on September 5, 2013 by Toledo in News, Comments (0)

The Mystery of Wooded Hills

About twenty miles up from downtown, the highway connecting our fair city to her northern neighbors crosses a small road.  At first glance, this intersection seems like many others, in the middle of nowhere, unworthy of a traffic light or even a working streetlight.  A look at the surrounding area, however, reveals this intersection to be rather unique.  There is a parking lot without any buildings.  A traffic signal is located at a road’s dead end.  Perhaps weirdest of all, the one structure near the intersection, a house, has been swallowed by the ground, while that ground holds one of the finest lawns in the metropolitan area.

Officially, the property belongs to the estate of one Rutherford T. Cottonwood.  Years ago, Cottonwood was a local celebrity, a real estate tycoon who bought and developed much of the land surrounding the city, often over the protests of preservationists.  City Hall has records of Cottonwood’s last project, a subdivision named Wooded Hills, which would have been located where the sunken house is today.  Permits on file show construction had begun, and was even well into its final stages, when Cottonwood disappeared.  At the same time people realized the feline was missing, Wooded Hills apparently also disappeared.  Almost every trace of the project seemingly evaporated overnight, and the traces that did remain were left in a very odd state.  Was Wooded Hills the victim of rogue environmentalists?  Did Cottonwood sabotage his own work, perhaps in an effort to make off with insurance money?  Nobody knows.  Cottonwood remains missing, leaving behind unanswered questions about his motives and whereabouts.  The land now sits undeveloped, save for what’s left of that one house.

Visitors who want to see the mystery for themselves can at least do so on a full stomach, thanks to an establishment not too far away, the Horizon Diner.  “People ask me about the house, or the broken streetlight or other things,” explains Joanna, a waitress at the Horizon.  “All that was before I got here, so I don’t know.  But I like this place the way it is, and I hope they don’t try to build anything now.”  Until Cottonwood is found, or at least until his estate figures out how to close this peculiar chapter of his life, the mystery of Wooded Hills likely will remain.

Tags: , , ,

No Comments

Leave a comment