A traveling salesman came to a small town by the name of Shrewsbury for a few days, selling his wares from door to door. He was a friendly man with a warm grin and a joke for everyone. He was accompanied by a large white dog that rode on the wagon beside him; companion, friend, and guardian of his wares.
The salesman and dog were making their way out of town when a grisly murder was discoveredin one of the places in which they had sported their wares. Suspicion blossomed at once against the stranger, certainly no one from the town was capable of committing such a crime! And shortly after, a lynch mob chased the salesman out of town and strung him up on a tree beside the road.
The white dog howled and barked and roared as the mob carried his master away. More than one man was bitten as the salesman, still screaming out his innocence, was silenced forever. One fellow finally shot his gun at the white dog, wounding it enough to send it whimpering away. It soon became obvious to everyone in town that they’d hanged the wrong man. The corpse, dangling obscenely from the tree on the Old Road, was a grisly reminder of the community crime. They’d have cut down the salesman and given him a decent burial, but the white dog stood guard over his master’s corpse day after day, savagely threatening anyone who came near the hanging tree. So the salesman’s body withered and rotted underneath the tree beside the road, filling the air with a malodorous stench as it desiccated in the summer heat. It was many weeks before body and dog disappeared from the Old Road.
A few months later, a man who participated in the salesman's lynching happened to be walking down Old Road one dark night. The moon was full but hid behind a cover of thick clouds. As he drew near the jagged hanging tree, that was surrounded by a mysterious fog, his nose wrinkled in disgust as a noisome rotten smell swept past his face. He staggered backward, his arm over his nose, wondering what was causing such a terrible stench. Then he spotted the hanging tree, and saw upon it a familiar looking desiccated corpse dangling obscenely by the neck from one of its branches. And beneath hanging figure stood a huge, white dog…