IchabodCrane comes from Connecticut to travel to Sleepy Hollow to work as aschoolteacher, and a singing master.
The narrator implies however, that Ichabodis not as great of a singer as he himself believes. “It was a matter of nolittle vanity to him, on Sundays, to take his station in front of the churchgallery, with a band of chosen singers; where, in his own mind, he completelycarried away the palm from the parson.” Ichabod shows throughout the novel hiscleverness, and his ability to jump to solutions. However, he holds a verygullible mind, and has an imagination that seems to run away from him. Addingto this, his belief in super natural objects or things, ultimately gets thebetter of him, and becomes his downfall.
Ichabod, disciplines his students by using arod. However, he only uses the rod on the students who appear not strong enoughto bear his punishment. This shows that Ichabod is not a cruel man toward hisstudents. However, Ichabod still manages short-temperedness toward his students.He also chooses favorite students, which leads to an undesirable romance forone side of the party. “His heart yearned after the damselwho was to inherit these domains, and his imagination expanded with the idea,how they might be readily turned into cash, and the money invested in immensetracts of wild land, and shingle palaces in the wilderness.” The narratorexplains to us that Ichabod enjoyed the company of his singing student, Katrina Van Tassel.
Katrina is 18 years ofage, whereas Ichabod appears much older. She flirts with many people in SleepyHollow and this behavior caught Ichabod’s interest. He attempts one day to goto Katrina’s estate and woo her over. The narrator suggests, in the undisclosedattempt, that Ichabod failed miserably.
Oneday, Ichabod hears the story of the ghost of the Headless Horseman. Ichabod,who enjoys supernatural tales becomes fascinated by it. One morning, amessenger arrives at the school house to give Ichabod Crane an invitation to a partyat the Van Tassels’ estate. Ichabod was one of the best men in the party andbecame well-liked by everyone. When everyone leaves, he stays behind to talk toKatrina, who has disappeared. Disappointed, Ichabod leaves the party.
Ichabodbegins to get frightened as he travels down a dark path, as he tries to calmhimself down, he passes the haunted Major Andre’s tree. He becomes extremelyfearful when he sees a dark figure moving nearby, he calls out to themysterious figure, but it does not respond. Ichabod continues moving down thepath, when all of a sudden, the figure appears on the path riding a dark, andvery large horse.
When Ichabod attempts to lose the odd dark figure, he noticesthat it has no head, but instead it sits on the saddle. Ichabod veryfrightened and unskilled as a horse driver, stops on the bridge and looks backas a foolish attempt to catch another glimpse. Suddenly the man hurls his headat Ichabod, who falls off the horse, and never seen again. We also learn at theend of the tale, more of what may have happened to Ichabod Crane. “The oldcountry wives, however, who are the best judges of these matters, maintain tothis day that Ichabod was spirited away by supernatural means; and it is afavorite story often told about the neighborhood round the winter eveningfire.”