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Bloody Bucket Road

Bloody Bucket Road isn’t the real name of this sinister road in Wauchula, but that’s what everybody calls it because of allegations of what happened there many years ago. There is also a bridge called Bloody Bucket Bridge that is connected to the story of this road, but whether or not any of the legend is factual or fiction is hard to determine.This paved road runs south off of Main Street in Wauchula and in the daytime doesn’t really look all that threatening, but drive farther down this road and cross the bridge and things start looking a little different, at least in the moonlight.

If you keep going you will eventually come out on Route 64 that runs between Zolfo Springs and Avon Park. The road was once a dirt road called Rhinehardt or Reinhart Pass Road, and is said to be a hundred years old, which is a fact since it can be found on pre-1900 old maps. Now you have the facts, but the rest of the story comes from locals who profess to have some knowledge about how the road got its creepy name.

Many years ago an ex-slave woman came down from Georgia with her husband and settled in Wauchula. She served as the midwife for the community and allegedly had delivered several hundred babies. Being concerned that some families already had too many children to feed, the woman decided to help out by eliminating a few right after birth. She would smother the babies and take them down to the bridge and bury them in the woods along the river. People became suspicious after so many babies had died while being delivered by her. Some said that she was deranged because she could not have children of her own or that her children had been taken from her while she was a slave.

After people refused to allow her to deliver any more babies the woman went crazy. Then the souls of the babies came back to haunt her. It is claimed that she could sit beside a bucket and it would fill with the blood of all the infants she had killed. She would empty the bucket and it would fill with blood again. She wore herself out carrying the blood filled buckets to the bridge where she would empty them in the river. One day while emptying a bloody bucket in the river, the old woman fell in and drowned. For several days following her demise the river ran red with blood. That is how the bridge became Bloody Bucket Bridge and I suppose the name carried-over to the road.

How much of the story is true is hard to determine, however there is some evidence that it might have been promoted in a Halloween story by an amateur writer in Wauchula. Whether the writer made-up the story or used an existing yarn is not known, but it certainly created momentum for a legend.

Bridge Over Bloody Water
There’s a bridge in Wauchula called Bloody Bucket Bridge and if you go there at certain times and look at the river water it will be red like blood. This happens only when the moon is full and you have to go there at night because in the daytime you can’t see it. We went there just to see if it was true and yes the water did look red. We shined a flashlight down there on the water and it was as red as blood. My friend said it was because of the tannic acid from tree roots that grow along the river but I don’t think so, it is much too red for tannic acid. There is a story about people pouring blood in the river but I don’t know if it was human or cow or some other blood. –michele1979

Cries From the Blood Bucket Woods
On Halloween night in 2003 we parked near the canoe launching place by the bridge and walked down that road called Bloody Bucket after hearing about the legend just to see if we could see anything. I was with my friend and two other people. It is really a scary place and I don’t advise anybody with a faint heart to go down there at night. There are sounds that come out of the woods by the river that sound like children crying. There is a story that a woman killed her babies and buried them in the woods right where we heard the sounds. We stood very still and tried to listen to the sounds to see if we could make them out. One of the guys said it could be birds roosting in the trees but the rest of us did not think so, it sounded too much like crying. As we were standing there something ran out of the woods and crossed the road. It scared the crap out of us. We literally ran back to the car was and got out of there. There is something real strange on that road. You can go check it yourself. –buddyX

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