Do you believe in spiritual powers and curses? After hearing this horrifying tale, you may want to stay away from the Saco River.


This could be a spooky story you tell your kids around a campfire, OR it could be real. After reading an article in New England Today Livinga journalist shares this scary legend that dates all the way back to 1675. Judith Hansen writes:

The wife and infant son of Squando, chief of the Saco tribe, were traveling by canoe near the mouth of the river when they encountered three rowdy, drunken English sailors. The sailors allegedly made a few bets, then snatched the baby from his mother and threw him into the river to see if American-Indian babies were natural swimmers as some claimed they were.

The mother rescued her baby, but he died a few days later. The grieving Squando, who was said to have great spiritual powers, put a curse on the Saco River, saying that every year after, three white people would drown in the river. Some historical accounts state that the death of Squando’s son, which is said to have occurred in 1675, marked the end of peaceful relations between the settlers and the American Indians living in that region.

Like many stories that have been passed down, the legend of the Saco River has multiple versions. One variation holds that the event took place near Limington, Maine, and the victim was a chief’s daughter. The maiden was supposedly kidnapped by three white settlers and carried off in a canoe; the girl fell out in the infamous “Limington Rips,” and her father placed a curse on the river.


WARNING: While their are no statistics to show how many people die on the Saco River a year, be advised. Click here to find the 3 deaths that have happened so far this year involving the Saco River.

Next time you plan an excursion on the Saco River, tell your fellow goers this legend. I bet they will be sure to be extra caution and safe.

Do you believe this curse? Or, think it's bogus?