Texas’s Donkey Lady
San Antonio, Texas, brings to mind the Alamo and the River Walk. I took a trip out to San Antonio and had a blast at both places. I never knew about the unusual cryptid that haunted the outskirts of San Antonio.
The Donkey Lady haunts a bridge just outside the city. It is an isolated bridge named after the Donkey Lady that people love to visit. There are two versions of the story, both with origins from the 1800s. You choose which version to believe, but they are both terrifying.
In the late 1880s, this couple owned a farm with the usual assortment of animals. One was a donkey, and this stranger approached the farm. He tried to pet the donkey, and it bit him. I guess it didn’t like the young man. And rightly so, it turns out because he took offense and beat the donkey. The couple heard the animal’s pitiful cries and rushed out of their house.
They stopped the beating, and the young man angrily left. What they didn’t know was the abuser was the son of a rich man. He came back later with his men and while the couple slept. They set fire to the couple’s house. He told his men to let no one escape from the raging fire. The fire killed the husband and their two children.
What happened next is where the story gets interesting. The wife escapes the burning inferno, jumping through the glass windows. Her body was still on fire, and witnesses claimed, “her fingers were melted down to stumps, creating hoof-like appendages, and the skin on her face was charred and gave her face an elongated, donkey-like appearance.” She ran into the darkness, screaming with pain and grief.
The second version from the 1850s has the husband setting the fire, leaving her disfigured. Local legend says she haunts the area looking for revenge. It is a horrible yet fascinating story. No one knows when this story first began circulating. It is one of the oldest and most famous stories in Texas.
Angry and betrayed, the poor wife haunts the Donkey Bridge. The bridge was near the farm, and some say that when she jumped out of the window. It was the bridge she ran to. Others say she haunts the bridge to exact revenge on any hapless driver out that night.
Whether you believe in the Donkey Lady, the story pulls people to the bridge to catch a glimpse of the Donkey Lady. Thrill-seekers were hoping to see if the legend is true. Others to disprove it and others to scare their friends.
However, people have reported that the area is eerie. Witnesses claim to feel ‘something’ is watching them. Others hear rustling noises emanating from the woods. For a select few, they bring back evidence of their encounters with the dreaded Donkey Lady. Some claim that a donkey’s face screams at them through the window. Ones that make it home discover hoof-like indentations on the hood of their car. Many swear they hear rushing hoof-claps when they dare to visit.
It’s said that the best way to get her attention? Drive to the middle of the bridge at night. Find a great spot on the bridge and park. Then when you are ready to greet her? Honk your horn, and she will appear and scare the soul right out of your body.
As many believers exist, there are as many disbelievers as well. I’m not sure what the pull is for disbelievers. Yet, they go to the bridge to prove there is no truth to the story. However, many of them do not stay long because of the eeriness of the area.
Whether the Donkey Lady is real doesn’t stop San Antonio from adopting her. She is as much a part of the local history as the Alamo is. There was even a beer named after her—Texan Donkey Lady from the Texas Brewing Company. They have retired The Golden Sour Ale aged on apples and spices. I’m not much of a beer drinker. The fact that the Texas Brewing Company no longer makes the ale suggests it didn’t sell well. but the fact
However, if you are in the mood to hear the Donkey Lady? Just call her hotline at: 210-960-3826. She is available to talk at midnight, October 31. Halloween is an appropriate time to talk to spirits. The Donkey Lady is open until November 6. Each night callers will hear a different 45-second recording relating the events of that terrible night. Marisela Barrera is a performance artist and claims to have had personal contact with the legendary lady.
Barrera states that the Donkey Lady wants to be part of San Antonio’s history. She doesn’t hold a grudge against the entire town. It is home, and she wants to pass on bits of wisdom learned from watching the city grow. It seems the Donkey Lady is also a bit of a feminist and head of her time. Barrera has received some negative feedback from the city’s elite males.
Whether this story is true or a myth, it still makes the rounds in San Antonio. Barrera states callers swear they don’t always get the recording to add to the creepiness. Witnesses have reported hearing creepy sounds on the line. They even claim they hear someone pick up the phone. So, they talk to her even though witnesses don’t get a response.
A tale to have survived this long. There has to be some truth to it. Well, you would think so. It is a fascinating story, true or not.
If you are ever in San Antonio and feel brave? You will find the bridge at Elm Creek and Applewhite Road, about four miles north of Loop 1604 on the Southside of San Antonio. The bridge has been closed off to adventure seekers, but if you honk your horn?
The Donkey Lady might come to you.
Featured Image By Prawny At Pixabay