The snake-infested grave of an infidel



[Users can easily read this entire publication by C. B. Jernigan by opening HDM0553.tex. I insert it here as indeed an extraordinary thing. -- DVM]


Ever and anon for some years we have heard of an infidel who lived years ago, to a ripe old age, and when he died, his grave was infested with a den of snakes. Some time ago I was holding a meeting, and this story was repeated to me, by a Nazarene preacher who had seen the grave and had killed snakes crawling over the grave. I, at once requested that I be carried out to see this notable grave. I spent half a day driving out to see the cemetery, and taking a Kodak along made the picture of the monument as you see it on the cover of this booklet.

We were told that this man especially delighted in ridiculing the Bible, calling it superstition, and ghost stories. He took special delight in deriding the story of Eve in the Garden of Eden, and the snake talking to her. He was often known to say that "any half-wit could write a more credible fairy tale than that given in the Bible. The idea of a dirty slimy snake crawling into the garden on its belly, and entering into a controversy with Eve. The most bungling blunder, of ancient Hebrew superstition, that an ugly snake could outwit a shrewd woman, and deceive her by his logic. Preposterous! Take a snake story like this to prove the authenticity of your Bible. The very first story in the book is ridiculous. I had rather have snakes crawl all over my dead body than to believe such rot." Such are the current stories about this man and his grave in the neighborhood where he lived.

This monument with its statue was made by him, and erected before his death, overlooking the grave of some very devoted Christian people we are told. The picture with the snakes in it was taken by a minister, who had killed these snakes off the grave lot at the foot of this monument.

The grave lot is full of snake holes that undermine the monument, and other places on the grave lot. We saw a dead snake on the grave the cold winter day that we visited the place. The cemetery is more than one hundred years old, as we found tombs there where people were buried in 1817, and many before 1830. It is one of the most beautiful cemeteries that we have ever visited, covered with blue grass, which is kept closely mowed, and we did not find a single snake hole any where else in the whole graveyard except those on this grave.

It is currently reported that any summer day one may find snakes crawling over this grave. The snakes in the picture were all killed on the grave, on a sunny November day, and hanged on the stick leaning against the monument where the picture was made, by this minister.

Explain this strange phenomenon? All that I know is what I have seen, and heard about it. He certainly sowed infidelity and reaped snakes.


Story of the Snake-Infested Grave Confirmed


In the month of March, 1930, I was assisted in a revival meeting in the great Church of the Nazarene, in East Liverpool, Ohio, by the Vaughan Radio quartet and one night in an audience of 800 I offered this book (A Snake Infested Grave) for sale, and while a member of the quartet was distributing the book through the congregation, he met a gentleman who told him that he had married the granddaughter of this noted infidel, and that he desired and interview with me.

After service, a fine looking man came up, introducing himself as Mr. B____, the manager of one of the great chain stores in the city. He said my first wife was the granddaughter of the man whose statue is on the monument on the cover page of this book. She is now dead, and is buried along side this monument. The infidel he said was a very noted character and very rich for his time, being worth at least five hundred thousand dollars. He was notorious in his hatred for the Bible; calling it a bundle of ignorance and superstition, publicly defying people to discuss the question with him. The grave lot where he was buried was on a hill side, and filled in with stones and other rubbish, and was literally a den of snakes.

The next day the Vaughan quartet drove out 40 miles to look at this monument, and the grave of this man's wife, and found it as he had said.

The next night Mr. B____ brought us a photograph of this noted character, and the next, night Mr. B____ was at the altar, and was gloriously converted.


Truth is stranger than fiction.


From: UNUSUAL OCCURRENCES Compiled by Duane V. Maxey