25 January 2009
Harry was the original owner of this little cottage; he was the first on the street to move in. But it didn’t take long before other houses were built up and occupied by very nice, friendly people. Harry raised his kids here in this house. His wife had died shortly before he moved in; it was said he’d moved in because he needed a fresh start in a new house. He and his children had a very good life in this cozy little cottage at the end of the street.
The children grew up and moved away. Harry remained in his home, content to be in the place that had known so many happy times. In time, Harry took his last breath and passed peacefully in his sleep. The house remained, the children refusing to sell it to others who might not be as kind to this little cottage as their father had been. So it sat where it was built.
Over the next several years, the other homes began to fail. Foundations cracked, roofs caved in. The inhabitants that once were Harry’s neighbors left their homes, never to be seen again. The neighborhoods surrounding this street fought the city hall to have the houses, which had become quite the eyesore, torn down. And torn down they were. One-by-one, the walls came down, leaving slabs of dirt in their wake.
Except for Harry’s house. In the midst of the destruction brought on by aging, abandoned houses, Harry’s home remained intact. The paint looked as fresh and new as the day it had been painted, the roof as sturdy and protective as ever. The windows were glistening and the lawn manicured.
No one understood this, as the house had remained empty since the day they took poor Harry’s failed body away. The kids hadn’t returned to clean it, nor was a single workman ever seen on the property. Yet the house stood proud, surviving the wrecking crews that destroyed its companions.
Life in the area went on. Though once a bustling city, it is now a quiet little town. And on the rare occasion when a stranger visits, the residents make sure to tell the story of the house that refused to die: The cozy little cottage at the end of a dark and lonely street.
18 January 2009
It was one night before Halloween the year the things changed at the beloved cemetery. See, the cemetery was lodged between two homes on the east side of the street. On this one night, as the resident of the corner house was walking past the cemetery to get to the house on the other side, he was spooked by a sudden, momentary silence, followed by a howling wind which was followed by an eerie screeching sound coming from the center of the cemetery. Unsettled by feelings of fright at this normally peaceful site, he hurried on his way.
An hour later he was returning home. Before he reached the edge of the cemetery he paused, thinking that maybe he should cross the street and walk past from there. “Oh don’t be ridiculous, it was your imagination”. And he proceeded to walk past. But just as soon as he crossed the edge of the cemetery, he was spooked by a sudden, momentary silence, followed by a howling wind which was followed by an eerie screeching sound coming from the center of the cemetery. He bolted home, locking the door to his house. He hurriedly called the emergency line, stating that someone was being swallowed up by the once-calm cemetery.
When police arrived at his home he recounted his story. The police were annoyed by this man, calling emergency services for an imaginary spook. Still, the officers decided to check it out. As they reached the edge of the cemetery, they stopped for just a moment to glance at each other, and then proceeded to walk past the cemetery. They walked by several times, together and one-by-one, but nothing out of the ordinary occurred. “In fact”, the officers told the resident, “if I felt anything at all it was a sense of peace as I crossed the path adjacent to the cemetery”.
The next morning he walked by the cemetery the same as he had the night before, but nothing was amiss. Still, he was leery. He put up signs on either side of the cemetery, knowing it was Halloween and all the neighborhood kids would be traipsing by to seek their sweet fortunes. The signs said “Warning! Spirits are upset. Cross the street before passing!”
He noticed that not a single child or adult paid any heed to his sign as they walked past the cemetery with no ill effects. About halfway through the evening, when there was a break in the trick-or-treating, he decided to walk past the cemetery. As he reached the edge, he was spooked by a a sudden, momentary silence, followed by a howling wind which was followed by an eerie screeching sound coming from the center of the cemetery. He ran back home to safety.
As the night progressed, children and parents paraded across the path between his and the house on the other side of the cemetery. As one group left his house, he asked if they could join them as they walked along, and they agreed. As they approached the edge of the cemetery, he was spooked by a sudden, momentary silence, followed by a howling wind which was followed by an eerie screeching sound coming from the center of the cemetery. “STOP!” he yelled, as the group stopped and stared at him. Though not one of the others in the group heard or felt a thing, they looked in horror at the man standing in the path in front of the cemetery, his hair straight in the air and shirt blowing in the wind.
Looking at each other and noticing no one else feeling the effects of any wind, they turned and ran, never crossing the path of the cemetery again.
15 January 2009
The part I do not remember is the chant. All the websites that described this game just say it was counting the clock: One O'Clock, Two O'Clock, Three O'Clock, etc until midnight which was the cue to start searching. Ours was a bit different in that some of the times were replaced with rhymes adding up to the final line signaling the start of the search (anyone catch the rhymes in that description?):
One O'Clock, Two O'Clock, ______________________
Five O'Clock, Six O'Clock, Ghost is almost here
Ten O'Clock, Eleven O'Clock, GHOST APPEAR!
I can't for the life of me remember the exact chant. Anyone around here know?
12 January 2009
I could order a full copy of the report for about $26.00, and I really should. I think it would be fascinating.
At any rate, I know of two other markers for this same John J. DOYLE. I believe they are both at St. Mary's Help of Christians Cemetery in Pittston, Luzerne County, PA. In fact, I'm almost sure they are, but why would he have two? It looks like the one on the left is newer; was it placed in much more recent times to preserve his memory and the information on it in anticipation of the gravestone's ultimate demise? Or is it in some other place?
11 January 2009
I invite my readers, bloggers or not, to submit to me an article to be featured in future editions of The Sunday Spook. It can be fact or fiction, serious or funny. Articles need only be eerie or spooky, relate to the topic of graveyards, ghosts, or strange occurrences, and be respectful of the topic. I do reserve the right to decline to publish an article if it doesn't fit the scope of this blog.
To send in a submission send an email to me at omchodoy-at-comcast-dot-net with the following information:
Put "Sunday Spook" in the subject line
Your name as you wish to be credited in the publication of the article
The URL to your website or blog if you have one; if you have multiple sites, choose either your GYR site or main site.
A simple statement as to the truth or non-truth of the submission.
Photographs and/or graphics are welcome.
One night in late October, the room was booked in its normal fashion. A traveler booked the room for a good night's sleep. As he was drifting off, he heard a voice: "It's a coming, It's a coming, It's a coming". He got up and searched the room: The bathroom, the little closet. That's all there was to the room, but nothing was found. So the man went back to bed.
"It's a coming, It's a coming, It's a coming." The man got scared and bolted out the door, demanding a refund of his money.
The room was booked again a short time later. The woman laid down to sleep when she heard a voice. "It's a coming, It's a coming, It's a coming." The woman searched the room over and returned to bed.
"It's a coming, It's a coming, It's a coming." She left as quickly as she had come.
The night clerk was very used this behavior, so was shocked when the third renter this night did not come in demanding a refund. That person, upon hearing the voice "It's a coming, It's a coming, It's a coming.", searched the room, and finding nothing, returned to bed.
"It's a coming, It's a coming, It's a coming." She searched again and returned to bed.
"It's a coming, It's a coming, It's a coming."
"That's it" she said. She got up and went into the hallway. She forced the night clerk to come over and inspect the hall with her. She could see a very faint light in the little closet next door, so she stormed over there and threw open the door.
What she found had the night had the night clerk in stitches for hours: There in the "closet" -- which turned out to be a small bathroom -- was an old man sitting on the toilet with a strained look on his face: "It's a coming. It's a coming. Dangit It's a COMING!".
05 January 2009
Myth or Truth?
Walt Disney’s own images is projected onto one of the busts in the theme parks’ Haunted Mansion?
Myth. The images projected belong to Thurl Ravenscroft (voice of Tony the Tiger), Chuck Schroeder, Bob Ebright, Jay Meyer, and Verne Row, the voices in the rendition of “Grim Grinning Ghosts” that plays in the attraction http://www.snopes.com/disney/parks/busts.asp
Myth or Truth?
Toy manufacturere Coleco sent death certificates to those who returned defective Cabbage Patch Dolls.
Myth. There is a theory that the myth got its start after a rock band reportedly destroyed Cabbage Patch Dolls onstage and later proclaimed the band would start a graveyard for the Dolls. http://www.snopes.com/business/consumer/cabbage.asp
Myth or Truth?
Some 5,000 wreaths are placed on headstones at Arlington National Cemetery every year at Christmas and are provided by a florist from one of the poorest areas in Maine.
Truth. http://www.snopes.com/photos/military/wreaths.asp (Worcester Wreath Co. of Harrington, Maine). Check out the link; it's an interesting story!
Myth or Truth?
France once demanded that the U.S. come and get their dead soldiers buried within its boundaries.
Myth or Truth?
The number of hooves on equestrian statues indicates how the rider died.
Thanks for playing. Stay tuned for more fun as time goes on!
04 January 2009
There is much information on the Gunfight at the O.K. Corral on the web. I used the handy source of Wikipedia, of which I'm becoming a bigger fan.
03 January 2009
Question 1, Myth or Fact?: Walt Disney’s own images is projected onto one of the busts in the theme parks’ Haunted Mansion?
Question 2, Myth or Fact? Toy manufacturer Coleco sent death certificates to those who returned defective Cabbage Patch Dolls.
Question 3, Myth or Fact? Some 5,000 wreaths are placed on headstones at Arlington National Cemetery every year at Christmas and are provided by a wreath company from one of the poorest areas in Maine.
Question 4, Myth or Fact? France once demanded that the U.S. come and get their dead soldiers buried within its boundaries.
Question 5, Myth or Fact? The number of hooves that are raised on equestrian statues indicates how the rider died.
02 January 2009
Once I decided to adapt a more positive attitude, it only seemed natural that I start a blog about after-death. I mean, as long as I'm able to write about death customs I'm not dead, right? And what more positive attitude can one have than to be glad to be alive?
This blog is intended to honor those that Rest In Peace beneath our land, across our oceans, or inside our vases. At times posts will reflect history, at times geography. At times it will express sorrow, and at other times, it will elicit laughter. I see nothing wrong with humor in any situation, so long as the humor is respectful and acceptable to the audience who receives it.
I hope that you will find this blog worth a read, and that you can always find some humor in any situation. As Truvy Jones (Dolly Parton) said in "Steel Magnolias", "Laughter through tears is my favorite emotion".