(These trees have never been cut) Photo Taken by Paul Narvaez
The Haunted Legend of “The DuPonts, Devil’s Road, and the Cult House”
The Haunted Legend of Cossart Road in Chadds Ford, PA has scared many locals to stay away from the roadway…
The road runs extremely narrow, fitting only one car at a time, while the wheels fall on and off the pavement. Just above the Delaware border in the town of Chadds Ford, PA, lies Cossart Road, where the trees bend in an eerie and frightening kind of way. Cossart Road has such a fearful history, it is now known as “Devil’s Road.” The roadway has become so famous among locals, the woods surrounding Devil’s Road were used to shoot the horror movie The Village.
And so it begins, with a mansion located within the woods. This mansion has become known as the Cult House. At one point in time it was owned and operated by the wealthy family all locals know: The DuPonts. The house did host a cult to some degree. It was common for the DuPont family members to marry among the bloodline, marrying their cousins so that the wealth would not be distributed outside of the family.
While some say it only belonged to the DuPonts, others point their views towards the notion that it was home to Satanists and KKK members.
The Natural Phenomenons…
The most unusual part about the Cult House is that there are in fact natural wonders located on the premises and the roadway that cannot be explained rationally. One in particular, are the trees that line the road. If you’re to drive down the roadway, you’ll notice how the trees bend away from the road. These trees were not cut, yet they bend dramatically away from the house, opposite the natural growth of growing towards the sun. As you get farther and farther away from the Cult House, the trees bend back into a natural shape, tall and rooted upwards.
Other trees that stand out around the house are known as Skull Trees. Rumor has it, the DuPont members of the Cult House would use these trees for dumping babies who were born disabled. Over time, Skull Trees would devour their bodies fully and take the shape of the child’s skull.
To view more of Paul’s photos click here…
Be Aware of Your Surroundings…
Many youngsters have explored Devil’s Road in attempt to uncover the secrets that lie within the property. This is very dangerous. The land is private property and covered with No Trespassing signs at every angle, which makes it a legal issue. But this doesn’t stop young risk takers and adrenaline junkies. Two stories derive from people who end up trespassing on the property; Either they are chased off the premises by guards wearing trench coats and black hoods with huge flashlights, or by men in tinted blacked-out diesel trucks. The other story is they see and hear things that cannot be explained (or unseen). Over time dead animals, crosses, spray painted symbols, and sometimes nooses, have been spotted around the premises.
We spoke to a local by the name of William on what he has witnessed…
“There was a light waving around and shining on the trees, but it was far away. I stopped my car and looked into the woods and as soon as I stopped it went off. A few seconds later it started back up. And it would shine just like S.O.S., three short, three long, and three short again. I had no service this whole time either. I was pretty freaked out so I started driving very slowly, and as soon I started to pull off, I saw a huge flame shoot up in the trees and heard a shrieking scream. I don’t know exactly what I saw, but to me I think they were literally lighting someone on fire. I drove right home.”
Today Cossart is still visited by risky teens and adults alike, in the hope of seeing ghosts or being chased off the street in fear of their life, or to simply try and discover the hidden secrets of the DuPont family.
Inside the Abandoned Cine'Mart Theater in Wilmington Delaware
In the late 60s and early 70s, movie theaters, drive-ins, and strip mall cinemas were popping up all over the nation. They were the new craze. Branmar Cinema had just opened their doors, along with Tri State Mall’s old theater and then came the Cine’Mart Theater on Governor Printz Boulevard in Wilmington, Delaware. The first date of the box office opening at the Cine’Mart was January 20th, 1969.
According to the credited research that Edwin Graf Diemer contributed to Cinema Treasures for this story, “The shopping center [across the street from Cine’Mart] was built just following World War II and quickly became the most popular shopping destination in Wilmington.” The theater seated 984 people and there was only 1 screen, similar to Branmar Theater just a couple miles away. A newspaper released at the time of the closure stated, “The CineMart, Northern Delaware’s largest motion picture theater was closed over the weekend. Employees of the 984-seat theater on the Governor Printz Boulevard said they were notified of the closing just hours before it was shut down.”
The theater was steadily losing “$50,000 to $60,000 a year” and fell behind on rent. The owners did ask the owners of the Merechandise Mart to twin the theater, but they declined. At the same time of the CineMart closure, the Edgemoor Theater, which was only a few hundred yards up the road, would close when their lease expired.
Edwin cited that “The auditorium was completely in gold with wide rocking chair seating. The front was deeply curved to allow for the screen, with curtains that went to the rear of the auditorium.” According to local WJBR listener, Gary Rauso who has been to the Cinemart as well as Branmar Cinema, stated “It was the first theater in the area to have surround sound.” This theater, along with many others across America, actually were booking shows ranging from G-rated to explicit pornographic films. The theater was originally built to operate solely on X-rated pornographic films, but the Budco company acquired the theater from Hallmark Theaters of Massachusetts and started showing all varieties of films. The first film ever shown at the Cinemart was in 1968, “The Odd Couple”. The last ever film shown there was “The Exterminator”.
The downfall of the Cine’Mart was actually the Concord Mall on Route 202 in Wilmington. The Mall had been built with a theater of its own and sucked the life out of the Cine’Mart. This also resulted in the abandonment of the entire Merchandise Mart. Today, the Cine’Mart is fully abandoned, but remains standing with boards up on every possible entrance.
For a more-in depth read of the history of the Cine’Mart, I highly recommend reading Edwin’s full contribution on Cinema Treasures.
Branmar Plaza Shopping Center in Wilmington Used to Have a Movie Theater
Branmar Plaza, owned by Capano Management, in Wilmington, Delaware is home to many great establishments. From El Diablo, to Branmar Wine and Spirits, Acme, and now a brand new Kid Shelleen’s. Located on Marsh Road and Silverside, the shopping plaza frequents many shoppers all hours through the day. The exterior of the storefronts are currently being renovated to match the aesthetic of the new Kid Shelleen’s, Branmar Wine and Spirits, and the Walgreens on the opposite corner.
In the early 2000’s two video rental stores were in business, but ended their lease when Netflix and streaming services came about. But what came before those video rental stores was something only some Wilmington residents remember. The Branmar Cinema.
The Branmar Cinema was located at 1812 Marsh Road, right in Branmar Plaza. It was in the back corner, right around where the current Karate storefront is. It was a strip mall movie theater, which were very popular in the late 60s and early 70s across America. The Branmar Cinema opened on August 12, 1970 and hosted only one screen. According to Jordan Lage of Cinema Treasures, “From the entrance, it had a modest-sized lobby with concession stand attached to the main auditorium, resulting in an L-shaped layout. During its life it was operated by Budco and AMC Theatres.” 10 years after opening, the theater was twinned on March 14, 1980, yet closed some time in the 90s. Apparently, for some time, the theater posters that once were plastered to the windows could still be faintly seen in the correct light. The windows have probably been replaced.
Delaware Has A Top Ranked Pumpkin Beer
It’s Pumpkin everything season and Delaware has a top ranked pumpkin beer!
You can’t leave the house without running into a new pumpkin product.
But it seems amongst all the pumpkin overload the pumpkin beer has been a staple for years!
Delish.com recently released their Top 20 Pumpkin Beers for Fall 2022.
So how did they decide on who ranked where? Taste and preference.
Delish said their methodology included “Delish staff favorites, regional picks, some faves from restaurant folks, and the best-reviewed pumpkin brews on the internet.”
Dogfish Head place very high this year and it’s no surprise.
Dogfish Head Punkin’ Ale was ranked just outside the Top 10!
Coming in at #15 the annual ale was just narrowed out by Flying Dog The Fear Pumpkin Ale at #14.
Delish describes the beer as “This pumpkin beer is warmed with nutmeg, cinnamon, and clove to create a full-bodied brown ale with plenty of brown sugar flavor. Dogfish Head likes to change up the packaging of Punkin Ale. Last year, the design featured a glow-in-the-dark element, while this year, it’s got sunflowers and a boisterous pumpkin.”
The top spot on the Top 20 Pumpkin Beers for Fall 2022 was Two Roads Roadsmary’s Baby.
Delish said this about the top beer: “Go traditional with this pumpkin ale from Two Roads. It’s aged in rum barrels and has delicious notes of pumpkin, spices, vanilla, oak, and rum.”
It’s Pumpkin everything season and Delaware has a top ranked pumpkin beer!
If you are a beer fan or just love talking beer make sure to check out this year’s Delaware Beer Fest.
Check out the Top 5 Pumpkin Beers for Fall 2022 below!
Hollywood Kyle is the Digital Content Producer and Production Director of Mix 99.5 WJBR. Being a Delaware local, Kyle takes pride in his hometown and has had a love for music since a young age. Hollywood Kyle joins the Mix Morning Show for abstract thoughts and ideas during "Hollywood Kyle" segment around 9:40am Monday thru Friday.