Thursday, March 01, 2012

Chardon Melonheads

"One can't be of an enquiring and experimental nature, and still be very sensible." - Charles Fort, Wild Talents (1932).

Credit: Weird Ohio.

There was an unfortunate school shooting at the Chardon High School in Chardon, Ohio, on February 27, 2012. My two overviews on this incident were previously posted here and here. See those for other details and decodes.

Forget the distractions. It is a deeper analysis of the place in association with the local legend of the Melon Heads that brings our attention into focus.

"Melon Heads" is the generic name given to legendary beings and urban legends in parts of Michigan, Ohio, and Connecticut, generally described as small humanoids with bulbous heads who occasionally emerge from hiding places to attack people. Different variations of the legend attribute different origins, but we need not get bogged down in those usual elaborate twisted origin myths.

In many ways, melon head sightings mirror the Dover Demon accounts of Dover, Massachusetts, and other large-headed cryptid encounters from the Midwest. 

Today, I'm only interested in the specific site of the Ohio sightings, in the context of the school shooting.

In the book I coauthored, Weird Ohio, there is more information on the Melon Heads. One quote from that article directly relates to this Chardon High School: "It's apparently a popular thing for local high school kids to do to drive around the area late at night, looking for them." "Them" are the melon heads, of course.

The alleged shooter T. J. Lane was caught on Wilder Road, Chardon, which is right down the Grand Army of the Republic Highway from Wisner Road, Chardon Township, Ohio.

It is along Wisner Road where sightings of "melon heads" have been reported.

The melon head stories of Ohio are primarily associated with the Cleveland suburban areas of Kirtland, Chardon, and Chardon Township. Chardon Township is the location of the Chardon High School, Chardon, Ohio, site of the recent school shooting.

Bridge on Wisner Road, Chardon Township, Ohio. Photo credit:

Legend holds that the melon heads may be sighted along Wisner Road in Kirtland, and Chardon Township, Geauga County, Ohio. The melon head legend has been popularized on the Internet, particularly on the websites Creepy Cleveland and DeadOhio where users offer their own versions of the story. As mentioned above, the Weird Ohio entries are to be found here, Melon Heads.

Legend of the Melonheads was released in 2011. It is a horror fiction film loosely based on the Ohio legend of the melon heads in the Kirtland-Chardon area.

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