42 The Legend of Sleepy Hollow.
Rust (Wolfert's Rest), but by the uneducated, who did not under-
stand Dutch, Wolfert's Roost; probably from its quaint cockloft look,
and from its having a weathercock perched on every gable.
Wolfert's luck followed him into retirement. He had shut him-
self up from the world, but he had brought with him a wife, and it
soon passed into a proverb throughout the neighborhood that the
cock of the Roost was the most henpecked bird in the country. His house too was reputed to be harassed by Yankee witchcraft. When the weather was quiet everywhere else, the wind, it was said, would owl and whistle about the gables ; witches and warlocks would whirl about upon the weathercocks, and scream down the chimneys; nay, it was even hinted that Wolfert's wife was in league with the enemy, and used to ride on a broomstick to a witches' Sabbath in Sleepy Hollow. This, however, was all mere scandal, founded perhaps on her occasionally flourishing a broomstick in the course of a curtain lecture, or raising a storm within doors, as termagant wives are apt to do, and against which sorcery horse-shoes are of no avail.Wolfert Acker died and was buried, but found no quiet even in the grave ; for if popular gossip be true, his ghost has occasionally been seen walking by moonlight among the old gray moss-grown trees of his apple orchard.
The next period at which we find this venerable and eventful pile rising into importance, was during the dark and troublous time of the revolutionary war. It was the keep or stronghold of Jacob Van Tassel, a valiant Dutchman of the old stock of Van Tassels, who abound in Westchester County. The name, as originally written, was Van Texel, being derived from the Texel in Holland, which gave birth to that heroic line.
Click tabs to swap between content that is broken into logical sections.