Spooklight

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Published on: Jan. 2, 1997

Last revision: Oct. 26, 2010

they found out where I live." During World War II, she and her husband took Camp Crowder soldiers to see the Spooklight.

In the 1950s, word went around that the light had moved south to E 50 road, currently considered "Spooklight Road," even though sightings continue on E 40. For years, successive proprietors Arthur "Spooky" Meadows and Garland "Spooky" Middleton ran a small Spooklight museum/pinball parlor on the Missouri side of State Line Road with soft drinks, a view down E 50 and a telescope that cost a quarter to use. On weekends, parked cars lined the road.

L. J. Perkins of Carl Junction can laugh now about her Spooklight outing with out-of-town visitors: "It was a great experience, one I never believed would happen. We saw it off in the distance, and we thought, well, that's it. And then this light just kept getting closer and kind of danced in front of us. That was when I got kind of paranoid. We wanted to get away from it. It kept bouncing along beside us and on us and over us, circled around us. My husband took a dirt road, and the car was never quite the same; we damaged the oil pan getting away."

Aside from such human mishaps, I've heard no stories of the light harming anyone. Most local residents seem to coexist easily with the phenomenon. "I grew up with it and saw it a thousand times," says Charles Dawes, whose family lived on E 40 Road. "I never paid much attention to it." Yet many visitors have watched for it in vain, and a couple living near the Spooklight area on State Line for 37 years have never seen it.

During the 1980s, Ralph and Josie Bilke lived on the north side of E 50, one-eighth mile back from the road. Twice, after having bulldozer work done in back of the house, Ralph saw "a big green glow out over the trees." Another night, after they turned out the lights, Josie says, "We thought someone had pulled up in our drive. It was the Spooklight, and it just lit up our bedroom. It was right on our porch, and then it went out."

One morning an hour before daylight, as Ralph drank a cup of coffee, he saw at the front window "two big red-it looked like eyes - within ten feet of the house."

The lights to the north and south

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