This is the story of the Black Angel of Oakland Cemetery in Iowa City.

The striking 8-foot tall burial monument marks the final resting place of Teresa Dolezal Feldevert, a Bohemian immigrant, and her son Eddie. He died of meningitis at the age of 18 and was buried in Oakland Cemetery in 1891.

In 1912 Theresa had the golden bronze statue of a hovering angel with arms and wings outstretched, erected over her son’s grave.

Within a few years, the bronze angel strangely began to turn black.

Experts claimed it was the natural oxidation of the metal but others blame it on supernatural forces of evil.

One claim is that a thunderbolt struck the angel turning it black on the night of Teresa’s funeral.

According to Wikipedia, local legend has it that Teresa’s own sinful ways were to blame. One story claims that misfortune follows because the angel is downcast, not facing towards the heavens.

Another myth accuses Teresa of murdering her own son, which led to her own guilt-ridden death. Her date of death is mysteriously absent from the grave's headstone, seen by some as perhaps a harbinger of her fate in the afterlife?

Over the years, superstitions about the Black Angel grew - warning the curious to stay away. Some of the alleged curses claim:

  • That touching the angel on Halloween night would lead to death within seven years.
  • That kissing the angel’s feet in the moonlight would cause death within six months.