Hopeing Boy

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    Photo: Gamma One Conversions
Paint on tin
45 x 27 inches
Collection of
Ackland Art Museum
Museum purchase and gift of the Souls Grown Deep Foundation

Doyle's last official job was as custodian at Frogmore's Chapel of Ease, a two-hundred-year-old church in ruins; perhaps that brought him closer to the spirits that protect, haunt, and empower the residents of St. Helena. Doyle liked to talk about the supernatural and portray it. A well-known legend told of a young slave whose master had him ceremonially executed (by decapitation) and his body buried to protect a hidden treasure. Every seven years some claimed to hear and see him running through the woods and streets, whooping loudly and carrying his head under his arm. After the introduction of automobiles on St. Helena, the Whooping Boy ghost disappeared and apparendy has not returned.