Saturday, March 15, 2014

Haunted Locations, Legends and the Unexplained 2


I will occasionally offer a collection of ghostly and strange tales from previous posts...enjoy:

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Macabre Book 'Bears Image Of Hanged Priest's Face'


A 17th century book believed to be bound in the skin of a priest executed for treason appears to bear a "spooky" image of his face on the cover, according to the auctioneers who sold the book in 2007.

The account of the death of Gunpowder Plot conspirator Father Henry Garnet is described by experts as "rare and macabre".

He said: "It's a little bit spooky because the front of the book looks like it has the face of a man on it, which is presumed to be the victim's face."

A True And Perfect Relation Of The Whole Proceedings Against The Late Most Barbarous Traitors, Garnet A Jesuit And His Confederates was printed by Robert Barker, printer to the king, and published in 1606, only months after Garnet's execution. Garnet's involvement in the plot to blow up the Houses of Parliament was controversial. He claimed he knew about the conspiracy but was not involved. Some scholars now believe that he was most likely trying to prevent the action against James I rather than conspiring against him.

But Garnet was found guilty of treason and executed in May 1606. The king ordered his hanging but he was spared the cruelty of being drawn and quartered.

According to legend, a piece of bloodstained straw found at the scene of his execution started to develop an exact image of the priest's face, which auctioneers now believe has happened to the centuries-old book.

Mr Wilkinson, who will sell the book in its wooden box, said: "There's nothing I can do about the poor victim now."

Faith and Treason: The Story of the Gunpowder Plot

God's Secret Agents: Queen Elizabeth's Forbidden Priests and the Hatching of the Gunpowder Plot


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Spirits at World Famous Brookdale Lodge Protesting Changes



santacruzsentinel - If somebody started looting your house, you'd be upset too, right?

That's how paranormal investigator Erich Breger says the spirits at Brookdale Lodge, now renamed Brookdale Inn & Spa, have been feeling lately. Breger, the lead investigator with California Paranormal Investigations, took his team to the famed Santa Cruz Mountains resort late Thursday night to see if they could draw the local haunt's haunters out from the shadows and find out why all the ruckus.

Brookdale employees, particularly the cooks, have said they've seen increased paranormal activity since the previous owners sold the business and began taking with them old furniture, clippings and memorabilia.

"I think why it's happening is there is definitely a defiling that's going on here," said Breger, a Boulder Creek man with an intense stare, raspy voice, suit and black trench coat.

Brookdale Inn & Spa has long been thought to be haunted by the spirit of a little girl -- among others -- who drowned in the creek that runs through the dining area. During the 1940s and '50s gangsters made the lodge their home, and some legends say they buried bodies under the floor.

Opened in 1870, the lodge has been featured on "Ripley's Believe It or Not" and has hosted notables such as Marilyn Monroe and President Herbert Hoover.

In recent weeks, there have been reports of shadowy figures. Employees in the kitchen have reported hearing bangs. Chef Juan Diaz said he and a cook saw a pot do a full rotation while sitting on the burner about two months ago.

"It was all full of water so it was heavy," said Diaz in Spanish. "And we saw it spin around like somebody was moving it."

Then there was the incident this summer with the swinging doors to the kitchen, said Diaz.

"They opened like somebody was coming in but there was nobody there," he said. "Then they opened again like somebody was leaving."

Bartender Jonelle Badger, who has worked at Brookdale Inn & Spa for a year, says she's only heard stories of strange occurrences from her co-workers.

"I've never had an experience here that would lead me to believe there was a ghost," she said.

But Breger, the fleet manager at Ocean Honda when he's not tracking spirits, said his team thinks something was definitely going on Thursday night. His fellow investigators include Ed Hayes, Ronaldo Williams and Shelly Crowley, all of Brookdale and Boulder Creek. The four walked the different levels of the lodge Thursday night with equipment such as an EVP [Electronic Voice Phenomenon] monitor, EMF [Electro Magnetic Field] monitor, infrared cameras and a Ouija board. Breger said he and his team will review their evidence in more detail tonight.

"Based on what we've gathered so far there is definitely something going on there," he said.

Breger said he's never been scared of anything he's experienced in 15 years of pursuit. He also takes his team out to wrecking yards to look for spirits involved in fatal vehicle accidents.

"It's a totally untapped resource," he said.

As for skeptics of paranormal activity and investigation, Breger said he doesn't blame them.

"Until you experience something," he said, "it's one of those things where you have to show me the proof."

The Haunted Brookdale Lodge

Haunted Places: The National Directory: Ghostly Abodes, Sacred Sites, UFO Landings and Other Supernatural Locations


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Documented Case of Real-Life Demonic Possession

An American woman who levitated, demonstrated paranormal psychic powers and spoke foreign languages unknown to her was clearly demon possessed, according to a board-certified psychiatrist and associate professor of clinical psychiatry at New York Medical College.

The unnamed woman, with a long history of involvement with Satanic groups, was observed by a team of priests, deacons, several lay assistants, psychiatrists, nuns, some of whom also had medical and psychiatric training, levitating six inches off the ground while objects flew off shelves in the same room, according to Dr. Richard E. Gallagher, who documented the case in the February issue of the New Oxford Review.

"Periodically, in our presence, Julia would go into a trance state of a recurring nature," writes Gallagher. "Mentally troubled individuals often 'dissociate,' but Julia's trances were accompanied by an unusual phenomenon: Out of her mouth would come various threats, taunts and scatological language, phrases like 'Leave her alone, you idiot,' 'She's ours,' 'Leave, you imbecile priest,' or just 'Leave.' The tone of this voice differed markedly from Julia's own, and it varied, sometimes sounding guttural and vaguely masculine, at other points high pitched. Most of her comments during these 'trances,' or at the subsequent exorcisms, displayed a marked contempt for anything religious or sacred."

The subject would have no recollection of speaking these phrases upon recovering from the trance-like state, according to Gallagher.

"Sometimes objects around her would fly off the shelves, the rare phenomenon of psychokinesis known to parapsychologists," reports Gallagher. "Julia was also in possession of knowledge of facts and occurrences beyond any possibility of their natural acquisition.

"She commonly reported information about the relatives, household composition, family deaths and illnesses, etc., of members of our team, without ever having observed or been informed about them," he said. "As an example, she knew the personality and precise manner of death (i.e., the exact type of cancer) of a relative of a team member that no one could conceivably have guessed. She once spoke about the strange behavior of some inexplicably frenzied animals beyond her direct observation: Though residing in another city, she commented, 'So those cats really went berserk last night, didn't they?' the morning after two cats in a team member's house uncharacteristically had violently attacked each other at about 2 a.m."

Julia requested a Roman Catholic exorcism ritual, convinced from the beginning of her consultations that she was under demonic attack.

"The exorcism began on a warm day in June," Gallagher recollects. "Despite the weather, the room where the rite was being conducted grew distinctly cold. Later, however, as the entity in Julia began to spout vitriol and make strange noises, members of the team felt themselves profusely sweating due to a stifling emanation of heat. The participants all said they found the heat unbearable.

"Julia at first had gone into a quiet trance-like state. After the prayers and invocations of the Roman Ritual had been going on for a while, however, multiple voices and sounds came out of her. One set consisted of loud growls and animal-like noises, which seemed to the group impossible for any human to mimic. At one point, the voices spoke in foreign languages, including recognizable Latin and Spanish. (Julia herself only speaks English, as she later verified to us.)

"The voices were noticeably attacking in nature, and often insolent, blasphemous and highly scatological. They cursed and insulted the participants in the crudest way. They were frequently threatening – trying, it appeared, to fight back – 'Leave her alone,' 'Stop, you whores' (to the nuns), 'You'll be sorry,' and the like.

"Julia also exhibited enormous strength. Despite the religious sisters and three others holding her down with all their might, they struggled to restrain her. Remarkably, for about 30 minutes, she actually levitated about half a foot in the air."

The purpose of Gallagher's paper, he says, is to "document a contemporary and clear-cut case of demonic possession." He explains that even those who doubt such a phenomenon exists may find this case "rather persuasive."

"Possession is only one and not the most common type of demonic attack. Possession is very rare, though not as exceedingly so as many imagine," he concludes. "So-called 'oppression,' or 'infestation,' is less rare, though hardly frequent either, and sometimes more difficult to discern accurately."

The Demonologist: The Extraordinary Career of Ed and Lorraine Warren

Interview With an Exorcist


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The Mysterious Whipporwill Valley Road

What's a New Jersey town without at least one creepy legend? Any sprawling town with acres of woods and nearly 350 years of local history must have at least one, right?

In Middletown, that legend is called Whipporwill Valley Road — a dusty, unpaved roadway that snakes through the Chapel Hill section of town and where it's rare to see another person.

Through the years, a handful of tragic events has given this road an air of legend and mystery. It's not surprising, then, that this winding dirt strip has taken on a sort of cult status for local teens who consider driving down the road in the middle of the night with friends an adolescent rite of passage.

Legends told over the years (and cited by Weird N.J. magazine) include:

Seeing and hearing witches.

A tall, looming tree that takes on human shape after dark.

A mysterious, rogue truck driver who wildly races up and down Whipporwill Valley Road.

Several Middletown teens who have driven on the road said that, while they have yet to actually encounter any of these purported presences, the road does possess an indefinably creepy feel.

One Middletown High School North senior, Joe Clements, 18, has gone as far as making a video of himself and friends driving down the notorious road in the dead of night.

Titled "Driving on Whipporwill," the video starts off with a narrator ominously explaining: "Six friends set out on what they thought was a harmless trip to Whipporwill Valley Road."

The video ends suddenly when the car full of screaming teens spots something, in affectionate homage to "The Blair Witch Project." Clement's video can be viewed at YouTube.com.

Another popular legend attached to Whipporwill Valley Road tells of witches burned at the stake when Europeans first populated Middletown in the 1700s, according to Weird N.J.

According to the legend, before the witches were burned, they placed hexes on all the local farmers who had accused them. All the farmers reportedly died 10 months later of a mysterious, undiagnosed illness.

Ironically, the farmers are said to have been buried just 10 feet away from the witches, who were buried 10 feet outside of the town cemetery. Some visitors who have driven down the road, according to Weird N.J., say they have felt bumps in the road that could have been the original graves.

In time, the witch legend was forgotten, but revived years later in the early 1960s, when remnants of an abandoned mansion that stood in the Whipporwill woods burned to the ground.

While the appearance of the supernatural has never been verified scientifically, Whipporwill Valley Road has a well-documented history of tragic and bizarre incidents.

The most recent incident happened in December 2006 when the body of Nello Caizza, the 76-year-old caretaker of a private residence at 160 Whipporwill Valley Road, was found submerged in near-freezing pool water. Police said Caizza had, apparently unknowingly, driven a John Deere tractor over the pool's plastic cover, which ripped, sending him and the tractor into the water.

Caizza, who had managed the 44-acre property for roughly 20 years, was pronounced dead at Riverview Medical Center in Red Bank. The death ultimately was ruled an accidental drowning.

When Fred Lazzati, 58, a worker for the Middletown Public Works Department, wasn't spotted by his co-workers on Sept. 1, 1989, they assumed he had come in early, as was often the case, and already was at work in another area.

About 8 a.m., workers found Lazzati's body near a road grader on Whipporwill Valley Road near Chapel Hill Road.

His death upset coworkers in the department, where he had worked for six years.

Public Works Director John McGowan at the time described Lazzati, of Viola Avenue in the Leonardo section, as "your basic construction guy; a hard worker."

Lazzati, who had a heart condition, died from a massive heart attack, the coroner ruled.

On March 6, 1982, Nancy Clark of Fair Haven was stabbed to death by Thomas W. Baliff, who had picked up Clark while she was hitchhiking. Her fully clothed body was found in an area off Whipporwill Valley Road.

Baliff, who was AWOL from the Marines at the time of Clark's murder, pleaded guilty, admitting he stabbed her several times with a 6-inch double-bladed bayonet. He was convicted of murder and is serving a life sentence in New Jersey State Prison in Trenton.

Baliff, now 48, made an appeal for parole in 2004 that was denied by the New Jersey State Parole Board.

There also have been a few near-fatal accidents along the dirt road. On Dec. 17, 2006, two boys — Alex Nazath, 17, and Andrew Aulicino, 16 — rescued three teenage girls whose vehicle had swerved off the road and landed partially submerged in a creek adjacent to Whipporwill Valley Road.

Aulicino used his pocket knife to cut the seat belt that one of the girls still was wearing.

Roughly two years earlier, two Monmouth County men stole a Jeep from a Highlands driveway and crashed it on Whipporwill Valley Road.

Police found the stolen vehicle unoccupied, but arrested the two men based on their fingerprints found on the vehicle and from a telephone call made on a mobile phone that was left accidentally in the Jeep.

Middletown police arrested Ronald Remp, 23, of Keyport and Christopher Martin, 19, of Highlands. The two young men were eventually convicted of auto theft and given two- to four-year sentences.

Weird N.J.: Your Travel Guide to New Jersey's Local Legends and Best Kept Secrets

Weird N.J. Vol. 2: Your Travel Guide to New Jersey's Local Legends and Best Kept Secrets

Weird NJ Presents... Home State Hauntings: True Stories of Ghostly Places in New Jersey


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Ghost Walker Of Natuashish, Labrador


Click for video

Not much information with this video other than it is from Natuashish, Labrador (I've actually been there....but that's another story).

Ghost Stories of Newfoundland and Labrador

Haunted Shores: True Ghost Stories of Newfoundland and Labrador