Early in the spring of 1850, an aspiring young farmer, Steven S. Pike, and his burgeoning family had just acquired a prime parcel of land in the vicinity of the thriving community of Ramer, Tennessee. As commerce began budding and the engines of progress moved forward that spring, the executives from an enterprising new railroad line had their eye on the property owned by Mr. Pike.
Unwilling to yield to the paltry offers from the railroad barons, Mr. Pike stood firmly, securing his rich farmland from the avarice of the ever-advancing rail line. Mr. Pike could see the greed in the eyes of the railroad agents each time they made a meager proposal for his land. Additionally, he knew the farm held the key for the survival of his family. With seven children under the age of ten, twins to be born any day, and his wife growing weaker daily from some mysterious malady, he could not part with the home and land he now owned.
Increasing fears, frustrations, and worries began to bombard Steven Pike. A once gentle man was growing increasingly troubled. With mounting worries about caring for his family and ever intensifying pressures from the railroad men, tensions were about to break Mr. Pike. Having grown up as the “black sheep” of his family, Steven had been constantly compared to his older brothers by their overbearing widowed mother. Finally, he thought he had escaped into a new life in Ramer with his wife and children, desperately holding on to his home and land.
Then, in a strange twist of fate, Mr. Pike was swindled out of his property. Railroad agents had hired a lookalike impostor to feign his presence and forge Mr. Steven S. Pike’s signature on a bill of sale, thus transferring to his nemesis the deed to the Pike home and property. The Pike family was left destitute as the new steel rails and massive steam engines invaded what had been Pike’s cherished property. Pike determined he must fight to survive.
A string of peculiar incidents occurred over the intervening months and years. Railroad agents and employees mysteriously vanished. Bodies of those associated with the railroad were, at times, found to be mutilated and dismembered, subjects of extreme torture. Trains running on the track that traversed the former property and home site of Mr. Steven S. Pike derailed with unusual frequency in the Ramer area. Investigations indicated, on numerous occasions, that railroad spikes had been removed from the rails, causing the trains to become unstable on the tracks, resulting in derailments. Engineers, conductors, brakemen, and coal tenders were found with large iron rail spikes driven through their heads and bodies, into blood-stained cross ties.
Although Steven S. Pike and his family seemingly disappeared from the area after losing their property, suspicious occurrences led to the speculation that Mr. S. Pike was somehow connected to the horrific events. Rumors circulated that Pike had “lost his mind” resulting from bitterness and anger. As terror, torture, and torment continued to befall railroad operations in Ramer for decades, the legend of a horrid figure bearing large spikes in his head and body began to grow from first-hand reports of the few lucky survivors of derailed trains in Ramer over the course of 150 years. Railroad men call the creature of lore “Spike.”
Could the legend be true? Is S. Pike still wreaking havoc in retaliation against the railroad for stealing his promising life? Does he still avenge his anger today?