Author Archive

Horror Art Made Flesh

by on May.17, 2018, under From the Web

Reposted from Ghost Stories and Haunted Places | Go to Original Post

A passion for the paranormal and for all things that go bump in the night can be expressed in many venues.  I love to write, some love to paint, others engrave their passion on their flesh.  One of my favorite horror novels was Kathe Koja’s Skin.  Written in the 1990s and set in Detroit, this novel pulled the reader into the obsessive world of tattoos and piercing.  Similarly, tattoo artists can pull us into our own obsessions with all things haunting and dark by imbedding images in our flesh.
Featured Artist:
Matt Looney
Black Pearl Studios in Florence Alabame
Matt Looney is the owner of Black Pearl Studios in Florence Alabama and specializes in horror themed tattoos.  Follow him on facebook at:  https://www.facebook.com/BlackPearlStudioTattooParlor/

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A Phantom in the Woods

by on May.14, 2018, under From the Web

Reposted from Ghost Stories and Haunted Places | Go to Original Post

The woods near Oscoda, Michigan are filled with legends.   Oscoda is a small town near Saginaw bay by Lake Huron.   Many of these stories surround Lake Solitude.  Lake Solitude used to to be attached to Lake Huron, but the years have cut it off, isolating it and now only a trickle of water connect the lake to the larger body of water.  Near the lake are the ruins of  Au Sable, the region’s oldest settlement.   Over the years this area has become associated with witchcraft and ghosts and there are tales of many local ghosts.  

The story of one of these resident ghosts was told best by a group of hunters that once got lost wandering the shores of this lake.  The hunters had gotten seperated from their group and lost their bearings.  They spent hours wandering through the woods in a desperate attempt to find anything that looked familiar.  But all their attempts were in vain and they were unable to find any help.  When they had finally given up and sat down,  a young woman seemed to appear out of nowhere.  She was lovely and amiable and the group immediated trusted her.  She explained to them that she was a local farmer’s daughter and that she knew the woods very well.   She guided them back to the safety of town.  The hunters were so greatful that they turned to thank her and then they watched her vanish into thin air.

When they got back to town,  they went to the local bar to have a beer and relax.  As they drank, they told their story to the bartender.   He knew the story well.   The ghost was well known in those parts.  The young woman’s name had been Leona and her family had once had a farm in those woods. Back in 1929, Leona had been shot and killed by a hunter who mistook her for a deer. Since then, her spirit had been seen many times, usually leading lost people out of the forest.

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A Phantom in the Woods

by on May.14, 2018, under From the Web

Reposted from Ghost Stories and Haunted Places | Go to Original Post

The woods near Oscoda, Michigan are filled with legends.   Oscoda is a small town near Saginaw bay by Lake Huron.   Many of these stories surround Lake Solitude.  Lake Solitude used to to be attached to Lake Huron, but the years have cut it off, isolating it and now only a trickle of water connect the lake to the larger body of water.  Near the lake are the ruins of  Au Sable, the region’s oldest settlement.   Over the years this area has become associated with witchcraft and ghosts and there are tales of many local ghosts.  

The story of one of these resident ghosts was told best by a group of hunters that once got lost wandering the shores of this lake.  The hunters had gotten seperated from their group and lost their bearings.  They spent hours wandering through the woods in a desperate attempt to find anything that looked familiar.  But all their attempts were in vain and they were unable to find any help.  When they had finally given up and sat down,  a young woman seemed to appear out of nowhere.  She was lovely and amiable and the group immediated trusted her.  She explained to them that she was a local farmer’s daughter and that she knew the woods very well.   She guided them back to the safety of town.  The hunters were so greatful that they turned to thank her and then they watched her vanish into thin air.

When they got back to town,  they went to the local bar to have a beer and relax.  As they drank, they told their story to the bartender.   He knew the story well.   The ghost was well known in those parts.  The young woman’s name had been Leona and her family had once had a farm in those woods. Back in 1929, Leona had been shot and killed by a hunter who mistook her for a deer. Since then, her spirit had been seen many times, usually leading lost people out of the forest.

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SPIRITS with SPIRITS is BACK!!!

by on May.09, 2018, under From the Web

Reposted from Ghost Hunters of Urban Los Angeles | Go to Original Post


GHOULA meets for cocktails in haunted places on the 13th of the month. “SPIRITS with SPIRITS” is a casual social gathering of regional ghost hunters and those that just like ghost stories. Open to all, from the curious skeptic to the passionate phantom pursuer. Make friends, and toast a ghost! Let’s put the “Boo!” back into “booze.”

All those who attend will receive a free (square) GHOULA. button. If you already have one, please wear it so others can find you, without asking the staff about our group. (i.e. LOOK FOR SOMEONE WITH A GHOULA BUTTON)

THE DATE: May 13th, 2018 (Sunday)
THE PLACE: The Tonga Hut
12808 Victory Blvd, North Hollywood, CA 91606 (Map)
THE TIME: 8:00pm to ? (4:00pm – 8:00pm is Happy Hour)

THE GHOST(S):

The Tonga Hut is considered the oldest “Tiki bar” in Los Angeles, opening in 1958. Much has been written about Tiki bars and their exotic rum-based fruity cocktails. There are many fans, books, and websites devoted to the artifacts and lifestyle associated with this post World War II era craze. So, the history and the facets of this topic can easily be found elsewhere. What is worth mentioning however is that some believe the resurgence of its popularity is because of this humble bar, which became a lightning rod for the preservation of this culture when fans discovered how far it had sunk in the 1980s with electronic dart boards and neon beer signs. Thankfully, as a result, The Tonga Hut has been restored and reimagined into this magical oasis in the desert of the San Fernando Valley.

This bar has also been on GHOULA’s radar for more than a decade, so we are very glad we can finally visit it. A long time ago, when we started doing these meet-ups in haunted bars, we were given a tip that this North Hollywood gem may be haunted. So one night, two of us from GHOULA dropped in to do a little “research.” After some time at the bar, we asked the bartender about ghosts. We were informed that “This bar is not haunted and there are no ghosts here.” We pressed a little more, mentioning that most historic places have legends and rumors connected to them that add to their colorful history and so on. Again, we were told that “This bar is not haunted and there are no ghosts here.”

We were about to drop the subject, when the patron sitting next to us (an elderly man) asked if we were looking for ghost stories. When we answered affirmatively, he told us that there was a long time regular of the bar that we should meet. With that, he called over an elderly woman with a drink in her hand. The man introduced us, and pleaded with her to tell us her ghost stories about the bar. As she was about to sit down and spill the beans, the bartender interrupted and said in a louder voice “This bar is not haunted and there are no ghosts here” and then added “and anyone who says otherwise… will be banned from the bar!” The older lady, scared from this threat, scurried away disappearing into the crowd. Our new friend turn his back on us and pretended we weren’t there. The bartender then turned to us (GHOULA) and said these final words “I’m going to ask you to leave now.” Not wanting trouble, we left without a ghost story.

Clearly we touched a nerve with this bartender, and clearly there was a ghost story. Henceforth, the Tonga Hut had always represented the one that got away. It was a great tavern that was apparently haunted, but we just couldn’t get the story. We never did find out what those stories were, but thanks to the investigative work of James T. Bartlett, author of Gourmet Ghosts 2 (and friend of GHOULA), we finally have a ghost story to pin to this exotic landmark. As he published in his book, it seems that a long time regular of the establishment named Dottie passed away, and subsequently, after hours, a cleaner would have long conversations with Dottie’s spirit while she did her nightly chores. One can not help but wonder if that patron we talked to so many years ago was this Dottie. Did the woman who was going to tell us a ghost story end up becoming the story herself? If so, sadly we may never find out the details of that original ghost story. So, whoever else might be haunting the Tong Hut will have to remain a mystery. In the meantime, let’s celebrate the ghost we do have, and have a drink at one of the most unique watering holes in LA. By the way, a seat is reserved for Dottie (the resident spirit) at the bar during Happy Hour.

So come out, join us, share ghost stories, and toast this ghost… If you dare!

(to read about the last haunted location… )
(to see a map of previous SPIRITS with SPIRITS locations… )

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HAUNTED HOUSE TOUR!

by on May.04, 2018, under From the Web

Reposted from Ghost Hunters of Urban Los Angeles | Go to Original Post


(Above-the William H. Perry Residence as it appeared a century ago in Boyle Heights.)

GHOULA’S HAUNTED HOUSE TOUR!

(Who wants to go inside a haunted house?)

THE DATE: May 26th, 2018 (Saturday)
THE PLACE: The Perry Mansion
3800 Homer St, Los Angeles, CA 90031 (Heritage Square Museum) (map)
THE TIMES: 6:00pm, 7:15pm, 8:30pm (Click here for tickets)
(The tour is about an hour long.)
ADMISSION: $13.00

Due to the restrictions of this 142 years old historic landmark, we will only be able to bring small groups into this house, and we only have allowed access to three haunted areas inside the walls of this protected building. 

NOTE: This is not a themed “haunted attraction” with special effects and costumed actors, nor is it a “ghost hunt” with psychics and equipment to record the presence of spirits. This is an evening of story-telling and an exploration of the buildings haunted lore… Simply put, This is an actual tour of an actual haunted house.

In a city known for its architecture, “house tours” are a common occurrence in Los Angeles. Although, there are many historic homes throughout the South-land with docent-led tours (who may mention rumors of hauntings), this in the very first “house tour” conducted in our city, where the focus is entirely on the ghostly inhabitants.

The “residence with the phantom presence” in question is the stately former home of William H. Perry (the largest house in Los Angeles when it was built in 1876), which is currently part of the Heritage Square Museum in the Arroyo Seco corridor. If you have ever taken the Pasadena Freeway (The 11O) between Downtown and Pasadena, then you have most likely seen it against the hills, next to the parkway, with the protected cluster of Victorian-era buildings. If you have ever wanted to pull off the freeway, go beyond those gates, and hear the strange stories the docents don’t tell you. This is your chance…

Come join us on this one-of-a-kind HAUNTED HOUSE TOUR… if you dare!
…And if you dare, that house you normally drive past, will never look the same again!

For tickets…
https://www.eventbrite.com/e/ghoulas-haunted-house-tour-tickets-45631259325

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The Real Story behind The Exorcist

by on Apr.23, 2018, under From the Web

Reposted from Ghost Stories and Haunted Places | Go to Original Post

As a young girl,  I found a copy of William Blatty’s The Exorcist and read it in less than two days.  It was the most engrossing and horrific book I had ever read.  I still have never found its equal.   The book itself was beautifuly written and terrifying, but what made it even more scary was what was written on the inside flap of the book.   There it said that the book was based on a true story.  

Of course, “based on a true story” is never the same thing as a true story.  The true story behind The Exorcist is also terrifying, but very different from the book and the movie. The Exorcist was based on the story of a 13 year-old boy named Robbie.   In January of 1949, Robbie lived in Maryland with his family and was very fond of his aunt.  His aunt and he began to play the ouija board together.   They enjoyed the game and were able to contact a friendly spirit.   Robbie’s aunt wasn’t always available to play with him,  so he began playing by himself when she wasn’t available.  Suddenly, the family began to notice various odd noises around the house.  They heard dripping and scratching and things that sounded like mice in the attic.  These noises began to escalate with time and ended when Robbie’s aunt died.

After Robbie’s aunt died,  things got worse.  Robbie’s bed began to shake violently at night while he was on it.   Objects flew around his room for no reason.  Things broke.   A vase was hurled at Robbie’s mother.   Robbie began ot use the ouija board more regularly in a desperated attempt to contact his aunt for help.

Robbie’s parents took him to see doctors, psychiatrists, psychologists, psychics, and ministers.   The first three were unable to help. In 1949, anti psychotics and regular medical treatments for severe mental illness had not yet been discovered. So it would have been fairly normal for mental illness to be untreatable during this time period so this in and of itself isn’t evidence of a possession.  However,  the  minister and the psychic both recommended an exorcism by a catholic priest.   Robbie got worse and entered a trance state.  Scratches appeared all over his body.    Finally, after months of coping with the ordeal,  Father Hugh’s was contacted and the exorcism began.   Of course,  it wasn’t as easy as it was in the movies.   The boy was at a hospital, tied to the bed.   The process took weeks.   At some point, Robbie got a spring loose from the bed and cut the priest.  The process was a nightmare that offered no help to young Robbie.     The boy spoke Latin and told the priest he was the devil, but for some reason the mother thought that he was possessed by his aunt.

Robbie was released from the hospital and the entire incident was covered up, but Robbie was no better.  The scratches appearing on Robbie’s chest said Louis and Robbie’s mother thought they were a message from her sister.  The family moved to St. Louis.    The family began experimenting with the Ouija board again to contact the aunt and get spiritual advice from beyond.  Robbie deteriorated.  Finally, Father Bowdern was called and after another ordeal, the boy was healed on Easter Day by taking communion

You can learn more about Robbie’s long and horrible ordeal in the book “Possessed, The True Story Of An Exorcism.” It was written by Thomas B. Allen.   The story is obviously more complex than this little synopsis and the book is worth reading to get the entire story.

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Fiction Corner: The Banshee of Killarney House by Wayne Miller

by on Apr.11, 2018, under From the Web

Reposted from Ghost Stories and Haunted Places | Go to Original Post

It had become a game to the local teens.

“Let’s go annoy the crazy lady!”

Everyone said Killarney House was haunted. Since their coming to America, since they’d constructed the house, every member of the O’Hurlahee family had died there, their deaths foretold by the wailing Banshee that had followed them from their native Ireland. The all heard the Banshee before they died, so the story went.

In the ten years since she’d bought the house, Frances hadn’t seen—or heard—any ghost.

She had seen plenty of annoying teenagers, though.

She’d chase them away; they’d come back. She’d turn the garden hose on them; they filmed her with their cellphones.

“You’re making it worse,” friends told her. “Putting on a show for them.”

“Horseshit!” Frances always replied.

Tonight a carload of the brats sat parked across the street, honking their horn to torment her, calling her name. Frances tried to ignore it but at last her nerves gave out. She seized a frying pan from its peg on the wall and charged out the front door. She’d show them.

“Here she comes!”

“Get out of here!” Frances charged into the street.

Then she heard it. Her bone marrow turned to ice. The screech of the Banshee.

It sounded just like the squealing of tires.

“Look out!” the brats shouted, too late.

Frances didn’t feel the impact.

The Banshee had announced another death at Killarney House.

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Fiction Corner: The Banshee of Killarney House by Wayne Miller

by on Apr.11, 2018, under From the Web

Reposted from Ghost Stories and Haunted Places | Go to Original Post

It had become a game to the local teens.

“Let’s go annoy the crazy lady!”

Everyone said Killarney House was haunted. Since their coming to America, since they’d constructed the house, every member of the O’Hurlahee family had died there, their deaths foretold by the wailing Banshee that had followed them from their native Ireland. The all heard the Banshee before they died, so the story went.

In the ten years since she’d bought the house, Frances hadn’t seen—or heard—any ghost.

She had seen plenty of annoying teenagers, though.

She’d chase them away; they’d come back. She’d turn the garden hose on them; they filmed her with their cellphones.

“You’re making it worse,” friends told her. “Putting on a show for them.”

“Horseshit!” Frances always replied.

Tonight a carload of the brats sat parked across the street, honking their horn to torment her, calling her name. Frances tried to ignore it but at last her nerves gave out. She seized a frying pan from its peg on the wall and charged out the front door. She’d show them.

“Here she comes!”

“Get out of here!” Frances charged into the street.

Then she heard it. Her bone marrow turned to ice. The screech of the Banshee.

It sounded just like the squealing of tires.

“Look out!” the brats shouted, too late.

Frances didn’t feel the impact.

The Banshee had announced another death at Killarney House.

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Fiction Corner: The Banshee of Killarney House by Wayne Miller

by on Apr.11, 2018, under From the Web

Reposted from Ghost Stories and Haunted Places | Go to Original Post

It had become a game to the local teens.

“Let’s go annoy the crazy lady!”

Everyone said Killarney House was haunted. Since their coming to America, since they’d constructed the house, every member of the O’Hurlahee family had died there, their deaths foretold by the wailing Banshee that had followed them from their native Ireland. The all heard the Banshee before they died, so the story went.

In the ten years since she’d bought the house, Frances hadn’t seen—or heard—any ghost.

She had seen plenty of annoying teenagers, though.

She’d chase them away; they’d come back. She’d turn the garden hose on them; they filmed her with their cellphones.

“You’re making it worse,” friends told her. “Putting on a show for them.”

“Horseshit!” Frances always replied.

Tonight a carload of the brats sat parked across the street, honking their horn to torment her, calling her name. Frances tried to ignore it but at last her nerves gave out. She seized a frying pan from its peg on the wall and charged out the front door. She’d show them.

“Here she comes!”

“Get out of here!” Frances charged into the street.

Then she heard it. Her bone marrow turned to ice. The screech of the Banshee.

It sounded just like the squealing of tires.

“Look out!” the brats shouted, too late.

Frances didn’t feel the impact.

The Banshee had announced another death at Killarney House.

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The Kildare Mansion

by on Apr.06, 2018, under From the Web

Reposted from Ghost Stories and Haunted Places | Go to Original Post

I did this post on The Kildare Mansion a couple of years ago. I have updated to include some of the more recent controversies surrounding this magnificent, haunted mansion. The Kildare Mansion was first famous for it’s ghosts.  It was built in 1886 by a wealthy Irishman named O’Shaughnessy.   He built the castle as a reminder of his homeland, Ireland.   He put a fortune into making it the most extravagant house in the area and he did a good job of it.  This giant of a house overshadows everything around it. It has over 40 rooms and is over 17,000 square feet including the massive basement.   In 1900, MR. O’Shaughnessy went blind and his wife Anna sold Kildare to the trust fund established for Mary McCormick who inherited a multi million dollar fortune from her father

Unfortunately, Mary McCormick was mentally ill and suffered greatly during certain periods.  At the time,  treatment options were limited so they kept her locked in the house and had several nurses and staff to take care of her.  During her lucid periods,  Mary a wonderful woman who was known for her kindness and generosity.   For her entire life, she needed nurses to help her care for her mental illness.  Finally she had to retire to a sanitarium,  leaving her beautiful house behind.

From 1932- 1975, the Kildare Mansion fell into disrepair.   It decayed slowly as slums and lesser buildings slowly surrounded it hiding it’s beauty in their sullen shadows.  In 1975, the house was purchased by the Reeves, who lovingly restored the house to its original splendor  It was during this time that the house was shown in the tour of historic homes and became a popular visit for haunt jaunters.   The house’s basement was notoriously haunted by the ghost of  Mary McCormick.   Still tormented by her madness, she apparently made quite a ruckus at night.

In 2005 the house was bought by a family whose name I won’t mention.  Since that time, the ghosts have become the least interesting part of this house.   The house has always been a favorite site for anyone visiting Huntsville because of its historic significance, its beauty, and its haunted history.  Many people drive by the house and photograph it.   Since 2005, however, the new owners have spent a considerable amount of time watching out for anyone lingering near the house.  If you drive by slowly or stop in front of the house,  a woman will emerge screaming at you.  Sometimes she’ll curse and sometimes she’ll use the garden hose to spray your car.  Other times she would shine a spotlight on you and others she’ll take pictures of you with her cell phone.  No matter what the new owner does, it was always hostile and she seems to always be watching.  She sat day and night waiting for those that linger too long, which might make one wonder if  Mary McCormick’s mental illness might not be spreading?   Perhaps the house and its dark secrets have driven the new owner mad?  Perhaps madness is part of the curse of the house?  I drove by the house several times during this owner’s occupancy.  I brought my children and parked across the street and would never think of harrassing anyone.  The woman came screaming from her home all three times.  One time she threw rocks at my car.  One time she just cursed at my children and I and called the police.  Another time she threw grass and called the police.  We were not on her property, we just wanted to see the legendary house that I had read so much about.  I visit all the local historic houses and have always been able to sit quietly in my car and take photos.  Some owners even offer tours and are on local tours.  Kildare Castle is different.  It sits in a shadow that spreads out beyond its ghosts.  It almost feels cursed.

Sadly,  the reason most drive by these days is to see the owner run out and start screaming.  Her wild antics have become a fun attraction for locals who stop by just to see her jump around and scream  Few remember the ghost stories or the house’s beautiful history.

The house has become even more infamous in recent years as the owner has tried to put up a massive fence (13 feet tall) and the city stopped construction.  The owner then decided to demolish the house.  The city and local history buffs are fighting this action but the outcome is as of yet, unpredictable.  Since the owners behavior remains outlandish, the behavior of locals has gotten even worse.  Kids love to see the owner flip out and will sit in front of the house and honk their horn for hours to get a response.  It is a tragedy.  Please read the comments below this post as they tell so many stories from people who have actually lived in this home and in the neighborhood.

Some of the footage and information on the ongoing struggles and controversies surrounding this historic beauty can be seen at:  http://www.kildaremansion.com/

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