Spring Villa, a mid 19th century home build by Horace King. King was the former slave of John Godwin, father-in-law to home owner William Penn C. Younge. King was a prominent bridge builder and architect who took it upon himself to take in Godwin’s family as his own due to his fondness for his old master and friend. (Incidentally, King also was attributed to building parts of Bryce Mental Institution in Tuscaloosa, AL under the contracts of Robert Jemison, Jr. who the Jemison Center at Bryce was named after). The home has incurred its own legendary status, surpassing the true beauty of the home and the Genius of King’s masterpieces.
The legend of Spring Villa states that Penn Younge was a cruel slave owner and one night a slave hid in the niche of the staircase and decapitated Younge on the 13th step. (Strangely enough, Alabama Paranormal Research Team has caught recorded sounds of something rolling down the stairs.) Younge is said to haunt the mansion to this very day. In a book about Horace King there is a mention of this legend and states it is false and that Younge died of old age eleven years after the supposed incident; although, the mansion does seem to be haunted. Alabama Paranormal Research Team has extensive recordings of a little child’s voice stating such things as “I want my mommy.” as well as a male’s voice with unsavory and belligerent tones. (APRT would like to express no one has ever been harmed in the home and stands firmly that the home should not be feared by any visitor.)
The land itself is filled with its own history. Native Americans were known to frequent lands filled with high natural minerals and we know the land Spring Villa was built on was used by the Uchee Creeks as a home (before it was settled on by Younge) due to its high energy fields generated by the quartz crystal that fills the land. Across from the home and about 800 yards to the west are mounds left behind by the Creek. Incidentally, APRT's very own John Mark Poe is credited with the discovery of the mounds 800 yards west of the land. Interesting tidbit: Lee County Creeks were the ones who named the town Opelika meaning “Little Swamp”. APRT has gotten evp’s (electronic voice phenomenon) close to Younge’s gravesite, which is across from the house about 100 yards in the wood line. Even in the house EVP's could have been Native American. One sounded like a woman, mimicking the voice of our Co-Founder Cassie Clark saying “Umaneech’ho” (roughly). Since the Uchee language is all but dead, only spoken by a minute few and never written, it is impossible to translate. The closest we have been able to discern is Ome’Nuce’ which is “we sleep here.” Rarely do all members of APRT visit the mounds. For many reasons, such as feelings of dread, strange occurrences after visiting, and the un-explainable events of no birds, frogs, or even bugs being heard around the mounds. Call it superstition, but even professionals can get the "heebie geebies"!
On the land is a where the swimming pool is now, used to be old slave quarters. About 50 yards away is an old “cooler” they used possibly to store meat and other products, cooled by the underground spring that still flows freely there. There, APRT has recorded more Native American Voices and received many readings on the Tri-Field meter. A Tri-Field is a meter that shows electromagnetic fields, and once man-made fields, such as power lines are ruled out, any reading you receive may be paranormal.
Most recently, APRT has discovered documents showing the untimely death of young girls where a lake once was on the land. The girls were dressed in their Sunday best and were traveling from one side of the pond to the other when their boat sank and the girls drown. This explains the constant voices of children upstairs at the house.
This land is an enigma, layers upon layers of past energy, stored in the minerals that lay upon the ground. Any emotion left by slaves, campers, masters, children, visitors-a-plenty seems to stay imprinted somehow. The home a masterpiece of an architectural genius is slowly dwindling to its demise. Yet, the land stays lively, playing back the past, but very much intelligent and interactive at the same time. APRT would like to ask you to help us keep this place alive. A place once buzzing with the laughter of campers and children is slowly becoming a broken down place forgotten by those of the living but relished by those of the dead. Help the living save this land for generations to come.