- Associated Press - Sunday, December 25, 2016

AUGUSTA, Ga. (AP) - A fund-raising effort is underway to restore Augusta’s “Haunted Pillar,” a downtown landmark and tourist attraction.

A car smashed into the pillar recently, scattering its bricks all over the pavement, The Augusta Chronicle reported (https://bit.ly/2hnbOKm).

The pillar is supposed to be all that was left standing when a storm destroyed the old market in 1878, the Chronicle reported. Legend has it that anyone who touches it is supposed to have bad luck - possibly to the point of death.

The story about bad luck was actually made up by a press agent hired by the city in the 1930s to help lure tourists, the newspaper reported.

The Augusta Convention and Visitors Bureau calls the pillar one of Augusta’s “most unique and historical attractions.”

“The Haunted Pillar is part of urban legend and has been a valued tourism asset for many years. It is very unique to Augusta,” Barry White, president/CEO of the Augusta Convention and Visitors Bureau, said in a statement.

“The community sells Haunted Pillar souvenir T-shirts, it’s included in various tours and it has been written about and featured in many television series, websites and travel media,” White added.

The Convention and Visitors Bureau recently announced an online fundraising campaign at https://gofundme.com/rebuild-the-haunted-pillar to allow “people passionate about the pillar to contribute to its restoration,” The Chronicle reported. Although the cost to rebuild it has not yet been determined, the page’s organizers set a goal of $2,500. More than $750 has already been raised.

The pillar was smashed on Dec. 18, when a motorist made a left turn off Broad Street, into the path of a Chevrolet Silverado pickup truck, an accident report states.

The force of impact pushed the truck onto the sidewalk, causing it to strike the pillar, according to the report from the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office.


Information from: The Augusta Chronicle , https://www.augustachronicle.com

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