying his unborn child. As the gossip spread about witchery, the local church members grew anxious. On a late night they gathered together and decided to take care of Katy. They stormed to her home and drug her out of bed and proceeded to the church. There they strapped a rope around the neck of Katy Vandine and ended her adulterous life. All of these are just tales passed around by the locals. Some current church members recall Katy Vandine as a kind women who lived well into her 80’s and donated the land where the church sits today. But besides all of these legends that have been passed from generation to generation, some odd occurrences have taken place at this church. Those who have dared to visit the grounds at night have spotted a spirit in a white dress and have heard cries from inside the church. Others tell even more disturbing stories of seeing blood drip from the church windows.

How did all of these legends begin? Some believe they were started by a local drunk who spent a little too much time at the tavern. Staggering home one late evening, he told his wife spirits had attacked him near the church, blaming them for his tardiness. So is thereany truth to any of these tales, or were they all just the imagination of a local drunk looking for an excuse? On our visit to Katy’s Church we found nothing out of the ordinary. What we did find were some extraordinary neighbors, who enjoy the fellowship the church provides them. The congregation has dealt with many issues in the past including vandalism. They are a very close knit community that appreciate their church’s history and isn’t fond of those who depreciate its value.


roadsidewonders said...

Are there dates on Katy's stone?

Here & There said...

Great Post! I noticed that the Vandine stone that everyone talks about that sits crooked has no dates, but there is a stone for Catharine, who died at age 87 on February 13, 1899.

Outta the Way said...

Thanks for the nice comments, I believe that's why there's so much mystery about the grave. No markings and it faces the opposite direction of all the others!

Here & There said...

It makes me wonder if it is even a grave at all or just a marker in honor of Katy or the Vandine family. I have seen many stones like this while poking around cemeteries - stones that aren't necessarily grave markers, just signifying the family that is buried nearby.

May said...

Correct to the last comment. There is no one buried at that stone, it is in honor of the Vandine name. Katy's Grandson is responsible for that. He and his Sister are buried by that Vandine stone along with other family members.
To roadsidewonders, yes the dates is on Katy's stone and her husband is not because he died before the Church was built.
We have our festival coming up August 20th for those who are interested.

Anonymous said...

That is a flat out FRAUD. Katy married and had children and her decendints are taking care of the church.