Thursday, September 27, 2012

Case Files: Dauphine Orleans Hotel

Situated on a site that dates back to 1775, the historic Dauphine Orleans Hotel is located in the heart of the French Quarter in New Orleans.  It's known as a premier stop for visitors to the Crescent City--and as a pilgrimage to those who like to stay in well known haunted places!

The current structure that is the hotel dates back to the city's first Spanish and French settlers and houses 111 rooms total (including the Herman House located across the street from the main hotel), a lounge/restaurant called May Baily's Place, and a massive courtyard with a pool.  It's thought that the handmade nails that line some of the original walls in the building came from the local Jean Lafitte Blacksmith Shop when Lafitte was known more for being a pirate than a blacksmith.

In addition to this great, traditional history, the hotel also has quite a few ghost stories associated with it as well.  In the late 1890's, May Baily's was known as one of the best brothels in Storyville (the original name of New Orleans)--and it was visited by a fair share of locals and travellers to the area.  And with the 'ladies of the night' also came those who like to drink, gamble, and cause trouble.

Since those days--and certainly after the hotel opened its doors in 1969--patrons have seen the spirit of a soldier (thought by some to be a Creole who may have patronized the brothel) in the courtyard area of the hotel and the ghost of a young lady has been witnessed throughout the property (though most often in the courtyard and surrounding rooms).  It was the tales of these two ghosts that were told to us when we arrived at the hotel.  And once we were finished hearing first-hand the activity that takes place there, and was checked into our room, the fun began...

Armed with our usual bag of investigative tools--and stationed in a cottage room alongside the courtyard area--we roamed the area attempting to capture anything paranormal or untoward with our audio and video recorders.

While outside in the courtyard we noticed that there are a lot of strange shadows that seem to be a result of erratic lighting--and there are areas that aren't lit at all.  These dark spaces seemed to play tricks on our eyes a bit; shadows of bushes in the wind, etc. were often mistaken for 'shadow shapes' moving about.  But nothing was seen of the soldier or woman.  Of course we know that spirits don't always show up when you want them too, so this came as no surprise.

video

While we were outside, however, the audio recorder in our room was capturing quite a lot of interesting sounds.  Before leaving to the courtyard, I had placed an audio recorder with a cell-sensor EMF detector in the room.  This particular detector makes a beeping sound when it detects any EMF's in the area--and this would show up on our audio recorder.  Almost immediately after leaving the room, things started happening there.

First there were the sounds of tapping, knocks, and bangs.  Then the EMF detector started going off now and then (the spirit was seemingly getting the energy to do more over time).  And finally, the knocks and EMF beeps were accompanied by a female voice.  No wonder we didn't see the female spirit in the courtyard:  she was in our empty room apparently!
Exterior of our Room

The Dauphine Orleans makes for a perfect haunted getaway; the rooms are spacious and lush, the onsite bar is a great hangout (and close to the room), and the haunting there is just enough to excite without frightening anyone.  I highly recommend visiting for a fun weekend.  Find out more about the Dauphine Orleans (and book your stay) at their official website.

The EVP's/Audio:

As with all EVP's that you listen to on this site, remember to listen in a quiet room with a good set of earphones or you may not hear all the sounds.  EVP's are typically recorded at a very low volume and at a hard-to-hear frequency, so turn up the volume, too!  Here we go...

Clip 1:  This is an example of the bangs and knocks that were heard when the EMF detector first started going off in the room.

Clip 2:  The activity is starting to ramp up; in this clip you will hear the EMF detector go off and what sounds like a voice maybe starting to speak or yell, etc.

Clip 3:  Activity is in full swing now.  You will hear a female voice say something, then a bang, then the female voice again.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Case Files: Allen House

Dating back to the early 1900's, the Allen House in Monticello, Arkansas is a local, treasured landmark--and to ghost and haunting enthusiasts all over the world, the Allen House is a place of legend.

Since the home was once posted as being the most haunted place in the country, it has been investigated many times by reputable paranormal groups and evidence that supports the haunting there has been gotten in spades.

Back on January 28th of this year (2012), Paranormal Inc honored the 68th anniversary of the funeral of Allen Bonner (one of the persons who are thought to haunt the home) with author and current owner of the home, Mark Spencer, by hosting a tour and ghost hunting class that was open to the public.  Over the course of that evening, attendees had several personal experiences and we were lucky enough to also collect a few EVP's during our visit as well.

Personal Experiences

1.  Several times over the course of the evening, attendees managed to get knocks/bangs in answer to questions posed while working in the attic of the home.  In particular, whenever the spirit of "Joe Lee" was addressed, the responses seemed to come readily and with some force.  Many of these were captured by an audio recorder, some are posted below.

2.  At one point in the attic, a shadowy black mass was seen moving through the area and was even dense enough to block out a patch of light coming in through an open door.

3.  Though this is standard for most investigations of truly haunted places, its worth noting:  throughout the investigation many people experienced brand new batteries being sucked dry.  It all climaxed with a laptop computer going dead during a Singapore Theory experiment in the downstairs parlor.

4.  During an EVP session in the attic, several attendees actually heard a disembodied voice speak in response to a question.  This was captured by an audio recorder and is posted below.

The Evidence

After the open investigation and ghost hunting class was concluded at the Allen House, the Paranormal Inc team returned to Memphis to review the numerous hours of audio and video footage that was collected--as well as to analyze approximately 300 photographs that were taken over the course of the evening.  And while nothing untoward was found in the photos or video, we did manage to find a few interesting EVP's and audio clips.

Remember, like all EVP's gathered at investigations, these need to be listened to in a quiet environment with good headphones.  Ghostly voices are usually faint and difficult to hear because of their low volume and frequency:

1.  EVP 1:  This is an EVP captured in the dining room of the Allen House.  We were setting up and the guests were just beginning to arrive.  If you listen closely behind us talking, you can hear a female voice say "Huh?" as we were talking about our strategy for the evening.


2.  EVP 2:  This EVP was captured in the attic of the house.  The area was empty at the time as it was prior to the event, but you can clearly hear a female voice saying a few words.


3.  EVP 3:  Not long after capturing EVP 2 in the attic, the female voice is recorded again.  Only this time she sounds like she is humming a tune.


4.  EVP 4:  During an EVP session in the attic, an attendee asked, "Y'all do some dancing up here?"  There is an audible, male response that the attendee hears.  This is a disembodied voice, not an EVP.


5.  EVP 5:  An attendee in the attic remarks, "I like your mustache."  She is answered with a loud tap that everyone hears.


6.  EVP 6:  During an EVP session an attendee says, "Knock again.  I heard you."  There are a couple sets of knocks in response that everyone hears.


7.  EVP 7:  A member of Paranormal Inc asks Joe Lee to knock and he does!  Everyone in the room heard this in real time.


Conclusion

The Allen House is a wonderful home with a unique and wonderful haunting.  I highly recommend visiting and taking a tour when they are offered.  For more information visit the official website of the house and read Mark's detailed book A Haunted Love Story to get a lot more background information about the history of the place, as well as hear about the ghosts who are thought to reside there.

We hope to return to the Allen House in the near future for some additional ghost hunting events, so stay tuned!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Investigate the Allen House With Paranormal Inc

On January 28th (2012), the haunted Allen House in Monticello, Arkansas will be opening their doors for an awesome paranormal event.   Paranormal Inc is teaming up with the Allen House to present a class on ghost hunting, followed by an actual ghost hunt/investigation of the home! In addition to this, I (Rich Newman) will be bringing copies of my last two books (The Ghost Hunter's Field Guide and Ghost Hunting for Beginners) for those who are interested in picking up a copy.

The Allen House--and the haunting therein--is featured in the new book A Haunted Love Story (The Ghosts of the Allen House) written by Mark Spencer, who also happens to be the current owner of the property (we hope to have copies of this book on hand for purchase, too).  The house was also featured recently on the Biography Channel's show My Ghost Story.  January 28th marks the 68th anniversary of the funeral of Allen Bonner, one of the spirits that's said to roam the property to this day, and seems an appropriate day to do a little ghost hunting...

Space for this event is extremely limited and the cost is a mere $30 to attend.  So if you are interested in the class and want to ghost hunt with Paranormal Inc in the Allen House give them a call at 870-224-2271 to make your reservation.  Those who attend should feel free to bring along any personal digital cameras/audio recorders that you own for the ghost hunt.  Additional ghost hunting gear will be on hand for attendees to use as well.  To learn more about the property, as well as other events at the house, be sure to visit their official website.