Legend of the Gray Man of Pawley’s Island-
Good evening my dears, welcome to my humble blog. I’m not one to talk about politics, so I discovered this amazing legend/history about what they call ‘The Gray Man’, that I believe is true of the Pawley’s Island. I happened to find it while watching T.V. late one night so I wrote down the legend and decided to look him up for an interesting post for you all. I hope that you all find it as interesting as myself. Apparently, he is quite popular on the east coast with the hurricanes season. When I watch the show, it had a very sad story that started in 1822 with it first rate 5 hurricane Hazel in 1954. Apparently, there are many different versions of the tail. This is the one that I heard of myself;
In 1822 a young woman was staying on the island of Pawley Island with her family when she received word her fiancée was going to join her on the island after going to see his family. Delighted with the news, she had the servants prepare all his favorite dishes and decorate the house in anticipation for his arrival. When the time for him to arrive, no one showed. For hours, she waited upon the beaches of the island worried and holding the very watch her fiancée had given her. Later she was visited on the beach by her fiancées servant with the tragic news. What had happened was, that her fiancée was in great haste to see her. So, as they were traveling down the road, her fiancée was in great spirits. So, he was racing his horse to her home. Not watching carefully as he would always do before. He then saw a shortcut through the marsh but didn’t think first before checking it out. In those days, the marsh had what they would call blogs – they look fine on the top but that was just a thin layer on the top. Underneath was like quicksand, once you got stuck you never get out no matter how his servant tried to help. The more he moves the faster he sank into the blog. So, Fate caused his horse to stumble, throwing him off into the blog. He tried to stand, but he found himself sinking in the quicksand. Despite his best efforts, he or his companion were able to free him and the young woman husband sank beneath the very deep sand. This news nearly drove his fiancée mad. She would spend hours just walking along the sandy beaches of Pawley’s Island strand. However, one afternoon she while she was out walking on the beach sands she saw a man looking at her out by the water, As, she got closer and closer she felt her stomach get tighter. She couldn’t believe her eyes. When she got just a mere few feet from the man, she was sure it was her love. It looked exactly like him. The way he would dress and his face was him but Suddenly as a wave burst down on them, he vanished in the sand. After seeing her lover, she ran to tell her family of what she had seen. They of course thought since losing her fiancée, that she was starting to lose her mind. That very night, the young woman had a horrific dream of being in a small boat in the ocean tossed by the waves, with wreckage all around her. All the while her lover stood on a dune, trying to wave to her to him. When she awoke, she was terrified. So, her father took her and the rest of the family to Charleston to see a doctor. This act actually saved the entire family. Within hours of leaving their home, a hurricane had struck the Island of Pawley’s with force of a rate of 5 categories – which at the time was the highest rate of a hurricane could be. When it was all over, almost if not everyone of the inhabitants of the North Inlet had died in the hurricane. You see they had no warning back in the day but the gray man. The young woman realized that her lover had returned to save her from a horrible fate, the girl returned to her normal self after that.
There have been many different stories of the origins of the Spirit of the Gray Man and the Young woman who was so much in love with him. Well, I thought I should touch on that part of the story too: So, this is one story about John Calhoun & Belle; The spirit of the Gray Man was John C. Calhoun, the man in live could not top the Gray Mans long enduring history and tragic legend. In the South Carolinas as the most famous ghost. As for the Young woman, his lover was to believe to be of Charleston Belle that was sent away to France because their relationship was not acceptable to their parents. The story goes on…There was a rumor that the two were cousins and that the man was a scoundrel of sorts. The lover had vowed to return and make her his wife one day. Well, time passed on and it was reported that the lover was reported have died in a duel. Grief yet again the stricken young woman mourned her lover. However, another man who had recently been widowed drew the woman out of her grief by marring her-then making the island of Pawley island their summer home from May through October each year. In 1778 John Calhoun joined the Army to fight in the American Revolution. During his absence, a hurricane had hit the Pawley island sinking a brigantine off the islands shores. All, were believed to have perished. However, a lone figure was seen struggling along the shore of the beach line. A manservant helped the surviving man to this Mistress’ door advising that the Master was gone to war but his Mistress would look after him. When she opened the door, and saw her lover their Belle fainted on the spot. The man realizing that his lover had married another and fled. He died alone on the mainland of a deadly fever. The Belle resumed her life but she was frequently troubled by the gray figure that watch her from the dunes from the beaches. He appeared to her prior to any hurricane, advised her to leave immediately, When, she returned to her home it had been the only one that had been spared the devastation wrought by the hurricane.
Another Story was about The Gray Man; This one is not as popular as the one above but I thought to include both…This man was called Plowder Charles Jeannerette Weston who loved his home and the island of Pawley’s faithfully. He died of tuberculosis but he is said to appear to residents to warn them of impending storms. No one could identify the Gray Man as he does not have a face some say or it’s not clearly seen. Even someone coming face to face with him cannot make out his facial details as they are a blur almost like a silhouette. The Gray Man to this day continues to warn his residents of hurricanes of the Pawley’s islands and the spirit who remains behind do so for various reasons that we still haven’t figure out. These are some of the various reasons that the people of the Pawley island believe;
Some because they don’t want to believe they are dead, some who died tragically, and those who love someone or something so greatly they feel a need to be the guardian for eternity. Sometimes there is no explanation only faith! We have faith that someone will watch over us and keep us safe. Pawley’s Islands sits along the coast line and its home to small cottage homes, inns and one very famous Spirit too! The story is always the same, The Gray man warns the residents to flee the island from an impending hurricane.
The People of the Pawley Island in South Carolina claim to still see the Gray Man. He has been walking the coastline for nearly 200years. Much like what he did in the pass he does now in the present is helping the people of the island of impending danger of the small island and the people that dwell there. It seems that while he is responsible for saving lives he was unable to save his own...So he is walking the beaches of Pawley’s to do what he couldn’t do for his own life… During the life time of the Gray Man there has been five deadly hurricanes that have battered the Pawley’s Island over the past 2ooyears, including hurricane Hazel in 1954|hurricane Hugo in 1989. If the stories are true about the Gray Man – he has appeared on Pawley’s Island before each of these deadly storms. Strangely, People who have seen the man in gray not only survive the storm, but their property remains intact as well… There is one such case – Jim and Clara Moore who encounter the Gray Man just two days before the hurricane Hugo roared ashore. They were taking a walk late in the afternoon which they usually would do. Many folks would take walks on the beach at that time of the day the couple would say. However, that particular afternoon they only saw the one, coming directly toward them. When Jim got within speaking distance, he raised his hand to say ‘Hi’ or ‘Beautiful evening’ or whatever, then he vanished.’’ Hurricane Hugo decimated Jim and Clara’s neighborhood, but the couple’s home suffer very little damage if any at all! Clara attributes their good fortune to the Gray Man and the Lord! Most of all eyewitness accounts are describe as a Man figure dressed in all gray clothing…And when he vanishes it’s like sand in the wind. He will appear mostly on the beach, out in the dunes or waving at boaters or anyone without saying a word…
Another example of the Gray man’s warnings of the people of Pawley
Island…One lone fisherman had spotted the gray man in Murrells Inlet, at the coastal town about 10 miles north of Pawley’s island. He said he had been out on his boat nearly the entire day and the sun was beginning to set. He was going to do one more sweep of the Inlet for oysters when he noticed a man standing alone on the shore waving at him. As the fisherman drew closer to the man, he realized he wasn’t waving at all. He had his hand out as if he was telling me to stop. He was dressed in all gray and looked like an old pirate. He couldn’t believe what he had saw. He had to literally rub his eyes and look again. But he was gone…A few hours later, a powerful storm had rolled ashore, it was pounding in Murrells inlet with heavy winds and lashing rains. The fisherman truly believes the Gray man appeared to him to get him off the water and out of harm’s way. So, there you have the legend/truth of the Gray Man. I myself truly believe he is real. I hope that you enjoy the story…
Your Wendy hugssss.