Legend of the Melon Heads

Legend of the Melon Heads – descendants of about a dozen escaped convicts in the Connecticut forest who resorted to cannibalism to survive the harsh winters; then they started inbreeding and developed some kind of mutation

This is one of the stranger legends an informant told me.  Since I had never heard the story before, I cringed when I first heard it, and my informant told me that is the natural reaction of everybody the first time they hear the story.  He really has no idea as to the truth of the legend, but he says that his parents remember hearing it when they were growing up, so it’s been around for a number of decades.  He says that he never really thought much about the legend or where it originally came from until I asked him about it.  Although he says he remembers it from his childhood, it is stuck in his memory more because of the gruesome details than because it was a formative piece of childhood.  I think of this story like I think of Chicago legends of mobsters – fun to think about for a bit, but then I just become curious as to how the story came about and whether it is true or not.  If it is, should we be worried?  With stories like this floating around, the answer is probably yes.