rss
twitter
    "Death is no more than passing from one room into another." – HELEN KELLER

New Episode - Ghost Hunters

I just want to remind everyone that tomorrow is the start of the new season of Ghost Hunters. I'm looking forward to seeing where they go and what they find or don't find this season.

As for the forum idea, upon reviewing the results of the poll, I've decided to go ahead and set up the forum on a trial basis and just see how it goes.

UPDATE: I watched the new episode tonight. It was great like most of them. I actually did a post on Waverly Hills when I first started this blog if you would like to learn some more about it.

Past Life

In a Past Life...

You Were: A Jittery Chief.

Where You Lived: South Africa.

How You Died: Killed in Battle.
At least I died honorably? What are your results?

The Mothman

I'm sure many of you have seen the 2002 movie The Mothman Prophecies starring Richard Gere and Laura Linney. That movie was based on a real creature seen in Point Pleasant, West Virginia. The myth of the Mothman began on November 12, 1966 in West Virginia. In a local cemetery, five men were preparing a grave for burial when they spotted a "brown human being" lift off from nearby trees and flew over their heads. The men were mystified by the sighting. The unidentified creature looked more like a man with wings rather than a bird. However, those five men wouldn't be the last ones to see it.

Three days later, two married couples saw it as they were driving past an abandoned TNT plant near Point Pleasant, West Virginia. They claimed to have seen two large eyes attached to something shaped like a man with big wings folded against its back. When the creature moved toward the plant door, the couples panicked and sped away. Later on, they saw the same creature on a hillside near the road. As they were traveling over 100 miles per hour, the creature flew next to the car, keeping up with their speed. They reported to Deputy Sheriff Millard Halstead that it followed them down Highway 62, all the way to the Point Pleasant city limits. They weren't the only group that saw the creature that night. The other four witnesses claimed to have seen the "bird" three different times.

However, those sightings were pretty mild compared to the one Newell Partridge had. Around 10:30 that same evening, Partridge, who lived about 90 miles from Point Pleasant, saw a weird pattern fill his television screen followed by loud, whining sounds from outside. "It sounded like a generator winding up," he stated. Dumbfounded by what was going on, he walked outside finding his dog, Bandit, facing the hay barn, 150 yards from the house. Partridge turned his flashlight in that direction and spotted two red circle-like eyes that were moving like red orbs. He believed they did not belong to that of any animal and the sight of them frightened him. Bandit was an experienced hunting dog and protective of his territory. So, it was no surprise that he shot off in pursuit of the glowing eyes.

Partridge tried to stop him but he didn't pay any attention. Instead, Partridge went back in the house for his gun but was too scared to return outside. He ended up sleeping that night with his gun propped up next to the bed. Bandit was no where to be seen the next morning. Partridge read in the newspaper about the sightings and especially took notice of a statement from a Roger Scarberry, a member of the group who spotted the strange "bird' at the TNT plant. He stated that they saw the body of a large dog laying on the side of the road and a few minutes later, on their way back out of town, the dog was gone. Newell Partridge believed that it may have been Bandit, who was never seen again.

A press conference was held in the county courthouse on November 16th where the couples from the TNT plant sighting repeated their story. Deputy Halstead, who had known the four people all of their lives, took them very seriously and many reporters did as well. They dubbed the unexplained creature as the "Mothman", after a character from the popular Batman television series.

The abandoned TNT plant became the lair of the Mothman which was an excellent place to hide. The area was made up of several hundred acres of woods and large concrete domes where high explosives were stored during World War II. A network of tunnels honeycombed the area and made it possible for the creature to move about without being seen. In addition to the manmade labyrinth, the area was also comprised of the McClintic Wildlife Station, a heavily forested animal preserve filled with woods, artificial ponds and steep ridges and hills. Much of the property was almost inaccessible and without a doubt, Mothman could have hid for weeks or months and remained totally unseen. The only people who ever wandered there were hunters and fishermen and the local teenagers, who used the rutted dirt roads of the preserve as a lovers lane spot.

Researchers, investigators and "monster hunters" from all over flock to the area, but the most well-known of them all was author John Keel. He has written about unexplained anomalies including Mothman, making him a controversial figure for decades. Despite how "colorful" he can get, he was still considered a respectful man. Keel became the major chronicler of the Mothman case. Keel arrived at Point Pleasant in December 1966 and immediately began collecting reports from witnesses. Apparently, Mothman wasn't the only unexplained thing in Point Pleasant. Reports of UFOs, television and phone problems, unexplained lights in the skies, and short-lived poltergeists could also be found there.

So who was Mothman? One explanation was Mothman was actually a sandhill crane from Canada. Whatever it may have been, the numerous credible witnesses prove it was no hoax. Even if he was real, it doesn't explain all the other strange events in Point Pleasant. John Keel believed it was a "window" area but could that be explanation for all the other strange occurrences in America? Who knows. He also blamed the events on the legendary Constalk Curse which was placed on Point Pleasant in the 1770s.

But the question is: Does Mothman still exist today? Some would say yes. A recent sighting was on September 11, 2001. Steve Moran was taking pictures of the rescue operation from Greenwich Street when he captured something interesting near the towers. Do you think it's Mothman or is the picture a fake? Does anyone have any Mothman stories they would like to share?

Scary...but True

Tonight, I was watching some TV, flipping through the channels trying to find something I haven't seen a hundred times already, and I stumbled up on this reality show called Scary..but True on the Fox Reality channel. I have Direct TV, BTW. I've seen an episode of this show before (can't remember when, though).

Scary...but True basically has the same premise as ABC Family's Scariest Places on Earth and MTV's Fear. It contains several stories about haunted locations across the US (I think) and people, particularly teens, spend a night in that place or test out the legends. I, personally, don't really care for a lot of paranormal reality type shows because it's mostly about entertaining rather than the paranormal aspects of it. To be honest, this one didn't really impress me much either. Most of the things they heard or saw, like a light in the distance, a door slamming shut, or footsteps outside a closed door, could have easily been done by someone on the production crew or whoever.

I would give you information about where you can see it, if it's still on the air or whatever so you can form your own opinion about the show but I have looked everywhere and can't find hardly anything about this show. After doing a few searches, a found a few threads on different forums here and there but not really anything useful to report. So, I have no idea where you can find it (besides the Fox Reality channel), if it's still on the air, or anything like that. Anybody have any information about this show or opinions?

BTW, there is a show called Strange but True. From what I understand it isn't the same as this one despite the similarities in the titles.

Blog Announcements

BlogMad is opening their doors to the public in a day or so. Of course, it'll still be in beta. The last few weeks, I've gotten a lot of traffic and interaction via BlogMad. So I definitely would recommend it to anyone. Oh, and one more thing, they are also have a double credit day. Meaning for every blog you surf, you get two credits instead of just one. It's your chance to build up your credits a bit.

I posted a month or so ago about setting up guidelines for you to send pics, videos and audio clips, and your true ghost stories. I should have the submission guidelines posted sometime next week.

I've also been thinking about setting up a message board for this blog. I found a free service I actually like for once. The thing is, I don't like maintaining something that hardly anyone is going to use. So, I created a poll. Let me know what you think.


Free polls from Pollhost.com
Want a Ghost Stories message board?
Yes No I guess I don't care

Three Men and a Ghost?

I'm sure you've all seen the popular 1987 film Three Men and a Baby. but how many of you know there's supposedly a "ghost" in the film? Where you ask. The little ghost boy can be seen in the scene where Jack's mother, Mrs. Holden, and Jack are walking around the apartment. If you look closely, you will see a little boy standing in front of the window behind the curtains.

Of course, there have been many rumors as to where this little boy came from. Some say he committed suicide with a shotgun in that apartment. With other variations, merely just mention how he died. The one I heard was that the little boy choked on a piece of food and died. Then, his parents moved out of the house, and he haunts the apartment, making his grand appearance in the movie.

According to Snopes, the truth is very much mundane. The boy is actually just a cardboard cutout for advertising reasons concerning part of the storyline about Jack in a dog food commercial. A prop that was accidentally left on the set. No real structures were used for interior scenes in the movie.

The rumor began shortly after the movie came out on home video. Most people think that the studio started the rumors in order to make more money with its' sequel Three Men and a Little Lady. It certainly isn't the only time someone has used supernatural mystery to gain publicity for a film. What do you think? Was it an honest mistake that got way out of control or a mistake that was used for profits?

Happy St. Patrick's Day

I just wanted to wish everyone a happy and safe St. Patrick's Day. If you're planning on drinking, please don't drive. You can have fun and also stay safe.

I also want to introduce you to my new tenant for the week. Barbara or B as she likes to be called blogs at All-Night.org. She's 21 years old from Baltimore who posts about a wide variety of things including her friends, family, work and even her charity efforts. I was particularly interested in her post about hearing unexplained voices and noises. Anyways, drop by her blog sometime and tell her I sent ya.

Sleep Paralysis

Sleep paralysis, or SP, is a condition in which someone who is about to fall asleep or waking from sleep realize they are unable to move or speak but still have the ability to breathe and eye movement. Some people blame aliens while others believe it's the "Devil" that cause sleep paralysis. However, researchers believe it's a transitory stage where your conscious mind has begun to drift into sleep but you still retain a small amount of your waking conscious. It can occur in any sleeping position but most common in the supine position (laying on your back).

Sometimes SP is only temporary, lasting for a few seconds to a minute. However, another scenario leaves a person hallucinating upon realizing they are paralyzed. They report seeing, hearing, and/or sensing one or more people (usually a malevolent presence or SMP) in the room with them while they are paralyzed. SMP usually seem to be just out of view of someone experiencing SP. The subject feels crushed, smothered, or pushed into the bed.

Some sufferers of SP reported having out-of-body experiences, a sensation of floating or falling through the bed. Some have an overwhelming feeling of wanting to cry out or "fight" the presence they believe is causing the SP. These hallucinations are called hypnagogic and hypnopompic hallucinations. They can be auditory, visual, tactile and proprioceptive (the feeling of someone smashed into the bed when actually it's a hallucination). Proprioceptive is considered the most convincing of all hallucinations.

Some researchers believe that SP is contributed by several outside factors including stress, emotional or physical, and adolescence. Of course, all of this is only scientific theory. At Waterloo University, intense research has been done on SP and have found some interesting results. In a normal REM state, our minds send a message to our body to I guess you can say turn off our muscles while we dream. This prevents us from doing any harm to ourselves or anyone around us. Also in REM state, we experience a stimuli within our minds that tunes out the world around us.

When a sufferer of SP is in REM state, it differs from that of a normal person. There is little to no blocking of external stimulation and they suffer from a state of "dreaming while awake". Researchers believe the paralysis is caused by the brain failing to remind the body it is awake. Simply put, you wake up still dreaming which then appear as hallucinations and you can't move to do anything about it. Although this is said to be a common condition that most people experience at least once in their life (mostly the mild scenario of SP), I, myself, have never experienced SP and if I do, I hope it is the mild version. The other version sounds like a terrifying experience.

In many different cultures, demons, devils and other beasties of the night have been blamed for SP. It's easy to understand why they would choose that kind of explanation rather than try and develop a logical one. In some parts of Europe, people use to blame the littlest unexplained occurrences on vampires. So, it doesn't surprise me that SP was associated with demons. How else were they going to explain it? Researchers today still haven't been able to come up with one explanation, just theories. Even today, some skeptics believe that sleep paralysis doesn't exist. That it's all in the mind.

Sleep paralysis was also known as Old Hag. The origins of this title dates back to the Sumerians. An evil hag-demon named Ardat lili or Lilitu was said to have attacked men in their sleep. This is obviously referenced to Lilith, who refused to lay on her back when laying with Adam and was thrown out of Eden. After she was thrown out, a myriad of things happened, she flew away and is now the eater of children, or she is a disgusting old hag who flies over the land, seeking revenge for being thrown out of Eden. However, this myth is far from being unique. Many she-devils and hag-demons have taken credit for nocturnal assaults throughout mythology for whatever reasons.

Anyways, there were consistencies with reports made by societies and cultures even though they had no previous knowledge of each other or their lore. The main details remained constant: a man or woman is attacked during the night in the supine position, when an evil entity sits on their body, causing paralysis. No matter what their motivation may have been, the attacks remained similar.

Despite that SP research is still in the infancy phase, is there a way to prevent it from happening to you? Well, from my understanding, not really. You can try not sleeping on your back, but there really aren't any guarantees. Researchers are always looking for sufferers of SP. There are several websites where you can fill out surveys about your SP experiences which could help researchers understand the condition further. One is located at the Waterloo University's website. Do you have any personal experience stories concerning sleep paralysis you'd like to share?

If you would like to know more about sleep paralysis, check out this article posted on Science News Online.

Your Chance to Win 500 Credits!!

Ok so my first contest here didn't work as well as I had hoped but that's alright. If anyone still needs an invite to BlogMad email me and I'll send you one.

My next contest is about the birth of my blog. November 16th is the two year anniversary of Ghost Stories. Since I kind of forgot to celebrate the first one, I'm trying to make it up this year. I know November is kind of a long way off but I'd like to get a head start.

So, here is where you come in. I'm looking for ideas on how to celebrate. I'm giving away 500 credits (BlogMad or BlogExplosion: your choice) to the person with the best suggestion. The amount of credits to be won will increase depending on you. The more suggestions I get, the more credits for the winner (1 credit for each idea posted). Oh and I may give out a few "mystery" prizes for best effort.

This contest will run for a month (ends April 13th). So, you have plenty of time to come up with something. Post a comment with your suggestions. Please keep it clean. If I find one with "adult content" it will be DELETED. Good Luck!!!

Reminder

I just wanted to remind everyone that today is the last day to enter the Ghost Stories Trivia Contest. You have until midnight. Hurry up and get those entries in!

I would also like to thank the developers at BlogMad. They are doing such a great job getting the site up and running.

Jaded Sunburns

I want you to meet my new renter for this week. Born in Denver, Jade currently lives in Arizona with her husband and three kids. She is a SAHM, which is one of the hardest and rewarding jobs there is. She doesn't hide the fact that she is a little off her rocker, if you know what I mean. I respect that. Got to love someone who is up front about their senility. LOL But for real, she sounds like a cool and interesting person.

Ok back to the mission at hand. Jade posts openly about her life marriage, and anything else she likes or bugs her. And apparently, she gets real excited about snow and rain. Now, I can understand getting enthusiastic about snow since here in Oklahoma, we don't get much of it but the rain, I can do without most of it. Right now Jade's got a limerick contest going on at her blog: Jaded Sunburns. If you got talent for that sort of thing, check it out. Contest ends March 11.

How about y'all show her some love and check out her blog sometime. You won't regret it.

Freaky Ghost

The London Dungeon Ghost seemed kind of popular. So I thought I would post another one. Be sure and turn the volume up.

A few people are complaining about the video (or the audio part at least). So for now on if you want to see it go here. Sorry for any inconvenience the clip may have caused.

Testifying Beyond the Grave - The Greenbrier Ghost

Life isn't like the movies. Sometimes the bad guy or girl does win but not in this case. How many times have you watched Court TV and heard the judge allow the assistance of a ghost to help win a case? I think it's safe to say there is only one case where that was allowed: the murder of Zona Heaster Shue. Let's start at the beginning.

Around 1873, Elva Zona Heaster was born in Greenbrier County, West Virginia. Little is known about her childhood except she gave birth to an illegitimate child in 1895. A year later, she met Erasmus (Edward) Stibbling Trout Shue, a drifter who moved to Greenbrier to work as a blacksmith. Greenbrier County was a perfect place for a blacksmith since all public roads were unpaved and the county was given over to rolling hills. Plenty of horses and cattle could be found there. He worked in the shop of James Crookshanks.

Zona and Shue married soon after he arrived in town despite her mother's, Mary Jane Robinson Heaster, dislike of him. She felt like there was something he was hiding but didn't know what. The couple lived together as husband and wife for several months. On January 23, 1897, a young errand boy, Andy Jones, discovered Zona's body inside of her house. He found her lying on the floor at the bottom of the stairs. He knew she was dead and ran home to tell his mother. Dr. George W. Knapp, the local doctor and coroner, arrived at the house nearly an hour after being summoned.

Before Knapp got there, Shue carried his wife's body upstairs and laid her on the bed, dressing the corpse himself. It was the proper thing to wash and dress the body in preparation for burial. Shue dressed Zona in a high-necked, stiff-collared dress the covered her neck and placed a veil over her face. Shue stayed by cradling her head and sobbing while Dr. Knapp tried to determine cause of death. Since he was obviously grieving, Knapp only gave the body a cursory even though he noticed some bruising on her neck. Upon examining them further, Shue became violent and Dr. Knapp left. The cause of death was listed as "everlasting faint" and then as "childbirth". No one knows if Zona was pregnant or not but Dr. Knapp was treating her for "female trouble".

Two of Zona's male friends volunteered to notify the Heaster's family. When Mary Heaster was informed of her daughter's death, she replied, "The Devil has killed her!" Zona's body was taken to her parent's home in an unfinished coffin. Shue and a handful of neighbors presided over the move. He showed extraordinary devotion toward the body. The body was placed in the Heaster's house for the wake. Neighbors and friends were able to pay their respects to the dead all Sunday and up until the burial on Monday. They noticed some bizarre behavior from Shue during the wake. His grief shifted back and forth from overwhelming sadness to manic energy. He wouldn't allow anyone to get close to the coffin. He placed a pillow and a rolled up cloth on either side of Zona's head and a scarf around her neck.

Mary Jane took the sheet from inside of the coffin and tried to return it to Shue after the wake, but he refused it. She began folding it back up when noticing that it had a peculiar odor. Mary decided to wash it out but when she dropped the sheet into a basin, the water turned red, the sheet turned pink and the color in the water disappeared. Mary Jane boiled the sheet and hung it outside but the stain wouldn't go away. She took the eerie stain as a sign that her daughter had been murdered.

Mary prayed every night for four weeks. She hoped her daughter would come to her and reveal the truth about her death. It only took a few more weeks for her prayers to be answered. During four dark nights, the spirit of Zona Shue appeared to her mother. She would come as a bright light and then the apparition would take form. She explained to Mary that Trout Shue had been abusive and said he had attacked her in a fit of rage because he thought she had not cooked any meat for supper. He then broke her neck. A short time later, Mary went to John Alfred Preston, the local prosecutor, to try and convince him to re-open the case. She offered the ghostly visitations as evidence. Sympathetic to Mrs. Heaster, Preston agreed to dispatch deputies to talk with Dr. Knapp as well as others involved in the case. Since there were others in the community asking questions about the case, the investigation re-opened.

Preston went to speak with Dr. Knapp, who admitted to an incomplete examination of Zona. They both agreed an autopsy would clear up all rumors and speculations revealing the truth once and for all. Days later, an inquest jury was assembled and the autopsy performed in the Nickell School House. Of course, Trout Shue was totally against the exhumation but it was made clear to him that it was mandatory he attend. He made a confession that told them he knew about his wife's murder.

The autopsy lasted for three hours. Fortunately, Zona's body was in near perfect condition due to the cold climate. It made the doctors work much easier. A jury of five men, officers of the court, Trout Shue, Andy Jones and other witnesses and spectators attended the autopsy. It didn't take the doctors long to discover the cause of death. Zona Shue had died of a broken neck. Trout Shue's only replied, "They cannot prove that I did it."

A report on March 9 said that "the discovery was made that the neck was broken and the windpipe mashed. On the throat were the marks of fingers indicating that she had been choken. The neck was dislocated between the first and second vertebrae. The ligaments were torn and ruptured. The windpipe had been crushed at a point in front of the neck."

Soon after the findings were made public, Shue was arrested and charged with murder. Despite the fact that the evidence against Shue was circumstantial, he was indicted by a grand jury and was formally arraigned for murder. He entered a plea of "not guilty".

While waiting for trial, Shue's past began to surface. Zona had been his third wife. His first, Allie Cutlip divorced him while he was in prison for horse stealing. She stated in the divorce decree that he had been abusive. Shue's second wife Lucy Ann Tritt died eight months after they were married. Shue claimed she had fallen and hit her head on a rock. No one really believed him. So he packed up and moved to Greenbrier.

The trial began on June 22, 1897. Many people from the community testified against him but the highlight of the trial was the testimony of Mary Jane Heaster. He wanted her to appear sane and reliable and for that reason, he skirted around the issue of the ghost story. Although, Shue's attorney didn't. He worked hard to get her to admit she may have been mistaken about seeing the spirit of her dead daughter. Unfortunately, she never wavered about what she saw and he dismissed her.

Most people believed what Mary saw. Despite Shue's eloquent testimony, the jury found him guilty. Most jurors voted that he be hanged but without a unanimous decision, Shue was sentenced to life in prison.

However, the sentence didn't satisfy everyone. A citizen's group formed a lynch mob and if it wasn't for George M. Harrah, Shue would have been hanged. Harrah contacted Deputy Sheriff Dwyer about the threat and he took Shue to a place of refuge in the woods a mile from town long enough to disband the mob.

Shue was later moved to the West Virginia State Penitentiary. After three years he died from one of the epidemics of measles, mumps or pneumonia. Shue was buried at the Tom's Run Cemetery but since they didn't begin keeping records until 1930s, no trace of Trout Shue can be found.

Mary Jane Robinson died in September 1916 without ever recanting her story about her daughter's ghost. Zona's ghost was never seen again but she left a lasting haunting and historical mark on Greenbrier County. A roadside marker along Route 60 commemorates the case today.

Ghost Stories Trivia Contest

A few days ago BlogMad went from private beta mode to public. BlogMad is somewhat similar to BlogExplosion. You surf blogs to earn credits. They go by the 1:1 ratio: view one blog and get one credit. They also have games, lottery and messaging service. For those who didn't sign up early, you need an invite. Here is your chance to earn one.

I'm giving invites to the first Five people who answer all trivia questions correctly. Since I'm only giving out five invites, there will only be five questions. Here are the rules:

1. All questions are from posts made this year (2006). There's only about 25 to 26 posts. The questions should give you a hint as to where the answer is.

2. You only get one chance, one entry. So, double check all answers before submitting them.

3. You can submit your answers two ways: leaving a comment to this post or emailing them to me. If you choose to email them, you must put "Contest Entry" in the subject line. If you don't, your submission will be deleted.

4. You must include your name (just your first name is fine) and email address in order to send the invite if you win.

5. You only have ONE week to send or post your entry. Next Sunday Midnight Central time, the contest will close. I will post the winners the following Monday. Winners will be sent their invites also on Monday.

6. No entry fee.

7. If you have any questions, feel free to e-mail me anytime.


Trivia Questions
1. What is the name of the man and his location who was said to be a ghost when he never actually died?
2. What did the people of Jamaica call Annie Palmer? How many husbands did she have?
3. List the four blog URLs of those who bid (including the one who won) to become my first renter.
4. How does Mario Varvoglis best suggest to test psychokinetic powers (telekinesis)?
5. What number landmark is The Whaley House? Name two spirits that have been spotted in the house.
Good Luck!!!!

Renter of the Week

My renter for the week is The Daily Piglet. She's been described as responsible yet daring, genuine, lovable and caring. She gives her readers insight to her life as well as provides tips on social conversations and thinks Eminem is a total hottie.

Apparently, she has more "psychic" talent than myself. Oh well, some are cut out to have the gift while others aren't, right? So be sure and check out her blog. Tell her I sent ya!

Helping Hands

The Legend: The protective ghosts of little children killed at a railway crossing push stalled cars off the tracks.

Basically, the story goes like this: In Texas, a school bus full of children stalls on the railroad tracks as a train was heading their way. Despite the efforts of the driver, the bus wouldn't start again and the train was coming too fast to get the children off. Everyone died. Now, if you stop on the railroad tracks, some say that the car will start rolling on its own. Small handprints that of children would be found on the back of your car. The spirits of the children guard the railroad crossing, making sure no one else suffers their fate.

Dating back to the 1970s, there are variations to the true origins of this legend. The story above is but only one version. Another one has a form of tame demon assisting the dead kids in their crusade. San Antonio claimed this legend to be its own but the actual bus accident took place in Salt Lake City. In the late 1930s, twenty-six children, ages ranging from 12 to 18, died when the school bus stalled on the tracks and was struck by a freight train, resulting in ten days of gruesome media coverage. Unfortunately, no similar accident has ever taken place in San Antonio.

The tale of the "ghosts of school kids that push vehicles off tracks" is actually a subset of Gravity Hill tales. Gravity Hill factlets really don't have a storyline to them (if a car is slipped into neutral at the right place, it'll move as if by magic). Gravity Hill even involves legends about dead teens which include cars stalling on train tracks and car rolls back uphill on freeway exit ramps (a carload of teens or a girl heading to the prom dies in a horrible accident on the off ramp). Of course, with that legend, there isn't any visual evidence. It's more like someone points out the weird "occurrence" and another volunteers the story.
 
Blogger Templates