Title: Doc Benton Story
Campbell Brewer is from Richmond, Virginia, and is in the class of 2019 at Dartmouth College. She is currently undecided on her major. She was interviewed in Hanover, NH on 11/2/16. She went on the Hiking 1 trip during her first-year trips.
- Verbal: legend; Customary: Prank
Social / Cultural Context:
Heard at Moosilauke Ravine Lodge during the final part of first-year trips.
This is a story that is told at the Moosilauke Ravine Lodge on the last night of first-year trips. The story involves a man that lives alone in the woods and is responsible for mysterious deaths around the town he lived in. It is a scary story that is told to the Freshmen as a prank to scare them on the last night of their trip.
“After a long few days on our trip, we were all excited to be at the lodj with the rest of the freshmen on our trip section. After dinner, they had us all sit on the grassy hill outside of the lodj. The story was pretty long and I heard it more than a year ago, so I may not remember all the details. From what I remember, the story went like this: There was a very smart boy that lived in the area by the lodj and the rest of the people in the town joined together in order to send him to medical school so he could return and be the doctor for the town. While Doc Benton was away studying, he met a scientist, or fellow doctor, I’m not really sure. When Doc Benton came back home, he helped the townspeople with medical issues. His wife died and after that, he was never seen around town and kept to himself. Once he disappeared, a bunch of animals started showing up dead with a red dot on their forehead. After that, a farmer’s daughter went missing and they found her on top of a cliff with Doc Benton. He threw her off the cliff and when they found her body, she had the same red dot on her forehead. That is all I remember but it definitely freaked me out.”
“After hearing the story and being completely freaked out, I think the main purpose of the story is to prank and scare the Freshmen as a source of entertainment.
I agree with Campbell in that the main purpose of the story is to entertain and scare the freshmen on their trip. However, I think there is also a sense of tradition within the community of first-year trips that is the reason for why it is told every year
Collector’s name: Will Randell
Tags/Keywords: Doc Benton, Legend, Scary story, prank, the lodi, moosilauke, trips