Written Monday, October 29, 2012
Edited and posted Tuesday, October 30, 2012
This article is long overdue but is still a work in progress. Our son Joe will likely have something to add, and more strange things may happen, so this may eventually become a whole series of posts.
Strange things often occur at our house. Sometimes objects will fall from shelves and land, not next to the shelf, but several feet away, as if pushed or thrown off the shelf. Other times we will feel hot or cold flashes; sometimes these can be explained in terms of drafts, or maybe health issues or even something we ate or drank, but often there is no explanation for them. At still other times, we feel either very nervous and “creeped out” or very serene and comforted, again, with no reasonable explanation. Though we have suspected some sort of supernatural or paranormal activity, we lack anything really concrete to support this; after all, you can’t see what you can’t see, if you get my drift.
At 12:55 a.m. today, something happened that left me genuinely creeped out. I had worked until 9:00 last night, and after eating a late dinner, I joined my wife in some bowling on the Wii. After that, we had a snack and went to bed at about 12:05. I had only been to sleep for a short time when I was awakened by a rapid series of loud thumps. My first thought was that the cats had caused an avalanche in the mud room, which is adjacent to the master bedroom; we have a lot of stuff stored in there, and such an avalanche is an ever-present possibility. A second or two later, I heard a cat scream briefly; Shadow and Sunny often fight, and they scream while fighting.
To my astonishment, the only thing I found disturbed is what I nearly stumbled on, right there in the bedroom. It was a heavy cast-iron burner cover (about 2.5 pounds) from the kitchen stove, which was two rooms and 20 feet away! In the morning, I asked Wendi and Chrissy if either of them had been up and could have moved the cover for some reason. Both of them had been fast asleep; in fact, I was the only human who woke up at all.
Several things puzzled me about this event:
Granted, cats can do some strange and remarkable things, and granted, our house is quite cluttered. But this one takes the prize in terms of the strange and seemingly inexplicable.
Joe and Chrissy have both seen figures of people when no one was there. The most common are a young lady with long brown hair, blue eyes and a birthmark on the side of her neck, and an old man with wispy white hair in a rocking chair, smoking a pipe. Sometimes this one is accompanied by the smell of cherry pipe tobacco. Wendi used to see people also, but lately she sleeps through the night, aided by medication.
Wendi noted that the strange events get more frequent — and often more intense — toward the end of October each year.
Wendi had a miscarriage in 1986; later we named the unborn child Dana, a name that could go for either a boy or a girl, though we often thought it was a girl. This could be the young lady seen in the house.
The old man could be my dad, who looked just like that; Chrissy never met him but has seen the eerie figure. Dad smoked a pipe, always with Half and Half tobacco; sometimes he smoked the cherry flavor. Again, Chrissy had no way of knowing this but has smelled it upstairs.
Just for the record, the house we live in is an old historic house, built circa 1880. It is listed by the Wisconsin Historical Society as the Alvin A. Clark House. I don’t know the full history of the house, but the age and history of it could account for some of the unusual phenomena as well.
An amateur archaeologist came to our house in the summer of 2008, asking permission to dig for artifacts in our back yard. He found the remnants of an old outhouse, along with a variety of medicine bottles and other artifacts from the 1870s onward.