“Dearest new neighbor at 657 Boulevard. Allow me to welcome you to the neighborhood.”
The letter started off innocently enough; an odd welcome stuffed inside a mailbox just days after 657 Boulevard in Westfield, New Jersey had been sold to a new family. But as Maria and Derek Broaddus continued to read the words messibly scrawled to them from an unfamiliar sender they found an unsettling message to their family that seemed more threat than welcome.
“Do you know the history of the house? Do you know what lies within the walls of 657 Boulevard? Why are you here? I will find out.”
The writer claimed to be some sort of keeper of the house, tasked with watching it and “waiting for its second coming.”. The letter explained that the house had been the subject of the writer’s family for decades, a place that their grandfather before them had watched over, a mantle that had now been passed down to them.
It became clear immediately that this stranger had indeed been keeping an eye on things since the Broaddus family were handed the keys– even knowing of the work the family had begun doing inside the house.
“I see already that you have flooded 657 Boulevard with contractors so that you can destroy the house as it was supposed to be. Tsk, tsk, tsk… bad move. You don’t want to make 657 Boulevard unhappy.”
The letter went on with more disturbing messages, some that referred to the Broaddus’ three children as “young blood”. The Broaddus’ had brought their children to the house a few days prior, chatting with the neighbours, letting them run around in the backyard. It seemed the writer had been watching.
“Who am I?” the sender taunted the family in their note, anonymity sealed by the lack of a return address on the letter itself. “There are hundreds and hundreds of cars that drive by 657 Boulevard each day. Maybe I am in one. Look at all the windows you can see from 657 Boulevard. Maybe I am in one. Look out any of the many windows in 657 Boulevard at all the people who stroll by each day. Maybe I am one.”
The bottom of the letter was signed: The Watcher.
Westfield, New Jersey is considered a haven by most residents who live there. 657 Boulevard is located in a well-off neighbourhood about 45 minutes outside of New York City. The bustle of the Big Apple fades here, life seems to slow down, and it’s widely considered the perfect place for raising a family. That’s exactly what the Broaddus’ thought when they purchased the 1.3 million dollar home at 657 Boulevard. Well, until they received that first letter.
The couple were quick to bring the letter to the police, even inviting along the previous owners of the house– the Woods family. In their 23 years of living at 657 Boulevard the Woods had only received one similar letter, just a few days before they were to move out. They’d marked it as a bit odd but had been quick to toss it in the trash and forget about it. By their experience the house was perfectly safe, the neighbourhood as well. In fact, they claimed they often left their doors unlocked.
The Broaddus family wouldn’t be able to say the same.
Just two weeks after the first letter was found, another arrived. This one included even more intimate details about the family, including the names of their children, as well as the nicknames of each child.
“Will the young blood play in the basement? Or are they too afraid to go down there alone. I would [be] very afraid if I were them. It is far away from the rest of the house. If you were upstairs you would never hear them scream.”
Despite the house being their dream home, the Broaddus’ no longer felt safe moving in, so the house would sit empty, the eyes of the Watcher remaining ever-present.
Eventually the case went cold; a lack of suspects and hard evidence left the police with no leads. Then, after five years of tossing and turning over the Watcher’s threats, the Broaddus’ family were finally able to sell the house and move on for good. While there supposedly hasn’t been a letter since 2017, it’s impossible to say whether or not this horror is truly over.
Is the Watcher still keeping an eye on 657 Boulevard?
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