Admittedly, there are many haunted places in these United States. Over the next few weeks, I’ll be sharing a few of them with you.

If you enjoy hiking haunted locations with beautiful scenery, then Big Ridge State Park, Tennessee, maybe just for you.

Big Ridge State Park has two trails with rather ominous names: the “Ghost House Trail” and “Dark Hollow Trail.”  

Inside Tennessee’s 3,700 acre Big Ridge State Park, the Ghost House trail loops past the foundations of a home from the early 1800s, a grist mill, and the Norton Cemetery. Admittedly, one of the park’s biggest disappointments is no “ghost house” on Ghost House Trail. Only the cistern and a couple of pits remain of the old Hutchison House from which the trail derives its name. Legend says the adult daughter, Nancy, died of tuberculosis. During Nancy’s funeral-wake, visitors heard what sounded like her voice crying from upstairs. When the house was eventually abandoned, the neighbors still heard frightening noises coming from the vacant house. Those neighbors eventually moved away to escape the unsettling ambiance of the place. The family members’ ghosts have reportedly “photo-bombed” hikers’ pictures over the years, showing up as vague silhouettes.

Hikers report seeing the apparition of a man dressed in red flannel and grey pants throughout the park 3,700-acre park.

People have even heard very realistic sounds of a Model A car engine on the Dark Hollow Trail. Horseback riders and hikers with dogs say their animals have been spooked when passing through certain parts of the park. If you believe in an animal’s sixth sense, this may be the most telling sign of all.

Sources: The Hartford Extra Mile; Exploring East Tennessee's Eerie Trails by Lehan Mahan

Until Next Time, 

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Most people would agree, being haunted is not on their bucket list. But, with COVID-19 and the need for social distancing, maybe we should look at the upside of living in a haunted house:

  1. You will never be lonely: Most people with active hauntings say they feel like someone is watching them. If you feel like someone is watching you, then you won’t feel alone. And, the adrenaline response to feeling watched acts as a stimulant. You can get some of that closet cleaned out. You know, the one you’ve put off for years. You may even start to look forward to those dreaded work Zoom meetings because they take your mind off of the ethereal voyeur.
  2. You will never be bored: If you are haunted, you are being entertained. You may only hear the occasional wail at night or phantom footsteps in an attic (that doesn’t exist because you live in a studio apartment in the attic). With a particularly active entity, cabinet doors bang randomly, dishes fly out of cabinets, the water turns on and off by itself, maybe even the chairs stack themselves in your kitchen. The need to clean up and get a good night’s sleep will keep your mind sharp—a genuine plus.  
  3. You may always have someone to talk to: Get out your recorder and start asking questions to the air around you. If you have a spirit in your house, you may get a response. You have the beginning of a conversation. Ask more questions, get more answers, before you know it, another day of isolation is over.
  4. No need for social distancing or a mask:  Since the person haunting you is already dead, there is no need to wear a mask and hold that awkward, muffled conversation. And, there is no need to worry about the six-foot rule, just like pre-COVID19 (almost).

I’m sure there are more positives to being haunted during a pandemic. Maybe you can send me your suggestions?

See my books @ https/:authormasterminds.com/mary-ann-poll 

Happy Halloween.

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Steve Levi, writes books in a multitude of genres. One of his passions is history. In this post, Steve presents a short lesson on 100 year old photography and how it relates to another pandemic.

From Steve: "Yeah, I know. “Photoshop.”  Actually, no. It is a double-exposure from 100 years ago. During the Spanish Flu influenza, 1918 to 1920.  That pandemic came in three waves. One in the Spring of 1918, a second wave in the Fall of 1918 and a third a year later. It killed about 650,000 Americans.  Three waves of a pandemic. Humm, where have I heard that before? History is not the story of the past; it is the study of the future. We get pandemics just about every 50 years.  50 years ago?  I’m glad you asked. It was the Hong Kong Flu, 1968, and it killed 100,000 Americans.  And with each pandemic the rules are the same: social distancing, testing, vaccine – and face masks" 

See Steve's books at: www.authormasterminds.com/steve-levi 

Thanks for this interesting contribution, Steve. 

 

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I must admit, with some embarrassment, that I am an avid PC gamer. Hidden Object Games are my favorite. One game I played was named The Wild Hunt.  It had the paranormal aspect I am drawn to. After all, I write Supernatural Thrillers that revolve around legends.

I always wondered about the origin of the phrase The Wild Hunt. Much to my delight, I came across the legend today. The tale of the Wild Hunt is told in many parts of England and Wales. The following story is one retold by Sir Arthur Quiller-Couch in Folklore of a Cornish Village.

With some creative embellishment, this story is one to tell friends are a dark, stormy night. Even better told around the proverbial campfire.

(Source: Psychic Animals, A Fascinating Investigation of Paranormal Behavior by Dennis Bardens)

“Stories of a ‘wild hunt’ – a spectral gathering of hunters and dogs – are told in many counties of England and Wales, as well as in Scotland. Sir Arthur Quiller-Couch, in Folklore of a Cornish Village, tells of a poor herdsman who was crossing the moors one windy night when he heard coming from the rocky peaks the baying of hounds and recognized it as the ghostly dog pack known in the area. But he was still three or four miles from his house. The light was poor, the path indeterminate and difficult to follow, the soil lumpy and damp. The howling of the hounds came nearer until, to his horror, he could see in front of him a ghostly concourse of hunters, their horses, and the dogs. They were about to rush upon him when he fell down upon his knees and prayed. He heard the hunter shout “Bo shrove” (meaning ‘The boy prays’) and the ghostly hunt sped away.”

No one can say too much about the power of sincere prayer.

 

Until next time,

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(Kat Tovslosky shares a charming story from one of her relatives)

Today, a distant cousin, Ruby by name, stopped by Grandma Bricken’s before returning to her tiny village in the Alaskan Interior. She is well-known for her storytelling. And, I love her stories.

I grabbed a cup of coffee, sat at Grandma's kitchen table, and eagerly waited to hear another tale about our people, the Denali.

Today, however, Ruby told a tale on herself.

Ruby is one who takes joy in laughing at herself—and anything else she finds amusing. One of her stories was so funny, I wanted to share it—in her words:

Ruby said, “The first time I took an escalator I saw a woman who looked just like me. She was riding the escalator, too. The woman looked back at me all the way down. I watched her and she watched me right back. The harder I stared, the harder she stared. She even had on the same Parkie that I did!

"I told my friends what happened. Do you know what they did?"

"No idea," I answered. 

"My friends howled in laughter, then told me I had been looking at my own reflection in a mirror. Then, I told them, 'I didn’t know mirrors came that big!'"

I chuckled at her honesty. 

Ruby then said, "I learn something new all of the time. Life would be boring if I didn't."

"It gives a whole new meaning to the phrase, 'meeting yourself coming and going.'" Grandma Bricken said before she broke out in giggles at her own joke. 

Grandma Bricken is wise, yes. Grandma Bricken is serious, yes. Grandma Bricken tell and joke? Never.

Ruby and I stared, saucer-eyed, at Grandma Bricken. We broke into a simultaneous laugher.

After I wiped my eyes, I said, "Yes, yes. It does, Grandma."

All of us broke into new rolls of laughter – more from Grandma's uncommon joking than from the elevator story. 

This short story reminded me of how odd the ‘civilized’ world looks to someone like this precious family member. And, surprisingly, I felt a stab of jealousy for the life she gets to live. For a moment, I longed for the simple peace of living in a village isolated from this crazy-paced world. Yep, even Ravens Cove, small in its own way, gets crazy—but you know that if you've read the books!

Until next time,

Kat

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