Bridges aren’t typically the things that nightmares are made of. Usually, they’re made of monsters or murderers or walks through the hallways of your high school without any clothes on. But one bridge in Louisiana might just haunt you in your dreams and in your waking hours too.
The bridge wouldn’t be infamous without local lore. According to legend, this bridge, located on Bayou Tortue Road (which is right outside of Broussard, LA) was a bit of a lover’s lane back in the days when lover’s lane was actually a thing. It’s located in a particularly dark area of the road, surrounded by overgrown woods on both sides. As the story goes, it’s also the place one teenager took her ultimate breath.
On prom night several decades back, a student by the name of Mary Jane drove to the bridge with her date. They wanted to spend some time alone together. Something went wrong, however, and Mary Jane was never seen or heard from again. Most of the rumors arrive at the same conclusion: her boyfriend killed her before tossing her into the bayou below. Her body was swallowed by the waters and never resurfaced.
Though there’s no evidence of any of this happening – no cold case file or America’s Most Wanted episode or even a Wikipedia page – that hasn’t stopped people from believing. Even the fact that the bridge is only about three feet high and built over a marsh (rather than a raging current that could carry a body into oblivion), hasn’t deterred the insistent. Of course, that’s how ghost stories work: they don’t need logic or a paper trail to be feasible. Intrigue is really the only ingredient required.
Today, the bridge is named after its presumptive victim and referred by locals and tourists as “Mary Jane’s Bridge.” It’s rumored that the ghost of Mary Jane appears each year on prom night, wearing the same dress she wore the fateful evening she lost her life.
Some people have claimed to have spoken to her, asking if she needed help while she stared at them blankly before fading away. Others say that she doesn’t have any feet and simply floats above the cement. Others still have claimed her spirit is surrounded by a white light and that the bridge becomes extremely cold in her presence, even on particularly warm summer nights.
Whether it’s real or not is irrelevant to most – curiosity seekers and paranormal enthusiasts continue to flock to the bridge in hopes of catching a glimpse of the afterlife. Some people have reportedly even used it has a place to perform satanic rituals and séances. Others have driven by between three and four a.m. – the witching hour and the time ghosts are most likely to appear.
The story is not altogether surprising, giving that Louisiana is a state rich with ghost sightings and other eerie occurrences. Still, you can probably find a paranormal story in just about any town in America if you’re willing to look hard enough. Some simply resonate more than others, such as the bridge on Bayou Tortue Road that might have served as Mary Jane’s last dance.