The Goat Man
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The Story

Charles "Ches" McCartney, the legendary "Goat Man", was a wanderer, who spent decades traveling across the country while guiding a massive iron-wheeled wagon loaded with pots and pans, pails, bails of hay, car tags lead by a team of goats. "The Goat Man" entwined himself in the folklore of rural America for more than six decades.

The Goat Man lead a very colorful life. At age 14, having a reputation as an eccentric, his left his hometown in Iowa for New York. There he married a Spanish maiden and became a target for her knife-tossing act for two years. In the 1930's McCartney hit the road with his wife and son. His wife later tired of the travels and returned home to Iowa while McCartney traveled on with his son.

He was somewhat like a prophet with his long, grey beard and travel-worn clothes, spreading the word of God to any man, woman or child who would listen. From 1930 to 1987, legend has it that he walked 100,000 miles preaching the gospel in 49 of the nations 50 states. If stories are true, he has wrestled a bear, was nearly lynched by the Ku Klux Klan, was once thought dead and taken to the morgue, got ordained as a preacher and got mugged in LA trying to see actress Morgan Fairchild.

In later years, the Goat Man retired to Eastview Nursing Home in Macon, Georgia. There he met Duane Branam who sang the song he wrote for him "The Legend". He also met Darryl Patton, the author of the book "America's Goat Man".

Gene McCartney, Ches' son, was murdered in 1998. He was found slain in the woods behind the bus that he called home. Only 5 months later, the Goat Man himself died in Eastview Nursing Home. He was belived to be 97, but was rumored to be as old as 120. No one realy knows. More than 65 friends and acquaintances gathered to bid him farewell.

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