Kathy Bates’ portrayal of the homicidal ghost Tomasyn White (the totally-sane-in-real-life wife of historical Governor John White) might make viewers quake in their boots, but the real terror on this iteration of American Horror Story is the Pigman.

One of White’s victims in life, he now stalks victims with the body of a man and the head of a pig.

It might interest you to know (it did me!) that Pigman legends pop up all over the United States – from New York, to Vermont, to Georgia, to Texas. The original story seems to have originated in Angola, New York, and is tied to a local pig farmer and butcher who seemed at first to only have a sick sense of humor. When he was overwhelmed with work and needed to be left alone, he would put the heads of butchered pigs on spikes and use them to line his drive.

To most people, the obvious thing would be to stay away from the man with a driveway of impaled pig heads, but to teenagers out late cruising on a weekend…well, it sounded like a dare.

Roadtrippers

Photo Credit: Roadtrippers

Legend has it that a group of teen boys decided to call on the butcher, only to end up on the wrong end of his axe – and his stakes. That’s right. He beheaded them and left them in the same condition as his pigs before fleeing into the woods, never to be heard from again.

The road still exists though, and it is considered one of the lesser known haunted stretches of pavement in the country. It’s known as (of course) Pigman Road.

When it comes to origins of the Pigman, I suppose it’s as good a story as any. I wouldn’t want to come face-to-face with that mass murdering farmer any more than I’d want to go looking for the Pigman from American Horror Story, so perhaps there’s some truth to it, after all.

h/t: Mentalfloss