Stone-throwing Devil Exposed
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Written by SeacoastNH Archive
Stone_throwing_devil_detail00SeacoastNH.com Presents
Historic Portsmouth #278

Meet the legendary Rock Throwing Devil of New Castle, NH. In 1682 demonic sounds and inexplicable events plagued superstitious residents of the island community. Hundreds of stones rained down on tavern-owner George Walton. (Continued with picture below)

 

Archeologist Edmund W. Baker leaves no stone unturned in his scholarly study of this New England witchcraft tale. Baker’s book, The Devil of Great Island, offers a host of reasons why George Walton was the sole target of the flying stones. Walton was a Quaker, for example, a religion persecuted in nearby Massachusetts and Maine. He was wealthy in a poor community. He was powerful and controversial. He was on the wrong side of an incredible legal dispute that threatened to strip many New Hampshireites of their homes and property. And George Walton, elderly for his time, had a host of greedy grandchildren who wanted to inherit his land sooner rather than later. This bland illustration of the Stone-throwing Devil comes from the 1884 history of New Castle by John Albee. (SeacoastNH.com Collection)

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