In this article we will be taking a look at the Black Angel of Oakland Cemetery – a bronze monument to tragedy that apparently causes the death of anyone who decides to touch it…
The Black Angel in Oakland Cemetery
Iowa City’s Oakland Cemetery is located in a run-of-the-mill neighborhood near Hickory Hill – it is well known for it’s impressive collection of monuments to the dead.
One of these monuments stands out from the others – a bronze Black Angel that stands over the graves of Teresa Dolezal and her family, apparently put in place near the start of the 20th century.
Teresa Dolezal arrived in Iowa City with her son Eddie back in the late 1800’s and was lucky enough to quickly land a job as a midwife. She worked at this career until 1891, when Eddie tragically died of meningitis.
He was buried in Oakland Cemetery below a strange carving of a tree stump, that acted as his headstone.
Full of grief, Teresa moved on to Oregon where she met and married Nicholas Feldevert. Maybe this new love could mend her broken heart?
Unfortunately, Feldevert died in 1911, leaving her carrying the pain of two family members she had tragically lost.
The Black Angel
Broken and in pain, Teresa returned to Iowa City and commissioned the construction of an eight-and-a-half foot tall bronze angel. The Chicago artist Mario Korbel took on the job and constructed a rather dark yet impressive piece.
The statue was placed in the cemetery in 1913 and her son’s monument was moved so it could stand right beside it.
Her late husband’s ashes were apparently spread throughout the concrete base of the angel. When Teresa eventually died in 1924, her ashes were also added to the base of the strange monument.
For some reason, there were no dates added to the names of the dead on the statue…and this got tongues wagging locally…
On top of this, the statue lost it’s bronze color to it’s now dark hue by the time Teresa died. This led to rumors surfacing regarding Teresa’s actions when she was alive – was the statue warning the living about this (evil) woman?
Another account claims that there was a severe thunderstorm on the night of Teresa’s funeral. During this storm a stray bolt of lightening hit out and caught the bronze statue – turning it black.
Other versions blamed the blackening of the statue on infidelity – did Teresa really swear on her husband’s grave that she would lay with no other man?
Some locals even went as far as claiming that Teresa had killed her son, Eddie, and managed to cover it up with the sickness story. The monument blackened as a mark of her guilt.
The Angel of Death
The most famous legend to hang off this sinister monument goes something like this – any girl kissed in the shadow of the angel’s wings will die within six months, and anyone who touches the bronze skin of the angel on Halloween, will die within seven years.
But there’s more…
Apparently, if you decide to kiss the actual statue, your heart will stop instantly…but if you are a virgin, the kiss will have no effect on you!
The statue itself is also thought to be a paranormal entity – locals insist that it has been spotted numerous times over the years, walking silently through the graveyard at night.
If you have any thoughts or opinions on the subject we have covered here today, please leave them in the comment section below.