The possible dangers of investigating the paranormal

Clients – the human factor.
Oftentimes the most dangerous thing you’ll face in an investigation will be clients themselves. Remember that you and your fellow team members are volunteering to walk into a stranger’s home who you do not know. Many clients and those claiming to experience paranormal problems are susceptible to mental illness, drug addiction, alcoholism or other factors. You may find yourself in their home and completely at risk.  Many clients may be experiencing psychological duress from the spirits that may haunt them. There may be partial or full possession, depression and other factors you may become aware of after you are at the location. You need to use caution at all times.

When you stick your head in the spirit world, it may follow you home and disrupt your life. Many investigators deal with sudden urges and obsessions, a sudden onset of mental illness, intense times of depression and spiritual oppression. Your family may suffer attacks from the spirit world. Your life may suddenly be filled with traumatic events or unexplained accidents. You may find yourself physically ill and sick with no medical cause or explanation.

During investigations if you experience a spiritual contact you may pick up on and feel the emotions and memories of another entity. Feelings of anger, rage, sorrow as well as memories that are not yours.

Spirit communication
EVPs – any time you are attempting to collect or play EVPs you may be welcoming the spirit world to affect your life. In the same way that a ouiji board or séance opens a door to communication with the spirit world, the simple act of asking questions of a spirit in an EVP session can open the same doors. In playing back EVPs, the vibrations of the spirit voices captured often attracts other spirits. Many times novice investigators will play back the EVPs they’ve just captured while walking back to their vehicles. The spirits whose voices they’ve captured find a valid reason to follow them home in their vehicles. It is recommended that you listen to your recordings after leaving a haunted location in order to prevent hitch hikers. Upon leaving a haunted location every investigator should make a statement that they do not give permission for any spirits to follow them home. This should be done multiple times to help ensure that nothing tags alone, follows you home and essentially disrupts you life.

Provoking
Television and media portray provoking entities in exchange for evidence, on a frequent basis. This is dangerous. Provoking a spirit can lead to a spirit attack. You should treat all spirits with respect. This is common sense. Put yourself in the spirits position. If I was in the spirit world and you walked into my home and provoked me, in order to capture your evidence, I would be upset and probably follow you home and disrupt your life as much as I could.

Never use Ouiji board, séances, magic or witchcraft during an investigation, as you may put everyone present at risk. Even professional mediums and psychics using these spiritual communication methods during investigations have shut them down after something evil slipped through. These methods have been attributed to most high level hauntings, inhuman and demonic cases that are referred to clergy and demonologists.

These are just a few of the possible dangers of the paranormal.  Exploring the paranormal can be a fun and rewarding hobby, but it can also be dangerous.  Do research. Be prepared just in case you find yourself one day facing the Dangers of the Paranormal.

Skellington Manor Investigation

On January 30, 2010, at 6:30 pm MVP was given the chance to perform an investigation at Skellington Manor, the former Masonic Temple in Rock Island, IL.

We met with Kimmy a friend of Mike and Penni Steen, whom are owners of Skellington Manor. Kim took members of the team through the building and showed them the different floors and told of reports of activity. Members split up into 2 teams. Team 1 was Diana, Jordan, and Becky and team 2 was Bob, Steve, and Stephanie. Team 1 stayed on the main floor while team 2 went to the 4th floor. Throughout the night, teams alternated floors and tried to hit all of the reported activity spots.The following are personal experiences that were reported by team members.

Steve writes this: Stephanie, Bob, our escort, and myself were in the process of investigating the 4th floor of Skellington manor. This floor has been considered a hot spot by the client. There were many animatronic horror displays left from the Halloween haunted house that the manor holds every year. We were doing an EVP session, and I had my IR camcorder pointed down a narrow hallway that was used by staff to get from room to room. I could see the wall at the end of the hallway, then all of a sudden a shadow slipped in from left to right, blocking out the end of the hallway. I panned my camera back and forth a little to make sure I just didn’t move the camera from it’s original position. I could see nothing, it was totally blocked out. I mentioned to the group that I could not see the end of the hallway anymore, then the camera refocused and cleared to reveal the wall again. I said to the group that I could see again, and BOOM! Something hit the camera, jolting it sideways. Of course I was excited about what just happened, and a little uneasy. Did whatever hit my camera hit it out of anger, or by accident in passing? I tend to think it was the latter, because nothing felt or seemed malevolent the whole night. All I knew is something that I could not see hit my camera. There was nothing there to bump the camera against, and I was holding the thing as still as possible. I was able to catch the shadow, and the sound of the hit on video and audio. Later that night, we had finished the investigation and had started to break down. ,I along with Stephanie, Jordan and Bob returned to the 4th floor to get Bob’s camera. We were standing in the same area where the event with my camera took place, when I looked over Stephanie’s shoulder to see a dark shadow that was shaped like the head and shoulders of a person move through the room behind her. The room in question was what we called the meat locker. It was a room in which body bags hung from the haunted house along with some fake body parts on the wall. Whatever I saw blocked out the body parts on the wall as it strolled by. I did not mention anything right away as I thought it may have been a trick of the eyes, when Stephanie mentioned seconds after I saw this, that she had felt something brush by her, hitting her hand along the way. We looked into the room to notice one of the fake body bags swinging slightly back and forth, as if something had brushed it walking by. We unfortunately did not have any equipment with us at this time, so it just became a personal experience. These are two experiences I will never forget. I honestly believe there is something to this place.

Diana writes, as for personal experiences, I can’t say that I had any except for Jordan and I possibly seeing a shadow down the end of the hall when we were in the locker room on the 4th floor.

Steph wrote, My personal experiences…

I heard some noises in response to our questions around the time in which Steve saw some distortion in his camera and before it was hit. I felt there was more than one entity around us at that time. The two guys there thought they heard what sounded like a wind chime but I did not hear it. When we went into the other room a curtain that our guide said had been closed earlier during our walk-thru was now open. There had been no one up there between those times. Towards the end of the night while me, Stephen, Bob, and Jordan were tearing down Bob’s equipment, I was speaking to the group about various horror movies and just basic conversation when I suddenly thought I saw something move very close to me in the corner of my eye. I also felt a breeze and a sensation that something had just passed me very close and very quickly. I whipped my head around to look in the direction in which it was going but saw nothing. I was standing in the doorway between the execution room and body bag room. I felt that whatever it was went from the execution room and around me into the body bag room.

Beckys report of personal experiences included unexplained noises and a possible shadow across the wall in the locker room. The group had a fantastic time investigating this historic building and trying to validate the existing claims of activity.

The following are photos that were taken at Skellington Manor. Photos do not claim to be paranormal.

PHOTOS

Old Lockers
Unexplained glow by the Chucky room.
Something manifesting next to Becky??
Check out the circled areas
Preparing to investigate
Jordan and Diana meet one of the residents

Visitation time for Steve and Stephanie
Bob and some friends
Steve and Jordan

AUDIO

Noise

DW_A01263 (2)

DW_A01262

hey

I won’t tell anyone your secret

sound of something hittling my camera 4th floor

UnexplainedVoice

Whisper

VIDEO

steve (2)

Tips to Capture EVP Audio Recordings

EVP recordings can sometimes be difficult to capture clearly on tape. Use these  tips to capture the best possible recording.
When you first begin to record at a location, make note of the date, time and location. Also, if you are going to be moving from room to room, or floor to floor be sure to mention it aloud. This will help you remember where you were when you process your recordings later.

Many new investigators get discouraged or frustrated by whispered or faint EVP. One thing that may (or may not) help would be to ask the spirits to please speak as loudly as they can.

When using a digital recorder,  it has been  found that an external microphone actually INCREASES the amount of static recorded. So, if you have a digital recorder, you may want to *avoid* using an external microphone.

Keep conversation between yourself and other members of your team to a minimum. When you talk, speak clearly and in a normal tone of voice. Never whisper. This will help you distinguish between human voices, and a real EVP audio recording.

Do NOT use the voice activation feature available on some models of recorders. It starts recording AFTER sound begins, which means an EVP can be cut off, or completely missed.  Many EVP’s are too quiet to be picked up by the voice activation feature.

Mississippi Valley Paranormal at Festival Of Trees

For the first time, MVP has entered a tree in the Festival of Trees that is currently taking place in Davenport at the River Center 136 E. 3rd St.  http://www.quadcityarts.com/festoftrees.asp

Team Member Sarah Knowlton is the designer for the tree. The theme for the tree is A Christmas Carol. The tree is split into 3 different decorated sections- Past, Present, and Future. Pictures of the tree can be seen, at MVPs facebook page at:

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Mississippi-Valley-Paranormal/73800414481

Davenport, Iowa Home December 12, 2009

MVP was contacted, in November,  by the daughter of a woman that had been experiencing unexplained activity in her home. This woman had enough of the activity and now wanted answers.

A phone interview was conducted with the homeowner and the following activity was reported from the daughter and her mother:

They have lived in the house, located in Davenport  for five years. She was in their bathroom and a cat picture (that hangs above the cat box) was fine.  She turned away for a minute or so to do whatever, looked back and the picture was covered in sticky stuff and ash. Her husband  even asked what happened to it.  She said that  things happen every day but nothing as tragic as being pushed (she had to go to physical therapy three times a week after that as she was pushed hard into a wall), cats dying, health problems, etc.  The biggest nuisance are things coming up missing and then resurfacing a few days later.     She has seen a  ‘mist’ toward the ceiling at night in the bedroom.  Things come up missing, especially her jewerly.  She told me about her watch that always comes up missing.  She will go to get it, it’s not there and then it will resurface a few days later in the spot where she had been looking.  She had the same experience with a ring.  She went to go get it, not there and a few days later there it was right on top of the jewerly box.    Stuff has moved on it’s own.  Jars in the pantry will fall off even though the jars are not close to the edge.  Last Easter she knew she put egg dye in the kitchen, couldn’t find it until she went into the bathroom and there it was and she had not been in the bathroom previously.  A heavy clock managed to fall off a table one night and shattered (too heavy for a cat to knock off).  There was black ash stuff in the hall bathroom all over the walls.  One time she went to take clothes out of the washer and cardboard was in there with the clothes!  She said it was like someone had put a cardboard box in the washer.  She cleaned it out and threw it away in the garage.  The next night after getting home from dinner, dried cardboard was all over the house.  The next time she washed, there were quite a few paper clips in with the clothes.  Not long ago,  she wasn’t able to open a door, the handle just wouldn’t turn.  The computer always stops working as well as television problems when the husband is out of town. She was pushed across the room, almost pushed down a flight of stairs and felt something push her when she was on a ladder. She said the last strange thing that happened was some garland disappeared from the fireplace area (it was hanging over the fireplace).  She found it about 5 feet away wrapped up.

On December 12th, MVP arrived at the home to conduct the investigation. A walk through took place and equipment was brought in. The team of Becky, Bryce, Bob, Jordan, Stephanie, Steve, and Sarah left to get supper and then returned to set up equipment and begin the investigation. Control experiments were set up, with a watch and ring being set on a piece of paper and outlined to monitor any movement that might happen. Cat toys had been brought by several members to see if they could illicit any responses, since the homeowner feels that what is there does not like cats. Members  split up into two teams with team 1 being  Steve, Bob, and Jordan that started their investigation in the homeowners bedroom, and team 2 being  Becky, Sarah, and Steph that started their investigation in the kitchen area. Bryce remained stationary monitoring the camera that was set up in the bedroom, to catch any possible movement of objects, mists, or shadows.

The team in the kitchen proceeded to do an EVP session. During that time Becky reported seeing shadows numerous times. All 3 members heard an unexplained noise that sounded like a whisper and also heard a knock.

The team in the bedroom conducted an EVP session as well. During their session, there were numerous reports of shadows, EMF going off, cold spots, unexplained sounds, heavy feelings,  and breaks in the lazer beam. This is Bobs account of what he experienced: While sitting on a chair in the bathroom, adjacent to the master bedroom, my EMF detector picked up a very high magnetic field that seemed to be of a circular pattern and focused around the area where I was sitting. The EMF meter was too far from any electrical outlets to register the residential power and no other electronic devices were in my possesion at the time. After about 2-3  minutes the EMF meter decreased down to zero and did not pick up any more readings in that area-nor could I find any readings in that area at all. Also a number of knocks were heard in the presence of the home owners daughter prior to equipment setup and investigation. Jordan reported a heavy feeling several times and also noted the area getting dark and then lighter.

After about 40 minutes the teams switched rooms and continued their investigation.

The members decided to stay together for the next part of the investigation and all went to the lower level to conduct their investigation. During this time, the motion detector seemed to light up several times, with no known reason for it.

The investigation concluded with the members conducting a short EVP session in the living room area. The teams reported very few personal experiences.

The following audio is being submitted as EVPs that we could not explain.

Audio

six knocks dav home enhanced

that’s freaky I love it enhancedBob reacting to the EMF spike

Raaar sound

footsteps

help me sound

hum

hum enhanced

no

no enhanced

mama

mama enhanced

screech enhanced

FaintVoice

Voice

whisper

stephanies whisper

Because of the personal experiences and amount of audio captured, MVP feels that this home warrants another investigation.

Case Open

Private Home Camanche, Iowa November 14, 2009

Hopes house01

MVP received a call from a woman in Camanche who wanted our help with a possible paranormal situation in her home. We were glad to oblige, and a team was sent out to the home on Saturday, November 14th to conduct an investigation. The team consisted of Becky, Steph, Diana, Sally, Stephen and Bob. After meeting and introducing ourselves to the woman of the home and her children, we began the interview and walk-thru process.

While Steph, Becky, Diana, and Sally conversed with the woman and children of the home, Stephen and Bob conducted the walk-thru looking for possible high EMF detections and any other items that could cause disturbances that could be mistaken for paranormal occurrences.

During the interview the following experiences were said to have taken place in the home during the nine and a half years in which the family had been living there.

* When one of the daughters was very young, she had an imaginary friend she called “Hopes”. “Hopes” she stated, was her sister from before, rode a train, and lived in the woods. She often wrote “Hopes” on her school papers and played with this “little girl“. This phenomena ended when the daughter reached about five years of age.

* This same daughter feels uneasy in her bedroom, often experiencing a feeling of being watched there. She had heard breathing before in her room – described as a huffing type of breathing next to her bed.

* Recently, both daughters were in the living room and heard a voice whisper something about “Loving Will” while they were watching a TV program that contained celebrities.

* Most of the experiences seem to revolve around the woman of the house. She has heard a voice call out “Mom” many times in the home but she is either alone or her daughters were not the one who had called. She had also heard a little girl in the basement seeming to “pout” but when she looked no one had been down there with her The mother has also heard footsteps but when checking who it was no one was there as well as hearing a “phantom” phone ring. She has heard what she described as someone “crawling into her room” and felt something sit on her bed but it was no one she could see or touch.

* Lilacs has been smelled in the house. This was the favorite flower and perfume of her mother that had passed away a few years before.

* Outside a water spigot seemed to turn itself on, a toy had been moved out into the middle of the floor when no one claimed to move it, and the dog has been barking incessantly at seemingly nothing, especially recently. The cat of the home does not display any strange activity.

* Husband ( although he is skeptical of any paranormal activity) and the woman had heard children giggling when there were no children around.

Stephen and Bob reported some high EMF spikes in the daughter’s bedroom and in an area in the basement but nothing else unusual. It was decided to set up the night-vision camera in the parents’ bedroom of the house facing down the hallway towards the daughter’s room as a wide range of the house could be captured in this position. Taking our audio recorders, EMF detectors and thermometers we set out around the house to investigate.

We began in the basement, conducting an EVP session and Steph had a very close encounter with a mouse. Stephen reported hearing footsteps with his parabolic coming from above. We then moved upstairs and conducted an EVP session in the kitchen and living room, asking several questions and requesting to play with the little girl in several different forms. After spending some time doing this, the team split up on the first floor, with Diana and Stephen going into the daughter’s bedroom, Sally and the woman of the house going into the other daughter’s bedroom, and Bob and Steph going into the parents’ bedroom to watch over the monitor and camera. Note: these bedrooms were all in the same hallway and the doors were all open. The team could see and hear each other easily during this time if needed.

After some time we decided that the one daughter should be invited back into the home in case an entity might feel more comfortable or attached to her and Diana and the daughter stayed in her bedroom alone, while Stephen sat alone in the kitchen (open door to the hallway and in sight of Steph and Bob from the parent’s bedroom).

After spending some more time in these rooms doing EVP sessions and trying a few different techniques, Bob and Steph decided to move the camera downstairs into the basement and leave it to stand alone, while returning to the parents’ bedroom to monitor the camera down below. Note: the camera can pan around in a circle by remote control held by the investigator.

After feeling as though everything was tried to that we could, the team made one more trip to basement to wrap up, and three of the members reported feeling a light-headed dizzy type of feeling followed by a headache out of nowhere in one specific corner of the basement. None of these claims were related to one another and were all separate reports although it was the same exact place in the basement. We were not certain if these feelings were paranormal or  just because of the high EMF readings in that section.

After thanking the woman and her daughter for allowing us in the their home and making our way to our own homes, we all looked forward to reviewing our audio and video we had captured.

There were not many personal experiences by members’ during the investigation, the only one being by Diana and the daughter of the home late in the investigation. Diana reports… “We were sitting in her room and we started talking about her grandmother and asking if *grandmother’s name” was here and I got a substantial hit on my K-2 meter. Before this my K-2 meter had sat there for a long time and never went off. I thought that was a little odd.”

After reviewing our audio and video evidence we did get two possible EVPs, both taken in the daughter’s bedroom. One of them was taken during the walk-thru of the home and was not a direct response to any of our questioning. The other one, the whisper in the daughter’s bedroom, happened when we were investigating, and the mother was showing Diana and Stephen the colored light that was in there. That EVP was in direct response to the mother turning on that light.

EVPs

voices jordan’s room

voices jordan’s room shorter cut

whisper jordan’s bedroom

Photos

Camanche Home 013 Camanche Home 017 Camanche Home 022

Hopes house 03


The conclusion of our investigation did not bring up any solid evidence with the exception of the two EVPs, which we believe might indicate something unexplained going on in the home, particularly the girl’s bedroom. We would like to set up another investigation there, and focus our efforts on that room to see if we can find anything further.

STATUS: CASE OPEN

Quarters One Rock Island, Illinois November 7, 2009

Quarters One

Introduction

On September 22, 2009, Becky received an email from Dana Matson, Director of Sales at the Rock Island Arsenal Golf Club & Quarters One. She stated that she would like to speak to her about an event that they would like to hold over at Quarters One on the Arsenal Island. She asked Becky to give her a call so that she could discuss it with her. As Becky was gone on vacation for the next two weeks, it was October 15th before she was able to return her call. Dana explained that she would like our group to do a presentation during a dinner at the golf club and then include the guests in a mini investigation. They agreed that it might be easier to get accurate information if MVP was to go in and perform an investigation ahead of time. Dana gave her the name and number of George and Mike, historians on the island, and Becky made a call, arranging to meet Mike for more information. MVP was asked to do a presentation on Nov. 13, but as the investigation could not be arranged until Nov. 7, MVP did not feel that would give us enough time to accurately review any information we might gather during our investigation. We wanted to make sure we were thorough reviewing all of the evidence.

HISTORY

In 1869, Rodman envisioned a house ornate enough to entertain guests and designed so a family and visitors could comfortably live there. Quarters One was designed by General Thomas Jefferson Rodman and constructed during 1870-1871 and the residence was ready for occupancy in 1872. It served as the family home of the highest-ranking officer on the Arsenal and was the second-largest single family residence owned by the federal government, behind only the White House. Quarters One consists of over 20,000 square feet, and about 50 rooms. It has a full basement, three floors, and a watch tower. The first large gathering there was a funeral in 1871 for Gen. Thomas Rodman, then commander of the Rock Island Arsenal and original constructor of the home itself.

The home has hosted many important gatherings in its 137-year history. Kings and Queens slept there as well as U.S. President Taft in the making. So did Charles Lindbergh, soon after his historic solo trans-Atlantic.

Two years ago, the Army determined that Quarters One needed approximately $3 million in repairs and upgrades to bring it up to modern standards. Earlier this year, Maj. Gen. Robert M. Radin and his wife Sara moved out of Quarters One to Quarters Six, another historic residence on the Arsenal. Future uses for Quarters One are being considered.

WALK-THRU

On November 7th, MVP met with Dana and Mike at 7:00 to do a walk through and set up for the investigation. Members present at this investigation were Becky, Steph, Stephen, Diana, Sally, Amy, and two new members Jordan and Bob.

Mike took us all on the walk-thru, covering every part of Quarters One, minus the tower. We would like to thank him again for his informative and interesting knowledge about the history of the place, as well as the present happenings.

One current phenomenon mentioned by him was the turning on and off of lights while no one is at the home, as well as doors opening and shutting on their own. On one instance, all of the windows throughout the 2nd floor of the home opened simultaneously. Employees have seen shadows and shapes and there have been phantom smells of roses and cinnamon. A usually well-mannered dog refuses to enter a certain room. Maintenance workers refuse to enter a particular room in the basement. Drumming noises have been heard as well as disembodied voices. A Confederate soldier had been spotted numerous times outside, leaning next to the first tree on the right as you enter the home’s driveway.

A worker had committed suicide in the basement, a young girl may haunt the upper floors, and the old owners and boarders may continue to be here as well. We could tell we had our work cut out for us.

INVESTIGATION

After the walk-thru the team stepped outside first and checked out the “soldier tree”, then made our way around the outside of the home, taking pictures of the home and surrounding areas. We then gathered together into the main hall and attempted the Singapore theory to stir up any activity in the house. The Singapore theory is when music of a certain time period is played relevant to the time period of the hauntings of the home. We played “Yankee Doodle” and a few military marches and afterwards, introduced ourselves and conducted an EVP session.

Bob and Steph set up a video camera in the Lindbergh bedroom on the second floor. We felt this room was the hottest spot in the house due to hearing of the past personal experiences there.

The group then split up, and the teams went on their separate ways. The teams had been pre-determined by the lead investigators, with re-organization of teams throughout the night so that everyone would have a chance to work together. One team, led by Stephanie, went into the basement and the other team, led by Becky, made their way to the second floor. We wanted a floor between teams in order to help avoid noise contamination.

Once we finished our floors, we regrouped and formed two different teams. This time Steph’s team investigated the third floor and the tower ending up in the Lindbergh room on the second floor, and Becky’s team stayed on the main floor. After thoroughly investigating our areas, we regrouped again and Steph took a team back down into the basement.

After several hours of investigating, the group decided to pack it up and call it a night. We thanked Dana for the incredible opportunity and made our way to our homes to sleep, excited to begin reviewing our video and audio recorders during the next few days.

The following experiences were reported by various members. Evidence is also included down below.

The whole team, including the historian Mike, smelled what seemed like a burning candle or kerosene during the walk-thru in one of the second floor back rooms. There were also black scorch marks on the grates of the fireplace in the room, which Mike stated had not been there before. The smell was quite strong and everyone smelled it. It then faded away within about five to ten minutes.

Steph, Jordan, and Sally all felt a strange sensation down in the basement while in the “meat preparation room”, after some strange noises were heard by all, including Stephen and Bob, outside of the room in the hallway. Jordan felt a sensation on her arm as if something was touching her, Steph then felt something lightly touching and moving her DVR recorder which was being held flat out in her palm, and then Sally felt something lightly touch her hair. All of these things happened about 2 to 3 minutes apart. The males in the room experienced nothing.

Steph had a personal experience in the basement, towards the end of the night. “Me and Stephen were alone in the “meat preparation room” in the side closet. We had shut the door and I was telling Stephen what I believed may have happened in the room. They were just feelings, but I described having a very strong sense that a woman had been sexually assaulted in there. All of sudden, my vision, directly in front of my face went black as if something was suddenly in front of my face and passed me by. It was black enough to block everything out and it seemed to come at me quickly then away and I flinched strongly and vocally reacted. I’m not sure what it was, but it startled me quite a lot, and left me with a really bad and disturbed feeling the rest of the night, that I could not shake.”

Becky stated during the walk through in the 2nd floor room next to the Lindbergh room, she smelled the scent of roses while standing next to the fireplace mantle. By the time she mentioned it out loud, the scent had gone. She also heard a whispering sound while on the second floor, but this was not captured on audio.

Diana had an experience she felt worth mentioning.  There was one time in the main area by the front door, when it was just me, Becky and Dana, that I had some weird feelings, like maybe we were being watched and at one point Becky and Dana were sitting across from me and it was pretty dark and it seemed like all the sudden the room got brighter because I could see Becky and Dana better. It was weird!

Stephen states – “My personal experiences include seeing the shadow on the second floor near the Lindbergh bedroom. The shadow I saw was my height and moved to the left quickly, blocking out the white doorway frame as it moved into the Lindbergh room. Bob and I then chased it inside, but we did not see the shadow again. I also had my shirt sleeve tugged both in the Lindbergh room and in the basement. I also heard a young girl giggle on the main floor.”

He and Jordan both shared an experience in the basement. Jordan states… “Steve, Stephanie, Sally, Bob, and I were in the basement. We gathered in the old courtroom, then Steve and I went to place a recorder in the room next door. Steve placed a recorder on the table and just as we were about to leave, we heard a noise in the corner. We both turned around as fast as we could and saw that the farthest door on the old kitchen cabinets was wide open. Steve said “Did that just open?” I replied that I believed it had. Stephanie and I had just been in that room a few moments before and none of the cabinet doors were open. (Steph verifies this). We called in the rest of the group and tested the door to check if it had opened on its own. If it had opened on its own it would have slammed into the pipe behind it, but it hadn’t. It seemed that it had been stopped before hitting the pipe.” (Steve had this event caught on audio)

Bob reported the following. My flashlight kept coming on in my back pocket,it is a 3-led flashlight with a push button switch, I’ve tried numerous times to recreate what happened but am unable to do so-the light is either on or off and will not stay in halfway position.

***A few more things had happened during the investigation, but due to some guests being in the home while the team was investigating, we cannot put enough validity into these things, as we were not certain that we knew where these guests were at all times. All of the experiences listed above, with the exception of the smell of the candle burning and Becky smelling the roses, happened after everyone had left and MVP were left alone in the house with only Dana to investigate.

EVPs

3rdFloorClosetDoorRmNameKayla(10,4)

Alone-Pantry-Walk-Thru2

Photos

*Pictures are not proof of Paranormal Activity

Quarters One pictures 050 Quarters One pictures 036

Quarters One pictures 096 Quarters One pictures 045

Quarters One pictures 056 Quarters One pictures 017

We hope to investigate Quarters One again, as the history and sheer beauty of the home is enough to bring us back. We believe there might be something going on in the house but did not receive enough hard evidence yet to deem it haunted for sure. We are currently planning a return investigation, to further research our personal experiences and to attempt further validation of what we believe to be some valid and unexplained EVPs.

STATUS – CASE OPEN

Private Home- Camanche, IA October, 2009

The investigation started at 7:00pm with a walk through of the residence. At the time there was no one living in the residence. We toured the basement, main floor, and upstairs rooms. The home appeared to be an older home with original limestone foundation. During the tour the home owners relative stated that in the past someone heard the sound of children playing upstairs when no one was up their and Dana a family member had been vacuuming the steps that go to the upstairs and had a feeling of the hair on the back of her neck being pulled.

Sally & the home owner’s relative started the investigation by turning all the light out in the home and went to the basement. Sally set up a controlled experiment with a toy tractor. The position of the tractor was marked and a photo was taken. We listened in silence and conduced an Evp session. A recorder was left in the basement while the investigators went to the upstairs of the home.

Upon going to the upstairs of the home we sat in the front bedroom first. Another control experiment was set up using a ball and a marker to show placement. An audio recorder was placed in the hall as well. While in the front bedroom an Evp session was conducted. Both the home owner’s relative and Sally experienced multiple cold spots as they were sitting on the floor. The both had stated that they only felt the cold from their shoulder to their hands. Their legs and head were not affected by the temperature changes. The windows of the home appeared to be replaced from the original; meaning that they seemed not to be creating a draft. Sally & the home owner’s relative also saw lights twinkling in the closet that were debunked and explained to be headlights from the distance shining through a pine tree.

Sally & the home owner’s relative moved to the smaller back bedroom for a short time. Sally asked a few more Evp questions and they moved downstairs to the living room.

In the living room Sally decided to experience with a pair of dowsing rods. She stated that if anyone in the room who wanted to communicate that a series of yes or no questions. She asked the rods to cross yes and go apart for no. The questions with responses are listed below:

Was this your home? Did you live here? Yes

Was that you who pulled Danas hair on the step? Yes

Is there more than one of you here? No

Do you like when kids come to play? Yes

Do you feel you are trapped here? Yes

Do you have brothers and sisters? Yes

Did you follow us into the basement? Yes

Did we hear your voice in the basement? Yes

Do you know how to cross over? No

Do you want to? Yes

Do you want us to stay here with you? Yes

Do you want us to leave? No

The investigation was concluded after Sally & the home owner’s relative sat in the living room for a while. Sally tried to get an audible response from whoever my still be in the home.

Upon review of the evidence of collected and the clear response of the dowsing rod experiment: I believe there to be paranormal activity in the home. The evidence points to the presence of a young girl.

A copy of the audio was given to the owners of the home.

EVIDENCE

Audio

BasementThump

LivingroomHelp

UpSmallBedroomNoise

BasementNoise12Sec

FrontBedroomVoice

LivingroomNoiseResponse

Pictures

6 30 09 061

6 30 09 062

6 30 09 063

CASE STATUS: OPEN

Grand Opera House Dubuque Iowa September 5, 2009

Grand Opera House 002

In July, the team was informed by Steve of a possible investigation of a well known haunted location that he had read about in a book of haunted places in Iowa.  The location was the Grand Opera House in Dubuque, IA.  Becky had set up the investigation for September 5th, 2009 Labor Day weekend.  A team of Becky, Sarah, Steve, Stephanie, Sally, and Diana met at the Opera House at 4:00 pm.  Shortly after meeting we went to have a bite to eat and then reconvened at the opera house where an employee was waiting to unlock the doors and give us a tour.

Walk Through

We were given a short tour of the theatre by an employee whom was also an actor.  While on the tour he explained to us that the opera house was built in 1889 and was open for business in 1890.  It had a seating capacity of 1100 and a huge stage that measured 47 feet from front to back.  The stage was so large that during a production of Ben Hur there were live horses, chariots, and elephants used.  The theatre was graced by legendary stars such as George M. Cohan, Sarah Bernhardt, Lillian Russell, Ethel Barrymore, and Henry Fonda.  In 1928 live theatre was phased out by moving pictures.  The second balcony was removed reducing the seating capacity to 644, and was converted into a movie house known as “The Grand.”  In 1986 The Barn Community Theatre purchased the building, renovated it, and returned live theatre to the historic site.   We were informed by our guide that he, himself had felt like someone was watching him from the balcony when he was in the main theatre by himself.  He also told us of another paranormal group that had done an overnight investigation only to come up with a few Evp’s of bumps and bangs along with one of a piano note being played over and over.  It was thought that the theatre’s paranormal activity had ceased as nobody had reported anything strange recently.  Many of the claims of activity had been tampering with electronic equipment, lights, sound, etc…  He said at one point an electrical box on the stage had blown and shortly after that a glowing orb was seen crossing the stage.  Objects and props would disappear and reappear in strange places.  The spirit of a woman had been seen by actors who were on stage, passing by the windows of the former projection booth which now holds the spotlights.  There is talk of the ghost of a woman on the fifth floor, which is now the costume shop, whom is said to dislike women.  Our guide had told us that an Ouija board session had been conducted by a couple of ladies who are unknown to us on the 5th floor in which they claimed that a name for the ghost was spelled out, “Sarah”.  Could it be Sarah Bernhardt?  The basement consisted of several dressing rooms, bathrooms, and showers, prop room, and paint room; which was the oldest section of the theatre. There was also a set storage room and an elevator that led up through a trap door in the center of the stage.  The theatre consists of 5 floors to investigate, no elevators, all stairs.  We had our work cut out for us.

Investigation

Our investigation started in the main theatre with all members present.  We decided to use a technique called “the Singapore theory.”  This is a technique using music of the era in which the ghosts are believed to have been from in hopes to stir up activity.  We chose to play “Carmen”, the first opera that was performed at the theatre.  Becky, Sarah, Stephanie, Sally, and Dianna chose to stay near the Stage, while Steve went up into the seats to record and listen from there.  We started the music and it wasn’t long before we started hearing knocks and thumping.  Becky reported hearing a cough come from the right side of the theatre and was confirmed by Sally who also heard it.  Stephanie reported hearing what sounded like a metallic pinging noise.  The noises started at the right portion of the theatre and moved towards the stage.  Noises were heard coming from different sections of the stage.  An EVP of what sounded like someone whistling along with the music was caught.  Everyone confirmed that none of us were whistling at the time.  After completing the Singapore theory we chose to split into smaller teams.  Steve and Stephanie went to the basement, Diana and Sally went to the upper floors, and Sarah stayed with Becky in the main theatre.
Upon descending the stairs to the basement via the stage right stairwell, Stephanie had felt the presence of something following us.  The first rooms that were checked were the dressing room area nothing out of the ordinary occurred but Stephanie still felt like there was something with her.   Steve and Stephanie entered what is now the prop room and Stephanie was shutting the door and asking at the same time to whomever was following them to not lock them in.  An EVP was caught in response to Stephanie’s request.  They then moved on to the paint room which was unbelievably dark.  Steve started to move towards the back of the room; kicking aside bricks that were in the way; when Stephanie got very uneasy of the situation.  She mentioned that the pipes were making noise, right after that a scraping sound was heard.  Stephanie wanted to exit the room immediately feeling that she would be trapped between whatever was with them and the doorway.  Steve noticed that there was a high level of EMF being emitted from the pipes.  It is possible that the eerie feelings Stephanie was getting could have been caused by the high level of EMF but she is normally not EMF sensitive.  They then moved on to the set storage area where there were many set pieces from past shows and a couple of tympani drums.  A short EVP session was conducted in the room with no results.  The last room to investigate in the basement was the utility room.  Steve scanned the area for EMF and found that the only thing giving off higher levels was the water heater.
Diana and Sally investigated the upper levels which consisted of the projection room on the third floor, a rehearsal and reception room on the fourth floor, and the costume shop on the fifth floor.  While in the costume shop, Sally and Diana held an EVP session which consisted of some mild provoking.  The spirit known only as “Sarah” is known to not like women.  There was one report of a woman being pushed down the stairs.  Knowing this they provoked telling whatever was there if it did not want them there to tell them to get out.  A very loud and clear EVP was caught in response.  The other rooms investigated yielded no results.

Meanwhile Becky and Sarah were in the main theater and had said the bangs and bumps continued to be heard.  They also heard voices and the banging of a drum.  The voices and drum were immediately debunked as they were coming from Steve and Stephanie in the basement.  Steve noticed that there were a couple of ventilation grates on the side of the stage and sounds from the basement could be heard easily from them.  The drum was Stephanie banging on it trying to get a response from anything there.  We reconvened in the main theatre and then split again.  This time Steve and Stephanie went to the upper levels, Sarah and Sally went to the basement, and Diana stayed with Becky in the main theatre.
Steve and Stephanie went up to the third floor to investigate the projection room, and noticed that anyone could walk by the windows looking out to the theatre, and be seen as a shadow because of bright stage lights that when on stage would hinder one’s sight.  Nothing out of the ordinary happened there.  They then went to the fourth floor rehearsal room, where there was a claim that one of the actors were sitting there playing the piano, and the door behind him began to shake and the doorknob was turning back and forth.  Steve decided to recreate the scenario by playing a few songs on the piano.  While playing, a small knock was heard, which sounded like someone sitting in one of the chairs, but never repeated.  They did notice though that the room echoes and sounds from outside could be heard.  Steve left his recorder in the room while he and Stephanie went to investigate the fifth floor.  Upon entering the costume shop, Stephanie again was overwhelmed by a feeling of dread.  She was hesitant to enter the room, but soon joined Steve in investigating it.  The room was very dark, hot, and spooky, filled with racks of costumes and a few cobwebs.  An EVP session was held with a little provoking by Steve yielded no results.  Stephanie was still feeling uneasy however.  They concluded their investigation and headed back down to the main theatre.
Sarah and Sally investigated the basement, entering the prop room they caught an EVP of what sounded likes a woman greeting them.  No other results were obtained but they also felt uneasy in the Paint room.
Becky and Diana continued to hear bumps and bangs in the Theatre.  They also confirmed hearing the piano playing from Steve.  At this time Steve and Sarah chose to investigate the Balcony.  Doing a short EVP session nothing unusual happened at that time.  We then took a short break and reconvened in the main theatre where we attempted the Singapore theory once more.
Again we started up the music, but this time we all remained by the stage.  Again the bumps and bangs started from the same area they did before and seemed to follow the same pattern, only this time were a little more pronounced.  We chose to do EVP at the same time.  While we traded off asking questions a sharp bang was heard from the back of the stage where there were some wooden scenery sections.  It sounded as if something knocked on the wood.  Shortly after that our motion sensor was tripped.  We had figured out that none of us set it off because it was facing in a direction that you would have to be in the center of the stage to set it off.  Steve then reported seeing something move across the table that was on the stage right side.  He recalls the event as this… “I was looking at the Center of the Stage, when I saw some shadow movement out of the corner of my eye.  I focused my attention on the table, as this is where I thought the shadow to be coming from.  I saw something orange shift slightly, then slide about a foot across the table.
I immediately pointed my flashlight at the table when Diana also confirmed that she saw the same thing.  I went up to investigate what it was that moved and discovered it was an orange extension cord adapter.  I was slack jawed at the experience, questioning myself as to whether I saw what I saw.  All I can say is Wow!”  At that moment Diana noticed that the motion sensor had been moved from its original position and we could not explain this as she was the one who set it there and knew the way it was facing originally.  We then set up the night vision DVR on the table where the adapter had moved; this time positioning a string around it.  It never moved again.  Stephanie was asking questions as to the name of the spirit moving about the stage.  She just started blurting out random names when an EVP was caught of a male voice responding to her.  We concluded our investigation at this point and began shutting down.  Stephanie noticed her flashlight was missing.  One of the claims of activity was things came up missing and found in strange spots.  We scoured the theatre looking for it; she found it in the bathroom.  She remembered being in there and concluded that she left it in there and that it was not moved by unseen forces.  Shortly before leaving Sally heard a loud bang coming from the door that led to the basement.  She recreated it by opening the door and letting it close.  No one recalled opening that door at that time.

Photos

Grand Opera House 029

Evidence

Audio

5thFloorGetOut

FourthFloor-Response

NoisePaintRoom

shh

twotapsExcuseme

VoiceinBasement

FifthFloorNoise_Alone

noiseswhileleftintheatre

StorageRoomWisperHello

unknownvoicebeforesteph

whistleWmusic

Conclusion

Upon review of our evidence and personal experiences; several Evp’s were caught.  The moving of the adapter and the motion sensor could not be explained.  The knocks and bangs could be explained as normal building or settling noises, but is still being questioned as they seemed to increase in frequency and intensity when Singapore theory was being conducted.  We believe that there is paranormal activity still going on in the theatre. We believe there to be the presence of possibly two intelligent spirits, one on or near the stage that seems to wander from the back of the theatre and through the basement and another intelligent presence on the fifth floor.  The claim of the woman being pushed down the stairs can be debunked, as the wall on the stairwell leans out creating a funhouse effect.  We are unsure as to whether the spirit on the fifth floor dislikes women, but seems to not want to be bothered.  One other EVP was caught on Stephanie’s recorder that was left there to sit alone.  It sounds as if something was sliding across the wood floor; perhaps the bench.  We were all pleased with the results and the experience of investigating this historic theatre and hope to return soon as we feel it is needed.

CASE STATUS: OPEN