Archive for the 'story' Category

21
May
17

Part Two – Ancestor Appreciation Day

Two posts ago, I wrote about one of my ancestors who completed a great feat, at the time. He was the first to take a wheeled vehicle from the Kennebec River to the Penobscot River (Skowhegan to Bangor).

I do not know if this was a 2 wheeled or 4 wheeled vehicle, but it did cause a stir among settlers as he passed by small settlements in the 1800’s, according to reports. It certainly must have been horse or oxen drawn.

I wish there was more documentation – was he alone? what was he transporting? how long did it take (about 50 miles)? what time of year did this take place?

So, today, I had the opportunity to drive this route myself (in my 4 wheeled car! and in the opposite direction). I just wanted to drive the drive and imagine what it must have been like in the early 1800’s.

20170521_104325-e1495410840150.jpg

Most of the area is now farm country so it is nice open fields, but at the time it would have been all wooded (as above), and as I mentioned in my original post, must have certainly needed some trailblazing!

I passed by a few lakes, bridged several rivers and went up and down countless hills! All I could think of was the poor horse(s) or ox(en) that had to work so hard. The modern road is a nice, wide 2 lane highway in very good shape and was a pleasure to drive.

Caleb Shaw must have had good reason to go to all that trouble, or maybe he was just up to a challenge! Some of my Shaw ancestors certainly have been the type to make their own way.

History is wonderful, haunted or not, but always leaves us wishing for more…

07
Nov
14

Boothbay Harbor Experience

Here is a link to a story that a guest on one of my tours wrote. It is about an experience she had the night after her tour with me in Boothbay Harbor. Maybe some of you who’ve also stayed at Captain Sawyer’s have some stories you’d like to share as well?

http://www.theconcordwriter.com/More_Ghost_Stories.php

31
Oct
14

Eccentric

Mary Moody Emerson was Ralph Waldo Emerson’s aunt. She spent her whole life taking care of friends and relatives, never marrying. She traveled throughout Maine, Massachusetts and New Hampshire helping whoever needed help. Mary was just 4 feet 2 inches tall, a frail looking woman with short blonde hair, the short bob being unusual for the times, but quite strong and determined. She didn’t care at all what people thought of her and she quickly became known as quite eccentric.

She was fascinated with death and traveled with her own shroud and coffin shaped bed! At one of her relatives homes she delighted in the coffin shaped shadow that was made by the nearby church steeple. She was so obsessed with death that her friends used a quote from Shakespeare to greet her, “I wish you the joy of the worm.”

One hot summer day she decided to put on the burial shroud she made for herself rather than the heavy skirt, corset, stockings, etc. that were the custom of the day. Mary found her shroud to be so cool and comfortable that she continued to wear it often, to the surprise and shock of many townspeople and her relatives! According to her nephew, she even wore it horseback riding and ended up making several in her later life because they would wear out.

In spite of her wish to die, she lived to be 89 and was laid to rest in Sleepy Hollow Cemetery, with this quote of her nephew, “Mary’s body—her “tedious tabernacle”—was finally placed into a cool, sweet grave, freeing her soul to ascend to Heaven. Worms, those most valuable companions, finally would gnaw away the meshes that had trapped her soul on earth, a place where she felt she never truly belonged.”

One of the places where Mary spent a considerable amount of time was Wiscasset, Maine, with her sister, Hannah. Even though Mary was not there when she died, she apparently has chosen Hannah’s home as one of her favorite places in the afterlife.

We were asked by some members of the office that is now in the house to do a light investigation, as they thought there was the spirit of a man there. Also, the office dog spent a lot of time at the bottom of the stairs looking up at nothing they could see.

When we went in, we immediately had lots of EMF activity in several areas of the downstairs at once. We quickly determined that there indeed was a man there, but Mary Moody Emerson was also in the house! They both “spoke” to us by making the EMF detectors go on or off in response to questions. They did not seem to want us to leave as the detectors were still registering as we walked out and we had to remind them to stay there.

Recently, I was by the house, outside, telling Mary’s story, showing some students an EMF detector and explaining what had happened to us inside. When I started talking about Mary the EMF detector started beeping, even though it was in the same place it had been for several minutes without registering anything! We asked if it was Mary and it beeped 3 times in response. I asked if I could tell about her shroud and it again beeped as if in the affirmative. When I mentioned that Mary had been quite an eccentric character, it again beeped. Several different times, the EMF detector beeped in appropriate places or in appropriate response to questions. We had to move along, so the students thanked Mary for “talking” to us and I asked her if she was glad that we had come by, and once again, the EMF detector beeped 3 times.

29
Oct
14

Mysterious Burial and Unmarked Grave

Some folks think we’re a seasonal business, just during Halloween/Fall season, but we are definitely a year round business!

Our current project is an example of how we work throughout the year. Over 130 years ago a woman was taken from her family under cover of night and buried in an out of town cemetery in an unmarked grave. We’ve been researching this story for years, but have stepped it up recently.

Our goal is to find the Maine cemetery, if not the actual gravesite, by Spring and do some fundraising to give this unfortunate woman a marker.

She did nothing wrong, she was reportedly in a trance, as was common for her, as a medium in her hometown. She was being cared for by her brothers, who assured everyone that she was fine and would come out of it soon.

You can read more about Mary’s story and our efforts here, http://wgme.com//news/features/top-stories/stories/dirigo-stories-missing-grave-mary-howe-24603.shtml#.VFCX-haCV8E.

Our book, “Haunted Damariscotta, Ghosts of the Twin Villages and Beyond” has the original story. Signed copies can be mailed to you upon request. Call 207-380-3806 or e-mail redcloaktours@gmail.com.

09
Oct
14

Paranormal Odors

As many of you know, I tend not to have “experiences” with the paranormal entities that might be around us, but I think that is changing… Over the last couple of years, I think have had 2 or 3 encounters.

The most recent one was in August when my husband and I were staying at an ocean front inn here in Maine. It was an older home, with small rooms and a shared bath.

We checked in, enjoyed dinner and, as we had an early morning planned, turned in early. It was a beautiful summer evening, so we had the windows wide open to the fresh salt water breezes.

About 3:00 in the morning I was awakened by a very strong smell. It was almost cloying; a very sweet perfumy smell. It was most noticeable right in the middle of the bed! I smelled the comforter, pillows, blankets, but it was not any of those. I rolled over toward the outside edge and it was a bit less annoying.

I was awakened again around 5:00 in the morning by the same strong odor. I was so puzzled because all I should have been smelling was the fresh ocean air.

When I was telling my husband about it in the morning, he said he didn’t notice it all, but we wondered if it might have been a previous resident of the room. I was very vocal about how unpleasant it was and that I hoped it/she did not come again that night. I think she heard me, for we were not disturbed that night.

I have heard many different stories of smells associated with the paranormal; cigarette smoke, pipe smoke, perfume, lotion, even toast and bacon! I’d love to hear your experiences…

12
Oct
12

My Very Favorite Halloween Children’s Story

I grew up with this story and it’s still my favorite. If you can find anywhere to look at the illustrations, they’re wonderful, too! I’ve just included a couple of snippets, but at the end is a link to a blog that has the whole story. Enjoy!

Tippity Witchet is a black kitten who wanted to go out in the big wide world, but his mother told him he was too little…

“Tippity Witchit sulked. The idea of telling him he was only a little kitten! Giving himself a shake, he got up from the straw. He was as big as the next cat and able to meet all adventures that might befall the cat tribe – anywhere in the world! Sneaking off to the door, he slipped across the barnyard and out on the long stretch of highway that ran to the wide, wide world. Oh, what a moon was shining! It turned all the fields to silver. And little mists were rising shimmering over the meadows. He was out in a white world of moonlight with little black shadows dancing here and there on the edges. He was out like a great big cat in the mystery of the night!

…Just the same, he trembled when he came to the very next cornfield. The corn here had not been cut; it stood in ghostly rows, like a bank of withered old witches. Its long dried leaves hung down like ghostly withered old arms, its tassels streamed out every which way like straggly hair on a hag. “I’m not afraid of a thing,” he had to repeat to himself…

http://blog.orangecountykidsactivities.com/tippity-witchits-halloween/

23
Apr
12

The Lady’s Musings…

I had a great time tonight with the folks who turned out for “Haunted Lighthouses of Maine”! They were a great group and had some interesting ghost stories to share – I always love to hear other’s stories!

Lighthouse lore is so fascinating – I learned a lot doing research for this, and there’s yet more to learn. Running into Abbie Burgess (“Keep the Lights Burning, Abbie”) again was fun. I sometimes think the wives and children of lighthouse keepers were just as stalwart as the men!

Two of the lighthouses we talked about tonight were Abenaki names, Matinicus and Seguin. It’s amazing to think about the Native Americans venturing that far out to sea in their canoes!

Next week I get to take some school children on walks; always rewarding and fun for me! I hope it doesn’t pour like it did today! I always hope to instill a love of history in the kids. History was something that was always part of my growing up, and obviously stuck with me!

Take a minute to think of your history… and enjoy!