2017 – Ringing in the New Year!

PrintWith the advent of a new year, sensibilities rise to the forefront of our mind. Perhaps more than a birthday, the new year sings its own reverie to get our ducks in a row, to begin again to tow the mark, bids us to turn the page and start anew. Yes, the new year taunts us to envision the horizon and see the future by improving our focus. The festivities are over – winter is settling in and she proves to be a preponderance of resolution our inner being innately underscores in its need for reparation toward the achievement of our newest creative seeds and their triumphant emergence in the springtime for summer’s consumption and fall’s exuberance.

As a fledgling entrepreneur / small business connoisseur, having experienced equally great successes and failures, it is time to embrace the season and refresh business acumen, ideologies and direction. It is time to take successes into the future, and to comprehend lessons-learned from entrepreneurial failures of the past, in order to benefit clients, customers, readers and authors universally in our future.

In order to enact benefits, change is required. So, throughout the month of January 2017, change is the plan of the hour. And, will be introduced as the month progresses to enrich government and commercial clients and customers, as well as literary and non-fiction readers and authors.

Both dpInk Company Ltd. and DonnaInk Publications, L.L.C. wish each of you happiness, prosperity, and health throughout 2017!

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Urban Legend – Annabelle the haunted doll

annabelleJust over a year ago, the movie Annabelle was released.  The film sent chills down the spines of horror enthusiasts everywhere!  The actual story came to light when Ed and Lorraine Warren were called in to investigate these odd occurrences.  The Warren’s case file is way more terrifying than the story line in the movie.

Who the Hell are the Warren’s?   Ed and Lorraine Warren were two of the most renowned paranormal investigators in modern times.  Their case files number over 4000 well documented stories complete with eyewitness and photographic evidence.  Some of their investigations include the Amityville house, the Perren family haunting, which was the true storywhich the Conjuring was based on, and the Southington Connecticut haunting on which the movie The haunting in Connecticut was based.  There are a ton more but for now, on with Annabelle.

For starters the Annabelle doll was not a porcelian faced doll, she was an oversized Raggedy Ann doll about the size of a four year old kid.  The doll was  given as a birthday gift to a young lady by her mother, kind of as a novelty, something to use in decorating her new apartment.  This young lady, Donna, also had a room mate named Angie, both of them were nurses.

In the beginning, the activity was very subtle, almost unnoticed.  The doll would be found sitting in a slightly different position than how she was left.  For example, Donna would leave the doll sitting on her bed with it’s arms and legs straight, but when the girls returned, it would be found with its legs crossed and it’s arms in different positions as well.  As the haunting persisted, the doll would be found in different locations in the apartment, when I say different locations, I mean a whole other room.  The girls stated that there was one time the doll was found kneeling near the doorway.  When they tried to place the doll in a kneeling position later, they found that there was no way they could bend it’s legs where it would remain in that position.

The girls also claimed to have found notes left by the doll, notes written in pencil on parchment paper.  Both girls, out of curiosity, searched the entire apartment for a pencil or parchment paper, neither could be found.

The two room mates began to suspect someone was sneaking into their apartment and playing a prank on them.  After changing the locks and securing the windows, the haunting became much more aggressive.  Sometimes things would levitate then come crashing to the floor.  Other times things would be discovered in the apartment, things that neither of them had seen before.  For example, one time a boot shaped piece of chocolate candy was found sitting on the stereo cabinet.

At this point, a Medium was called in.  And if you ask me, this medium had serious issues with her ability of spiritual discernment.

The Warren’s later stated that this only agitated the situation.  The demon that was inhabiting the apartment duped the Medium into believing that it was the spirit of a young girl named Annabelle, who had died on the vacant lot where the apartment complex was later built.  When asked by the Medium why “Annabelle” was attracted to the doll the Demon spun it’s lie.

Playing on the compassion of the young nurses, the demon, still under the guise of the young girls spirit, insisted that it was lonely and only wanted to play.  The demon then asked permission to stay with the girls and live inside the doll.  The girls, seeing no harm in the spirits’ request, gave their permission.  This, so Ed Warren said, sealed the deal and allowed the demon to attach itself to the girls.

After the Medium’s visit, the haunting became much worse.  One evening the girl’s came home to find the doll sitting on the couch with three drops of blood on it’s chest and blood smears on the back of its’ hand.  The owner of the doll panicked and called her boyfriend, Lou to come over.  This is when the shit hit the fan.

When the boyfriend arrived, he removed the doll from the couch and took it back into the bedroom.  A few minutes later, they were all startled by loud banging and screaming that was coming from the bedroom.
Lou went to see what was happening.  When they all arrived at the door, the doll was crumpled over in the corner.  Lou entered the room and immediately felt as if someone or something was standing behind him.  When he turned to confront the stranger, he was attacked.  An invisible hand began to choke him, then he was clawed across his chest.  Seven claw marks criss-crossed his chest, they bled profusely but then healed at an amazing rate.  Within 48 hours no sign of the claw marks remained.

Donna and Angie then reached out to a local Priest.  The Priest, after having heard their story, immediately called his friends, Lorraine and Ed Warren, to come and investigate.

When the Warren’s arrived they interviewed Donna, Angie and Lou at the same time.  This is when Lou begrudgingly relayed other occurrences where the doll had attacked him.  He confessed that he awoke to see the doll at his feet.  It climbed over him and began to strangle him.  Somehow, it was as if he was paralyzed and couldn’t defend himself.

After sharing their story, the girls stated that they were planning to move out of the apartment.  Imagine their shock when Ed Warren told them that it wouldn’t do any good.  Ed stated that all of the gestures the doll made, the transportation of the doll around the apartment, the letters written on parchment and the three drops of blood,  a mockery of the trinity, all proved that there had been intent behind the entity’s actions.  This is one determining factor that separates a haunting from a demonic infestation.  Spirits don’t have that kind of ability, only something inhuman has this type of power.

The Warrens then called the Priest over to the apartment for an exorcism, followed by a blessing of the apartment and all who were there.  You see, a demon can only attach itself to an object, not possess it, a demon can only possess a person.

So, after the Priest finished, they all said their good byes and at the request of Donna, the doll’s owner, the Warrens took “Annabelle” with them when they left.  Ok so, you would think the story ends here.  Oh, no, there’s more!

Ed was concerned that the demon had not detached itself from the doll, so he placed it in the back seat of the car and avoided taking the interstate home.

His hunch was soon proven to be fact.  The Warren’s new car seemed to stall at every dangerous curve.  With every stall, the brakes and power steering would fail.  The third time it happened, Ed pulled to the side of the road, after having barely avoided a collision.  He reached into his black bag, took out a small vial and tossed holy water onto the doll before making the sign of the cross over its head.  Things seemed to quiet down after that and the Warren’s arrived home safely.

For the next few days the doll sat in a chair next to Eds desk.  All seemed to be fine until a few days later.  The doll would begin to levitate then fall inert, a few days later the doll began showing up in other rooms of the house.  On one occasion, when the Warren’s were away, the doll was locked in an outside storage building.  When they returned, it was found upstairs in the house, sitting in Ed’s easy chair.

When Annabelle made her return, she did not come alone.  She brought with her a friend, a black cat that would sometimes materialize beside the doll.  The cat would make it’s way around Ed’s office inspecting books or other haunted objects, before returning to Annabelle’s side and dematerializing from the head down.

It also became rather apparent that Annabelle didn’t much care for clergy of any type.  Loud growling sounds would reverberate through the Warren home when ever a the presence of a holy man was near, even if only by phone.

Annabelle remained inside the Warrens house without confinement for several more months.  The final straw was when there was an attack on a Priest at a large social gathering in their home.

While in conversation with Lorraine Warren, Father Jason Bradford saw something moving out of the corner of his eye.  Seconds later a 24 inch boars’ tooth necklace exploded above them.  The noise was so loud that other guests heard it and ran into the kitchen.  A nearby guest had been taking a photograph at the time of the occurrence.  When the film was developed, all appeared normal with the exception of two beams of light that were coming from Annabelle and pointing directly at Father Bradford.

Soon after, Ed began the “occult museum” where haunted objects could be stored safely inside their home.

If you were to visit Ed’s museum, which by the way is open to the public for tours, the words DO NOT TOUCH have a Hell of a meaning behind them.  Ed explained haunted objects like this:  Profane objects, such as the Annabelle doll, have their own aura.  If we are to touch that object, our aura mingles with theirs.  This change attracts spirits, it’s like setting off a fire alarm.

If you love haunted history and urban legends, check out my show on Armed Radio Global and TuneIn Satellite Radio.  Past episodes can be listened to here!

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The Waverly Hills Sanatorium – Haunted History

whDuring the 1800’s through early 1900’s the “white death” plague, otherwise known as tuberculosis, was ravaging the country.  White death was a terrifying, highly contagious and incurable illness.  This evil plague wiped out entire families, and in some cases, entire towns.  So in 1910 a hospital was built specifically to treat those that had been infected.  Sometimes entire families would be brought here, so as you may have guessed by now, this sucker was overcrowded quickly.  So, in 1924 another, much larger,  hospital was constructed, 2 years later the institution was functioning as Waverly Hills Sanatorium.

Now, white death was still incurable, so the thousands of patients that were treated there all died, some of them weren’t lucky enough to perish before experimental surgeries.  See, the doctors all knew that everyone who was admitted was going to die, it was just a matter of time.  These sick bastards took it upon themselves to start experimental surgeries in an attempt to beat the illness.  Many patients didn’t survive the surgery those that did, mostly died painful deaths.

Because at this time there were no known drugs to treat the illness with, Doctors thought that the best remedy was fresh air and sunlight.  The patients got healthy doses every day, no matter the weather or temperature.  That was mild considering the experimental trials though.  One technique was to surgically insert a balloon into the lungs another involved removing ribs and muscles around the lungs, both supposedly to allow the lungs to take on more oxygen.  So these patients are already miserable, can’t breath, running insanely high fevers and now they’re in even more pain due to the effects of these surgeries, if they made it that far at all.

So, as you can imagine, there was pretty much always a line of meat wagons coming through to pick up these corpses.  Well, the operators of this facility were at least humane enough to make an attempt to keep up patient morale.  That’s when the body chute was constructed.  So, the body chute was a tunnel that was carved through the side of the hill, it met up with a train track below where bodies would be loaded onto railway cars and carted away to wherever.

By the late 1930’s white death was beginning to play out and by 1943 new medicines had all but extinguished it’s wrath in the United States.  In 1961 Waverly Hills was closed down but reopened one year later as Woodhaven Geriatrics Sanatorium.

Now, while serving as an old folks home, rumors began circulating that there were unusual experiments being done on unwilling patients.  In these days, electroshock therapy was quite popular and the technique was being used to treat ailments of all kinds at Woodhaven.  So even if Grandpa was sane when he checked in, usually a few weeks later he was bat shit crazy.  Electro-therapy was also used to keeps the patients in line so if Grandma didn’t eat her beans she probably got shocked into submission.  Obviously there’s some defect because everyone should eat their beans, right?!

Then as if that wasn’t bad enough, throughout the 60’s and 70’s massive budget cuts had taken hold.  Conditions had deteriorated badly.  The facility was grossly understaffed, patient neglect and mistreatment was on the rise.  It was an ordinary occurrence for patients to be caged or chained in place, sometimes sleeping one on top of the other due to overcrowding as well.  In 1982 the state became involved and began an investigation, Woodhaven Geriatrics was shut down immediately.

Now that we know the history of the building, it makes it easier for us to understand the legends behind these ghosts.

With such a shit-sational background as this, there’s no wonder why there are tons of well documented encounters and occurrences on these grounds!

For starters, it wasn’t unusual to see rooms lit up,  when the building was abandoned in ruins and had no power.  There is even a ghostly hearse that pulls up to the back door and drops off coffins, when the driver returns to the car, it takes off and disappears into the darkness.

There are of course they typical slamming doors, disembodied voices and footsteps and lets not forget the cries and moans of the unfortunate patients.  And then there are ghosts, and a whole lot of them.  Two children for sure.  A little girl that can be seen running up and down the third floor solarium and a boy that is frequently seen playing with a leather ball.

There have been numerous encounters with the cook, a spector in a white coat that never seems to leave the kitchen.  Those that have encountered him also state that they can smell food cooking, most notably, fresh baked bread.

Now the fifth floor seems to be the hot spot here, and there is a good reason for that.  This is where the mentally insane white death patients were housed.  In the center of this floor there are two nurses stations, the patients were isolated to either side, and both sides opened at the other end onto a patio type area on the roof.  With these poor bastards kept far from view of other patients, they were the ones that bore the brunt of experimental treatments.  Many of them flung themselves from the roof top patio.

The nurses station is still staffed too, well kind of.  in 1928 the head nurse hung herself in room 502, this room was part of the nurses station.  In 1932 another nurse that worked in that same room, inexplicably  fled from the room and threw herself off of the roof top patio.  Both of these ladies are still on staff and can be encountered near or in room 502, but be careful if you decide to visit.  One of these ladies has a nasty disposition and has no problem telling visitors to “Get Out!” her voice has been recorded during several paranormal investigations.

The fourth floor is very active as well.  Most encounters are experiences when there are no flashlight or lanterns in use.  Patients and doctors alike can be see roaming the halls, going from room to room.

Investigations are still ongoing and every one produces more sightings, voices and otherwise creepy occurrences.  There is no way to document the number of souls that still reside here. Some are silent and do nothing other than show up, like the ones that can be seen resting in their beds on the solarium. Some are angry, no shit right?!  These are the ones that throw things, slap, pinch, hit, bite and scream when they are disturbed.

Some want to play, and are known to roll a ball towards visitors as an invitation.  Some want help, like the woman that frequently runs from the front doors sobbing while blood gushes from her wrists.

Besides the interior of the sanatorium there is still the body chute.  Imagine how many tormented souls walked alongside their bodies while they were being taken to the train to be loaded up like produce from some morbid harvest.

So if you’d like to check this wicked haunted Sanatorium out for yourself, it is available for tours.

The Dibbuk Box

dbSo, this beautiful wine box enters the market at an estate sale.  It previously was owned by a woman that lived to be 103 years old.  Prior to the old woman passing, she requested that the box be buried with her.  Because this was not typical to Jewish rituals, the Rabbi refused her last request, leaving her family responsible for the care of her personal possessions.

It’s September 2001 and there is a huge estate sale in Portland Oregon where the old woman’s belongings were being auctioned away by her grandchildren.  A local cabinet maker lays eyes on this unique piece and immediately feels compelled to buy it.  At the end of the auction, the cabinet maker is approached by the grand daughter who informs him of his grandmothers last wish.  She goes further and tells the guy that her grandmother always said that the box must never be opened.

The old woman was the only member of her family that survived Nazi concentration camp.  Her parents, brother, sister, husband and three children were all murdered at the same camp.  She survived by escaping with some other prisoners to Spain where she lived until the end of the war when she came to the United States.    The wine box had been purchased in Spain along with two other items that the woman brought with her when she
relocated.

The cabinetmaker began to feel that maybe he should leave the wine box with the family, certainly it had some sentimental value.  He offered the box back to the grand daughter who immediately refused.  He assured the woman that he did not want a refund, he would gladly return it to her as a good deed.  The Grand Daughter became irrational, she starts crying and screaming, demanding that the man leave immediately, and so he did,
with his newly purchased relic.

So the cabinet maker brings the box to his shop and puts it away with intentions of refinishing it and giving it to his mother for her upcoming birthday.  So the next day after he opens his shop, then leaves to run some errands.

Not 30 minutes later, his cell phone rings, it’s the girl that works for him.  She’s frantic and babbling into the phone about someone being in the shop with her.   She could hear glass breaking and swearing and on top of that, all of the security exits and the gate were inexplicably locked, she couldn’t get out.  As soon as the shop owner hears what’s going on, his cell phone goes dead.

So, he hauls ass back to his shop. When he arrives he finds the gates and doors still locked.  he finally gets into the shop to find his distraught employee curled into a fetal position under the front counter, she’s still sobbing hysterically.  So, he mans up and starts walking through the shop, as he’s looking around he sees that every light bulb in the shop has been shattered.  From regular screw in bulbs to 4 foot fluorescents, every light bulb had
been destroyed.  Not only was there the mess to contend with but the entire shop smelled strongly of cat urine.  No the guy didn’t have a cat.

So he goes back to check on his employee, he finds that she’s gone.  She’s never returned to work and refuses to talk about what happened to this day.  So a few days later the mess is cleaned up and the light bulbs are replaced, Moms birthday is coming up so he decides to get to work restoring the cabinet.  So what does he do? He opens the damned thing.  Inside he finds a 1925 and 1928 wheat penny, a lock of blonde hair and a lock of brown hair, a
dried rosebud, a small gold wine cup, a small granite statue and a cast iron candle stick holder.

The shop owner puts all of the contents into a box and returns them to the estate, they adamantly refused to take them.  So he’s back to restoring the wine box.  Upon closer examination he decides not to refinish it but to give it a good rub down with lemon oil.  Well, he would definitely have it ready for Mom’s birthday.  The next morning
he gets a call that Mom is going to stay with her sister for the next 2 days and that they will celebrate when she returned, which just happened to be October 31, Halloween.

So Mom gets back in town comes to his shop and he presents her with the box. Before he’s able to hear her response he has to leave to take a call.  While on his call one of his employees runs in screaming that something’s wrong with his Mother.

He runs into the room to find her completely unresponsive, tears rolling down her face. So Mom goes to the hospital by ambulance, once she’s stabilized they realize that she can’t speak and has partial paralysis.  In order for her to communicate, she is given a notebook with the alphabet written down on it, she points to spell words.

The first thing she says is NO GIFT.  Her son laughs, thinking that she had forgotten about the wine box.  He assured her that he had given her a gift.  She starts pointing at the notebook and spells out HATE GIFT.  A few days later since Mom hated the wine box, he gives it to his sister, two days later she returns it and says that the doors won’t stay closed.  He looks it over sees no problem with it and a few days later, he offers it to his brother.

Three days later he brings it back says that the box smells like jasmines and his wife said it smelled like cat urine.  So, he gives it to his girlfriend, she brings it back in two days and tells him to sell it.  So he puts it for sale in his shop and the next day a young couple purchased it. Well, three days later he goes to open his shop for the day and finds the box sitting in front of the door with a note on it.  It said: This has a bad darkness.

So the guy winds up taking it home with him, it’s then that he begins to see what the problem was.  Every night since he brought it home he has had the same nightmare.  He’s walking next to a friend and at some point he turns to look into their eyes, he finds something evil staring back at him and then his friends face began to change, turning into a gruesome and demonic looking hag who proceeds to beat the living shit out of him.  When
he wakes up the next morning he’s bruised and scratched.

So a few weeks into his nightly pummellings, his brother and his wife and his sister all come over to visit for the weekend.  The first morning they’re all gathered at the table for coffee His sister begins complaining about having had a nightmare the same one that she had had before.  She starts describing the dream and the room gets quiet.  They had all had the same dream, at that point he calls his girlfriend and asks her if she’d had the dream, sure enough, she had.

After this, the shit hits the fan.  Shadowy creatures begin lurking through his house, he’s not the only one seeing them, his guests and neighbors saw them as well. He puts the box outside in a storage unit only to be awoken by the fire alarm that night.  He goes to the unit to see what the hell is going on, he opens the door and is nearly knocked down by the smell of cat urine but nothing was on fire.  He goes back inside and finds that his house now smells like cat urine.

So, he goes back to the unit, grabs the box and begins to investigate it on the internet.  He dozes off and somewhere around 4:30 he’s woken by the smell and feel of something breathing on the back of his neck.  When he looks around he sees a large shadowy figure dart out of the door and down the hall.

So now that he’s awake, he lists the box on e-bay with a detailed outlay of his experiences, the box sells to Jason Haxton who is a museum director.  So now Haxton has a bit of history to add to the legend.

Since acquiring the box, Haxton has had prophetic dreams along with an array of health issues ranging from vision loss to hives, and his house is infested with shadowy creatures that float across the floor.  So why hasn’t he got rid of the damned thing?  Well, Haxton deems himself the caretaker.  The box is safer in his hands than in the hands of some poor unsuspecting bystander.  Since the paranormal activity began, Haxton has spent hours researching the box and the Dibbuk that is latched to it.   He has personally consulted with scientists, kabbalists, wiccans, priests and paranormal professionals.

For the past few years the box has been sealed inside a acacia chest lined in 24 carat gold.  It has been rendered neutral for the most part.

Haxton has informed his entire family that he wishes to be buried with it, just like the 103 year old woman that owned it from the beginning.  His wishes were the same; to keep it safe and protect everyone else as well.  But in the meanwhile Haxton has written a book and signed a movie deal.  The film “Possession” was released in the United States in August 2012.

Tune me in and Turn me on!

flier1Author Lyn Gibson shares urban legends and haunted history every Monday evening!  All horror – all hour, just the way we like it!  Tune in at TUNEIN Satellite Radio or stream live at ARMED RADIO GLOBAL!  Replays on SPREAKER

The Legend of Stingy Jack – Jack-o-Lantern urban legend

stingy-jack There’s the slightest hint of Fall in the air, an omen of one of the most revered holidays of the year, Halloween!

As a primer for the approaching, “Day of the Dead” I thought I’d share the urban legend that inspired the Jack-o-Lantern.

This tale is rooted in Irish folklore, stemmed off of the reputation of a man called Stingy Jack.

Stingy Jack was a nasty deviant,  foul tempered and mean was he!  Jack was a known alcoholic that frequently beat his wife and children before setting off into the streets to create mischief with whoever was unfortunate enough to encounter him.

One Halloween night Jack comes staggering in to the local pub.  He bellies up to the bar and orders a drink, but the Bar Keep is no fool.  Jack frequently comes in to the bar and drinks then has no money to pay.  This night there would be no free drinks for Jack.

By now he is irate as the Bar Keep has refused him service.  He looks about the pub and discovers that every man in the room has turned their backs to him, no doubt they had all fallen victim to his evil ways.

Just as he had about given up, the door to the pub flies open revealing Satan himself standing beneath the threshold.  You see, Satan had come to claim Jack’s soul on this night and he was eager to add another wicked man to his minions.

Jack peered over at the towering beast and deep within him he knew that he had been the reason for Satan’s visit.  Jack, thinking quickly, invites Satan to have a drink with him.  Satan, seeing no reason to refuse his offer, approaches the bar.  Jack orders two pints of ale for them, then proceeds to gulp his down in one swig.  Now Jack, having no money, laughs at the Bar Keep when he demands payment.  He then turns to Satan and convinces him to turn himself into a sixpence so that he could pay for their drinks.

Satan, seeing no harm in a further delay, turns himself into a sixpence.  Jack, true to his own evil nature, picks the sixpence up from the bar and puts it into his pocket next to a silver cross which would keep Satan from returning to his true form.  Jack then flees from the pub, his belly full of ale and his pocket heavy with coin.

At some point Jack decides to set Satan free and releases him to return to his true form with one condition; that Satan would not return for his soul for 10 years.

Ten years later Jack is stumbling down a dark country road and who should he encounter other than Satan himself!  Satan, angered at having been outsmarted and imprisoned by a drunkard, is eager to claim what is rightfully his.

“I’ll go with you” Jack said.  “But before I go, will you pick that apple from the tree for me” he said motioning to the top of a nearby apple tree.

Satan, feeling he had nothing to lose, climbed the tree but soon became perturbed as Jack stood pointing at the highest apple on the tree.  He grumbled loudly but continued climbing up into the tree.

When Jack saw that he was on the highest branch, he ran quickly to the tree and carved a cross into the trunk so Satan could not descent.  Jack, now overjoyed by his own wit, made Satan promise that he would never again come seeking his soul.  Satan, seeing no other option, begrudgingly agreed.

Soon after this, Jack died but the story doesn’t end here.  Seeing as that Jack was such an unsavory character and had knowingly made deals with the devil, God refused him entry to Heaven.  Jack soon after finds himself at the gates of Hell, but he would find no solace here.  Satan was still quite put off by the tricks that jack had played on him, he too refused Jack entrance.

Jack, standing alone in the darkness cries out to Satan.  “God will not allow me into heaven and you refuse to claim my soul, where is it that I am to go?”

Satan, feeling no compassion for Jack, calls back to him, “Go back where you came from!”

The way back was very dark and treacherous and Jack was afraid.  He began begging Satan for a light so that he may find his way back.  Satan, now more that a little irritated, tossed some coals from the lake of fire at Jack’s feet.  Jack carved out a turnip and placed the coals inside to light his way.  From that day forward Jack has roamed the earth in the form of a shadowy man, carrying what we know today as a Jack-o-Lantern.

Now that you know the urban legend, I’ll fill you in on the pumpkin side!  The carved turnips became common place because of the great potato famine.  When Irish immigrants began to migrate to the United States, they found an abundance of pumpkins or other gourds that were much larger and much easier to carve.

Homes all across the United States and other countries place Jack-o-Lanterns in the windows or on their front porches for dual purposes, whether we knew it or not.  The Jack-o-Lantern is said to frighten old Stingy Jack away but on the flip side, a tasty gourd is seen as a food offering to other ill willed spirits that are free to haunt the living on All Hallows Eve.  Got your pumpkin ready?

Haunted Louisiana – The Chretien Plantation

So, who doesn’t love to hear the history of an old Louisiana Plantation!  Well, there are a ton of old homesteads in our state, nearly all of them have traumatic pasts which today renders them nothing less than haunted!  Here’s one that I just stumbled across:

chretien1Construction of the Chretien Point Plantation began in 1831 and was complete, in Sunset Louisiana in 1835.  It’s owner Hippolyte Chretien and his wife Felicite moved in upon completion.  Four years later, Hippolyte died of Yellow Fever, his wife stayed on to fun the 3000 acre cotton farm.  She and her 500+ slaves would see the farm grow to 10,000 acres and all was well until October of 1863.  The plantation became a war zone when the Battle of Buzzard’s Prairie erupted, and then later in November, the infamous “Bloody Battle of Bayou Bourbeux” all but consumed the grounds.  *More on this later in the blog!

The main house was used as a hospital during this period, catering mainly to local Confederate Soldiers.  Many lives were saved, and lost on the property, it is said that the spirits of the soldiers which remained on the grounds continue to fight their battle even today.

The boots of soldiers and slaves were not exclusive to having trodden the plantation grounds.  Garrr!  There be pirates in this tale too!  That’s right, none other than Jean Lafitte resided at the main house.  He and Hippolyte were known business associates, but he was not the only Pirate that traded goods with the Chretien dynasty.  One Pirate named Robert (pronounced Ro Bair) met a well deserved fate at the front steps of the main house.  It seems that greed took hold after Hippolyte passed.  Intent on robbing the widow Felicite, he approached the front door, pistol in hand.  Felicite knew his plan exactly!  She opened the front door dangling a diamond choker in front of her.  When Robert reached out to take the choker, Felicite shot him in the head with a pistol of her own that had been tucked within the pleats of her skirts!

Ok, so I told you that to tell you this:  The Chretien Plantation was the model for Tara of “Gone With the Wind” complete with the true story of the Mistress of the house defending herself against an ill-willed invader!

Felicite and her children, along with Robert can still be seen on the grounds to this day.  Felicite goes about her normal routine, overseeing the plantation just as she did in life.  Robert still searches for the Chretien treasures while both Union and Confederate Soldiers re-enact their battles complete with the sounds of marching feet, the smell of gunpowder and the eternal wailing of the injured and dying.

Here’s the extra tidbit that I teased earlier in the blog:  Marland’s  Bridge

marlandsbridge-300x165The bridge is said to be the most haunted place in Lafayette.  It is located beside the Chretien Plantation and was in the midst of both the Battle of Buzzard’s Prairie and most notably the Bloody Battle of Bayou Bourbeux!  Named after a brave Confederate Soldier, a twenty-three-year-old Lieutenant, William Marland of the Second Massachusetts artillery (later honored with the Congressional Medal of Honor for his brave actions that day).

When Union Soldiers advanced, Marland baited them by standing in the center of the bridge, leaving the soldiers under the impression that he was surrendering.  When the Union Soldiers were all on the bridge, Marland and his hidden artillary squad charged the bridge forcing the soldiers to jump.  Those that did not perish from the jump were met by awaiting Confederate soldiers below, only to meet a far worse fate!

Today, on Marland’s Bridge, could encounter glowing orbs, disembodied voices, cold spots and shadowy figures.  One recent investigation by GhostsN Spectors of Breaux Bridge was found to be quite successful.  Here is what they had to report:

“One of our parked vehicles had the head lights and interior lights turned on when all investigators were across the bridge and this phenomena took place at the time we captured an EVP saying ‘get in your truck and leave,’” they claimed on the web site report, along with a recording of the actual EVP. “While walking the area on the anniversary of the battle, an investigator complained of sudden pain in the arm as if she’d been struck with something. After removing a jacket and rolling up a sleeve, a round red mark about the size of a dime was visible. The investigator reported feeling as if she’d been ‘hit’ with something small and it burned like being stabbed with a hot iron. The description of the sensation is similar to that given by gunshot victims. The pain eased after about thirty minutes but the mark lasted a few hours then faded.”

Sounds like a nice place to visit, anyone up for a road trip!?!