Northwest of Rockford this rickety old metal footbridge crosses the Rogue River and has been dubbed as Hell’s Bridge. Urban legend has it that this is the spot where a man killed several children you can hear their screams at night and see their faces in the water of the flowing river. I have read different variations of the legend on the internets but As the story goes, In the 1800s, a man by the name of Elias Friskie who lived near the river either kidnapped children or was asked to watch a group of children. He took them down to the river where the current metal bridge crosses it. they say he was summoned by a demon to murder the innocent children. Either he buried their bodies under leaves near the river, or threw them into the river to be carried downstream. When the townspeople of Rockford began looking for the children they found Elias Friskie covered in blood and hanged him from a bridge over the Rogue River.
That is the gist of the urban legend. I am not sure how true it is or if any of it is true. I looked for Elias Friskie on www.findagrave.com but I did not see him listed on there or anywhere else. I am thinking he was a fictional person and a story created to scare the local teenagers and it has grown over time and especially on the internet. I think the name of Elias Friske was taken from Friskie Road which is where the trail to access the bride state from.
I stopped by and visited the legendary bridge, but did not see or witness anything out of the ordinary other than the graffiti on the tree. From what I could tell it looks as if it is a spot where you could launch a canoe or kayak. There is a small parking lot with a bulletin board, although nothing was posted on it. It looked like it was meant for public access, but there are houses around so I did not wander off the trail because I assume the surrounding property is private. I am guessing years ago the local teenagers hung out and partied at the remote spot on the river and that is how the legend of Hell’s Bridge began.
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