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Monday, September 24, 2018

Bigfoot - Do You Believe?

Bigfoot, the word conjures up different feelings in people. Some believe, others are skeptics, and many just think it’s a myth. My dear Mother and I used to watch “Finding Bigfoot” on Animal Planet. The crew would go out into wild places with their cameras and recorders. They knocked on trees with sticks and made what they said was a bigfoot yell. This could have compared with a hog calling yell as far as I know.

This drawing shows what witnesses said Bigfoot looked like. Image credit Lizard King at English Wickimedia

I always thought they were crazy. Not because they were looking for Bigfoot but because they were out in the wilderness where they could come into contact with a bear, cougar, or even an alligator. I used to ask Mom, “What in the hell are they going to do if they come face to face with one?” Safety apparently wasn’t important. I used to ask Mom, “Aren’t you glad I hunt ghosts and not bigfoot?” She would laugh at me. It’s much safer!

Badge of the SHE Squatchers. These brave gals go out into the woods looking for bigfoot. Image credit: K C Paracon 2018
Since I’m a paranormal investigator I attend the local paracon each year. Every paranormal group is there from the UFO people to the Bigfoot people. Last year I attended a presentation of the SHE Squatchers, a group of ladies from Minnesota. Many of these women are clairvoyant as they “sense” the bigfoot in certain areas. This may sound funny but a lot of what they said made sense. I personally do not doubt that many people have a sixth sense and can hon in on things that the rest of us are too thick to pick up. The question I had was, why would you use this gift to look for bigfoot?

Many foot prints have been found over the years. Some are real and others are fake. Only the experts can tell the difference.  Image credit: Wikimedia Commons 
Sixty years ago, bigfoot came to light when a man discovered 16-inch footprints in Northern California. People were intrigued. After years of speculation the family of a man named Ray Wallace, revealed that he had made the footprints as a joke. In 1967 two men, Roger Patterson and Bob Gimlin, filmed a creature walking upright like a human through the same area the footprints had been found. Although this film is considered the best evidence to date, the fact that it occurred in the same place the footprints were found taints it.  Many people believe it too is a hoax, but others that have studied it say it can’t be a human due to its gait and body proportions.

To me bigfoot is a fun legend. I have seen photos of something that could be a bigfoot but the jury is still out on its existence. My spiritual friends believe that bigfoot is an interdimensional creature. This is why it is so hard to find. This would make more sense to me. If bigfoot is real, it slips in and out of our dimension to do whatever its life purpose is. Then I wonder what its life purpose could be. No one has ever been rescued by a bigfoot or seen a bigfoot chase off a predator sparing a human’s life. So many questions!

Whether real or not, bigfoot draws people to attractions in many parts of the country. Image credit: Wikimedia Commons 

Unless a bigfoot is caught, there will likely never be proof of its existence. There are too many dodo birds out there that fake evidence and post fake photos and videos. The paranormal community detests these fakes and think people need to grow up and stop trying to fool the public. This goes for fake ghost videos too.

Another way for businesses to bring in tourists. I wonder what is in a Sasquatch Burger! Image credit: Wikimedia Commons 
Whether bigfoot is real or not, it is fascinating to think that there are still undiscovered animals on our planet. I know when I drive through a national forest or stand next to a lake or river, I wonder what animals live there. Let’s keep our minds open but also look at things with a skeptical eye. The current popularity of calling things fake isn’t fair to the real news and discoveries that come to light. Stop judging and start thinking and don’t forget to look for bigfoot the next time you’re near a forest.  

Saturday, September 22, 2018

Things to Consider Before You Buy Healing Stones and Crystals

We live in times where in spite of our best efforts in personal and professional walks of our lives, we are grappling serious issues. Each one of us has some kind of questions we need direction with, emotional and physical battles where we could do with some help. That’s where alternative therapy seems to be offering solace to a large number of people all over the world. And when it comes to alternative Healing techniques, the benefits of different types of naturally found transparent stones cannot be overemphasized.

Amethyst is a protective crystal that can also be used to communicate with spirits. 

We know them as Crystals, which carry with them the power of vibrations that can offer people of all ages amazing benefits. Mankind has gained from them to a large extent for centuries and they have made a stunning comeback in recent years. Another reason for that is their aesthetic value, which cannot be overlooked. Many of these translucent stones are things of beauty and works of art in their own right. They can be used in the form of bracelets, rings, earrings and a whole lot more. However to be able to get optimum benefits out of them, you need to focus on crucial buying criteria.

Citrine brings positive energy and happiness. 
Buy for your requirements
These Crystals can be differentiated based on their color and each one of them has their specific benefits. Hence it is important that when you are buying them for yourself or a loved one, you consider your unique requirements. Are you looking for help in your professional life or do you want to boost your creativity? There are options that will help you with your personal relationships and others can have advantages for your physical and emotional well being. Do your research about these diverse options, before you make any purchases.

Carnelian is a warm crystal that helps with confidence and self-expression.

Be assured of the quality

It’s important to realize that given the popularity of Crystals today, there are many fake options you will often find in the market. In order to save yourself from being taken for a ride, you need to try and verify their authenticity. Usually dedicated online stores will go out of their way to offer you information about the products they have for you. There are many options that will come with certification, which is an added advantage. Of course, you can also buy products based on their beauty and visual appeal too, but at the end of the day you can’t lose sight of their quality if you want maximum benefits.
Rose Quartz is the love crystal. It helps one with understanding, empathy, and forgiveness.

You will also find that best quality Crystals don’t always cost you a fortune, especially if you buy them online.

Cave Hill Cemetery - A Look at History and People

Several people I know love cemeteries. Not really for their morbid curiosity but more for their beauty and history. I’ve been fascinated with cemeteries and mausoleums most of my life. In the past eight years that interest has peaked because I am a paranormal investigator.

Entrance to Cave Hill Cemetery in Louisville, Kentucky
Our paranormal team, Dusk 2 Dawn Paranormal Investigations, went on a trip to Louisville, Kentucky in June 2018. The trip was to investigate Waverly Hills Sanatorium. However, four of us drove out to Louisville a day early and had some time to look around. The one tourist site that grabbed my attention was Cave Hill Cemetery, so Jerry, Adria, and I headed off to check it out.
Huge monument to the Garvin family.

Sherley family monument.
Cave Hill Cemetery is located off Highway 64 at 701 Baxter Avenue, Louisville, Ky. It is 297 acres of beautifully landscaped hills. Upon entering the cemetery, one is immediately taken with the beauty of the winding roads, trees, shrubs, and monuments. It’s obvious that it is an old cemetery because of all the mature trees and shrubs. The monuments are huge and amazing.

Garvin family monument
Cave Hill Cemetery started out as a farm that the city inherited in the 1800’s. In 1846 Edmund Francis Lee convinced the city to turn the beautiful farm into a cemetery. At the time garden cemeteries were being created all over the United States and Lee suggested that Cave Hill’s topography was perfect for a garden cemetery. 

Many infants died in the 1800's. This beautiful monument is in memory of the Edwin baby. 

This family monument is a definite indication of their extreme wealth.
This was perfect for families living during the Victorian period. Many families were wealthy due to the ground floor opportunities they were given. These wealthy families enjoyed flaunting their personal wealth. This shows in the grand monuments of Cave Hill Cemetery. These monuments not only memorialize the deceased but many lists their accomplishments in life.  

This monument is so worn that I couldn't read it. I did find it interesting due to the scroll and anchor. 

The Vanbuskirk family monument is built into the hillside.
The best way to see the cemetery is to drive a way, then stop, and get out and walk around. There are so many beautiful monuments, statues, and mausoleums that it is impossible to see them all. We only had time to see one third of the cemetery but what we saw left me wanting to go back.

Part of the Civil War soldiers graves at Cave Hill Cemetery.

Battle of Rowletts Station monument

Plaque in the Civil War section of Cave Hill Cemetery 
In one area of the cemetery are the graves of soldiers. Many are from the Civil War, some sadly are unknown. When we drove upon this area and walked around our moods became somber. Seeing so many headstones, especially of those unknown soldiers broke our hearts. One can hear casualty numbers but walking among the headstones brings it to life. There are over 5,500 military graves in Cave Hill Cemetery.

James Engle's stone

There are over 500 unknown soldiers from the Civil War buried in Cave Hill cemetery.
We drove around to find one of the lakes in the cemetery. It was loaded with geese and ducks. We stopped to gather goose feathers which can be used when cleansing a house. This is an awesome place for water fowl and we discovered that residents come out to feed them on a regular basis. We drove around the lake to the main building and found a local couple feeding the ducks and geese. Talk about bedlam! Two geese actually got into a fight. They had each other by the shoulder pulling and tugging with their beaks. One finally ran off while the other spit out feathers from it’s mouth, reared up his head and flapped his wings to show off his moment of glory. It’s crazy how animals are a lot like people.

This was the largest lake at Cave Hill Cemetery and a favorite of the geese.

The geese greet everyone who stops at the lake. They are also very assertive getting their share of the food.
There are two very famous people buried at Cave Hill Cemetery, Muhammad Ali and Colonial Sanders. We didn’t find this out until later or we would have looked them up. Most of the graves and mausoleums we saw were turn of the century barons who ran mercantile companies, lumber mills, and other industries. Several were politicians who made Louisville what it is today.

Unique monument for Minnie Harrison Hoyt.

The Marriner family monument. 

This Greek style monument is amazing. The detail in the ceiling is incredible.
I know a cemetery isn’t on most people’s list of places to visit but Cave Hill Cemetery is certainly worth taking a couple of hours to visit, even if it’s just driving through it. It is a gorgeous place and the monuments are amazing.  So, if you’re ever in Louisville, Kentucky and have some extra time, drop in to Cave Hill Cemetery and see for yourself how beautiful a cemetery can be.   

Friday, August 10, 2018

Different Types Of Crystals And Benefits They Offer

As our lifestyles get increasingly hectic, and almost chaotic, we face the brunt in more ways than we can imagine. Many of us deal with emotional distress and anxiety, which can affect our wellbeing. There are many physical issues that are caused by the high levels of stress as well. You simply cannot rely on medicinal methods to combat these issues every time. That’s the reason alternative therapies are becoming increasingly prevalent. If that’s something on your mind as well then you can benefit to a large extent from the power of Crystals.
Clear quartz is an energy amplifier and holds strong healing powers.
These naturally occurring stones have been used by shamans, priests, gurus and healers for centuries now. There is a strong belief that they vibrate at the same pace as our bodies. In fact, the resonance is so strong that it is capable of fighting the vibrations of ill-health. There are many alternative therapy practitioners that are harnessing their benefits for their clients in several ways. You can also find various types of Crystals in different colors, which are known to offer you unique benefits. We will try and look at the most popular options and the benefits they offer you.
Red agate crystals protect the holder from negative energies and keeps one grounded.
Warm colored options
When it comes to Healing properties of these stones, Ruby a red option is considered for the energy and stimulation. If you want to improve your daily practical skills then this is the right options. Pink colored Rose Quartz is usually used by people with confidence issues. It has been known to promote self-love, which is at the heart of confident personalities. Orange colored Carnelian is another powerful option that is considered ideal for those working in creative fields. Citrine Quartz amplifies the benefits of clear Yellow, which is associated with clarity of mind for those who need direction for the future.

Aquamarine crystals hold calming energy. They reduce stress and ease the mind.

Cool colored options
Green colored Crystals are talked about when it comes to emotions. Green Aventurine and Malachite can help you with letting go of negative emotions and spreading cheeriness in your life. When people talk of Light Blue options, they consider the throat, which directly relates to communication skills. Celestite and Aquamarine are both strong options that are also quite easy on the eye. Indigo Azurite is all about perception and is known to benefit people with memory related issues. Amethyst is the most popular Violet option associated with empathy and imagination.
Many other Crystals including Black and White options can offer you phenomenal benefits based on your specific needs.

Tuesday, July 3, 2018

Our Waverly Hills Sanatorium Investigation

The paranormal team in which I’m a member is Dusk 2 Dawn ParanormalInvestigations. We work regularly at the 1859 Jail in Independence Missouri doing pay to play paranormal investigations and Ghost Tours in October. Most of the money we make goes to the Jackson County Historical Society to preserve our beloved 1859 Jail. The portion we get goes into a bank account and at the end of the year we decide on where to go for a team trip. This year it was Waverly Hills Sanatorium!

The front door of Waverly Hills Sanatorium. Image credit: G Gamble
Four of us arrived in Louisville on a Tuesday evening after a long drive from Kansas City. We checked into our motel and crashed for the night. The next day the four remaining team members got in around 4 p.m. so everyone rested up for the big night.
At 6 p.m. we loaded our equipment up and headed for Texas Roadhouse for a team dinner. We all ate and laughed and had a great time. Sadly, we found out that our founder wouldn’t be able to attend the investigation due to health reasons. We all hugged him and acknowledged that his health was more important  and he would be missed, then we were off to our Waverly Hills Sanatorium investigation.
The view of the back shows just how huge Waverly Hills Sanatorium really is. Image credit: G Gamble
Waverly Hills is on the bucket list of nearly every paranormal investigator in the United States. Waverly Hills was originally a two-story structure designed for up to 50 tuberculosis patients. This small sanitarium opened in 1910. However, a tuberculosis epidemic broke out in many parts of Jefferson County Kentucky and by 1924 construction began on the existing building. By 1926 Waverly Hills was open for business and housed more than 400 patients. At the time it was considered modern and perfectly equipped to help people with tuberculosis.

This photo hangs on the wall in the gift shop. It shows patients on the terrace getting their fresh air. Image credit: G Gamble
In the 1920’s doctors thought that rest and plenty of fresh air would cure tuberculosis. Sadly, the only thing they got right was the realization that it is an airborne disease so those diagnosed with it had to be isolated from the general public.

One of the small bedrooms from the hallway. Our guide told us that they put two people in each of these rooms. They pulled the beds out onto the terrace so the patients could get fresh air. Image credit: G Gamble
Once someone went to Waverly Hills they became a permanent resident. Waverly had its own vegetable gardens, farm animals, water treatment facility, and their own zip code. Even though they knew how contagious tuberculosis is, visitors were allowed to come see their friends and relatives then go back into the general population. Many Waverly Hills patients lived there as long as ten years.

Waverly was a tuberculosis facility until the discovery that a combination of streptomycin and para-Aminosalicylic acid cured the disease in the 1960’s. Waverly was later reopened in 1962 as a geriatric facility called Woodhaven Medical Services and remained open until 1981.
We walked around the building and were in awe of how big it is. Image credit: G Gamble
Now Waverly Hills Sanatorium is a historic site and is currently being renovated by the owner. Our guide informed us that they hope to always have paranormal investigations there even when the remodeling is done and Waverly can be opened for other activities.

We arrived at the gate around 7:30 p.m. The tour guide met us and told us to drive up to the parking lot. As we drove up the driveway through the woods the huge sanatorium came into view. Wow! It is huge!  We followed our tour guide to the gift shop where we signed waiver forms and purchased some tee shirts. Only one member of our team had been to Waverly Hills before so we all opted to take the tour of the facility.

As our tour guide prepared for the tour we all walked around the huge building. The structure sits atop a hill surrounded by thick woods. The city of Louisville also surrounds it so there are people in every direction. 
We had to stop at the front of the Sanatorium to take a group photo. Left to right is Cari, Adria, Jerry, me, Margie (in front), Erica (in back), and Stacey (in front). Image credit: J. Nichols 
As we went around the building, we noticed that our voices echoed when we laughed. There are lots of fences and barriers around the building to stop trespassers. The guide also has many security cameras to watch the surrounding grounds.  We were in awe of this huge building and so anxious to investigate it!! Once we got back to the gift shop the tour guide, Mel, took us into the sanatorium.
The Waverly Hills Gift Shop is a large building. They have tee shirts for sale and many Sanatorium artifacts on display. Image credit: G Gamble 
We walked through a door from the gift shop and went through a tunnel. Some stairs led us to the first-floor lobby. There were paintings on the walls of skeletons and ghouls which is part of a Halloween haunted house that Waverly does each year. When we went up the stairs to the second floor we were shown a room that we could use as base. This room had electric lights and electricity which came in handy and we were very grateful for.
The fifth floor of Waverly during our tour. This is the area where a nurse was found hanging from a light fixture in the 1930's.  Image credit: G Gamble
Mel took us up to the fifth floor to start the tour and proceeded to tell us about the nurse that was found hung in the 1930’s. Another nurse had fell or jumped to her death around that same time. She laid her flashlight down on a windowsill in the area of these events. While she talked the flashlight would dim, then brighten, and ended up flashing like a strobe light. It did this all on its own. Mel did not have control of the light and it was just an ordinary flashlight.  That was pretty cool! We walked around the fifth floor out onto the roof where the children used to play. The view was amazing and the hills of Kentucky are breathtaking.  Apparently, the children were kept on one side of the fifth floor while the adults with tuberculosis of the brain were housed on the other side.
The hallways at Waverly Hills Sanatorium seem to go on forever. Image credit: G Gamble 
We followed Mel down the stairs to the fourth floor. Here the hallway has rooms on both sides. On the side toward the back is a terrace. This terrace is open air. This is where the patients were put for “treatment” to receive fresh air. Mel said that patients were left there year-round and there are photos of patients lying in bed on the terrace with snow on their feet. Mel said that the patient rooms next to the terrace were where the patients that were doing well stayed. Once someone was deemed too ill to survive they pulled their bed back across the hall into a different room where the patient was left to die. Once the patient died, personnel would move the body down the hall at night in an effort to be discreet. They did not want to alert the other patients of a death. Deaths grew to the volume of one per hour before Waverly Hills Sanitorium closed it doors.  All of this death apparently left a mark on the fourth floor as it has the darkest hauntings. While we were there, two of our team members were overcome with emotion and one member could not stop crying. There definitely is a sadness that hangs in the air on the fourth floor.  Shadow figures have been seen moving in and out of the doorways down the hall. The Creeper is the one shadow that everyone is afraid of because it crawls on the ceiling and along the walls as a dark shadow. We didn’t see the Creeper but we did see the shadow figures in the hallway. Mel let us know that the fourth floor is where the darker entities are. 
Our team touring the long hallways with our guide. Image credit: G Gamble
At the end of the fourth-floor hallway was the operating room. Surgeries done here were experimental at best and many people did not survive. While Mel was telling us about the operating room I received a message from a very close friend to call her. This close friend just happens to be the medium that works with our team. When I called her, she told me that my Mother (who passed in 2015) popped in and told her that “Lucy will be their guide for tonight” then my Mother left. My friend was frustrated that was the only information my Mother gave her but she wanted to tell me right away.  I thanked her then went back into the operating room. I apologized for leaving and explained about my friend and told everyone the message from my Mother. Mel looked at me and said “I can’t believe you just said that!” Mel went on to explain that there is a child spirit there named Lucy and she has communicated with many people. Mel said that Lucy was in the body chute once and wanted some living people to take her back up to the fifth floor with the rest of the children. I told her that my friend is spot on and my Mother keeps track of me from the other side.

The operating room on the fourth floor. This was taking during the investigation. Erica is on the left and Adria is on the right. Image credit: G Gamble
She took us down to the third floor where the atmosphere seemed lighter. This floor was set up much like the fourth floor with the terraces, hallway and rooms on both sides. She told us about a homeless man and his dog who had lived there years ago. The owners at that time left him alone as he wasn’t hurting anything. Tragically, a gang initiation brought several teenagers into the building where they killed the man and his dog and threw them down an elevator shaft. Mel showed us the room where the man stayed. We knew we had to investigate this area later. While we were on the third floor, Erica said that she felt like she walked through a giant cobweb and Stacey had a similar experience. Apparently, the spirits wanted us to know they were there.
The body chute is a long underground tunnel that slants down 45 degrees to an outside door. We sat here and watched the shadows moving at the end of the tunnel. It was mesmerizing! Image credit: S Allin
The last place Mel showed us was the tunnel known as the “body chute”. We followed her downstairs and through a dark tunnel that slanted downward. We stopped at the top of some stairs. There were stairs on one side of the tunnel and a concrete slab on the other that slanted downward to the bottom of the chute. This was where supplies were brought in when Waverly was in operation. Once people started dying by the hour they used it as a death chute to remove the bodies. Mel told us to turn off our flashlights and we did. “Now watch”, Mel said, so we all stood still and looked toward the end of the tunnel. It wasn’t long before our eyes adjusted to the darkness and we could see light moving around at the end of the tunnel. This was a spot we would definitely come back to.

Mel took us back to the gift shop and we gathered our equipment up and set it up in the second-floor room with electricity. Mel locked us in and set the alarm. This was for our safety to be sure someone else didn’t sneak into the building.  
Several team members at base preparing for the investigation. Image credit: G Gamble
There were outside sounds that we had to take into account during our investigation. Since Waverly Hills has three floors where the windows are nonexistent these floors are open to noise, birds, bats, and bugs. Apparently, cargo planes take a route out of Louisville that goes directly over Waverly Hills Sanatorium because we heard lots of planes go over. We could also hear some traffic outside not to mention the trains that were going through the area. Reviewing my audio from this investigation has been a challenge to say the least.

Most of the activity on the fifth floor came from responses to questions by lighting up our K2s (EMF readers). Image credit: G Gamble 
It was around 9:30 p.m. and we only had until 4 a.m. so instead of setting up cameras and kinects we chose to use our handheld cameras and devices. We started off on the fifth floor where the nurse was found hanging from a light fixture in the 1930’s. Our guide told us that they had gotten a lot of interaction using the spirit box but when we tried it we didn’t get anything except a man saying “Hi”.  We got several hits on our K2s and kept getting the name “Lisa” on the echovox. At one point a team member farted, we all laughed, then the tempod went off. A moment later the echovox said “fart”. I don’t know what the spirits thought of us but we were having a good time.
Margie and Stacey on the fourth floor watching for Shadows. Image credit: G Gamble
By midnight we were on the fourth floor. We sat in total darkness to see if we could see shadows in the ambient light coming through the windows. Several team members saw some of these shadows moving down towards the end of the hallway. One of the figures that was seen was white. Jerry, our team leader, placed a tempod in the hallway and the spirits played with it turning the light and sound on and off. They seemed to be playing a tune on it at times. During our session we heard three gunshots outside. We watched a bat flying up and down the hallway and a rogue lightening bug which at first, we thought was an anomaly but then realized it was just a lightening bug.  

The session we had on the third floor was interesting. Here is a tempod that the spirits enjoyed playing with. The red light is from doing Facebook live. Image credit: G Gamble
By 1:30 a.m. we were on the third floor stationed outside the room where the homeless man and his dog had lived. We were getting many K2 hits and responses to questions on the tempod. I was getting K2 hits in an area about ten inches off the floor, not above, or below, but in that ten-inch space. We wondered if it was the spirit of the homeless man’s dog. Our echovox gave us several words repeatedly: death, black, and kill. When we asked if Lucy was there the echovox answered “Yeah”.  After asking the question “How did you die?” We received the words bled and kill. It was getting late and we were all tired. Several team members, me included, got the giggles over Lord knows what and we had a hard time stopping the laughter.

We moved down the hallway toward a noise we heard and found some toy balls. We tried to kick the balls around to get a response but it didn’t work. The echovox told us to “Leave” and “Get Out”. Apparently, they didn’t appreciate our kicking skills.
This is where bodies were kept before they went down into the body chute. Each member of our team (excluding me) climbed into the bottom shelf to see what would happen. Image credit: G Gamble
It was nearly 3 a.m. when we got down to the morgue. Everyone but me took a turn laying on the bottom shelf of the cabinet that held the dead bodies. I wasn’t going to get into a tight place where I couldn’t get out. Once in the container, Stacey told the spirits they could whisper in her ear and then she suddenly exclaimed “Shit!” and crawled out of there. “Something touched me!” Stacey said. I think it freaked her out. 
We headed down toward the body chute as we wanted to check it out before we had to leave at 4 a.m.  My camera and recorder batteries had died by then so all I had left was my cell phone. Luckily other team members still had their equipment running.
This photo of the body chute was taken with my cell phone because my camera died. This was probably the most interesting experience we had that night. Image credit: G Gamble
We all went down to the area in the body chute where the 45-degree angle begins to go down toward the outside door. We sat on the stairs and concrete slab in total darkness and silence. It wasn’t long before we could see the shadows moving at the bottom of the tunnel. The light would appear at the upper right-hand corner of the tunnel, then the lower left-hand corner. It moved back and forth as if someone was stuck moving items from one place to another. The light would be visible on the left then the right, it went up and down. It was completely mesmerizing. We all sat in wonder watching these shadows. It was if they were stuck in another dimension doing the same tasks in death as they did in life and we could see it all.  It was something I will never forget.

We soon realized our time was up so we went back to base and gathered up our equipment and headed toward the gift shop where Mel was waiting for us. She had to turn off the alarms and unlock the door so we could transfer our equipment from the building to our cars.  We thanked her for the opportunity to investigate Waverly Hills Sanatorium and headed off for our motel.
The morning after in front of our motel. We were tired but very happy for getting the priviledge of investigating Waverly Hills. From left to right Erica, Jimmie, Stacey, me, in front Cari, Margie, and Adria. Jerry was cut out of the photo. Image credit: J Nichols
The next day we had a quick breakfast at the motel and headed back west to Kansas City. Our Waverly Hills adventure had come to a close but not without giving us incredible experiences and memories. It is a treat for a paranormal team to be able to investigate a place as huge as Waverly Hills. We thoroughly enjoyed it and once we review all our data we will be able to post what we caught on our Facebook page. If you ever get a chance to even tour Waverly Hills Sanitarium, do it! It’s an awesome place with an incredible history.

Thursday, March 29, 2018

Ghost Hunts Can Save Historic Sites

I’ve always been interested in history. My Dad was a history buff and I’m carrying on his tradition. A lot of people don’t like history which puzzles me. Don’t they want to know about their roots? What about the history of their town or the area in which they grew up? Well, no matter how you feel about history, it is important. Why? It’s important because it goes hand in hand with hauntings. Yes, hauntings!

The Missouri State Penitentiary is one of the most haunted places in America

Our history is peppered with violence, high emotions, and trauma. These emotions and actions leave marks, or imprints on places. Historic sites like prisons, asylums, factories, hospitals, and group homes all contain imprints of these strong emotions. Many of these places have spirits that have yet to move on. So, most of these historic sites have ghosts, some have many ghosts.

Some people have smelled baking bread in the kitchen of the 1859 Jailers home.
Most people are fascinated with ghosts. The multiple ghost hunting shows on cable TV has created a huge interest in ghost hunting for the general public. People don’t want to just watch someone hunting ghosts, they want to hunt ghosts too! This has created a demand for historic sites to hold public ghost hunts.

The owners of the old Odd Fellows home in Liberty Missouri have ghost hunts to pay for remodeling the main building.
There are thousands of historic sites around the world. Many of them are struggling because young people aren’t really interested in visiting them. Upkeep on historic buildings is costly. Once declared a national historic site, a building has to be kept up as it originally was. This means that plastic shutters can’t be put on windows when the original shutters were made of wood. Building materials have changed a lot over the years so this makes it more difficult to preserve historic sites.

An old church in midtown Kansas City needs to be restored. As we found there are ghosts here and it could be restored by having ghost hunts.
 Now some directors of historic sites are learning that allowing ghost hunts won’t ruin their reputation. Some have snubbed paranormal teams in the past that offer to do investigations. They thought that it would drive potential guests away from their sites. They are now learning that they can increase their revenue by allowing ‘pay to play’ ghost hunts. In a time when the Federal government has cut funding for historic sites, cities and historic societies are jumping on the ghost hunt bandwagon to keep their historic sites afloat.

The 1859 Jail and home. We have done pay to play ghost hunts here since 2014 and paid for many improvements to the structures. 
I’ve been a member of Dusk 2 Dawn Paranormal Investigations for seven years and people always ask me if we are looking for new members or they want to know the date of our next public investigation.  We’ve been doing ‘pay to play’ ghost hunts at the 1859 Jail and Marshal’s Home in Independence, Missouri for four years. People find them so much fun that they come again and again. 
Guests investigate the upper cell area of the 1859 Jail.
The best thing about this is the money we’ve raised for the 1859 Jail and Marshal’s Home. We’ve paid for many improvements. We pulled up the old carpet in the museum and paid for new carpet to be installed. We also painted the museum ourselves. We’ve paid for a new roof on the one room schoolhouse that is on the property and have helped to fund their repair and upkeep account.

This was taken in the Alexander Majors Home in Kansas City. They've been doing ghost hunts for years to help fund their historic site. 
Not all historic sites are trying to restore and keep up their buildings. If you do a Google search you will find many haunted sites that allow people to come and hunt ghosts. Some haunted buildings are seen as money makers by their owners. They’ve learned that they can make lots of money charging people and paranormal groups for overnight investigations. These places are usually dirty and seldom safe to investigate. It’s best to find someone who has been to the location and ask them about their experience. Just be aware that these places exist.

The John Wornall Home in Kansas City, Missouri also has ghost investigations as well as daily tours.
Whether a historic site is using funds to restore or remodel their building(s), going on an overnight ghost hunt is exciting. It’s best to go in a group to many of these places due to the cost. For instance, a private overnight investigation at Waverly Hills Sanitorium runs from $1,000 to $1,500 for one night.

Members of Dusk 2 Dawn Paranormal Investigations went to Waverly Hills Sanitorium in 2016.
Ashmore Estates is $129.00 per person for an overnight ghost hunt. Malvern Manor charges according to the day of the week. Costs run from $200 to $350.00 for the first five investigators then $25.00 per person after that. 

Dusk 2 Dawn Paranormal Investigations has investigated Malvern Manor twice.
When going on these ghost hunts remember that you are on your own. Stay in pairs and use flashlights to be safe. Watch for debris on the floor, wires hanging from the ceiling, and be aware of stairs, open windows, and elevator shafts. You want to come home in one piece and not end up being one of the ghosts at the site.

The Marshal's office at the 1859 Jail. 
At the 1859 Jail, we don’t do overnight investigations. Our investigations last around five to six hours. We stay with our guests for the duration. First, we only charge $30 per person. We usually have snacks, coffee, and water for our guests. We take them on an initial tour informing them of the history and some of the activity, then we have sessions of about 45 minutes each throughout the night until about 1 a.m. or 2 a.m. depending on the activity. We let our guests use our K2’s (electromagnetic field detectors) and make sure everyone has a flashlight. We watch out for them and if someone is suddenly sick or feels faint we get them out of the room asap. We’re hands on but we encourage our guests to bring their own camera’s, recorders, etc. and we want them to ask questions and have experiences.

Our base at the 1859 Jail. We hand everyone a flashlight and allow them to use EMF detectors during the investigations.
One thing that we don’t do is provoke the spirits. That is one of the worse things to do. We know the spirits so well at the 1859 Jail that one night a voice came through the Echovox and said “They’re okay, they’re here a lot”.

Guests sit in a circle in the parlor of the 1859 Jails home. It may feel silly talking to things you can't see but when you get an answer it is exciting!
 Most of our guests enjoy the experience and many report being touched during the investigations. We have people come in who don’t believe in ghosts. At the end of the night they leave a believer.

The Bingham Waggoner Mansion in Independence, Missouri hasn't yet jumped on the ghost hunt bandwagon. 
Having ghost hunts at historic sites serves two purposes. One is to raise money to keep the site going. The second one is allowing people to come in and play ghost hunter for the night. This situation is a win, win for everyone. This preserves historic sites for future generations which is very important. It also allows people to discover there is more to our world than what we see.

The Vaile Mansion in Independence, Missouri hasn't started doing ghost hunts yet but it is rumored to be haunted. 
If you go on a ghost hunt at a historic site, please, please be respectful. Although the furniture usually isn’t original to the site, it is old and delicate. Also, don’t yell at or provoke the spirits. Even though people may not live at some historic sites, they do have docents that have to deal with whatever you have stirred up, so just don’t provoke. Be sure to take your camera and digital recorder to catch any mists or voices during your hunt. Most of all remember to be patient; spirits do not act on command. Happy hunting!  

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