Haunted Collector – Ghost Tavern and Terror House – S02E09

Kings Tavern in Natchez, Mississippi

For this investigation we’re at Kings Tavern in Natchez, Mississippi where the tavern owner claims he hears a baby crying, his wait staff is getting touched and people are being shoved. There is also the rumor of "Madeline", the mistress of Mr. King, who was killed because of her affair. There is also the legend of a baby being killed in the tavern by Little Harp. Again, these stories are rumor, so who knows what the real stories are.

As they do their research there is no evidence to support either a Madeline, or a murder of a baby at the tavern. For the moment, those remain nothing but rumor have no facts to back them up.

The main investigation does reveal something interesting. While doing an EVP and asking if bones are buried under the floor, Aimee gets her hair pulled. There is also a bottle cap that lands on the floor. Just an interesting coincidence? Did Aimee just brush up against something or did she get it caught on the mantle?

They also capture the sound of what they feel is a baby crying. That’s not what I hear, but I wasn’t there so maybe it sounds different to them. I hear more of a scraping noise, but they are all in agreement on a baby noise. Plus, if Brian, the most level headed one in the group says he hears a baby, I will go with that.

As they look around they are "drawn" to a box where they uncover what looks like a very old baby rattle. It happens to be in the room above where they heard the baby noises. John takes it to an antiques dealer and it does indeed turn out to be a rattle from the late 1700s.

It’s interesting to note that there is no evidence to support that a baby was ever hurt in the tavern. And why would there be a rattle in the tavern in the first place? Does this give credence to the story? But you have to ask, are we saying a baby is responsible for all the activity in this place? Is any of the stories are true, how does this explain people being touched, hair being pulled, people shoved on the stairs and all the other comments? How does this explain the readings in front of the fireplace? People are reporting half a dozen different kinds of things and this rattle would only explain one of them.

I keep saying it, but this location also feels like it has more urban legend than facts associated with it. All the stories are legends. The death of mistress by a jealous wife makes for a good story. A injured baby shows the cruelty of some outlaws, even if those outlaws may not have ever been at the tavern. This location seems to fall inline with uneven floors, sticky doors, creaky floors, gusts of wind and other every day events rather than events associated with the paranormal.

Schuyler Lake, New York

In New York, the team visits another home where activity is keeping the kids out of their beds at night. Mom says they hear whispers, doors knobs moving, doors slamming and that the son wakes up to see red eyes looking at him.

After going through the house it’s not hard to come up with some completely down to earth explanations for what they see. As Brian says, the red eyes are the streets lights and brake lights of cars. The daughters room is filled with antiques, and while they may be all fun and games during the day they can be creepy at night. As we saw with the music carousel, mechanical objects can behave in funny ways and give off an eerie presence, but it’s all perfectly normal. To be honest, I think these people have so much stuff that they’re just letting their imaginations run away. I think a music box starting on it’s own would scare the hell out of a teenager. But there’s nothing paranormal about it.

However, the investigation reveals an EVP with the name of "Paul". They later discover there was a stabbing victim by the name of Paul. But it doesn’t have anything to do with the name like we would think, but rather a crappy ice pick the guys find down in the basement. It is also surmised that Robert Jones would have been acting as the town doctor so if someone was stabbed he could have been on the scene for treatment. Keep in mind, this is putting a lot of circumstantial evidence together to make a case. There is nothing to show this was the ice pick used. There is nothing to say "Paul" went to that house. There is nothing to suggest that any ill deeds took place in or around the house itself. Those are simply old items found in the dirt floor and in the walls of an extremely old house. It’s just as likely, none of these items have any relationship to each other and once removed there is the psychiatric effect that something has changed.

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Haunted Collector – Bare Bones and Octagon Haunting – S02E08


Forestville, New York

For this episode the team heads to New York to investigate a pretty odd set of circumstances. There is a home tattoo business in a house from the 1800’s, which sits right next to a cemetery and they have bones crumbling out of the wall. None of this sounds good at all. I think the first time bones came tumbling out at me, the place would be up for sale.

The activity in the house consists of the sound of footsteps, the feeling of being watched, bones in the walls, the sound of running up and down the stairs and their son claims there is an evil man in the closet of his room. Seems like there is a little bit of everything going on here.

John is able to determine the bones are animal rather than human. The strange cement structure dig into the ground out in the back yard was a bomb shelter rather than a cold storage place for bodies and has nothing to do with the cemetery.

During the investigation they get the EVP of "Jerome", which they associate with Jerome Bennet who died of tuberculosis in the 1800s. While investigating the attic they find a leech pot which would have been used to try and treat TB by letting leeches try to clean the blood.

So putting these together they assume that the jar was used on Jerome and that the attic would have been his sick room. Most likely it’s also where he would have died. Instead of taking the leech jar back to his museum, John put the jar in a wooden box and put it in the running water of a nearby river.

I didn’t really get the sense much was happening at this house. They only captured one (very faint) EVP and that was all. There didn’t appear to be any other activity going on. The house has the usual bumps and knocks and considering it’s age, I would expect it to make the sounds of footsteps as it settles and for there to be plenty of other noises since I’m sure some critters have made their home in there – thus the bones in the walls.

Does the leech pot hold the key to all the activity? Perhaps it does, but is that the only item from that time period? They didn’t find anything else? If that was the sick room, I would suspect they would find other things in there as well.

Octagon Hall – Franklin, Kentucky

The Octagon Hall was built back in the early 1800s and is being converted into a Cival War museum. The current owner says he has a lot of usual things going on such as strange noises, voices, a little girl singing and multiple shadow figures. From the way he describes it, the shadow figures are everywhere. And one witness says he was charged by a shadow figure and was all but knock out because of it.

A lot of the claims about the house are easy to debunk. Uneven floors would cause the wheelchair to move. Sagging floor and the usual wear and tear on a building this old would cause plenty of noises including footsteps. And air currents would help make that pot swing in the kitchen that everyone associates with the little girl. Once again, some pretty debunking by Brian.

This is also another place where I don’t think they captured any real activity. When asked the question, "Did you die here?" they get a very faint yes. That really seems to be it. There was the faint sound of bell, but you have to remember, just walking around that place could cause the walls, and floor to shake and make those noises. There was the feeling of being touched, but when you’re down in a dark basement that sort of thing always happens. And it didn’t happen again. And there was no other evidence gathered at the same time.

Their item for the night turns out to be a picture frame of Elizabeth, the first wife, who died at a young age, along with her children. Wife and children passed away and the husband re-married and started over. They hear some bangs, although they don’t find the source of that bang, they start playing with a picture when a card falls out. It simply says the name of Elizabeth Caldwell. They put this together with the Ovilus recordings they got outside which said, "three", meaning the passing of mother and two children. to sum it all up they believe Elizabeth is getting upset because she is being ignored and her importance in starting the house and being the first wife is being overlooked.

Again, the crazy random happenstance way of finding that card is a little odd, but the story is plausible. I’m not saying I agree, just that it’s plausible. I do agree with John that Elizabeth should get a little more of a spotlight for her place in history, but I still didn’t see too much evidence to support any paranormal claims. Pretty much everyone they reported is indicative of an old house.

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Haunted Collector – Casino Phantom and California Nightmare – S02E07

Binion’s Casino in Las Vegas

For this episode, John and his team head into the back yard of Ghost Adventures and investigate Binion’s Casino in Las Vegas. The General Manager is reporting claims of people getting touched and grabbed as well as seeing apparitions. His casino is in the older and more historic part of Vegas where the rules were a little looser and dealing with problems a little more stern. It sounds like an episode that would be rife with mafia ties, cheating, stealing, lost fortunes and more.

John and his team find or are given a couple of token items such as a razor, poker chip and matchbook. They also research a tie clip, which turns out to be a "wizard", a way to cheat at cards.

While the items are certainly interesting how do they support the paranormal activity and for that matter, what is the activity? While looking around the place nothing seems to happen. Not every episode has to be riddled with spooks, specters and ghosts, but I didn’t see anything in this episode that backed up any paranormal claims. The most interesting thing was the tarantula in the bathroom sink. For casino that may have seen some dark times, it doesn’t seem like the team runs across anything. Since it’s Vegas they are going to assume that the "wizard" is associated with someone who got caught and that he was killed because of his cheating. They associate the "Secret Room" with dealing with the cheat and link the whole thing to Tony Stralla. To be fair, that is certainly plausible and considering this is Vegas, something like that probably did happen, but aren’t they putting the cart in front of the horse? There is absolutely nothing to support any of these claims. It’s an interesting theory, but it’s nothing more than that, a theory.

Gomez Residence – Glendora, California

After hanging out in Vegas, the teams heads over to Glendora, California to investigate a home owned by Pedro Gomez where he claims paranormal activity is giving him cause for concern. He feels a presence in the house, hears knocking on the walls, feels he’s being watched and has a sense of negative energy.

Unfortunately, I think they’re looking for answers in the wrong place. In fact, Brian seems to have the right idea before they even get to the place. First off, it’s been abandoned for years. I’m sure animals have made their home in the walls, ceiling and lots of other places. Second, it’s been vandalized. There was a ton of graffiti as well as plenty of "demonic" and "satanic" symbolism all over the place. That clearly is going to play with your mind. As Brian states, the noose in the tree was meant to scare the crap out of people. Especially since there is a history that the home was once a halfway house back in the late 70s. How else are you going to start an urban legend and terrorize young kids? You need to make up some stories and throw some scary symbols around. I don’t believe any of that means anything.

Additionally, it’s California, it’s on a fault line. The house rumbles with some regularity and that will cause the house to shake, shift and settle. All of those will cause strange sounds. A house settling is going to sound like footsteps and the bed rumbling is simply a small tremor or aftershock. Well, other than the obvious reason a bed might shake when there’s a couple in it.

The team does talk with the police who confirm there were problems at the house. Too many ex-convicts were allowed to stay there at one time, conditions were cramped and tempers flared. However, no mention of murder or other unsolved crimes. There’s the potential for restless spirits, but it’s not all coming together.

In the end they look into the pictures Pedro brought to them previously. They notice the words, "victim" and "murdered" on the back of the photo. They draw the conclusion that the man in the photo is reaching out to Pedro to help solve his murder. Now that is a spectacular story, but it’s a bit much for me. I don’t see how the pieces fit together to draw that conclusion. But as an officer of the law, Pedro is going to do his best to identify the man and investigate what he can. I wish him the best of luck, but I don’t see this as being anything more than a bunch of misguided kids throwing around trinkets with the hopes of starting a rumor about the house being haunted.

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Haunted Collector – Stirring the Dead and Ghost Writer – S02E06

Lorain County, Ohio

For this episode we head to Lorain County, Ohio where a woman claims the paranormal activity has increased since she started renovating the house. She claims to have seen an apparition, hears footsteps and has the feeling she’s being watched. Things seemed to start when she removed a boot from the wall while doing some renovation work.

As things get rolling it sounds like the radios in the basement are playing some sort of circus music. However, all the radios are unplugged and most of them don’t work. Unfortunately, the team doesn’t come back around to investigate any further.

There is a story about one of the previous owner’s children being killed on the railroad tracks. Ironically, at least to John and his team, they uncover a compass in the basement crawl space.

Without any real connection or supporting evidence, John ties the compass to the death and that the boy is lost and removing the compass will somehow help him find his way. I’m s little confused by this. How is removing the compass going to help? Won’t he be even more lost? I also think it’s just a convenient connection to link the compass to the boy. There is nothing to suggest it was his. The timeframe seems correct, but there is no engraving, no markings, no name, no other personal items to associate the compass with any one person. They are making a story to fit the evidence and drawing conclusions that support it.

They also have a plan to put the shoe back in the wall and seal it up. This will contain the energy and protect the house. John says this is an ancient tradition and that a shoe will ward off evil. I’ll have to look into that one, because I’ve never heard of such a thing. That would be a new bit of lore coming into play.

In the end, John takes the compass from the house, encircles it with salt and believes this will stop the problems. According to the end credit, there is still activity there. Yeah, how about we go back and investigate some of those radios some more. If spirits can communicate through them, perhaps John and his team should listen a little harder…

Tipp City, Ohio

John investigates another business that has had activity going on for quite some time. People claim to get touched, hear footsteps and feel a presence. There are claims of a previous owner dying and a fire in one of the rooms. A child is also supposed to play in the "mystery room", moving toys on a regular basis.

John makes another interesting comment almost suggesting that people are letting their imaginations get the better of them. And in the end there might be a lot of validity to that.

Jumping right in I have to ask, why do people keep all the boxes of junk they immediately show to John when he gets there? If you think it’s causing a problem, throw that shit out! You know, these straight razors and this box full of tools could be causing a haunting in my shop and I have absolutely no room or reason to keep them, but you know what, I think I’ll keep anyway, just in case. Why throw away perfectly good junk?

The first thing we notice about this place is the insane levels of EMF going on. The whole place is flooded with those crappy fluorescent bulbs and the meters are off the charts. If that’s supposed to cause anxiety, nausea, fear, and other sensations, why not tell the owner to replace those damn things? That’s never even mentioned to her. No wonder that woman started to feel sick, the lights are horrible in that place.

It’s interesting they want to make something out the book that flew off the shelves by a convicted killer, but let’s be realistic here, those shelves are wobbly as hell, are all hand made and probably uneven, a book falling would be perfectly normal. It would be more unusual for it to never happen.

The one thing that’s interesting is the ball moving. It does appear to "jump" as though hit or kicked. Is that the spirit of the little girl? Since there is no evidence of a little girl dying there, why do they think there is a spirit there? Sure, I admit, that ball moved, no doubt about it. And it was cool as hell. But how about we do some more experiments and see if the floor rattles, was it shaken by someone walking, or is there some odd draft that caused the effect. Nothing of weight moved, so let’s not jump to too many conclusions just yet. The building is well over 100 years old, are we really saying that a draft, uneven floor and people walking around couldn’t cause that same behavior?

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