Folklore of Oswego

Written by: Aurora Fitzgerald


As the month of October approaches, people gather their pumpkins and treats for All Hallows Eve, there are things that lurk in the shadows of Oswego that have chilling stories behind them. The Town of Oswego holds many treasures of folklore. Looking through the town, there is more to what meets the eye. Some famous sites and stories are Fort Ontario, Oswego Harbor Lighthouse, Gray Road, and more.


Fort Ontario

         Fort Ontario is a very popular historical sight to see in Oswego that many tourists visit throughout the year. Not only does the site host many events, but this historical land holds many secrets from the time it was built and the people who lived there. This historic star-shaped site has been around since the early 1840s to house troops in times of need. There are cool buildings to view, and there is also a graveyard for all the soldiers, women, and children who resided here and helped serve in the wars. This graveyard is open to the public from dawn to dusk.

         You might be getting goosebumps as soon as you read the word graveyard. They are classic places in movies and in real life where many spooky things can happen. If you believe in these kinds of things, you are in for a treat. Being at the old fort will heighten your senses of eerie feelings, almost melancholy-like, walking by each of the graves.

Oswego Harbor Lighthouse

         For all my Swifty fans out there, you might be wondering that this lighthouse is so 1989 Era, and you would be correct. However, as dusk falls, this place might not be as much 1989 Era anymore. By day it is a beautiful fully functioning lighthouse, by night it flickers with the old lights of passed fishermen who were cast into treacherous waters that people say haunt the inside of the building. At night, people claim to see hints of lights coming from the lighthouse and it is believed that those are the spirits of those old fishermen. Going here can be an absolute treat, just be wary at dusk and always be careful around the waters.

Gray Road

         This particular road that is just outside of the city leading to Minetto is shaded by thick forest which makes it kind of hidden. The swamp lands around it make it even more intimidating to cross, especially at night. With this uninhabited location, brave locals who have crossed this road have reported seeing ghosts. Legend has it, that a man was hung from one of the trees on this road whose spirit is now in limbo, haunting the road. Sightings of the headless horseman have also been rumored to be seen along this road.

         Personally, when I crossed this road, I can confirm there was some sort of eerie feel to it. I only went during the day and the feeling was still there. Therefore, this is a hotspot for paranormal activity. Who knows, the brave souls that venture onto this road at nightfall may get to see some surprising things they never thought they’d see before. I plan on having a deeper investigation to see if the rumors and legends are true. These spirits that have been spotted might only show themselves to certain beings though.


         With the many questionable paranormal events that have been reportedly seen, it really takes a personal view to see if they are possibly true or not. For most people, seeing is believing. Since Oswego is such an old town full of history and wonders, there’s no doubt there is some sort of eerie paranormal activity going on. While being at some of these eerie sites, it was definitely an adventure heading into the fall season, my personal favorite. Go check out my other ‘sisters’ part of the website for other cute and spooky things in Oswego!