The first image is alleged reoccurring blood stains in the wood floor panels. The second is a face in the wood panels. The third is of an area that had a figure sitting on the pew. In eastern Oklahoma, near Muskogee is a privately owned church and lands. The owner purchased the abandoned land and building in order to preserve the location for investigations. The following are images from a visit there with the owner. On the occasion of the visit several events occurred that could not be altogether explained.
A reader sent in this lead...... "I LIVED IN FT. GIBSON AS A CHILD AND I USE TO STAY WITH MY GRANDMOTHER MAUDE WHITE ALOT. THEY LIVED IN AN OLDER HOUSE BUT IT WAS VERY LARGE. IT HAD A HUGE FRONT PORCH THAT WENT ALL THE WAY ACROSS THE FRONT OF THE HOUSE. ALMOST EVERYTIME I STAYED THERE I WOULD HERE AND SEE STRANGE THINGS. I WOULD HERE SHOUTING LAUGHING AND SEE MEN DRESSED IN ARMY UNIFORMS FROM I WOULD GUESS AROUND THE TERRITORY DAYS OR MAYBE EVEN THE NORTH AND THE SOUTH. ALSO WOULD SEE MEN IN WESTERN TYPE DRESS. LATER AS I GROWN AND LEFT FT. GIBSON I HEARD THAT THIS HOUSE HAD BEEN THE NEWSPAPER AND THEY WERE PLANNING ON MAKING IT A HISTORICAL SITE BECAUSE IT WAS USED BY SOILDERS AND BY OUTLAWS AND THEY HAD EVEN FOUND BULLET HOLES AND OLD BULLETS EMBEDDED IN THE WALLS. I CANT REMEMBER WERE THIS PLACE WAS IM SURE IF I WENT BACK I COULD PROBALLY FIND IT BUT DO YOU ALL KNOW WHERE I AM TALKING ABOUT ......"
I tried to respond to her email - but it bounced back.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE PRLog (Press Release) – Sep 21, 2008 – “...tales of headless ghosts seeking ill-gotten gold, fiery witches, graves guarded by rattlesnakes, and even a guest appearance by Oklahoma’s most beloved backwoods creature, Bigfoot himself.” — Tim Tingle OKLAHOMA CITY — — Looking for a spooky tale to share at your Halloween Dinner Party? Want something distinctly Oklahoma to slip into the trick-or-treat bag of your favorite little Goblin? Check out The Ghost of Mingo Creek and Other Spooky Oklahoma Legends, released last week in hardback by Forty-Sixth Star Press, Oklahoma City ($15.95). Penned by Greg Rodgers, an Oklahoma storyteller and member of the Choctaw Nation, the 104-page 5x6 book, features eight creepy tales that take place across the Oklahoma landscape. From a ghost that haunts Tulsa County’s Mingo Creek to the Kiamichi Country’s bigfoot in the southeast region of the state, the stories, though fictionalized, are based on rich Oklahoma legends. Written with the middle reader in mind, Tim Tingle, Oklahoma author and renowned Choctaw storyteller, says the book offers an enjoyable experience for readers of all ages. “For teachers, parents and librarians seeking new ways to stimulate student interest in Oklahoma history, geography, and social patterns, these stories will prove to be a valuable tool,” writes Tingle in the foreword. The book is available at www.fortysixthstarpress.com. It also retails for $15.95 at Best of Books in Edmond, Okla., and in Oklahoma City at Borders and Full Circle Bookstores. For more information, on the Forty-Sixth Star Press, contact Pam Bracken at email@example.com. To schedule an author visit, please contact Rodgers directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ghoulie reports: "Para-Con - Oklahoma's Paranormal Conference date is Set! March 21st, 2009 in the Historically Haunted Elks Lodge.... It is a community event. We promote travel and tourism and we want it to continue throughout the year.
Instead of allowing the media to place our event with Halloween "fluff" we have stepped out of the box and moved it until next year. This years Oklahoma Para-Con theme is "It was a Dark and Stormy Night". We will be celebrating Ghost Stories! Yes, Ghost Stories. The importance of them, the effect they have on people and the passion that is connected with those that are involved in the field. It's all about the STORY and we will be celebrating it!
Conference time- It has also changed. Instead of the early to rise conference, Oklahoma's Para-Con will start around 4 - 5PM into the night. We will have our speakers on stage front and center. We will not do "break out sessions". All speakers will be heard. We will then follow the conference with an independent film about Ghosts!
Pricing- As always... pricing for Oklahoma's Paranormal Conference is affordable. Tickets will range from $20 to $30 for the entire event. We are aware of the economy today and we will be working to make this event affordable and fun for everyone. No strings attached. **vendor space is very limited, please contact us for details. We do not have a lot of vendors for a reason. We do not host a flea market, it's a Paranormal Conference!***
Speakers- Well, we have some great speakers in line and confirmed. We will have the video highlighting the speakers up very soon. We are waiting for confirmation from just a couple people. We have hand picked the best of the best to speak at this conference! No blatant self promotion of ghost hunting teams, just the celebration of the Ghost Story! We will have skeptics, believers and even a few familiar faces. Great live radio shows, Ghost films and more!
As always- Plenty of Food, Drinks and fun! Lodging will be offered at a discount rate. Hotel information will be posted soon. As always- Any tour proceeds will go directly into Preservation and Mainstreet programs to keep our history alive in Oklahoma.
Good news- A New Oklahoma Haunt book will be released at Para-Con! You think you know Oklahoma? Think again! New Book! Written by Tonya H of GHOULI and Tammy W. of EerieOK."
Cullan Hudson, of Strange State, has an excellent entry on the research regarding the alleged tales of this location. His basic research into the validity of one aspect of the legends surrounding the location are proof of the value of preliminary historic research. Despite several state groups visits to the place, the findings have been non-existent or questionable. It is, however, a delightfully charming and historic location for a weekend get-away, even sans ghosts. [Image courtesy of Cullan Hudson].
In 1932, this petite and minimalistArt Deco style, theater opened in the booming oil-wealthy "other Oklahoma capital" of Tulsa. Plagued by several fires over the years the theater finally fell into disrepair in the 1970's. Stories of assorted haunting entities began to appear. Even into this century, images of anomalous orbs have been taken that are hard to explain. The theater has now been fully, and beautifully restored, and is enjoying a renaissance as a theater and event venue. read more of its history and see some before and after pictures at
There is divided opinion as to the validity of reports concerning the ballroom's alleged ghosts. Some argue that there is a definite presence, labeled as the ghost of famed musician Bob Wills. Others suggest a "lady in red". Various groups have conducted investigations with, so far, less than significant findings reported. Hopefully, as the ballroom regains it role in the Tulsa and Oklahoma music scene and its preservation is more secure, more and more indepth research will take place to answer the question of its haunted state.
Honobia Oklahoma Bigfoot Festival and Sasquatch Conference is Oct 3rd & 4th. Dr. Jeff Meldrum will be the keynote speaker at the conference, which is being hosted by the Mid-America Bigfoot Research Center ( www.mid-americabigfoot.com ).
From "Biggy Blog"....In the early 1960's stories begin to surface of strange critters roaming the river runs and forests of Oklahoma.
El Reno Chicken Man. Oklahoman (1970 Dec pg?). Original article not yet found. Mysterious tracks located around a chicken coop that had had its door pulled off [cited in “Monster prints called fake”]
Lawton alert for “wolfman.” Oklahoman (1971 Mar 3 pg 46).The “thing” described in this AP story as traipsing around this southwestern corner of the state as being “tall, very hairy, with a distorted face and wearing pants several sizes too small.” Moreover it was alleged to be able to jump 15 feet from a standing start or drop from a second story balcony with out ill effects. C. Edward Green, 24, was a witness and declared it was no hoax. He described its ability to jump, said it was heavily bearded with extremely thick, black hair all over its body. Donald Childs, 36, suffered a seizure when it sprang out of a nearby field, leap a fish pond, and “really move out” toward an alley. When first seen was simply sitting in a flower bed near the pond. Unidentified others, including three soldiers from Ft. Sill, reported sighting it as well.Monster prints called fake. Oklahoman. (1972 Jul 26 pg 21) by Cecial Peaden.The director of the OKC Zoo, Lawrence Curtis, and Hayden Hewes, director of the International UFO Bureau in Oklahoma City, gave their opinions on a set of tracks from a Louisiana, MO sighting (by Edgar Harrison’s son and daughter) that had people in two states puzzled. Zoologists from the University of Missouri declared it was not a bear but could not say what it was. The creature seen making the tracks was described as “tall, hairy creature”. Hewes leaned toward a “visitor from a flying saucer” and Curtis of the zoo declared they were probably fakes. However, black hairs were found around the print and were being sent to Oklahoma for analysis.
Experts to join search at Noxie. Oklahoman (1975 Sept 9 pg 28.).A group of researchers with Hayden Hewes, associated with the Association for the Investigation of the Unexplained, descend on a small community southwest Oklahoma near. Hewes reported about a dozen sightings had been made of a “hairy seven-foot monster” with “eyes that glow in the dark” had been reported in the area since 1972. Armed with cameras, tape recorders, and a Geiger counter they planned to search for evidence.State’s own “Bigfoot” topic of talk.. Oklahoman. (1977 Jun 4 pg 9).Bob Stamps of The International Organization for the Unknown presented a talk at the Edmond Broadway Motor Inn. He reported sightings from the NE corner of the state and shared alleged tapes and films of the “Bigfoot” creatures.Sasquatch send sooner…. Oklahoman (1977 Aug 7 pg 200).Story by staff writer Robert B. Allen “somewhere in northeast Oklahoma”, along researchers Mike Williams and Bob Stamps investigate the “fabled, hairy monster of Big Timber Hills”. An OKC psychic, Charles O. Rhoades, had led a group into the area where he as “confident that a “fossil man” is roaming the area” and this creature had been spotted since about 1975.
Mysterious Creature Stalk….Oklahoman (1977 Aug 10 pg 33). From Stilwell, staff writer Jim Etter reported that a teenager had been clawed by a “hairy nine-foot-tall “something” with “glowing red eyes” in wooded northeastern Oklahoma. Adair county Gary Faden had confirmed their investigation being kept low key to prevent a panic and people getting “guns out there and getting someone shot.” Reports indicated the creature “stalks in the moonlight, peers through windows with its red eyes, grunts like a hog and bounds off…
”Lie-Detector….. Oklahoman (1977 Aug 8 pg 240).Jim Etter continues with an account of a Colorado private detective who ran a “psychological stress evaluation” lie-detector test on statements made by 17 yr old Brian Jones about his story of being attacked by a hairy creature. The youth had reported to authorities he had made the story up and had lied during a polygraph test in Ft. Smith, Ark. The Colorado detective, Forrest Erickson (Wheat Ridge, CO) said that it was his opinion the boy had told the truth and his test bore it out. “I really believe the boy’s telling the truth…I can’t believe that he’s not telling the truth.
”Search for “Big Foot.” Oklahoman (1977 Aug 21 pg. 30).Profiles Bob Stamps who hoped to become a full time big foot hunter and support himself by writing. To that end he had written several un-published magazine articles, including one titled “Sexual Encounters with Sasquatch.” Timeline of events noted: Aug 7 article appeared with story of Stamps and the overnight Big foot hunt; two days later Brian Jones reported that on August 5 he had been attacked (clawed and thrown in the air) by 9 foot tall hairy creature near Stilwell. Other reports of the period were cited without dates but included people had reported partially eaten goats and missing calves.
Do you want your website to look professional even if you can't hire a high dollar designer? Here are some tips to help make your site look more professional. Note, some website providers place creative restrictions making some changes impossible.
1. Use a clear - easy to read font.
2. Avoid dripping gore fonts, dancing ghosts, and animated tombstones - if you want to be taken as "serious". These are the "plastic pocket protectors" sending an alert...."danger, Para-Geek!!" Run for you lives!.. Of course, if this is your fun, personal pages...go for it!
3. Avoid "busy" and overdark backgrounds - as they tend to compete with the text or text boxes.
4. Aim for bold, clear, well-contrasted titles.
5. Keep images small - as overlarge can be hard for some people with slower systems to load.
6. Strive for a unified "look"in colors and styles.
7. Add statements of responsibility, contact (electronic and snail), and date of last update (so people know how up-to-date your page is and active your group).
8. Providers like "MySpace" and "GeoCities" can be pretty restrictive and humdrum - so if you want more creative control, try other providers such as Freewebs.com or Blogger.com or another free/small fee provider.
--Courtesy of Kevin and Shade at "Byte Marks", 2007. Used with permission.
According to a local newspaper account, picked up on Legends of America, Bristow, Oklahoma has at least one ghost story. It involves a woman hit by a truck and who appears at a local convenience store... One of the complexities of paranormal research is why one ghost haunts and not another....in 1929 a thirty eight year old man with two small children was killed in a gas main explosion near the 8th Street entrance to the City Cemetary...yet no one has ever reported seeing his ghost (Jess Hudson was the man's name). Finding out the difference and the why would be an important contribution to the field.
Once a speakeasy of prohibition days, where criminals such as Pretty Boy Floyd were said to wet their whistles, this establishment is said to be haunted by more than one customer. Located at 1226 NE 63rd, OKC (405) 478-4955 /the current "Country Line Resturant", Oklahoma City location, is in an "old 30's classic deco structure with a great view of the downtown lights in the distance. Structural highlights include curved glass brick, a curved ceiling & sweeping curved bar. Just two minutes from the Cowboy Hall of Fame. Open for Lunch & Dinner 7 days a week." Various groups, such as PROS and GHOULI have conducted investigations. It has been featured on several paranormal and mysterious television specials as well. It bears continued investigation. Apparently, the Austin location of this chain also lays claim to being haunted as well. Go for a visit and enjoy good food, great atmosphere, and the knowledge that even if it is not haunted - it is a real piece of Oklahoma history.
Checklists provide a valuable tool in preparing, standardizing, and organizing any project. This is especially true of ghost-hunting/paranormal investigations. Checklists allow a plan to be in place so that investigators work the plan....
Checklists might include:
What equipment is needed (camera, thermometers, etc.)
What supplies to bring (map, batteries, etc.)
What steps to follow to provide standardized activity (doors have been checked, windows checked, etc.)
The term "demonologist" is one being seen more frequently, however, it does not always mean the same thing. This most serious form of paranormal investigation requires careful handling and much caution. Call them "demons", "evil spirits" or "dark entitites" - they all spell trouble for the people involved and to the potenital investigators. They are known to often endanger those who study or investigate them. They frequently provide such a strong negative influence that the only word possible is "possession." There is an excellent article about this subject at TAPS. The article explores issues of professionalism, study, and how to handle the religious beliefs of others in demonic cases.
It is very important to learn as much as possible about the history of a location as it is to gather data of a scientific nature. It will be necessary to verify legends, rumors, and commonly held "truths" about a location and the reasons for a possible haunting. Remember, despite common mythology, not everything is on the Internet - some old school research is required to do top quality work.
Keep a notebook for your research trips, record where you found the information (name of the library and location) and the general bibliographic information (author, title, publisher, date, and call number - in case you need to re-check it). The notebook can be a simple spiral bound school notebook or a laptop.
Libraries will generally have information related to local history (old newspapers, local history books, etc.). Some libraries now offer, with a library card, access to genealogical databases to search census records, deeds, newspapers (to a limit). This link lists all Oklahoma Public Libraries. Library cards are usually free in the location to area residents since they are funded by tax dollars (property or other tax bases). Visitors from out of town or state may need to pay to access local databases, but use of other materials is usually free to visitors. Special collections (archives) may have limitations as to use or access. In Oklahoma, students and staff of universities can apply (via their school library) for the OKShareCard. This is honored by member libraries at other institutions. It allows limited checkout of books - but often does not allow access to databases.
Courthouses & City or County Clerks offices can provide information related to ownership of land, previous occupations of an area, and other pertinent information. The link lists state courthouses and their addresses.
Local museums can also sometimes provide some information about local legends or history. The lists all museums in Oklahoma. Some are staffed by volunteers and be prepared to leave bags or cases with an attendant, sign papers to use, etc. They may not be sympathetic with a paranormal investigation, but then sometimes the people staffing these places aren't sympathetic to any researcher! So be polite, friendly, and have a plan as to what you want to find out. You might discover they want to help.
Expect misspelled names, hard to read writing, and changes in street names and housing developments.
Expect history books to cover only the well-known, wealthy, or notorious people or events of any community.
Think of alternative ways of learning information. If a book on the town makes no mention of the haunted house....look at biographies of local people....or family genealogies, etc. Somebody may mention legends or places in passing.
Ghouli, an Oklahoma based paranormal team, has worked to carve out a niche that places paranormal legends and activity in line to assist local communities to bolster sagging economies. They encourage Main Street projects, city tours, etc. of local legends and haunted places. Ideally, local storytellers and such groups might team up to provide exciting and professionally competent entertainment as well. Walking tours or trolley tours "after hours" could be a source of revenue...and not just at Halloween! The money brought in could help to preserve, maintain, or improve historical areas of a community. The funds might go to local charities and into downtown improvements benefiting the entire community. The funds might go to buy books, computers, and furnishings for local schools, hospitals, or libraries. Contact the state storytelling organization, The Territory Tellers, for information about storytelling, storytellers who specialize in ghost stories, etc. Contact, Ghouli for information about developing local walking, bus, or trolley tours in your area.
Based on research by MH Research the following are geographic features by county with the bizarre words (or variants such as possessives) of “Devil”, “Dead”, "Skull", "Skeleton" and “Ghost” in the names:
"Devil" is found in the names of hill, ridges, canyons, hollows, and peaks in Caddo, Pushmahata, Ottawa, Latimer, Mukgogee, and Haskill Counties. Names include: Devil's Backbone, Devil's Canyon, Devil's Hollow, Devil's Peak and Seven Devil's Peak.
"Dead" is found in the names of gaps, hollow's mountains, crossings, springs, lakes, and rocks in Osage, Sequoyah, Tillman, LeFlore, Pontotoc, and Johnston Co. Names include: Deadman Gap, Deadman's hollow, Dead Woman Crossing, Deadman Springs, Deadman Rock and Deadman Mountain.
"Ghost" is found in the names of mounds and hollows in Payne, Caddo, and Creek Co. Names include: Ghost Mounds and Ghost Hollow.
In addition waterways appear with names contaning the words "skeleton" and "skull": Skeleton Creek in Garfield and Logan Co. (it appears to dump into the Cimmeron River. The Skull Creek travels through Payne and Creek Co.
Built in 1903 by one of the early leaders of the community, the house is described as "This three-story French chateau-style home is fitted with the original furnishings of the Overholser family, including Brussels lace curtains, English carpets and French stained glass windows". According to a listing on Paranormal Soup "The house is said to be haunted, having doors closing by themselves, bedspreads gaining "impressions" of people lying in them, curtains being pulled back by themselves, and apparitions appearing. The apparition of a woman with no legs, in particular, has been seen. Some believe this to be the ghost of Anna Overholser, Henry's second wife. "When author Cullan Hudson (Strange State: Mysteries and Legends of Oklahoma, 2005, 2007) sought to view and photograph the location for his book he was informed that they did not want to encourage that kind of thing; apprarently in more recent years that attitude changed as several paranormal groups alledge to have conducted research in the mansion. It may that, like many other places across the country, it was discovered that the possibility of a place being haunted does not drive awaycustomers, but rather, it lures them in.
According to one researcher: " The legend of the Kitchen Lake Witch is mentioned on several websites, but it appears to date only from about the 1960's. (Note: If anyone knows of any earlier mentions let me know). It appears to be a combination of a huge fire that did occur at the nearby Tinker Air Base depot in the 1950's that sent ash flying for miles - much of it into the area of nearby Kitchen Lake - a rural suburb wanna be that never really took off. Situated so close to the "forbidden zone" of a military enclave, its rural setting, and desires of youth to escape to the lake for "parties" a story of a witch seemed to evolve. There is a land lot with the remains of a chimney and some evidence of fire, but more research is required. It appears to be largely urban legend, as no deaths appear to have occurred there related to a fire (via a search of local newspapers). Today, the lake is a trash rimmed rural water hole that might someday be developed into a nice and appreciated park area that highlights the lovely rolling hills of the area."
The legend goes that a man killed his wife and another man, Enos Parsons, in 1935. The facts are that the remains of stone house of some size is found outside of Copan. A gravestone for a Frank Labadie (1860-1935) and a Samantha Labadie (1857-1935) have been found. There is a Frank Labadie listed on the 1920 census as being 19 and born in Arkansas - but none are listed on Heritage Quest census database for 1930 and no Enos Parsons either! In addition, the Oklahoma City papers did not carry any news of such a crime or event and it is supposed that as is usual bad news would travel. The facts are that numerous people have admitted to using the place as a spot to scare girls, party, or do other recreational activities. So - given the fact that older citizens have said the couple died from smoke in a fire - this is probably another sample of what folklorist call "contemporary legends" (i.e., urban myths).
What is needed: Census or official records stating the people were alive in the area in the time period; some official record (newspaper, funeral records, etc.) of the cause of the death of the man and the woman, some record of the existance of Enos Parsons, and some type of proof of haunitng activity via photos, audio, or other evidence.
In the early 1990's accounts of a "Hatchet House" with accompanying awful murder and porch painted red to hide "all the blood", began to appear in local OKC newspapers. Soon tales of swings moving in the moonlight.....and ghostly voices of children playing..... began to flesh out the vague and lurid premise. Now, every Halloween local haunters flock to the historic district of the Gatewood Neighborhood to find the notorious house with hatchet cutouts...or the red painted porch....or the driveway where 'they found the body.' This seemed like an easy find....track down the dastardly crime....solve the mystery...provide some background for this legend. So far...however, no such crime has come to light. The area only dates back to the 1920's when it boomed along with various other areas of the city. Its classic hometown feel and its historic homes kept it a special place for many decades. There was tragedy as children, go to and coming from the local elementary school (Gatewood Elementary) were struck by automobiles...a few random crimes....and some natural deaths. Findng a grim and ghastly crime worthy of such a horrific legend....has so far drawn a blank. It is similar to the tale in the Don Knotts comedy, "The Ghost and Mr. Chicken" with its tale of murder, blood stained organ keys ("and they used Bon-Ami!"), and generally bad reputation. Unless, and until, something definite is discovered this is no doubt another OKC Urban Legend. So, drive through the area and enjoy the neighborhood that is on the national history registry.....but give the folks there a rest because there is really nothing else to see there.
Conflicting stories exist that suggest that the germ of a real event, the kidnapping and murder of Mrs. Katie James in 1905, and a later tall tale/urban myth from university students merged to create a jumble of ghostly tales related to this general area. For more information: Dead Woman’s Crossing: http://www.ghost-investigators.com/Stories/view_story.php?story_num=15
Prairie Ghosts has a pretty good account of it, except he misnames the detective who help search. Sam Bartell was a wellknown early US Marshall and local police officer and at the time was with the Oklahoma Detective Agency. http://wikimapia.org/4525854/Dead_Woman_s_Crossing
For more information on Barter see the entry on him at MYSTORICAL.
If you can find in a library: Brenner, Susan Woolf. "Dead Woman;s Crossing: The Legacy of a Territorial Murder." Chronicles of Oklahoma: Volume LX (Fall 1982).
An excellent article shares some of the major legends surrounding this city in the far NE corner of the state. To read about a haunted mansion, a gravity hill and others - http://okwustudents.net/advweb/swears/?p=9
Scan the pages of any Internet site and you will find phrases such as "it looks haunted!" or "it is a creepy place - I bet there are ghosts there!" The truth of the matter is that a haunting can -and often do occur - in very prosaic places. Modern suburban houses filled with bric-a-brac and office buildings in strip malls. How something looks is no gauge of its value or merit or haunted-ness. There are, however, some places that sensitives can identify (and sometimes others) as having a "feel" or a "mood". Sometimes there is a sense that "something lingers on." There can also be places "tainted" by emotions, actions, or negative spirits. So - despite what all the horror novels and movies have enjoyed telling us for decades - if it looks spooky - it probably is not.
A persistent legend tells that a cruel nurse killed boys and buried them in the basement....or any of several other. However, residents and past "inmates" have simply laughed at the tale declaring it untrue. Searches for proof in newspapers has so far failed to find any such crimes reported. Crimes are covered up - but until more is fpound to support the legend - it must remain simply that.
Around this old historic setting it is said there is a ghost. It is said to be haunted by a vengeful and yet sad ghost of a girl who followed her love to the Fort disguised as a boy. "Vivia Thomas" is said to have killed her lover and then regretted it for the length of her short life. Visit Ft. Gibson.
One of the obstacles for anyone doing "serious" research is trying to untangle the truth from layers of obfuscation, confabulations, mixed up memories, and plain and simple tall tale. So how do you identify an urban legend?
Here are some tips:
1. Consider its structure. Does it have all the normal "story" components of a beginning, a middle, or an end? Does it have a "punch line"....or a tag line....."no matter how much they tried they could never get the stain out...." Chances are it is an urban legend.
2. Watch out for lines just as : 'This is a true story...' or 'This really happened to a friend of a friend' .
3. "Only names and places have been changed"....you have heard the same story before with different little (or updated) details?
4. Is there a peculiar lack of details as to names, places, dates, or exact details of the event?
5. Can the "facts" be verified in newspapers, books, interviews, etc.
Things to remember:
Often hauntings do not have any context; there is no romantic tale of why a ghost is there or what caused the ghost to stay.
Satanism, witchcraft, and cults - are not as prevalent as some would have you believe (check with studies by national police organizations and the FBI). There have been more lynchings in this country than the burning of witches at the stake and more accidents than murders.
Hauntings or episodes quite often have a "I walked into the middle of something" feel to them when they are real. They do not have a "beginning" or an "end" - they dangle out there in mid event with no why or how and leave the observer scratching their head.
The following are some of the most common spots listed as haunted in Oklahoma:
Ft. Gibson Ft. Washita Ft. El Reno Black Jail - Guthrie LaBady Mansion- Bartlesville Kulli Tukilo Methodist Church - Idabel Carey Place - Oklahoma City Kitchen Lake - SE OKC/MWC area Old women's dorms/ AGR Frat House- OSU, Stillwater "Dead Woman's Crossing" - Weatherford County Line Resturant - OKC OKC Zoo - OKC Walls Bargain Center- Shawnee Music Store - Shawnee Cate's Center - OU Tulsa Area: Cain's Ballroom Brady Theater Tulsa Little Theater Tulsa Garden Center Sparky's Cemetary Riverside Park The Cave House The Gilcrease house Labadie Mansion The Brady Mansion The Camelot Hotel The Mayo Hotel Peace of Mind Bookstore Old Bellview School (Jason's Deli 15th & Peoria) Empire Bar Brady Mansion Hex House Lot Club Majestic Lola's & Fox Hotel Philbrook Mansion The White House - Jenks, OK
Due to significant debunking the following are not listed: Choctaw Library, Choctaw Middle School, Stone Lion Inn
Local historian Marilyn A. Hudson presents an intriguing theory concerning the alleged "Effie" ghost of the old Skirvin Hotel. Having researched stories and interviewed several people who had worked in the old hotel, Hudson suggests that several "ghosts" of the Skirvin were based on incidences occurring much earlier in OKC history. Failing to find many deaths reported in the famous hotel, she was able to find numerous deaths in hotels that once graced the downtown area: The Grand, The Lee, and others. In 1904 there was a "keeper of a bowdy house" on West 2nd Street who was killed by her husband by the name of "Effie Fisher". Knowing from other research how easy it is for memory to get tangled and distanced from the facts, Hudson suggests that many of the exciting deaths, suicides, strange visitors, and shootings from the other hotels and "houses" (which may not always have survived) may have been assigned later to the more Gothic and imposing Skirvin. After all, she notes, when a place "looks haunted" people expect to be haunted. An article in the Oklahoman (May 1, 1910) pointed out the construction of the new hotel (then called the "Skirvin House") at First and Broadway was a landmark from the earliest days of the city. On that location had stood the Richardson Real Estate office.
Just in case, if you have first hand experience from someone who worked in the pre-renovationSkirvin use the comments to add your tales.
The original name of the hotel, according to newspaper accounts ,was "The Skirvin House" (1910).
In 1911 - the manager committed suicide and it was investigated as suspicious
Later, (1902's?) a workman fell to his death.
Several people committed suicide - as they did in all the local hotels- most by poison and a few by pistol.
The legend that "Effie" was a mistress kept imprisoned in the hotel is also similar to a tale told about the "Gold Hotel" in Nevada - making it more the urban legend than real tale. In that time period, it was more likely he would have sent away - with a payoff - a pregnant mistress or simply paid for an illegal abortion. If an "Effie" did die - perhaps it was a botched abortion rather than some convoluted prisoner in the hotel scenerio.
Long recognized as one of the historic gems of the state, the location also has a long history of paranormal stories. As early as March of 1907 a local newspaper recounted people traveling there to view the semi-annual appearance of ghost said to appear the last day of March and the last day of October of each year. On these ocassasions witnesses have claimed seeing a young woman who, when she sees she is watched, will beckon the observer to follow and then disappears as she floats over a spring stream running near the fort. At the same time will be reports of the sounds of horses hoofs as cavalry troops are taking a ghostly ride. The romantic underpinning of the tale involves a young lieutenant from an eastern post sent to the garrison at Fort Washita. Although, to be married in a week, his orders sent him to the frontier and the wedding was postponed. The young man soon became ill and died and the bride-to-be died of grief soon after. The appearances are thought to have been linked to the death of first the young man and then the bride to be. ["Party Will Await Beck of "Ghost"" Romantic Story's Foundation To Be Investigated by the Curious". The Oklahoman (March 17, 1907): 15.].
Shown in the image is the West Barracks at the Fort, for more information and events go to Ft Washita
1. Get permission to visit the locale. 2. Do some background information searching. 3. Go with a plan (what is the problem being researched? what do you want to learn? Verify?) 4. Check out the area for drafts, exists, entrances. 5. Create a simple map of the area marking normal readings for areas, adding exits, air ducts, etc. Note times, temperatures, etc. 6. Take multiple readings of the locations and mark on the map. 7. Develop a case file, dated, in order on each visit.
"I received information from some who travels NW 36th street in OKC that they had observed a man who "disappeared" crossing the street. He was there , was momentarily invisible by a passing truck, but gone when the truck moved past. High fences, brick walls and the such made it impossible, so reports the source, of the person going anywhere without being seen." Spellbound Stories
"Across the country "ghost hunters" - using the term loosely - are being arrested with charges of tresspassing and other citations. They break into posted locations, or enter private property, with no regard for issues of law or even courtesy. They also give all groups trying to raise the standards and expectations a bad name. Bored teens are still breaking into local haunts to stare into blotchy mirrors chanting"Bloody Mary! Bloody Mary!Bloody Mary!" through a weed or alchohol haze. Serious investigations are going to be hindered. -- Shadow Man
"Folklore is the body of expressive culture, including tales, music, dance, legends, oral history, proverbs, jokes, popular beliefs, customs, and so forth within a particular population comprising the traditions (including oral traditions) of that culture, subculture, or group" states Wikipedia. Ghost stories and local legends often fall in this general catagory. Some folklore has a small grain of original truth around which layers of story have been wound. The better the storyteller, the longer the time, and the more it is told the thicker the layers and the farther removed one is from the grain of truth at the core.
A paranormal investigator must be able, and willing, to tear away those false layers to find the truth of the tale. Sometimes this is not easy. Sometimes the better story is the one that has evolved over time...embellished and enriched by creative minds for many years. The "truth" may lack excitement or conflict and may be as flat as an old tire.
Some tales are purposely created by the bored or the mischievous. These chronicle things that never happended, or never happened in the manner suggested. Some were "boogyman" tales designed to keep children away from unsafe places. Some were created by criminal types to scare off those who might come around to interfer with their "business" dealings or to simply exert power over those more timid.
" Kelleyville - The real "Cry Baby Bridge" - The original cry baby bridge is in the town of Kellyville. It has spawned many urban legends, (Kiefer, Schulter, Catoosa, and there are 3 more fake ones in Kellyville.)The road has been completely re-routed, and the bridge is no longer standing. The original legend goes like this: Legends states that if you go there you can sometimes hear, or see the woman looking for her baby in the form of a glowing soft blue light. " -- Shadowlands, and numerous other sites that lifted information in total.
Despite some postings like this on various websites this is one story that has to be re-evaluated with facts. Debate on the web as to the location of the "real" Crybaby Bridge in Oklahoma totally ignores the folkloric root of this tale. It is in folklore that the meaning and identification of the bridge must be found.
The story of the Crybaby Bridge always begs the question, which one? Such bridges have been identified through local legend in almost every state from New York to Ohio to Oklahoma and further west. Since the story did not originate in Oklahoma claims that the "real" bridge is in Oklahoma are untrue.
Experts have seen that in the western versions, there is an apparent relationship to the Hispanic tale of La Llorona. This old legend tells of a woman who drowned her children to be with her young lover, who in turn deserted her. The contemporary case of Susan Smith comes to mind as a modern example of just the same type of tragedy. This tale may date back to pre-colonial Mexico and refer to an early native deity.
In these crybaby bridge tales a frequent motif of the shamed daughter rejected by her father, where a baby and daughter died (either through cold or through drowning) a memorial to lost innocence. An old Irish folk song may have helped shape the development of this legend.
“Mary of the Wild Moors” is a haunting tune that has the elements of the shamed daughter, the infant baby, the rejecting father, and the lingering cry heard in the place of their death The cold stoop of the cottage.
Although, many areas have their haunted hollows and stretches of eerie road or wood (one such place was recorded near El Reno in the early 1900 , the sight of an alleged murder). Many of these bridge tales, by comparison, seemed to have all arisen during the 1920's and 1930's.
If, as many believe, urban legends, are as much morality tales cautioning about behavior, then the often dangerous bridges of the early years, coupled with the moral threat posed by a newly independently mobile youth, could easily have led to the development of this tale and explain its enduring appeal.
Oklahoma, like Ohio, has several bridges identified as a Cry Baby Bridge. Most have been closed down over the years, lost as roads were rerouted, or simply replaced by newer bridges. I visited one alleged sight in southwest Oklahoma County. It was down an old dirt road and had been closed for decades. The metal had rusted and the wooden planks were beginning to weaken.
It crossed a narrow ravine where a tiny trickle of dirty water flowed decorated here and there with the debris of cast off appliances and car parts. An old concrete pipe in one side of the ravine served to spill out rain water from somewhere. In the clear light of day I could hear the wind sighing through the pipe, and knew that in the dead of night it might sound like the whimpering cries of a child, or the mournful pleas of a woman in pain.
Looking around at the lonely road, its tall stand of scrub grasses and volunteer trees, circadian hums playing background music to my musings, I wished I too had come in the night. This was something to be savored and remembered before it too disappeared into myth.
One day the bridge would be gone, replaced by a staid modern bridge, and it would loose something along the way. The modern replacement bridges, with their multiple lanes of harsh glaring concrete with stable, unimaginative barriers spanning waterways the drivers can no longer even see. They are traversed by hurried traffic with no time to pause and enjoy. Every new bridge seems designed to defy any legend, no matter how romantic and enduring, to linger..
--Marilyn A. Hudson. Shadow Tales of Oklahoma (2005-used by permission).
Is there a "Satanic" connection between thunderstorms, and other extreme weather, and the paranormal?Visit http://www.weathergraphics.com/tim/hauntedhouse.pdf for a lighthearted look at the correlations between extreme weather and extreme paranormal activity. Spoiler alert: keep tongue firmly in cheek while reading!
Looking for hauntings, ghosts, bigfoot, scary stories, UFO's and events related to Oklahoma? There is now online a directory designed to be a gateway to help seekers find the information they desire. It is put together by a professional information broker (librarian), supported by several bloggers, authors, and those interested in the mysterious, strange, bizarre, and unexplained in Oklahoma. The OKLAHOMA PARANORMAL DIRECTORY has a goal of providing current, quality, and balanced information.
An alliance of researchers, authors, reviewers,and information brokers interested in bringing order from chaos about Oklahoma's paranormal side. We are committed to professional attitudes, objectivity, and balance.