Place item was collected
Point of Discovery/Informant Bio
Hanna is a 20 year old white female. She comes from a Mormon family and is the second of five children. Despite being from Nevada, she chose to come to Utah State University because of its strong Mormon ties, and the fact that she was not accepted into BYU. We met when she was a freshman, and that is when I told her the story of Saint Anne’s Retreat. She is currently serving an LDS mission in Rome, Italy.
Because Hanna is currently on a mission, we had to communicate via email. I sent her the initial question from my iphone and I assume she responded with her tablet that they are required to have for electronic communication. She was willing to help, although she wanted her last name redacted because she was afraid of complications that come with trespassing. When I asked how/when she would usually tell this story if she was going to in person, she said that she thought it would be an interesting conversation starter for a first date, or something to bring up at a party.
Alright, so I remember that you told us the story when we were at the pineview apartment playing games. You asked us if we had ever heard of the nunnery and most of us hadn’t because we aren’t from here, and then you told us the story about how when a nun would get pregnant they would be sent up to the nunnery in Logan canyon and they would drown the baby when it was born. Then something about ghost babies in the pool. Anyways I remember that we all wanted to go, and we decided that we would later that week. The day we were leaving Megan and Troy didn’t want to go, but really that just meant that Megan didn’t want to go and Troy would rather hang out with her. It took us a couple stops to find the right place because you didn’t remember exactly where it was, but then you found it. We got out of the car and Alan started freaking out. Saying that he didn’t want to get arrested for trespassing, but he was really just scared. We sat in the little forest part on the side of the river that the road was on because we had heard cars passing and hid in the trees, and that is where Alan said that we shouldn’t go across and just head home, and I could tell that you were getting frustrated because you had finally gotten like 12 people to go and now he was trying to back out. You looked at me and asked if I trusted you and I said yes and that made Alan really mad. The first people to go across the bridge were you Brittney and Nick if I remember right, and you were in the front of the three. When you crossed a bright spotlight shined down on you and you froze for a second and then turned around and walked back and said that there was a camera there that wasn’t before. This gave Alan even more reason, and at this point I remember Mike and Emily turned back and just waited in the car. You said that there was no way that something could be connected to the camera and that it was just to scare people off, and that you were going across again. Brittney and Nick went with you and you guys crossed the bridge and after about 5 minutes you yelled “Caw-Caw” which was signal that the rest of us should come over. We went over and walked in the pool, which was kind of weird. We went around to a couple of the buildings but most of them were locked, and the one really big building that you told us was the coolest part had signs on it that said that it had a security system, and the entrance was boarded up and you didn’t want to do anything to hurt the buildings so we just left after that. It was pretty creepy, but honestly the scariest part was the fear of getting caught as opposed to the baby ghosts. I also remember something about an abandoned car, but I’m not exactly sure what. Is that what you needed?
Hanna never did really believe in the legend when I originally told it to her, and not much changed. I remember that the real fear that this group had was the fear of getting caught and for her specifically, not being able to serve her mission because she had a record. One thing that she mentioned at the end was a car, and the story behind it was that when we approached the nunnery on the roadside of the river there appeared to be an abandoned car parked deep in the trees with some foliage poking through the windows, but when we left the car wasn’t there anymore.
Intro to Folklore, Engl 2210
Semester and year
Cahoon, Dylan, "Nunnery Legend Tripping" (2017). USU Student Folklore Fieldwork. Paper 257.