November 21st, 2009 - Investigation in CT

I promised the boss lady... um, TheCrimeBrat (GG)... that I would submit a report of our investigation by today.. so here it is... well, here's a post about it anyway... *locations and names changed to protect the haunted... AND the spirits.

It was a fine evening in the great state of CT. There was a waxing moon and plenty of stars out. The investigation took place at a private residence in a town "west" of Hartford. The owners are a young(er) couple, Bob and Chelsea, with a 17 month old daughter, Cathy. The house is 2 living levels (a garrison, I believe), 3 bedrooms upstairs and a family room addition off the back of the dining room, a full basement and a semi-accessible attic.

We arrived at the location around 7:30... later decided to be too early for a real active investigation. Unfortunately, the owners were home but we persuaded them to go out... at least for a little while so the house would be empty and none of our potential experiences could be attributed to the 2 of them... the "baby" was out for the night.

First a brief history of the activities experienced by the owners...
  • Black shadows passing
  • Being touched
  • Footprints that disappear down the hallway
  • Personally seeing a door open and then be closed abruptly
  • Cathy pointing and interacting with an unseen entity
The house has always been in Bob's family, it being his boyhood home. Bob's father, Richard, had died suddenly in the home in the family room addition that was added in the 70's. Also, for a time, Bob's grandmother resided with them and Richard took care of her.

The owner's took us for a walk-through and explained to us the areas of the most activity.... black shadows in the addition, the footprints down the upstairs hallway and the most activity being in the "back bedroom" which was Richard's while he was alive - and is directly across the hall from the "baby's" room. At the conclusion of the "tour" the back bedroom door was CLOSED... important... keep reading.

Although we didn't personally see shadows (although at one point I thought I did - but it could have been a reflection from a passing car), doors opening or footprints, I would like to believe that some of our experiences can only be explained as paranormal.

Let me explain my take on "ghost hunting". I personally use the phrase loosely and would rather refer to this as an investigation. Ghost hunt depicts a random and amateur quest to "see" a ghost. Under this pretense, one is sure to subconsciously will themselves into seeing something that might not even be there.

An investigation depicts an attempt to collect evidence and data to determine the possibility of paranormal activity, while trying to explain what you do experience by scientific or rational means... but you can call it what you want.

Rather than recap the entire investigation, which could take at least 2 posts to do, I will have to summarize, and will explain what we experienced via different pieces of equipment to the best of my analytical ability.... and then I will summarize the evening.

EMF meter (K2)

(Stair Landing - time of constant yellow)

The newly acquired K2 was not very active throughout the night... EXCEPT for on the stair landing leading to the upstairs. There was definitely some energy being detected in this area with the K2 registering a yellow light on several occasions.

In my initial sweep, I didn't get any readings here. However in a later sweep, GG received a steady yellow reading. Trying to explain the reading, she panned the area maintaining the constant yellow from about her eye level to her thigh level, but not above or below.

An even stronger reading we collected at the corner wall of the landing, later to be debunked by the electrical service running down the outside of the house at that particular corner.

I'm not sure that explains the steady reading in the entire area for several reasons.....
  1. Since the electrical service runs down from the roof, if it was the source of the constant yellow reading, then that reading should have registered from the floor to the ceiling in that area... not just from GGs eyes to her thighs.
  2. On a later sweep to retest the area, the K2 did not register any reading in the exact same area...
  3. Subsequent sweeps of the area above, Cathy's closet, did not register any reading... and of the area below, the stairwell to the basement where the electrical service enters the house, only registered a minor increase in energy.
There was also a K2 fluctuation near a dresser in Cathy's bedroom... and, it DID occur at the same moment that the dowsing rods were registering activity in the room.

Dowsing Rods

(crossed rods in Richard's doorway)

Though possibly controversial, metal rods to register electromagnetic energy seems like viable tool. The rods registered activity in several locations throughout the evening, most notably:
  1. The entrance to the kitchen from the living room... At one point, while walking toward the doorway, the rods crossed... As I backed up, they uncrossed... approaching again, they crossed again. This activity was not duplicated in a later sweep.
  2. Cathy's bedroom - There was definitely energy picked up by the rods in the baby's bedroom. As previously mentioned, concurrently with a K2 "hit' but also on several other occasions, including at one point crossing and uncrossing in succession and then 1 rod seemingly pointing toward the crib and 1 toward the doorway at the same time.
  3. Richard's room - There was also definitely energy picked up by the rods here, most notably at the door which looks across to Cathy's bedroom on a couple of occasions. Again, the successive crossing then uncrossing and then both pointing across the hall.
Now, I know many may not believe in the rods... but as the holder of them several times Saturday... there's definitely some paranormal pull on them.

EVP recorder

(recorder in the living room)

Admittedly, I'm a "baby" at analyzing digitally recorded evidence, having never done it before. Also realize that most spirits won't just walk up to you, shake your hand and say "Hi, I'm Richard".... not to mention, some of the EVP's I've listened to online seem somewhat subjective to me.

So, as I'm realizing, the analysis of the recording can be a tedious process - at least at this point in my hobby. I actually had to step away from it to not make myself hear what I wanted to hear... and the floors of the house are creaky as hell, making it difficult to wade through the recording.

That being said, on my initial listening, my fresh ears picked out several instances to analyze... in doing so, I was able to rationalize a few of the noises that I thought I heard. I was also able to determine that I just may not have an explanation for a few...

Radio - Early on we were investigating the family room. At one point GG asked me if there was a radio on. Certainly there wasn't but she said she heard a voice, which I didn't happen to hear. Although very faint, there is definitely a possibility of an EVP at that spot in the recording, further enhancement training is definitely in need, but I CAN say there may be a woman's voice there. GG and her "mother's ears !!!!"

Knocking - Also while we were investigating the family room, we were calling out to Richard to show us a sign of his presence. Immediately after GG uttered ...."even a knock..." the recording picked up a distinct series of 5 successive "knocks"... neither of us had heard that at the time. But, this just may be the sign we were asking for.

Dee - While in the living room, upon the thought that it may be Richard's mother that is haunting the house, I said to GG that we should have asked what his mother's name was. GG replied that she didn't know. BUT, immediately after her response to me, there's a female voice quietly uttering "Dee". Follow-up proved that there was no one named or nick-named Dee in the family but the house is decorated with antique furniture and such as Richard owned an antique shop. So, it very well could be a spirit attached to an object in the house itself, but don't tell Chelsea that it may follow them when they move !!!!

Richard? - While in Richard's bedroom, GG asked, "Where'd you go Richard?". There is an immediate response from what sounds like a male voice. This one needs to be further clarified also, but it would certainly prove again to be a direct response from a present spirit.

Digital Camera

(living room - orbs?)

GG took several photos throughout the evening, many of them containing "orbs". I'm not totally sold on the whole orb phenomena as most of them can be attributed to flash reflections. However, coupled with other simultaneous experiences or evidence, they certainly can help prove paranormal activity.

One photo that caught my eye is the one below that GG took in Richard's bedroom while I was sweeping the door with the K2. The reason it caught my eye is due to the "orb" to the left of the fan stand. This orb appeared more solid than the "standard" transparent orbs caused by camera flash... and it didn't appear in other pictures of the same area....

I must note that on viewing the entire collection of photos taken that night, a friend asked me if there was also the ghost of a little girl in that house (THAT could explain the height of the EMF reading on the stair landing). I'm trying to determine her reason for asking that question, and if she may possibly be a "sensitive" or clairvoyant... if so, SHE'S coming back there with us.....

Digital Video Recorder

We were definitely least prepared here. I do have one but it's an older JVC model and actually records onto digital video tape. And my hopes that it may be night vision capable came crashing down after purchasing an Infrared light source.... although maybe the light is junk...

So, not the greatest of video equipment to have. But our thoughts were that something is better than nothing hoping that it may be able to capture a floating orb or at the very least be a second audio recording device.

With that in mind, we permanently set the camera up in Cathy's room aiming out her door into the hallway, again hoping that if it picked up any evidence, then it was worth bringing it along.

Well, hope became reality upon my initial view of the footage. Although I stared at a black screen for over an hour willing myself to see some "light action", that didn't happen. But, what did happen is that the camera's microphone absolutely picked up 2 definite and 2 more possible noises upstairs while we were downstairs - noises we would not have had evidence of without the video camera.

The first noise picked up was merely 3 or 4 minutes after the tape started rolling so we were downstairs in the family room. This noise sounded like it eminated close to the camera and most resembled the "click" of an older light switch. I actually had left a lamp on in the room at the time and did not see anything but a light switch click is a light switch click.... and it could have been from across the hall as the microphone proved to be very sensitive and we later found out that Richard's "closed" door was OPEN.

The second noise happened about 3 minutes later. Again, this noise sounded relatively close to the camera due to it's clarity. I can't say for sure what this noise was either but it too was some sort of click... but different from that light switch... a lower pitched noise than that... more like a "clunk"... light switch being shut off ??? it does make a different sound.. or a doorknob ????

The other 2 noises that sounded like they came from upstairs while we weren't there were over an hour later and were more distant, possibly from one of the other bedrooms. These weren't clicks or clunks but more like a bang or a "thud"... I guess like the sound a paperback makes if dropped on the floor or a foot.... I'm not trying to be persuasive about what the noise was, just trying to describe the sound it was in terms easier to relate to.

People can debunk and say what they want about recorded evidence.... I'm a show-me kinda guy !!! We definitely experienced paranormal evidence throughout the evening...

The OPEN door - As I mentioned earlier, after the tour by the owners, Richard's door remained closed - this was later confirmed by Bob. Upon our initial investigating of the upstairs, we found the door WIDE OPEN. I have no explanation as I remember Bob closing the door showing us how they witnessed it shut abruptly. ALTHOUGH as I listened to the video, the second noise that the camera captured sounded eerily similar to the sound of me opening the door to exit Richard's room later.... hmmmm

"Malfunctioning" flashlight - GG's flashlight is brand new with brand new batteries. On several occasions - in Richard's room, on the stair landing and in the living room - in conjunction with other activity, the flashlight would flicker and go very dim, despite her every effort to make it work properly. Return visits to the same locations found the flashlight to be working 100%. Remember that spirits are thought to feed off of energy... or even flicker a flashlight to prove their presence.

Cold Rush - While investigating the basement, as I was about to rest the EVP recorder on the stairs, a very sudden cold breeze rushed across my hand, seemingly from the interior of the basement. Attempts to locate a source for a draft proved futile.

The Haunted Clothes Dryer - Ok, this one is still going around in my skull, and I really don't have an explanation, but.... At one point we heard the distinct sound and smell (dryer sheets) of a clothes dryer tumbling... you all know the sound and smell I'm sure... from the basement, accompanied by vocal activity. We were in the kitchen area diagonally above where their dryer is. Realize that we knew the owners were going to be returning from dinner so we assumed that they had quietly returned and went to hang out in the basement to not be in the way.

Much to our surprise, the basement was empty (they weren't even home yet) and inspection of the dryer found the vent hose to be cold as ice - obviously NOT having been run recently.

Ok, so maybe it was the furnace, and somehow it sounds like a dryer... that doesn't explain the smell or the voices.... but when we inspected the furnace, it appeared to be relatively new and should NOT rattle like a dryer.

When the owners returned, we asked them if their furnace is noisy. They replied that it was, despite being brand new.... SO, STILL not satisfied with that explanation (being a show-me kinda guy), we tested the noise of the furnace by spiking the thermostat to kick it on.

Now, when the furnace kicked on, I'll admit there was noise... but it in NO WAY sounded (or smelled) like a clothes dryer running in the basement... the noise the furnace makes isn't the furnace itself, it's the walls of the house (sounds like radiators need to be bled - suggest that GG) that were making noise in the very room we were in.

Further confirming that the noise we heard wasn't from the furnace is the fact that what WE heard was NOT captured on the digital recorder, yet the house noises from the starting of the furnace were captured clearly... and even if it was the furnace, what about the smell of dryer sheets and the sound of voices below us????

So, being probably less active than we both hoped for, can i definitely say this house is haunted??? I don't think I can say that - YET..... I will continue to educate myself with regard to the audio analysis process to determine what I may have missed in listening to the recording so far. But, I wouldn't be surprised if it is the spirit of Richard trying to know his grand daughter, as he died before she was born.

By the same token, can I say this house ISN'T haunted ??? I definitely can't say THAT !!! Despite being a somewhat "quiet" 3 hours, there were definitely signs of activity that I have no reasonable explanation for. Besides, many investigations of documented paranormal hot spots can go an entire night with less activity than we experienced. Plus, I have my own personal poltergeist and would never doubt any one's word as to activity that they have experienced.... but, personal experience of said activity would definitely be a plus.

At the very least, it was an interesting and educational evening with a good friend. We may be virgins at this but I certainly believe we investigated in a pretty professional manner, trying to explain everything we could as we experienced it. We made 2 sweeps of the house and the areas that produced activity we couldn't initially explain, we revisited several times to try to do so....

What we did experience brought up questions.... questions we have considered trying to have answered by performing a Ouija seance... so, to Richard, Dee and/or any other spirit that may be in that house west of Hartford.....

WE'LL BE BACK !!!!!!!!!!!

1 screams:

bob said...

WOW sounds like you had a good investigation. You did a very good job documenting the it all. Made it feel like i was there with you. Glad you found some evidence but like most investigations, you were left with more questions. Keep up the good work.