Monday, October 7, 2019

Haunted Nebraska State Capitol

Several legends surround this building. The following two stories have taken on folklore (or ghostlore) status.

The one shared the most involves Christmas lights that used to be placed on the Capitol dome.

Nebraska State Capitol
Finding workers to do this job was difficult. The state had to find people brave enough to risk a 17-story drop to string these lights.

Because of this state prisoners were offered this job, enticed by shorter paroles and jail sentences.

One prisoner who volunteered for the job, in 1968, had a heart attack at the top. He fell to his death.

Witnesses state his screams and sobs were heard for years after his death.

Spiral staircase in
Another legend involves a 50-year-old man who fell down the spiral staircase in the building. He became dizzy while looking down the stairs and fell 12 flights. His ghost is also said to haunt the capitol.

Some have debunked these two legends, but others point to a real haunting that occurs in the capitol’s law library.

A female ghost interacts with male visitors in this room.

Witnesses have reported when they couldn’t find the light switch while entering this room, this ghost has grabbed their hand. She then guides their fingers to the light switch.

Many others report seeing books lying strewn across the libraries' floor, after the doors were closed for the day.

Law library at the capitol.
An elevator at the capitol building.
Late one night, a female worker, had a strange encounter involving the elevator on the 3rd floor. After pressing the button, she waited, only to see the elevator zip passed her floor, and go up to the 12th floor.

She then answered her phone call, where a mysterious voice told her to wait, “They were coming back down.” When the elevator doors opened on her floor, no one was there.

Saturday, September 28, 2019

Spooky Point Sur Lighthouse

This lighthouse, first built in 1889, was fully automated by the Coast Guard in 1972.

Point Sur Lighthouse
It sits high atop a large volcanic rock on a remote location, just north of Big Sur, California.

Today, this lighthouse is a California State Park and is on the National Register of Historic Places.

Despite its strong intense beam many ships wrecked, as they tried to navigate along this rugged section of the California coastline.

But this is not the reason midnight haunted tours are offered in October at the lighthouse.

Instead, it is the spirits of family members of the lightkeepers who linger on this beautiful spot.

Many believe these spirits stay because the keeper’s house affords spectacular views of the wild coastline and the Pacific Ocean on three sides.

This house has ocean-view windows in every room, including even the closets and bathrooms.

Several volunteers who help out at the fully restored lighthouse have encountered these ghosts.

Julie Nunes, states the lighthouse has a peaceful, “Shangri-La” feel. She states the ghosts she has encountered are not malevolent in nature.

Kitchen a Point Sur.
Before entering the light keeper's house Nunes, always knocks and greets one ghost, named Ruth, that resides in the house.

Ruth was one light keeper’s wife. She likes to hang out in the house’s kitchen. Smells of cooking are reported, and it seems Ruth likes her privacy for she often swings the kitchen door shut.

Nunes has recorded another female spirit’s voice stating-- “Now she wants you to go home.” And “Pokey, go to bed.”

It is believed this is the voice of Catherine Ingersoll, a Danish immigrant who married one of the lightkeepers.

She is telling her daughter, Pokey, to go to bed. On this recording, the listener can hear the faint sound of the little girl’s voice responding.

Another volunteer, Sheila Fraser was alone in the keeper’s house cleaning. As she put a vacuum away, she heard something downstairs.

Stair landing where
Fraser saw the ghost.
She looked down from the stair landing and saw a woman who looked real.

“She wore her hair up, her sleeves were puffy, and she wore a long skirt. As Fraser watched, she just disappeared.

Fraser has also seen a male ghost watching her from the keeper house's living room window.

In the following video, Nune places an Ovilus down on the kitchen table next to a pair of skeleton arms. She asks, “Pokey, are you here?”

Watch closely, for the skeleton hand on the left—near the coffee mug—moves. I didn’t see it the first time I watched—but it makes a slight movement.

Besides the October tours, year-round tours are offered at Point Sur Lighthouse.

Thursday, September 19, 2019

Haunted Kennebunk Inn

Tavern in 1885.
This inn nestled between the Kennebunk and Mousam Rivers, in the town of Kennebunk, Maine, was built as a private home in 1799.

In 1928, this residence was converted to a tavern. During this time a man by the name of Silas Perkins was hired to be the night watchman and auditor.

The son of a sea captain, Silas was also a published poet.

Silas died, of a heart attack, in the 1940s, at the inn. He was eighty years old. Since his death, many believe that his ghost lingers.

Light mist photographed at the inn.
Click to enlarge.
In more recent years, this old tavern was converted into an inn.

Former owners of this inn, the LeBlanc’s encountered Silas’ ghost on more than one occasion.

This ghost likes to play pranks on the inn’s employees—especially on those he does not like.

At first, Angela LeBlanc was skeptical the inn was haunted. She quickly changed her mind.

Inn's bar.
One afternoon as she sat the inn’s bar, several mugs levitated off a shelf, where the bartender, named Dudley stood. These mugs hit him in the back of the head.

On other occasions wine glasses fell or flew across the bar.

Room 17 at the inn is very active. As well as the hallway outside this room.

Recently, a housekeeper was cleaning this room when she unplugged the television, to clean behind it. To her horror, this TV moments later turned on by itself.

Even though Silas is mischievous, most of the owners of the inn agree that his spirit overall is a protective presence.

He takes his role as night watchman seriously—guest often state, that he watches over them as they sleep. I am not sure if I would find this comforting or not. 

One line from a poem he wrote, entitled The Common Man, sums up his role as protector.

“I want to laugh with the common man.
Whenever he chance to be,
I want to aid him when I can
Whenever there’s need of me.”

Thursday, August 29, 2019

Oregon’s Spooky McMenamins Edgefield

McMenamins Edgefield
Located in Troutdale, Oregon is an impressive hotel named McMenamins Edgefield.

This large hotel has a brewery/winery, and offers fine dining, concerts, a movie theater, gardens, a spa, and a golf course.

Gardens and vineyard at Edgefield

It is also, without doubt, one of the most haunted hotels in the U.S.

The reason for this is how the site was used, for the seven decades before it became a hotel.

In 1911, the Multnomah County Poor Farm opened where the Sandy and Columbus Rivers come together.

Multnomah Poor Farm
This 345-acre farm was a progressive new idea, to help families, the disabled, and the mentally ill to become self-sufficient.

Even with overcrowding during the Great Depression, the Multnomah was still thriving. Residents in Portland would often visit the farm to buy handicrafts made by the residents.

After WWll, with Roosevelt’s New Deal, most of the residents were able to move on—leaving only the more disabled and sick residents on the farm.

A county jail was established on one section of the land in 1954. The inmates refused to work the farm, so it fell into disrepair. The decision was made to sell the livestock and lease the farmland.

The main building was used for the Edgefield Nursing Home starting in 1964.

When the nursing home closed, the property was abandoned for over 20 years, it was extensively vandalized. It was about to be torn down when the Troutdale Historical Society stepped in and saved it.

Spa with soaking pool.
Winery tasting room.
Then with financial support, the McMenamins brothers were able to renovate it.

After the hotel opened, it became apparent to both staff and guests that the grounds and buildings are haunted. A nurse wearing white, a former janitor, and a ghost dog have all been observed by many.

The phantom dog, besides being seen, wakes guests up late at night, by sticking its’ wet nose into people’s faces. Others state they heard the unmistakable clicking of a dog’s nails as this canine moved through their rooms.

One guest hearing this sound, spoke to the dog, telling it, “You are good fella,” at which point it jumped on her. She never saw it.

A phantom janitor, wearing a uniform of a different era, is seen, smiles, and even talks to guests. He is spotted in the same spot each time.

One time he gave a guest the direction to the ladies room as she left the ballroom, but it was where a restroom used to be. He often just disappears after people spot him.

Tasting Room
Allison Berliner, a wine server, has seen the ghostly nurse. She saw this entity walking with keys in her hands in the winery, at 11:00 in the morning. This ghost stopped as if to unlock a door and then just vanished. (The winery was previously the poorhouse infirmary.)

Mural near where entity walked
through Berliner.
One night, as she walked between the second and third floor, she felt an energy go right through her chest. It took her breath away, and she hyperventilated.

At one point Berliner was transferred to work at the hotel’s Black Rabbit Bar. She encountered a shadowy figure that had “very dark energy,” so, to her relief, she was transferred back to the winery.

Maids at the hotel report a variety of experiences. One housekeeper as she stood at the foot of a bed had her ankle grabbed firmly. This unseen hand wouldn’t let go until she jumped away. (Several guests have had this same experience.)

Another maid had just cleaned a room when she returned to retrieve an item that she had forgotten—she entered the room to find everything in disarray.

The night before this happened, a guest staying in this room told the front desk that she awoke to find a dark figure standing over her bed.

Several rooms on the second floor are very active. Guests report awaking to someone tapping on their chest or being poked in the side, or their feet being grabbed while they are in bed.

One guest had her backside grabbed by an unseen hand as she showered. She screamed and retrieved a towel, as she watched one of her shirts in the next room, lift up and fly across the room.

Another guest, who has visited the hotel several times, tells the story of kissing her boyfriend in one elevator when her hair was yanked violently. No one else was in the elevator with them, and her friend’s hands were both on her waist.

Haunted room.
One guest awoke to find an old man standing over her—he had his hand extended as if he wanted her to shake it. He only disappeared after she obliged him.

Guests often take pictures, knowing the hotel’s reputation. Many have captured mists outside. One guest who snapped many photos during his visit found that all the ones he had taken inside had just disappeared. This had never happened with his camera.

A female guest lost her brush. She poured her purse out on the bed in an attempt to find it—only to see it lying on top of the contents she had spilled out, moments before.

Haunted room.
A couple that stayed in a corner room on the third floor—another room with a lot of activity—had a disturbing night. The wife was shoved off the bed, only to see her husband was asleep and turned away from her.

In this same room, another couple both awoke to the sound of something substantial, hitting a hardwood floor. They turned on the lights and discovered the floor was carpeted, and nothing was on the floor.

A third couple heard creepy footsteps circling the bed. The husband saw what appeared to be a grandmother sitting in the corner, watching them.

These couples state they can hardly wait to revisit the hotel. Others say they are too scared to return.

Other activity includes: Cold breezes inside where they shouldn’t be, the feeling that something is watching, a child’s loud cries in what was the infirmary and lamps turn on by themselves.

Concert on the lawn at Edgefield.
The hotel doesn’t deny these hauntings. In fact, they have had the structures cleansed in the past.

Edgefield's' wines and beers.
But they also do not publicize them. The owners don’t have to. The McMenamins Edgefield is a popular destination for a myriad of reasons. Hot mineral springs—anyone?

Saturday, August 24, 2019

Lake Bomoseen’s Phantom Rowboat

Even the simplest unexplained activity can cause terror *, especially when the same sight is seen for over a century and a half.

Abandoned industrial site.
In the mid-1800s Castleton, Vermont was a booming mining town with several mills and a quarry.

By the early 1900s, the town had slid into a financial decline. Castleton by the early 1920s was abandoned.

In 1929, the area became Lake Bomoseen State Park. Years before this, the lake already had a firm reputation for being haunted.

Lake Bomoseen at sunset.
The cause for this was connected to three Irish quarry workers that lived in the area during its boom years.

One night, these three men rowed across the lake to visit a local tavern to celebrate and drink.

After they left this bar drunk, they were never seen again. It was believed they must have drowned in the lake, on their way home.

Their bodies were never found. But their rowboat was discovered several days later when it drifted ashore.

This incident would not be remembered today—except for the strange sight it caused.

One artist's depiction of the phantom rowboat.
Ever since the loss of these three men, witnesses have claimed to see a strange rowboat gliding across the lake—especially if there is a full moon.

The boat is described as empty and completely quiet.

People report seeing the oars rowing, but what is creepy, is they don’t see anyone in the boat. Even scarier is none of these witnesses heard a splash as the oars hit the water.

Also strange is there is no ripple on the surface of the water as the rowboat passes.

So are these three men doomed to row this boat for eternity?

*  People don’t need to experience a lot of activity for it to be frightening. 

When I was in high school, every time I was alone at home, a lamp in our den would turn on by itself. It never happened when others were there.

My family had it checked. There was not an electrical short etc. But this pattern of it happening when I was alone in the house—freaked me out.

Thursday, August 22, 2019

Haunted Kansas Aviation Museum

“There are things that have happened that can not be explained.”

Art Deco style.
The original Wichita, Kansas, Municipal Airport operated for nineteen years from 1935-1954. Its terminal reflects the much admired, art deco style.

Wichita, for years, was known as the “Air Capital of the World.” And at one time its airport was one of the busiest in the U.S.

Kansas Aviation Museum
Today the old airport terminal is surrounded by McConnell Air Force Base and is an aviation museum.

This museum displays forty of the oldest and most rare airplanes plus some of the earliest engines. The visitor can also get up close to a B-52, and a variety of other hands-on exhibits.


But be forewarned, the staff claims that there are as many “dead as the living” at this old terminal.

Barb Kramer had only worked a few months at the museum when she began to experience unexplained activity. She was often assigned to close the museum at night.

In a room, just after she had shut off the lights, she felt an extreme cold spot. It was summer, and the room had no air-conditioning. (For many years this terminal had no air-conditioning or heat.)

One night as she shut down the museum after a special event, she heard what she thought were children’s footsteps and laughter on the stairs. She then heard one of them say, “shhh.”

Thinking some visitors were still in the terminal she went to investigate. She found no one.

Saff have also reported, slamming doors, happy, excited voices, and a disappearing man wearing a 1940s hat.

Several employees have heard both public announcements and music from another era. Lights on dimmers are known to turn to bright and then turn completely off on their own.

Several apparitions have been spotted, and the sounds of children playing are often heard during the day.

Others report the feeling someone is following them or watching them.

Most of these hauntings have been connected to events that happened at the old airport in the past—some tragic—but one haunting was brought to the museum via an airplane.

Jernigin's Crop Duster
Duke Jernigin, was a pilot of a crop duster when he crashed and died in his plane.

His bright, yellow plane is displayed in the museum, and paranormal groups that have investigated, state his spirit remains with his aircraft.

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

The Hanging of Rose Butler

The land where Washington Square Park is located in New York’s Greenwich Village was used for over a hundred years as a burial site.

It was initially used as an Indian burial ground.

Then after the Revolutionary War it was a potter’s field for criminals that were hanged in New York in the 1700s.

A Vault full of bones found
beneath the park.
There are an additional 20,000 souls buried in a mass grave, lost to a yellow fever epidemic that lasted from 1791 to 1821.

As New York’s wealthier citizens moved into the area, this extensive graveyard was covered over for a military parade ground.

It was at this point that the shallow graves of the potter’s field began to surface. As a result, several bones of the deceased poor were crushed underfoot.

The military parade ground at what was to become the park.

This stark history, plus the disturbance of these graves—point to this ground being haunted. After this location became a park in 1828, people began to note unexplained activity.

Today, the buildings that surround Washington Square, house the various NYU departments. The young people that flock to this park often do not know, about the morbid history of their favorite hangout.

Many bodies lie beneath the famous fountain and arch at this park.

Hangman's Elm
Most of NYUs students have never heard of Rose Butler, even though some have encountered her ghost. On windy nights, she is seen swinging from a large tree in the park’s northwest corner known as the “Hangman’s Elm.”

She is described as a shadow dangling in the tree that appears to disappear when witnesses move closer, to get a better view. Others have noticed this dangling figure from the various windows that overlook the park.

Some have seen her apparition walking through the park. Cold spots accompany her, even on hot summer days. Most disturbing is the witnesses who claim they felt her walk right through them.

Rose Butler was a house slave owned by the Morris family. At age sixteen, the family accused her of stealing. Previous owners had also caught her stealing.

Rose resentful, was also angered at the fact many blacks that were “free” lived near the Morris household.*

She hatched a plan to kill the family. She tried to burn down their house. She set it ablaze and tied their only exit shut.

But she only managed to burn part of the staircase, the family escaped unharmed.

Rose was arrested and tried for arson.

Arson was a heinous crime at the time—for there were not firefighters, and many perished in house fires.

Butler was condemned to death by hanging. This was a harsh penalty—for a woman. The case went all the way to the New York Supreme Court, but they upheld the ruling.

Some state this was because New York was in transition at the time. Slavery was on the decline, and there was a lot of tension between slaveholders and non-slaveholders.

At the age of nineteen, in 1799, Rose Butler was the last criminal hanged in what would become Washington Square Park. She was buried in the nearby potter’s field.

Some feel her grave was one of the many desecrated—hence the haunting.

*   She should have been free, slavery was an abomination, but some because of this sentiment, claim she was innocent--the fire was just an accident. But my research reflected otherwise.

But another question remains--

Since Rose didn't succeed, should she have been hanged?