The gravestone of Kate Blood in Appleton’s Riverside Cemetery
Riverside Cemetery in Appleton is home to one of Wisconsin’s most notorious legends: The grave of Kate Blood. Visitors have reported seeing blood dripping from the gravestone on a full moon night. Some have touched the stone and felt it to be warmer than other nearby markers. All are drawn to the grave by the story that Kate Blood was a witch who murdered her husband and children with an axe.
While most legends have some basis in fact, however, the stigma surrounding Kate Blood seems to be entirely unwarranted and some Appleton residents have made it their mission to clear her name.
In reality, Kate Marcia “Kitty” Blood Miller was a beloved member of the community with a tragic story of her own.
“She was just 23 when stricken with tuberculosis, and had traveled south to stay with family in a warmer climate,” the Appleton Post Crescent writes. “She soon died in Lawrence, Kansas, and her body was brought back to a grieving community by train.”
Worse yet, when Kate succumbed to the disease in 1874, she left behind a 2-year-old daughter.
Kate’s husband George Miller remarried and lived 42 years after Kate’s death. His second wife is buried in the same plot.
The fact that the grave is a bit off the beaten path – you probably won’t find it unless you know where to look – has no doubt helped perpetuate the myth.
Kate Blood’s grave along the edge of the Fox River
But just because Kate Blood wasn’t really an axe-murdering witch doesn’t mean there aren’t strange things happening at her grave.
Find Kate Blood’s Grave
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