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Black Eyed Child in a fantasy image

Black-Eyed Children (or Black-Eyed Kids) is an urban legend of supposed paranormal creatures that resemble children between the ages of 6 and 16, with pale skin and black eyes, who are reportedly seen hitchhiking or panhandling, or are encountered on doorsteps of residential homes. Tales of black-eyed children have appeared in pop culture since the late 1990s.[1][2][3][4][5]


The supposed origin of the legend are 1998 postings written by Texas reporter Brian Bethel on a "ghost-related mailing list" relating alleged encounters with "black eyed kids" in Abilene, Texas and Portland, Oregon. Called classic examples of creepypasta, Bethel's stories gained such popularity that he published a FAQ "just to keep up with demand for more info about the new urban legend."[1][5] In 2012, Brian Bethel told his story on the reality television series Monsters and Mysteries in America. He wrote a follow up article for the Abilene Reporter News, describing his experience.[6]

In 2012, the horror film Black Eyed Kids was produced with Kickstarter funding, its director commenting that the black eyed children were "an urban legend that's been floating around on the Internet for years now, I always thought it was fascinating".[7] A 2013 episode of MSN's Weekly Strange that featured reports of black eyed children is thought to have helped spread the legend on the internet.[1]

In late September 2014, the British tabloid Daily Star ran three sensationalistic front-page stories about alleged sightings of black-eyed children, claiming a "shock rise in sightings around the world".[8] Alleged sightings are taken seriously by ghost hunters, some of whom believe black eyed children to be extraterrestrials, vampires or ghosts.[9]

According to science writer Sharon A. Hill, the legend of "black eyed kids resembles typical spooky folklore stories in the same realm as phantom black dogs, apparitions, and mysterious monsters. They aren't supernatural, there may never even have been an actual encounter. That does not stop people from continuing to see and fear them and pass on the latest tale of terror."[2]


  1. 1,0 1,1 1,2 Legend: Mysterious black-eyed children show up at the homes of unsuspecting residents
  2. 2,0 2,1 Template:Cite web
  3. Smith, Patrick (3 Oct 2014). Everything You Need To Know About Black-Eyed Ghost Children, BuzzFeed
  4. (19 November 2013). Black eyed children: Real, or just a creepy myth?
  5. 5,0 5,1 Template:Cite web
  6. Template:Cite web
  7. Template:Cite web
  8. (2 October 2014). Here’s the actual story behind the ‘black-eyed ghost children’, Daily Edge
  9. Template:Cite web

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