Haunted History – The Cecil Hotel

So let’s talk about the Cecil Hotel in L.A., trust me, not a place you’d want to book for vacation, unless you’re as demented as I am!

cecilThe Cecil is a low budget hotel and when I say low, I mean gutter low.  This 600 room train wreck plays host to transients and crackheads alike, offering a roof over their guests heads for about $470 per month, getting the picture, yeah, it’s like that!  Since its construction in 1927 it has been the site for multiple suicides, murders, and disappearances as well as providing a sanctuary for serial killers.

cycsternIn 2013 the Cecil was the site of a mysterious death, this highly publicized tragedy hit headlines across the nation, you may have heard something about it.  It started out with complaints from the guests, stating that the water smelled bad and had a foul taste.  Well, when maintenance staff started investigating the cause it took a while but eventually a corpse was discovered in the water cistern on the roof.  At the bottom of the tank were the remains of a Canadian tourist named Elisa Lam, ring a bell yet?

Just imagine, these folks had been bathing in, brushing their teeth and cooking with the same water that Lams body had been decomposing in, fantastic right!  Lam had checked into the hotel on January 26 and was reported missing on February 1st. No on knows what happened to her to this day but closed circuit tv recordings showed  Lam acting bizarrely, hiding in the lift, then pressing all the buttons before peering out strangely. She eventually exits the lift and gestures to someone – or something – outside the doors.

After this, she vanished. Her body was discovered in the tank on the secured and alarmed rooftop over two weeks later.  In watching the footage it appears that Lam had consumed some serious drugs when she is filmed in the lift, yet no substances were found in her system during an autopsy.

The coroner ruled her death “accidental due to drowning”, yet many questions remain unanswered. What actually happened to Lam may never be known.

rrAs far as those serial killers, yeah, here we go:  The Cecil was home to ‘Night Stalker’ Richard Ramirez, an American serial killer, rapist and burglar during 1984-85. The satanist’s terrorized L.A. before he was finally captured and convicted of 13 murders.

He lived on the top floor in a $14-a-night room while he slaughtered his 13 female victims.  It was convenient for him, he’d just dump his bloody clothes in the dumpster at the end of the evening and go into the hotel via the rear entrance.  Ramirez was sentenced to death in a gas chamber in 1989, and on receiving his sentence showed no remorse, his last statement: “Big deal. Death always went with the territory. See you in Disneyland.” Yeah, keep that shit in mind when you book your summer vacation with the kids right!

jackAustrian serial killer Jack Unterweger also stayed at the hotel in 1991 for five weeks. During this time he murdered three prostitutes, who would enter his room via the fire escape for a measly $30.  This all occurred after he had been jailed and released in Austria for similar murders.  He was released as an example for rehabilitation and was hired by an Austrian magazine to be a crime writer in Los Angeles.  The disturbed crime journalist is believed to have been paying homage to his subject, Richard Ramirez, when he beat, sexually assaulted and then strangled the women with their own bra straps.

g1And what about the suicides and murders?  The horrors started at the beginning of the great depression.   In 1929 a 33 year old woman was taken to the hospital after wandering around the hotel for 3 days while acting in a bizarre manner.  According to reports, she was distraught over the sudden death of her husband and had tried to poison herself with prescribed barbiturates. She failed in her attempt.  After this, the hotel became known as a suicide hot spot.  The first suicide was documented only a few weeks later when a 46 year old man intentionally od’s on poison.   The following year, a 25-year-old man shot himself in his hotel room.  A year later, a young truck driver was fatally pinned against the hotel by a large truck.

g2In 1934, another lonely man took his life.  and then a marine fireman named Roy Thompson, who had been at the Cecil for several weeks, was found dead in the skylight of the building next door after apparently jumping from his hotel room.   Oh, I’m not finished because Pauline Otton, 27, threw herself to her death from a ninth-floor window after arguing with her husband. She landed on pedestrian George Gianinni, 65, on the street below, killing him instantly. Oh and helen Gurnee too, she plunged to her death from a seventh-floor window, her body landing atop the hotel marquee above the heads of pedestrians,  and check this out,  In 1947, Elizabeth Short, nicknamed the Black Dahlia, was allegedly seen at the Cecil bar shortly before she was murdered.

In an unsolved murder in 1964, Pigeon woman, Goldie Osgood, who enjoyed feeding the birds in a nearby square, was found dead in her room. She had been stabbed, strangled and raped – and then had her room ransacked.

These deaths are only a potion of the tragedies that have befallen the Cecil there are many more bizarre stories to be told such as the man accused of killing his girlfriend in Huntington Beach was arrested at the Cecil in 1988.   In 1995, a murder suspect named Eric Reed was found at the hotel, after breaking out of a jail in Castaic.

So, yeah, as I was saying, unless you are demented, not a place you’d care to book.  But I think we may spend some time on this join in a later episode.  I’ve only researched the grizzly deaths associated with the Cecil, There have got to be some serious ghosts wandering around this hotel today, wouldn’t you think?  Yeah, I’m thinking I’ll have to dig into this a little further but at least now we know the background, so later when we talk about the hauntings, we’ll at least have a better understanding of why right!

 

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Haunted History, The Ghosts of 911

 

Everybody and their Grandmama can remember exactly where they were when this fucked up event took place.  I was wearing a suit and heels and carrying a briefcase, standing in my office with my eyes glued to the TV.  Yeah, me in a suit with a briefcase, that’s scary enough in it’s own right!  My initial reaction when I walked into the conference room and saw the scene playing out was that everybody was watching a movie, it didn’t take long before I figured out otherwise, and the cameras rolled on as people were jumping or falling from the flaming building.  People noticed right away that there was something evil in the air, besides the physical fall out from the attack. Almost immediately pictures were being posted of demonic faces that had emerged in the billowing smoke that followed the explosions.  I’ve looked at several still frames and videos.  There are 13 distinct wicked faces that were documented that day, and from then forward there have been tales of paranormal activity on that very site.

There are hundreds of reports from workers and volunteers that participated in searching through the rubble for bodies.  Along with these eyewitness statements comes tons of photographs of white misty figures floating about over the rubble.  The spirits of those that perished that day searched desperately for answers.  Some of these victims never knew what hit them, their scenarios are much like the mother we discussed earlier.  But then there were those that looked out of a window just before the plane plowed through the building.  They saw what was coming.  Imagine the terror and desperation, the flux of adrenaline and the sensation of damnation that these folks felt as they braced for impact.  That is the very state that hundreds of these victims died in and that is the very sense that has saturated the soil where the freedom tower stands today.

The clean up after the attack took nine months to clear out, a total of 1.8 millions of rubble and debris were moved to a landfill where volunteers sifted through each handful for remains or any forms of identification that could be found.  Many of the spirits also came to the site where the rubble had been delivered.  Frank Marra was a NYPD officer that had been assigned to help and oversee this “Sifter” project.  Frank had so many encounters with the spirits of the victims from 911 that he wrote his own book entitled Hallowed Ground, it may be one that you would want to pick up.

1Among some of Frank’s experiences were these, two of which we’ve talked about in the past.  Frank, on several occasions, witnessed an colored woman dressed in a red cross uniform, she was carrying around a tray of sandwiches.  The apparition was strikingly vivid until she got near him, then she would fade away into nothing.  Frank was not the only worker on the site to see the red cross woman, several other volunteers reported witnessing the same image.  And there’s another example.  Frank, along with many others that worked the site of the attack as well as the Sifter project, reported seeing Soul reapers, large black masses that slowly hovered over the rubble.  Soul reapers are said to be heavenly entities that are here to help spirits find their way.  It’s a good thing, I’m certain the help was needed but I am also certain that not every wayward spirit was retrieved from either site.

WTC Ghost_WatermarkedJoe Lani, another NYPD officer, worked at ground zero 12 hours a day for 5 months.  His first paranormal encounter was on day 1.  His work hours were from 4 am to 4PM, he rolls onto the site at 4 in the morning and sees a man walking around in the middle of all of the rubble and debris.  He then gets out of his vehicle to begin his work day and decides to go over and get a status report from the man he sees walking around.  But the second he gets close enough to call out to him, he disappears into thin air.  These experiences became the norm for Joe and everyone else on site.  5 months into this heart wrenching detail and his heart literally gives out on him.  After his heart attack, Joe was forced to retire, but several of the spirits that he had encountered on site, came home with him.

Spirits walk through the rooms of his home, absorbing all of the light and electricity within them as they pass.  He is frequently touched or tapped by unseen hands, and there are the constantly muffled voices of those that are still crying out for justice or at the very least, an explanation of what has happened to them.  and lastly, every clock in Joe’s house is constantly stopping at 8:46 am which is the exact time the first tower was hit.

Joe has a music room in his home, which he calls the “drum room.”  He said the room became rife with paranormal activity. He’d walk in and there would be cold spots, the smell of cigarette smoke and perfume, and his cellphone battery would immediately drain.  Lights would flicker.  So he began taking photos and, to his shock, the photos revealed apparitions in the form of foggy streaks of light also known as ectoplasm.  The ectoplasm even spelled out his name.  Another time, a spectral crucifix appeared on his kitchen cabinets.  The next time, the Twin Towers appeared in the same spot.  He caught both on film.

First responders, on site witnesses and volunteers weren’t the only ones that were directly affected by the horrendous remains scattering the area.  Several days passed before folks that lived near ground zero were allowed to return to their homes.  Most of these folks were accompanied by police or fireman just to make sure these folks would be returning to structurally sound residences.  Imagine having been at work only a few blocks from where the attacks went down, close enough to see the rising flames and billowing smoke.

You wonder who of your friends and family could have been lost and then at the end of the day, you’re informed that you can’t go home.  Here’s what makes it worse.  Several days have passed, you and everyone you know or encounter are physically and mentally exhausted, you’re only form of relief is knowing that you will finally be allowed to return to your apartment.  So, your escorted all the way to your door, everything is basically ok, covered in ashes and soot, but ok.  You open your door and see that there is a huge gaping hole in the wall where there was once a window and just inside what was once your dining nook sits 2 airliner seats with the scorched remains of human bodies still strapped in them.

There were tons of grisly tales running rampant for days and weeks after the attack.   A policeman dead of a self-inflicted bullet wound, his legs crushed in the rubble. (He’d chosen to die quickly rather than slowly.) A baby’s broken body trampled on the street outside the World Trade Center.  A pair of clasped hands, severed at the wrists, one black and one white. Five emaciated bodies dug out of the debris sometime in November. (These folks had died of starvation.) and these are just the tales that we know about, there are bound to be multitudes of others.

On November 3rd 2014 the Freedom Tower was opened on the site of where the twin towers once stood.  Inside of the world trade center complex there were also a set of twin fountains and a September the 11th museum constructed to memorialize both the victims and the site itself.  Since construction began on this complex there have been reports of a mysterious hum or moan reported, some believe that it is the sound of the victims desperate voices as they call out from beyond.  Now folks, I have actually listened to a couple of different recordings of this humming noise.  The first time I heard it, even within the first few seconds, my initial reaction was heartbreak and my eyes filled with tears, that should tell you something right there.  Whether there’s a physical reason for the heart-wrenching sound or if spirits are reaching out, no one knows. No scientific explanation exists.

Before the Freedom Tower was built, the Millennium Hilton Hotel overlooked the ground zero site. Many hotel visitors reported seeing all kinds of ghostly activity.  One visitor swore that he felt like a crowd of people were in his room, and he couldn’t sleep there.  Other guests complained to the staff that they had nightmares of 9/11 victims faces pressing against their windows.  Due to all of the complaints, the staff avoided renting rooms that had a view of Ground Zero.

3In the September 11 Museum, a 30 foot girder from the original tower is on display.  The centerpiece has been bent and deformed from the Flight 11 aircraft.  On the metal surface, a face appeared to construction workers. Thereafter, many of the workers were too frightened to go near the display.  They dubbed this piece the “Angel of 911” as it seems to look down in anguish and horror for what has come to pass.

While we’re on the subject of strange and inexplicable happenings, some believe that it would have been impossible for the airplane passengers to have called from their cellphones, and yet many did.  The planes were flying at 29,000 and 31,000 feet.  According to Bill Rojas of IDCAR, cellphone reception is lost at about 10,000 feet.

4And then there was flight 93, no way I wouldn’t acknowledge these guys.  Their brave acts saved the lives of hundreds, possibly 1000’s.  Certainly the emotions spent upon their last stand have permeated the soil there at the fated site.  Today there stands a memorial for each hero that gave their life that day, but on September 11th there was a flaming pile of wreckage beneath a billowing cloud of smoke that reeked of aviation fuel and pine trees.

Three hours after impact, an FBI agent by the name of Lillie Leonardi was sent to the site in the capacity of liaison between first repsonders and victims families.  Lillie was used to gruesome scenes due to her scope of work but when she arrived to the flight 93 site she said it was oddly different than the others she had worked on.  The site was still, quiet even and most bizarre, there were no bodies scattered around, it was like the ground opened up and swallowed the plane.  and then, Lillie has a paranormal encounter that few have ever experienced.  She said she looked on as the smoke started to settle to the ground and then from the ground rose angels, hundreds of them were gathering just to the left of the site.  Then a sudden brisk wind came from nowhere distracting her and two men that were walking to either side.  There attention was grabbed as the wind seemingly intentionally flipped through the pages of a barely singed book then abruptly stopped.

Lillie picked up the book to see that it was a bible, and the page where it stopped, Psalm 23.  For you that don’t know, Psalms 23 is more commonly known as the Lords Prayer, The Lord in my Shepard, I shall not want, ring a bell, yeah, incredible right!

Today the site is fenced off and patrolled by security guards, and trust me these guys have some stories to tell too, tons.  On a normal night there are easily half a dozen shadow people encountered but there are several that appear vividly in full form as well.  Voices are heard several times per shift and inside the trailer on site that serves as an office, it’s typical that the front door is knocked on by unseen hands, furniture is moved and voices are heard.

and then what about flight 77?  Well, folks, I did a little digging and guess what I found?  Nothing, zip, nada.  I was perplexed for a minute, how could this be?  ok, there weren’t thousands of deaths at that site, but still more than just a handful of people died there that day.  Then I realized, it’s the pentagon, we’ll never, ever know anything about any spirits that return to, or never left that site.

 

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Haunted History – Headless Horsemen

I’ve run across some cool headless horsemen legends I wanna tell you about. Yeah, get Icabod Crane out of your heads, these aren’t works of fiction, these legends are a big part of haunted history in the areas where they originate.  Let’s start out in south Texas, shall we?

So, the legend of El Muerto has been around for a very long time, the mid 1800’s to be exact.  Back in the day there was a little strip of land between the Nueces and Rio Grande Rivers that was known as no man’s land.  The area was well known to be a haven for horse thieves and cattle rustlers, and back then, these crimes were worse than murder.  Things had gotten so bad in this area that the Texas Rangers basically deputized posses and sent them out to handle business, but it wasn’t going so well for them.

One of the worse bandits to encounter in no man’s land was a man named Vidal.  By 1850, this dude had a high price on his head and was wanted dead or alive.  And on the flip side, two of the worst rangers for bandits to encounter in this area were Taylor Creed and William “Big Foot” Wallace.  Now, these two in particular had spent a lot of time running these criminals out of the area and they’d resorted to some pretty brutal tactics because shooting and hanging them from trees just hadn’t seemed to get the point across.

Well it just so happened that while both of these guys were out of town defending a white settlement against Comanche attacks.  Vidal and his hoodlums decide to steal Creed’s livestock.  When Creed gets home and finds several of his prized mustangs gone, the shit hits the fan.  He and Wallace join up with a neighboring rancher by the name of Flores and they track down Vidal and his associates shortly thereafter.

So they wait outside of Vidal’s camp and once they’re certain that everyone was asleep, they sneak in and kill every last one of them.  Knowing that this wasn’t going to make the statement that they wanted to make, Big Foot cuts off Vidal’s head then fastens his headless body to a saddle that he strapped to a wild mustang.  Then he ties Vidal’s hat to his head and fastens it to the saddle as well before sending the mustang to roam the country side as a warning.

It didn’t take long before stories began circulating about a headless horseman seen riding around no man’s land. The apparition scared the Hell out of Cowboys and Indians alike and soon Vidal’s mutilated body was full of bullet holes and arrows.  People stated calling this headless horseman El Muerto. As time went by a legend grew that people must avoid this strange apparition because when it was seen, some evil misfortune would befall them.

In the end, a group of ranchers caught up with this poor burdened horse near Alice, Texas. They buried Vidal’s body in an unmarked grave near the tiny community of Ben Bolt. As soon as his body was laid to rest, soldiers at Fort Inge began to see the apparition of a headless rider. Travelers and ranchers in No Man’s Land also reported seeing this strange sight.

One written account was recorded in 1917.  It mentions that a couple traveling to San Diego, Texas made camp for the night near a stream.  As they sat at their fire, they saw a large grey stallion speed by with a headless man atop it.  They stated they heard him shouting, “It is mine. It is mine.” Yet other witnesses saw a similar sight in 1969 outside the town of Freer, Texas.  Even today, people still claim to see El Muerto galloping through the mesquite in the bush country on moonlit nights.

Well Old El Muerto isn’t the only headless horseman out there today, there’s a legend in southern Illinois about a man named Joel Lakely.  This story came to life back before the 1830’s around what is known today as Lakely’s Creek.  The creek, in fact, was named after Lakely.  So, Joel built his home near a shallow spot in the creek where it was easy for folks to cross over.  He was a sociable kind of guy and enjoyed meeting riders as they passed by his home.

Well, old Joel was murdered by his son in law one day, no one knows why.  His headless body was found propped up against a tree and beside him was the very axe that he had used to cut down trees when building his home.  His body and head were buried there next to his new house.  It wasn’t long before folks that crossed the stream there began witnessing some very strange things.  There were reports being made that people would hear heavy horse hooves behind them as they went to cross the creek but when they turned to see who followed them there was no evidence of another rider or horse.

Other witnesses experienced something more terrifying. They too had heard the horse hooves but when they turned around to see who was behind them, they saw a large black horse with a headless rider. Witnesses stated this horrible apparition would chase them–at least until they reached the creek.

All these accounts mention that this headless rider was always seen downstream from from where the witnesses were, which is the same side of the creek near the forest area where Lakey was murdered. This rider and his horse would not follow them across the creek but instead would turn back and go downstream.

Sightings of this headless horseman have endured for over 200 years. This apparition is still seen today. The old ford along Lakey’s Creek has been abandoned for years and there’s a modern bridge that crosses the creek today. It is on this bridge where travelers report seeing Lakely, the headless horseman.

What about one more headless horseman, you know it’s more fun when there’s three right!  I know where your mind went!  Anyway, in Irish legends the horseman is known as a Dullahan, who’s agenda is a little different than the first two.  The Dullahan is basically a reaper, he comes around to grab the souls of those that are dying.  His description is basically the same, big guy, no head.  He is said to ride around on a massive black horse that either also has no head or if he does, he’s got clipped ears and glowing red eyes.  The Dullahan, I have to say, is a bit more intimidating than El Muerto and Joel Lakely, that’s for sure.  He uses a human spine as a whip and if you were to lock eyes with him, he’s gonna snatch your eyes out!  because he can.  Now this dudes head isn’t missing, he usually carries it around with him, he holds it up to see with, and he can see for miles and miles, even in pitch dark he can look right inside the house of the dying even if it’s somewhere across the countryside from where he stands.  Sometimes he’s known to set his head back on his shoulders but more than often, he’s in the habit of throwing it at folks.

Now sometimes the Dullahan would arrive in style, sitting on top of what is known as the death coach.  In his hands are the reins which are attached to 6 black horses that draw the carriage so fast that bushes and trees sometimes catch fire in their wake.  And there was no hiding from him once the wheels on the carriage began to turn as the Dullahan could not return empty handed.  To see or hear him coming was a sure sign that you or someone in your household was fixing to bite it.  Nothing could deter the Dullahan, even locks on gates or doors suddenly spring open in his presence.  The legend goes further to say that if you hear him coming and you open your door and he wasn’t there for you, you would be covered in buckets of blood or even worse be rendered blind in his presence, the only hope you would have, would be to expose him to solid gold.  For some reason he doesn’t like it, and gold will send him barrelling back to the depths from which he arose, at least temporarily.

So one quirky fact about this legendary headless horseman, why is he headless?  Well because ancient Celts believed that the soul resided in your head.  That’s why when the warriors encountered a worthy opponent they were sure to take his head.  They further believed that if they were to attach the head to a pole outside of their home, that it would begin to shriek if the enemy was approaching.

Oh and there’s this tale, he’s not a horseman but he’s got a little issue with his head!  So William Laud was Archbishop of Canterbury from 1633-1645.  During this time religion was in turmoil and Laud had made some serious enemies.  He once had 3 prominent Puritan’s ears and then branded their SL on their cheeks which stood for Seditious Libeller.  That means that they organized against whatever was socially acceptable in some way.
Eventually, his enemies gained enough political power to have him arrested and beheaded for subverting Protestantism and alienating the King from his subjects.

Before becoming Archbishop of Canterbury, Laud was the Chancellor of Oxford University. His gruesome end has become associated with a haunting at the library of St. John’s College in Oxford. At night, it is said, a ghostly figure can be seen walking the building, carrying a candle in his hand as he kicks his own severed head along the floor.

And here’s one more quick tale for you, This one is about the ghost of a drummer boy.  Rumor has it that a mysterious drumming noise can be heard in the walls of Edinburgh Castle. The source of this lonely sound is said to be a phantom drummer boy. According to the story, the boy is seen whenever the castle is under threat, first appearing in 1650 when Oliver Cromwell launched an attack. When he appears, the ghostly drummer boy lacks a head.

Ghostly drummer boys are a recurring motif in legends around the world—for example, one such spirit is said to have been haunting Shiloh in America since the days of the Civil War. However, the headless nature of the ghost of Edinburgh Castle marks him out as a unique case, Bet he got caught putting that little head somewhere it didn’t belong!

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Haunted History – Haunted Clifton Hall

Believe it or not, there’s a spooky story about a castle in the UK that we haven’t talked about on yet!.  It may be more than a little obvious by now that I kind of dig haunted castles!  This one is a little different from the others that I usually tell you guys about though.  There’s not a whole bunch of ancient history here, I don’t really get why, but let me tell you a little about what I did find.

So this castle was purchased by Gervase de Clifton from the de Rodes family in the late 1300’s, so we really don’t know how old the original structure is, though locals say it was erected in the 11th century.  Now there’s plenty of history on the Clifton family, of course there would be, it seems that every successor has held a position of authority for the entire 700 years that the estate was in their family.  Most of these dudes where sheriffs or other law enforcement types.  That doesn’t put me in the mind of clean cut and wholesome to begin with, not back in these times.  I don’t know it to be fact but in my twisted little mind, I’m thinking that sentences were passed and executions were likely performed on this property.  I guess we may never know as there is just nothing of that sort of history recorded, that I can find.

The history of the estate itself is only adamant about a few things during the 700 years that the Clifton’s resided there, It seemed that damn near every successor or heir, had the entire estate renovated, altered and or added on to, so this goes on until the 1950’s when the last of the heirs decided to sell the property.  Then the estate changed hands several times and most of those times having been converted to private schools.  This is where the bulk of the haunted history comes in to play, but there’s not really much to tell here.

The first story was about a room where the windows and door had been bricked closed.  From within the closed off room students often reported hearing the sound of an infant crying.  The legend behind it has to do with a jilted lover.  It says that the maid, who was also the master’s mistress, gave birth to his son while living at the estate.  After having been denied status of any sort by her lover, the distressed new mother snatches up the infant and does a swan dive out of the window of what is now the closed off room.  She and the infant of course, didn’t survive the impact of the fall, guess that left the master of the house with a little explaining to do, huh?!

Besides the jilted lover story there were chatter of dopplegangers, ever hear of those?  These are some bad assed entities here folks, they’re evil spirits that take on the appearance of someone in order to do wicked things.  There had been several reports of students during the 70’s that ran in to their own dopplegangers in the halls of the manor while it was serving as a school.  The reports are there but they don’t go into great detail.  Well this goes on until the grounds once again are sold.  and in 2000 the main house was converted into two luxury apartments.  For one reason or the other, the luxury apartment thing didn’t work out for very long and in 2007 the estate was purchased by a millionaire named Anwar Rashid, this is where it starts getting good ya’ll!

So Rashid buys the place, and moves in with his family, consisting of 4 kids, his wife, his brother and both of his parents.  It’s a good thing this joint is massive and has a shit ton of bedrooms, 17 to be exact along with 10 bathrooms a gym and private theater.  Well, his noble intentions were soon going to crumble at his feet, in fact the first night in their new home there were already signs of what was to come.  The first paranormal experience came in the form of sharp knocking followed by a man’s voice.  Rashid called out asking if anyone was there, there was no response, moments later the knocking and the voice were back.  They couldn’t figure out where it was coming from, there was no one at any of the entrances when they were checked, in fact, it sounded like it was coming from all around them.  So Rashid and his brother go room to room checking every window and door, there was no one there that wasn’t supposed to be, at least no  one that they could see right!

Things kind of settled down after that and there was no noticeable activity for several weeks and then it began again.  One morning the maid had returned to her quarters before carrying on with her daily chores, when she opened the door there was the grey misty figure of someone sitting on her bed, the covers and mattress were dimpled under the weight of the shadowy creature.  As she’s standing in the doorway trying to comprehend what she’s seeing, it turns to look at her then disappears leaving the bed linens wrinkled where it had been sitting.  needless to say, that maid was a wee bit on the distraught side!

Only days after everyone settled from the maid’s encounter, something new happened.  Rashid’s wife was on her way downstairs to fix some milk for their newborn, when she gets downstairs she sees her oldest daughter in the den watching tv.  Well it’s 5 o’clock in the morning and she’s of course concerned over why her daughter was up at that hour and how long she’d been up.  But with a hungry fussy baby in her arms, she was driven to the kitchen to fix his breakfast.  She called out a couple of times to the nearby den for her daughter to join her but there was no answer.  Once the bottle was prepared she turns to go back upstairs, shrugging off the whole thing that her daughter hadn’t answered to a moody teenager thing.  She walks back by the den, her daughter is still glued to the TV.  Fine whatever!  So as she gets back upstairs she just happens to glance over into her daughters bedroom, you know, the moody teenager that’s downstairs watching tv, yeah, not so much, the girl was asleep in her bed.  What the HELL is this madness right!

So now they’re terrified, these spirits are taking on the form of their children! what’s next!  Well, I’m gonna tell you what’s next.  All of them start seeing these dark shadowy figures lurking around the house.  Then comes the sound of the baby crying from behind the wall, which is really freaking them out because of their baby, so I’m betting that one of them kept that kid strapped to them just to make sure nothing’s messing with it.

It wasn’t just the sound of the ghostly infant’s crying that they were hearing either, now there were the sounds of other people’s voices coming from all around, but no one was ever there.  So, Rashid calls in a paranormal investigator and his team, hoping that they could help them get rid of the ghosts.  The Team leader who was also a police officer, later admitted that out of all of the places they had investigated in the past, Clifton hall was the only place that really scared him.  Upon having been on the grounds for about an hour, two members of the team encounter the ghost of a small boy, they immediately fainted, pussies!  What the hell are you doing on a paranormal investigation if you’re going to faint when you see a ghost, duh!  Anyway, at the conclusion of the investigation, the consensus was that Clifton hall was the most haunted property they had ever stepped foot on, there was so much activity in this house that there was no way they could help Rashid and his family.

Rashid was kicking himself in the ass by now.  He had been warned that strange things happened in the house, but he didn’t believe in that kind of bullshit.  He’d heard the stories of the jilted lover and the dopplegangers, he’d even heard that the grounds had originally been used for satanic rituals back in the 11th and 12th centuries.  He even knew about the maze of secret tunnels that were beneath the house and all throughout the grounds.  But, he didn’t listen, now he’s living the nightmare that he had so arrogantly laughed off when he was warned.  And now, he’s being told that no one can help him and his family.  The dude was stuck like chuck, he’d just dropped 3.6 million pounds on the estate, what the hell was he gonna do now!

Well, everyone had hoped that just the presence of an investigative team would cause the activity to die down, these folks must be idiots right!  We know better than that don’t we.  Yeah, it only got worse for them, and just days after the team had left the grounds, Rashid and his wife went in to check on their 18 month old son while he slept in his nursery, when they see drops of blood falling from nowhere onto the baby and his bed, that pretty much did it.  They walked away from the investment.

Rashid told the bank to take that bitch back, he would take the loss.  So now, if you’re interested, you can pick this joint up for a steal at 2.75 million pounds, cause it’s just sitting on the market waiting for you!

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Louisiana’s Pirate – Jean Lafitte

jeanWhen it comes to pirates, I’m most definitely going to talk about Louisiana’s own, Jean Lafitte!  Jean, of course, was known for his piracy in and around the Gulf of Mexico but I bet you didn’t know that he was also known to have been a hero during the battle of New Orleans.  Yeah, he had his good moments, and then of course there were those other moments.  In fact, on 3 separate occasions, U.S. Presidents Condemned then exonerated his actions.  Jean liked to keep them guessing right!?

Well, in 1804 Louisiana became United States territory, Jean and his brother Pierre bought into a warehouse where they would dispense the goods that they smuggled into port.  When the government passed the embargo act, the brothers moved their business to an island in Barataria bay.  Laffitte was such an entrepreneur and a diplomat the he had been able to take an entire island full of shiftless seafarers and fisherman and turn them into an organized group of buccaneers, smugglers and wholesalers.  By 1810 their port was a huge success.  The two of them continued smuggling and Jean began his career as a pirate, it wasn’t long after, when Captain Lafitte had acquired his own fleet.

During this time, while the embargo was still active, things got tough, especially for the southern states.  Lafitte’s beloved Louisiana, and it’s people, were suffering, so he put his fleet to work.  From the ships that he plundered off of the Caribbean coast and the Atlantic, he and his crews were able to keep clothes and commodities flowing to the people of Louisiana.  As a result, Lafitte became a hero to both the rich and the poor alike, even authorities in high positions were turning a blind eye to his more questionable accomplishments.

Jean saw himself as a patriot, he respected the American constitution and never once attacked an American vessel.  But not everyone saw him in the same light.  Despite Lafitte’s shifty methods, his endless supplies of clothes, spices, furniture and other necessities which helped Louisiana survive and thrive, In 1814 things began to go bad for him.  There was a new Governor by the name of WC Claiborne.  Claiborne decided of his own accord that Lafitte should no longer be accepted in their society.  Claiborne saw to it that he was constantly harassed and that his home island in Barataria Bay was destroyed, but he didn’t stop there, eventually Claiborne has Lafitte thrown in jail.

Well he didn’t stay there long, With the war of 1812 well underway, President Andrew Jackson needed more boats and men, he needed Lafitte’s fleets.  So Lafitte was released from jail and set out to protect New Orleans and the Mississippi river from the British.  When the war was lost, Lafitte sailed away from Louisiana for the last time, he was proud that he had fought to defend her however he was heartbroken, he was no longer wanted or trusted in the place that he loved and called home.

Now days there are many witnesses that have seen Lafitte making a proud return to the Gulf of Mexico.  Workers on oil platforms, which litter the Gulf, have reported the billow of his sails on the horizon just before sunset, he’s always headed east.  Crews on offshore supply vessels have heard the flapping of sail riggings and the cry of phantom voices calling out commands to a ghostly crew in the Creole patois once spoken in Barataria.  These same supply vessels have felt the passing of an entire ghostly fleet, that is unseen, but produces visible white foam where their bows break the waves.  Once they have finished passing, they leave a tremendous wake in the darkened waters.

One three-man crew on a charter fishing boat, anchored off Grand Isle near Barataria Bay in the dead of night reported that they all saw an apparition of a pale man, clad in black and wearing a wide-brim hat such as the one Lafitte wore, standing on the aft deck of their sport fisherman.  The apparition glared at them as if sending a warning, then looked away toward the Louisiana coast before suddenly disappearing.

Folks in my neck of the woods, we believe that when Lafitte’s fleet is spotted in the Gulf it’s an omen that something wicked is about to befall the Louisiana coastline.  In fact, Lafitte and his fleet were spotted in the Gulf just before Hurricane Katrina ravaged the state.  This photo was sent to me by an avid listener that just happens to be a pilot that flies over the Gulf of Mexico often.  It was taken recently.  The pilot, John Bering says that after 20 years of flying across the Gulf, this was the first time he had ever seen a square rigged ship.  Could this be Lafitte, and is it a warning that ill tides are coming?

On shore, Lafitte is seen in the Blacksmith shop in the French Quarter that Pierre owned.  Many nights were spent here planning raids and designing new weaponry for his ships.  Today the Blacksmith shop is a popular bar, and Jean is still spotted there frequently.  He keeps a low profile, always sitting at a rear table while holding a brandy in his hand, the smell of cigar smoke accompanying his rather vivid apparition.

Like the story? Want to hear more haunted history and urban legends?  Check out my show on Armed Radio Global!  All past episodes are available on Spreaker!

Haunted History – Unit 731

So, next up, we’re gonna talk a little about the atrocities of war and the ghosts of those victims that still linger today.  Typically, when we hear war atrocities, we think back to the German concentration camps where hundreds of thousands of folks were tormented, tortured and eventually killed.  It’s no big secret now, as to what was going on in these places then.  No way you can cover up that much evil, right?!

Though the Nazis and their SS men have certainly left a monstrous footprint in history, they are not the target of discussion for now.  Did you know that during the same time that the Germans were running freakish and grotesque experiments on their prisoners, that the Japanese were doing the exact same thing, at their own concentration camps?  Yeah, don’t feel bad, not many people do.  In fact, the madness that was going on over there has just recently begun seeping it’s way out to the public.  Like I said, no way to cover up that much evil.  It’s time to talk about unit 731.

Gruesome and unthinkable horrors were performed daily at Unit 731.  Hidden under the guise of an epidemic prevention and research facility, experiments for germ warfare and its effects on the human body had been covered up by the Imperial Japanese army for decades.  Those responsible for the torture and torment of hundreds of thousands of victims lived out full lives surrounded by the wealth that they acquired during these dark times.  Many of these sick bastards were awarded with medals or compensated with prestigious jobs or positions within the Japanese government in return for their keeping the facility a secret.  Japanese authorities adamantly denied the atrocities that took place at unit 731, the truth only started coming to light in 1984 when photographic evidence began to surface.  Now the site has been excavated and the research has begun.  The once tormented souls that had found peace are beginning to stir again since the site has been disturbed.  It’s no wonder either, listen to what I’ve found.

Up to 10,000 people per day were murdered at this facility, recent research estimates nearly 600,000 lost their lives under unimaginably horrific circumstances.  95% of these victims were Chinese or Korean, many were civilians but some were soldiers, the remainder was mostly represented by prisoners of war taken by Japanese Allies.

Tortures ranged from psychological to any and all forms of physical abuse that can be imagined.  The lightest of the experiments took place in the rape room where Fathers were forced to rape daughters and sons were forced to rape their mothers in hopes that pregnancy would ensue.  Those that didn’t become pregnant suffered through some of the most gruesome mutilation of genitalia that could ever be imagined, and that was before they were murdered.  Those that did become pregnant would be tied down and were forced to watch these ghoulish doctors cut the babies from them all while unsedated.  As if that wasn’t bad enough, the mothers would then be forced to watch as the doctor’s would murder the infants by performing living autopsies.

Other prisoners were infected with deadly diseases like anthrax, cholera and the Bubonic plague.  The Japanese were very creative, it’s not like all of these folks were just injected, some of the subjects were staked to the ground and covered with plague infested fleas or contained in small cells to be bitten by infected lab rats.   These evil bastards would wait until the disease took effect on the subject, and once their health began to deteriorate, the fiendish doctors would perform vivisections on the unsedated victims.  That means that they would cut them open in order to examine the effects of the diseases on the subjects vital organs, all without any form of sedation.

And then there was the frostbite unit, also part of the complex.  Prisoners would be staked to the ground during the coldest part of winter.  They’d remain there until nearly frozen solid, when their limbs could be broken from their body they were taken to the frostbite unit in order for the doctors to experiment and better understand the effects of frostbite in hopes of finding better forms of treatment.

Then there was a pressure chamber, yeah it’s probably exactly what you’re thinking.  Victims would be crammed into these chambers and the gauges were cranked up, all just to find out how long the human body could maintain under immense pressure.  The experiments usually ended once the victims eyeballs popped out.

Oh and then there’s the courtyard, sounds all peaceful and serene right?! Not so much ya’ll.  So out in the courtyard, prisoners would be staked to the ground within close proximity to experimental explosives.  After the bombs were detonated the subjects remains would be examined in order to discover the effects of the blast.  Really! my thoughts, it blew the poor bastards up! how much experimenting did that take and I’m pretty certain that my conclusion, though unscientific, is 100% correct, right!?

I even ran across some experiments that put me in the mind of Madame Laulaurie.  Quite often, limbs would be cut from unsedated subjects then reattached to other places on their body.  Sometimes these twisted doctors would cut the subjects open and rearrange their internal organs just to study the effects.  Gangrene was prompted by the doctors as well, in order to closer examine it’s effects on the human body.

Other subjects fell victim to their share of other sordid tortures, some were starved to death, burned to death, injected with animal blood or sea water to study the effects.  Some were burned to death or buried alive and some were spun to death on massive centrifuges.  All of this in the name of science in order to better establish what is known today as germ warfare.

So now that we all know more about the gruesome activities that took place at unit 731, is it any wonder that this joint is as haunted as hell!?  I should say not!  The investigators that have been, and are still on site today report that their electrical equipment doesn’t work at all there, any and all research done onsite has to be completed during the day because at night, the lights that are being used are drained by the presence of the spirits that haunt the grounds.  There are of course strange noises, sorrowful cries and the screams of those that died such gruesome deaths.

Live tours are ongoing as well as paranormal investigations.  Crews are finding it very difficult to investigate the site as their electrical equipment fails quickly upon arrival.  Tour guides will only lead groups through certain areas of the site as some areas are far too active to bring civilians.  One of those areas is the frost bite ward.  Guides state that they frequently see the misty forms of victims moving through the halls, there is the sound of heavy breathing and faces that materialize in reflective surfaces.  There are the sounds of trembling voices that beg for mercy as well as the presence of angry entities that want to exact their revenge.  Can’t say as that I blame them either!  I can’t imagine one happy memory that would tie these spirits to this place.  There have literally got to be tens of thousands of pissed off ghosts on these grounds!

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Haunted History – The Charleville Castle