December 8, 1840


     Patience Coffin is the earliest known Cross resident to have been photographed prior to a peculiar event.

     Patience was a young woman of 23, recently wed into the Coffin family, and of good breeding. She and her husband, Abel Coffin, met during a social gathering in Boston. Initially, her family thought of him as a poor country fellow and were not inclined to encourage his courtship of Patience. When it was discovered that he was a wealthy landowner, and well-educated, they changed their tune.

     She and Abel were wed in 1839. In 1840, she was photographed in Boston.

     On the afternoon of December 8, 1841, Patience and the maid, a young girl from an Irish family, walked together toward the center of Cross, but neither ever arrived.

     When they did not return by dinner, Abel Coffin rode out in search of them, concerned that some mishap had occurred.

     What he found did not set his heart at ease, but instead, it drove him to seek the counsel of Duncan Blood.

     Abel had found, on the side of the road in a small bit of grass, a faery ring. The mushrooms were large and misshapen, twisting around one another in some places and reaching to the sky in others. But despite their curious formations, there was no doubt as to what they were part of.

     In the center of the ring, the bonnets of both Patience and the maid could be seen.

     As the two men approached the ring, the mushrooms withered and died, trapping the women within.

     Along the stretch of the North Road that passes by Patience’s Glen, muffled drums and pipes are often heard.

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Nicholas Efstathiou

Husband, father, and writer.

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