A Haunting Halloween

Dear Readers,

I hope this letter finds you well.  I will have another new story for The Ghost Post up next week.  In the meantime, I thought I would repost one of my favorite Halloween stories with an additional update at the end of the blog.  Thank you so much for all your support!

Have a Happy Halloween and a Blessed Samhain!

Tara Theresa Hill


One of my favorite ghost stories is “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” by Washington Irving.  So, when Mom was approached to do a ritual at Sleepy Hollow Cemetery for a kid’s paranormal television show, I was thrilled to go along.  When our car first pulled into the cemetery parking lot, I was astounded by the sheer size of the place.  The endless rows of old graves amongst the fallen leaves and stark grey sky were an impressive sight.  We were given a brief private tour of the cemetery before leaving to grab some dinner at a nearby diner.  As the shadows lengthened, I asked when Mom and Sandy were going to start the circle.

“Oh, that will take place later tonight, once it gets dark,” said Mom.

“What?  How long are we going to be there?” I asked.

“All night,” Sandy sighed, sipping her coffee.

“You mean to tell me that we’re going to spend Halloween night in Sleepy Hollow Cemetery?”

“Yes.  I thought you knew that,” said Mom, as if walking around a haunted cemetery at night was the most normal thing in the world.  “I’m going to do a ritual that climaxes at midnight.  We should start wrapping up at about one o’clock in the morning, unless of course the film crew wants to do multiple takes.”

“Terrific…” I mumbled.

Of course, growing up Wiccan, Halloween had always been a bit different in my family.  While my mother encouraged me to participate in the secular activities of dressing in costume and going trick-or-treating, it was also a deeply spiritual event.  One of my earliest Halloween memories involves sitting around a flickering jack-o’-lantern in our darkened living room listening to my mother tell me about the history of All Hallows Eve.  She told me about how the veil between the Spirit World and the Living waxes and wanes throughout the year, becoming thinnest on Halloween Night.  Mom raised me not to fear the dead, but to honor our ancestral spirits as they watch over and guide us on our life mission.

So, that’s how I found myself standing in Sleepy Hollow Cemetery at midnight on Halloween Night.  While Mom tried to make contact with a trapped spirit, I went wandering off into the cemetery with my friend and coven member, Carrie.  I had been instructed to stay out of the way of the film crew.  This was before the creation of Smart Phones or Kindles, so I didn’t have much to do to keep myself occupied.  I wasn’t interested in the screeching teenagers and it was too dark to read.  I wore one of my mother’s heavy, hooded cloaks and had bundled up in multiple layers, so at least I was warm.  Carrie and I were standing near a section of graves that were in-between the parking lot and the filming area.  I could just make out the cemetery gates and the outlines of a few tombstones.

We had been silent for a few minutes when out of the darkness, there came a low moaning.  My spine tingled at the woeful sound.  “Do you hear that?” I asked Carrie.

“Uh huh…”

“What do you suppose that is?”

“I don’t know.”

The sound was coming from one of the nearby graves, but it was so dark that we couldn’t be sure which one it was.

“Maybe it’s a sick dog or some other animal,” I ventured.

“I don’t think so,” said Carrie.

My next thought was that it was a sound effect from the film crew.  I looked over toward where one of them was standing in the parking lot.  He seemed oblivious to the noise.  Perhaps someone was playing a trick on us, but we were too far away from the staged area for that to make any sense.  The unearthly wailing continued.

“Okay.  Whatever it is, I’m leaving,” I said.  I struck out into the darkness thinking that whatever lay in front of me was better than staying next to that moaning tombstone.  I walked all the way back to where Mom was doing the ritual before I realized that Carrie wasn’t with me.  To be fair, it was pitch black and I had sped away, so it was hard to tell.

I made my way back through the cemetery, trying not to trip over any gravestones as I went until I found Carrie again.  The tombstone was still moaning.

“You left me with it!” Carrie hissed.

“I’m sorry.  I thought that you were following me.”

“No…I’m too scared to move.”

“Well, come on.  You can’t hear it once you step a few feet away.  Let’s leave whatever it is alone.”  I grabbed Carrie’s arm.  “Sorry to have disturbed you,” I said to the invisible, but clearly audible spirit.  “We’re leaving now.  Have a Happy Halloween!”  Then I dragged Carrie away as fast as we could go.

On the way home, Mom told us that she hadn’t been able to contact any spirits because of all the noise that the terrified teenagers kept making.  The television crew had purposely spooked them to create an artificial atmosphere that wasn’t conducive to speaking with the spirits.

I nodded.  “You can say that again.  I think they annoyed any ones that were hanging out tonight.  Carrie and I heard one ghost groaning.  Perhaps, she or he did not like a bunch of noisy people tromping around the cemetery at night.”

“Yes.  I wouldn’t have even done the show if I had known that they were going to make a spectacle of it.”  Our eyes met in the car’s rearview mirror.  “Remember, Tara.  Always respect the dead for they are people too.”

Update 2017: One of my recent interviewees told me that the sound that I heard in Sleepy Hollow Cemetery might have been the Weeping Woman.  She said that the Weeping Woman is a spirit who haunts the cemetery.  Some people hear her moaning or wailing.  She is supposed to be connected to a statue depicting a crying woman that is in the cemetery.  I do not recall if I was near a statue because it was too dark to see, but some versions of the legend claim that she walks the cemetery at night.  The statue is called the Bronze Lady and is located across from the tomb of General Samuel Thomas.


Do You Have a Ghost Story?

Send me an email to theghostpostreporter@gmail.com to set up an interview.  I’m always in the mood for a good ghost story! 

Want even more Ghost Stories?

I have launched a ghost story magazine via Patreon called The Spirit Hour.  For a dollar a month, you get complete access to all the stories in the ghost story magazine, so that you can read them whenever you want.  A new ghost story will be posted once a month. 

Also, check out The Ghost Post’s YouTube channel for audio recordings of The Ghost Post.  It’s perfect for camping out, sleepovers, or anytime you just want to hear a ghost story on the go. 

For more ghost stories, paranormal phenomena, and updates, follow Tara Theresa Hill on Facebook and on Twitter at @TaraTheresaHill

Are you one of the following: A paranormal writer, artist, or investigator?

Or

Do you have a paranormal-themed business or Facebook group?

Then check out my new paranormal advertising group, The Paranormal Hotspot: The Market for All Things Paranormal. There is no set promotion day, so you can promote your business, art, or group every day for free. You can also post links to sites where you sell your products or services. Our mission is to help paranormal businesses, artists, writers, and investigators connect with fans and consumers!

Get Your Ghost On!

Check out our CafePress store featuring The Ghost Post’s official mascot, Spook.  We’ve got awesome coffee mugs, t-shirts, and more!

Spook Logo, White T-Shirt, Copyright 2017
Spook Logo, White T-Shirt, Copyright 2017

 

 

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The Spirit’s Stone

Thanks to Diane from St. Augustine, Florida for this story!

One day, Diane was visiting a friend, when she was presented with a strange stone pendant.  It was a beautiful malachite stone in a homemade setting.  Knowing that Diane was into crystals, incense, and things like that, the woman offered to give Diane the stone.  Her friend said that she had found it years ago, but didn’t like wearing it because she seemed to have a bad day whenever she did.  Before deciding to take it, Diane wanted to get a feel for the stone’s energy.  Holding it in her hands, she closed her eyes and sensed green sweeping hills that reminded her of Ireland.  Diane decided that she liked the stone and thanked her friend for giving it to her.

Soon after, Diane wore the stone to a Druid meet up and a Wiccan meeting.  At both events, different people approached her and said that they were picking up weird vibes from the stone.  They encouraged Diane to cleanse the stone before wearing it again.  Diane took the stone home, gave it a sage cleansing, and placed it on the altar she had dedicated to the fairies.

Instead of helping, odd things started happening in her apartment.  Stuff was moved around, lights turned themselves on and off, and she began seeing a white ball of light that floated about the apartment and over her fairy altar.  Then she saw an apparition of a young girl with long, straight, dark hair peeking around the corner of the hallway by her bedroom.  The child spirit looked to be about eight or nine years old.  Diane’s husband also caught a glimpse of the spirit.  One night, he went to take out the trash and saw a person sitting in the back of Diane’s car.  When he looked closer and saw the little girl’s ghost, he freaked out and went and told his wife.

Another day, Diane had just finished vacuuming the living room.  She turned the vacuum off and went to go talk to her husband about something.  A few minutes later, she went back into the living room to find that the whole thing had been turned upside down and dumped out all over the floor.  Both Diane and her husband had just been in the next room and they hadn’t heard a sound.

It was clear that something was wrong.  With all this activity happening since Diane had brought the necklace home, she placed it in salt water to try to purify it again. While Diane’s husband was afraid, Diane just wanted to know what was going on.  She decided to try to contact the spirit through meditation.

She cast a circle and used a homemade Ouija board with a pendulum.  The spirit told her that her name was E.J. and that she had been killed in an invasion during wartime in St. Augustine.  The stone pendant had been a gift to her and she wanted it back.  One of Diane’s friends, who was a Wiccan high priestess, came to inspect the house and confirmed what Diane had found out through the Ouija board session.  The piece of malachite emanated a guardian energy that was intended to help protect the child’s spirit.

Meanwhile, Diane had this nagging suspicion that whatever spirit was attached to the stone was not happy that it was submerged in salt water.  Unable to dismiss this feeling, Diane took the malachite pendant out of the water and placed it back on her fairy altar.  She warned her husband not to touch it and then went out to do some errands.

When she got home, she went back in her room to find the stone missing.  Diane asked her husband where the stone was, but he swore that he hadn’t seen it.  They searched the room, but couldn’t find it anywhere.  Later, as they were getting into bed, her husband said that he felt something underneath his pillow.  Picking up his pillow, he found the green stone lying underneath.  Diane’s husband turned pale and leapt out of the bed screaming, “How did it get there?!”  After that, Diane promised E.J. that she would find a way to return the stone to her.

The next day, she put the stone into a cloth bag covered with rune symbols and went to go see her friend.  Diane asked the woman where she had gotten the stone.  At this point, the woman confessed that she had found the malachite pendant while hanging out in a cemetery after dark when she was a teenager.  Diane was upset.  She would never have accepted the stone if she had known where it had come from.  She asked the woman for the location of the graveyard so that she could return it.

The burial ground was across from a fort.  Many of the people buried in there died from a yellow fever outbreak.  By the time that Diane got there, the cemetery gates were locked.  She really didn’t want to keep the stone any longer than necessary.  Walking around the perimeter, she saw a little grave with the initials E.J.

“That must be her grave!” thought Diane.  Now, the problem was getting inside to return the malachite pendant.  She didn’t want to take it home again since she was only feet away from the little ghost girl’s grave.  She stood there holding the stone and praying over it for a few minutes.  Taking her best shot, she hurled the stone over the gate.  It landed in an aloe plant that was right next to the tiny grave.

On her way home from the cemetery, Diane found a fairy pendant lying on the ground.  She took this as a sign that E.J. was happy and at peace now that she had her stone back.  When she got home, the apartment’s energy was back to normal.  The spirit had moved on.

After these events, Diane learned that there is a spirit named Elizabeth who haunts the city gates, which are located right across from the cemetery.  According to local history, Elizabeth was the daughter of one of the guards.  She is believed to have died during an invasion.  Could the spirit of Elizabeth and E.J. be one and the same?  What do you think?  Let me know in the comments.


Media Announcement:

Big news!  I recently did an interview with Jacquetta Szathmari and Katie Kazimir on their podcast, Hey You Know It.  I had a great time talking about ghosts, the paranormal, and sharing some of my favorite ghostly encounters.  Listen to the podcast for free here: A Reluctant Happy Medium.

Do You Have a Ghost Story?

Send me an email to theghostpostreporter@gmail.com to set up an interview.  I’m always in the mood for a good ghost story! 

Want even more Ghost Stories?

I have launched a ghost story magazine via Patreon called The Spirit Hour.  For a dollar a month, you get complete access to all the stories in the ghost story magazine, so that you can read them whenever you want.  A new ghost story will be posted once a month. 

Also, check out The Ghost Post’s YouTube channel for audio recordings of The Ghost Post.  It’s perfect for camping out, sleepovers, or anytime you just want to hear a ghost story on the go. 

For more ghost stories, paranormal phenomena, and updates, follow Tara Theresa Hill on Facebook and on Twitter at @TaraTheresaHill

Are you one of the following: A paranormal writer, artist, or investigator?

Or

Do you have a paranormal-themed business or Facebook group?

Then check out my new paranormal advertising group, The Paranormal Hotspot: The Market for All Things Paranormal. There is no set promotion day, so you can promote your business, art, or group every day for free. You can also post links to sites where you sell your products or services. Our mission is to help paranormal businesses, artists, writers, and investigators connect with fans and consumers!

Get Your Ghost On!

Check out our CafePress store featuring The Ghost Post’s official mascot, Spook.  We’ve got awesome coffee mugs, t-shirts, and more!

Spook Giant Coffee Mug
Spook – Coffee Mug – Copyright 2017

 

 

 

 

Ghost Friends

Thanks to Holly Bell for this story! 

One of the warnings that is given to paranormal investigators and ghost hunters who are just starting out in the field is never to invite spirits to follow you home.  This is so that the spirit does not become attached to the person.  The idea is that you would not invite a total stranger into your home without caution and since ghosts are the souls of people who have passed on, you do not want to encourage them to take up residence with you either.  Unless you know the spirit well or have a previous relationship with the person from when they were alive, it’s generally not considered wise to let them into your sacred space.  However, just as with everything, there are some exceptions to this rule.

Holly Bell is a clairaudient paranormal investigator.  Although she has seen apparitions, she mostly hears whispers and collects EVPs.  Holly started her paranormal investigation group about five years ago with another friend of hers who is also an empath.  You can check out her paranormal videos on YouTube.

A couple of years ago, Holly was investigating her former professor’s home.  The professor had lived peacefully in the building for years.  When he became empathic and psychically aware after a near-death experience, he started noticing that his old house was full of ghosts.  Unfortunately, he was terrified of them and decided to sell the place.  Before the deal was closed, he asked Holly to come over and investigate.

After Holly had been in the house a few minutes, the professor asked, “Well?  Why are they here?  What do they want?”

“They want to know why you hate them.  They don’t mean you any harm,” Holly answered.  “Even though they’re dead, they’re just peacefully living out their afterlife here.”

As she continued to explore the house, a young female spirit approached Holly.  The spirit said her name was Sarafina.  She wore a dress that looked like something from the Little House on The Prairie books.  Holly estimated that she was from the 1800s.  The little girl ghost had played with the professor’s niece when she visited, but since he was going to be leaving soon, she was going to be all alone.  The spirit did not seem ready to move on to the light.  During the visit, Holly took a liking to Sarafina and invited her to come home with her instead.

Another time, Holly was doing an investigation in Sacramento Historic City Cemetery in California when she came across the spirit of a cavalry soldier.  He introduced himself as John.  When she was leaving the area where he was, he called for her to come back.  Perhaps he wasn’t stuck haunting the cemetery and might have just been passing through because he decided to follow her home.  Holly has had readings with two other psychics who have confirmed this spirit by name.  John is not ready to cross over and has taken up the role of protecting Holly.


If you have a real ghost story that you would like to share with The Ghost Post, send me an email to theghostpostreporter@gmail.com to set up an interview.  I’m always in the mood for a good ghost story! 

For more ghost stories, paranormal phenomena, and updates, follow Tara Theresa Hill on Facebook and on Twitter at @TaraTheresaHill.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Presence

Thanks to Regina for this story!  To read Regina’s first story, please see A Medium’s Rite of Passage.

Most of the houses in Regina’s neighborhood in North Philadelphia were built during the early 19th century.  It was rumored that some had been constructed over an old cemetery, so there was no surprise that the town had a reputation for hauntings.  Regina was about eight when she started noticing strange things happening in her house.

The previous owner of Regina’s home was an alcoholic who died while living in the house.  Sometimes, Regina would see a male apparition.  One day, Regina came home and saw a man sleeping on the couch.  At first glance, she thought the man was her father.  Then she watched as the figure got up, walked through the closed door, and down the block before fading away.

The dining room was also known for strange activity.  Sometimes in the middle of the night, disembodied voices could be heard among the tinkling of the chandelier as it swayed back and forth.  The floor had a mysterious stain that couldn’t be removed.  Regina’s parents constantly tried to cover the dark mark, but it always managed to come through whatever carpet that they laid over it.

The eeriness permeated the rest of the house’s atmosphere, but only Regina and her sisters seemed to notice.  As a young child, Regina was afraid of going upstairs by herself, especially at night.  There were two chips in the paint that looked like gaping eye sockets.  Even with her back turned, she felt like they were watching her.

Her parents’ closet door would open on its own.  Outside their bedroom was a perpetual cold spot about five feet in diameter.  It didn’t matter what time of the year it was, the iciness was always there and light always left the hallway in shadow.

One Easter, there was a terrible fire next door that caused extensive smoke damage.  Regina’s family decided to move a few months later.  A suffocating, almost violent feeling hung in the air as they packed up their belongings.  Regina’s father went to drop some things off at the new house.  On his return trip, Regina decided to go with him.  Her mother, Rachel, and brother, Janiero, stayed behind.

After Regina left, the temperature in the house continued to drop until it was so cold that her mother and brother’s teeth were chattering.  Janiero had to use the bathroom.  They heard a creaking noise coming from upstairs.  Looking up, mother and son watched as Regina’s bedroom door slowly closed on its own.

If you have a real ghost story that you would like to share with The Ghost Post, send an email with your contact information to Tara Theresa Hill at theghostpostreporter@gmail.com to set up an interview. 

I’m always in the mood for a good ghost story! 

Follow Tara Theresa Hill on Facebook and Twitter at @TaraTheresaHill for more updates and paranormal phenomena!

 

My Haunted Vacation

Dear Readers,

Happy Haunted Holidays from The Ghost Post!  Please be advised that this will be the last post for 2016 as next Sunday is Christmas.  The Ghost Post will resume posting new stories on January 2nd, 2017.  I have a lot of new things in the works for 2017, including a ghost story magazine.  Please stay tuned for more real ghost stories!

Best,

Tara Theresa Hill

For our five-year wedding anniversary, George and I decided to go to Washington, D.C.  We both love history and he wanted to see the space exhibits at the Smithsonian.  Since hotels outside of D.C. were cheaper, we stayed in a hotel in Virginia and drove into D.C. each day.  I can usually count on at least one ghostly encounter per trip.

One of the attractions that we did was called Monuments in the Moonlight.  This was a nighttime trolley tour of D.C.’s national monuments.  Some of the scheduled stops let you out to explore.  The tour included a drive through Arlington National Cemetery.  Since it was already dark, they didn’t let us get out of the trolley.  The trolley was an open-air one, so that you really got great views and pictures as they coasted by the monuments.

I was leaning with my fist on my chin, gazing out at the cemetery.  My reverie was broken by the appearance of a glowing figure.  At first, I took it to be a statue of a Civil War soldier that had been lit up somehow.  I saw the uniform with the buttons down the front and the cap.  I even noted that he had a handlebar mustache.

“That’s an amazingly detailed statue!” I thought to myself and shifted around in my seat to get a better look.  The figure was gone.  We had only just passed by it, so I should have been able to see it.  I turned to my husband.

“Did you see the glowing statue of the Civil War soldier?”

“No.  What statue?”

I pointed behind us.  “There in the woods.”

“Honey, statues don’t generally glow.”

Then it hit me.  I hadn’t seen a statue at all, but a full-blown apparition of a Civil War soldier on the eve of the 150th Anniversary of the Battle of Gettysburg.

 

The Ways of Ghosts

Thanks to Don from New York for this story!

Don lived in the same house in Williamsburg, Brooklyn from 1980 until this past June.  The house is estimated to have been built no later than 1812.  It has three floors, a sub-basement, and is connected to a separate brick building.  Don’s landlord lived in the brick building.

Once when the landlord was away visiting family, Don heard footsteps coming up the stairs.  Thinking it was someone attempting to break in, he armed himself with a bat and went to investigate.  Creeping along, he finally reached the stairs only to find that no one was there.  After a few more repeats of this event, Don started saying hi to the invisible spirit whenever he heard the footsteps.

Don’s girlfriend, Alyssa, had a different encounter with the ghost.  Alyssa is the thirteenth generation of psychics in her family.  One day, she told Don that the ghost in the house had come to her and complained about what was going on in the sub-basement.  Don wasn’t aware of anything happening, but he decided to mention the incident to his landlord.  The landlord was astounded.  As it turned out, he had been setting off bug bombs in the basement and the ghost had not approved of it.

Three years after he had been buried, Alyssa’s uncle’s body had to be exhumed.  Noting that he looked better than he had when he was alive, Alyssa asked Don for a reading to see how her uncle was doing on the Other Side.  Everything went fine during the reading.

Later that night, Don was awakened by the presence of someone lying beside him.  Don jumped out of bed to find the spot next to him empty, except that the blankets seemed slightly raised.  Don and Alyssa mentioned the incident to Alyssa’s aunt who was then ninety-eight years old.

She laughed at them.  “Don’t you know better?  Doing readings about the dead draws them to you.”

If you have a real ghost story that you would like to share with The Ghost Post, send an email with your contact information to Tara Theresa Hill at theghostpostreporter@gmail.com to set up an interview. 

I’m always in the mood for a good ghost story!

Follow Tara Theresa Hill on Facebook and on Twitter at @TaraTheresaHill for more updates and paranormal phenomena!

If you enjoyed this article and would be interested in supporting my work, please check out my Patreon page. 

 

 

 

“Told you that we have a ghost.”

Soon after we got married, George and I moved to Yonkers, New York.  The apartment was a large studio with a walk-through kitchen and a wide hallway that led to the bathroom.  The hallway was so big that we turned it into a mini-library and storage area for some of George’s Star Trek models.

Having grown up in Yonkers until I was about eleven years old, I was happy to be back in my old neighborhood.  The building was from the 1920s, although the city itself dates back to the mid-1600s.  There was even an old Jewish cemetery located a few blocks from our apartment building that was usually kept locked.  The earliest gravestones had dates from the 1950s.

One night, about two weeks after we had settled in and unpacked everything, I was walking by the bookshelf when one of George’s toy Star Trek phasers went off by itself.  To say I nearly jumped out of my skin is an understatement.  I ran out of that hallway so fast that I’m sure the ghost must have been in a fit of hysterics.  This happened a few more times, including a couple in front of George.

Our second year there, George and I decided to throw a Halloween party.  A few of our friends came over and we all dressed in costume and played some board games.  We also gave out candy to the trick-or-treaters.  I had told my friends about the events in the house.  I had by this time taken George’s electronic toys and stuffed them in the closet so that I couldn’t hear them if they decided to go off on their own.  Some of my friends were skeptics, some believed me, but we were all in for a surprise later that night.

Everyone was standing around, saying their goodbyes, and getting ready to go home.  I had just finished telling them that I was in the middle of writing a ghost story that was quickly turning into my first novel.  Then inexplicably, our TV turned itself on.  No one was near the remote or standing by the TV.  This was one of those older television sets with a built-in DVD player from the early 2000s.  You had to press the power button firmly to get it to turn on.  Everyone looked at me.

“Told you that we have a ghost.”

If you have a real ghost story that you would like to share with The Ghost Post, send an email with your contact information to Tara Theresa Hill at theghostpostreporter@gmail.com to set up an interview. 

I’m always in the mood for a good ghost story! 

If you enjoyed this article and would be interested in supporting my work, please check out my Patreon page.