Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Voices Coming From The Closet

The following is an interesting story from Newfoundland:

In the late 1960s, a local man by the name of Reg lived in a house with some particularly chatty spirits. As he explained it to me, "I've had the goose bumps because I've not seen, but heard, ghosts talking in the house I grew up in on Blackmarsh Road."

"My grandmother, my grandfather, mother, and myself, have all had chance meetings with the supernatural beings on Blackmarsh Road, west of Purity Factories Ltd.," Reg said. His first encounter with the local ghosts took place in his family home when he was about nine years old, around the year 1968-69.

In the late 1960s, a local man by the name of Reg lived in a house with some particularly chatty spirits. As he explained it to me, "I've had the goose bumps because I've not seen, but heard, ghosts talking in the house I grew up in on Blackmarsh Road."

"My grandmother, my grandfather, mother, and myself, have all had chance meetings with the supernatural beings on Blackmarsh Road, west of Purity Factories Ltd.," Reg said. His first encounter with the local ghosts took place in his family home when he was about nine years old, around the year 1968-69.

"I grew up there with my three sisters," Reg said. "Sometimes, due to limited space, I slept on the sofa in the living room. In the living room was a small stove and coat closet. I remember the chimney ran next to the closet."

It was this closet that was the focus of Reg's encounters with a pack of noisy ghosts.

"I remember so vividly being woken up between 3-4 a.m. every morning to the sounds of a group of people conversing in the closet," Reg said. "To the best of my knowledge, there were six or seven people. I could not pick out what they were saying, though at the moment I could hear them very clearly.

"This went on until we moved," he said. "I told my mother about this at the time it was happening but, of course, it was dismissed as a child's imagination until many years later."

Long after Reg had grown up and moved out of the property, his grandparents had moved into the same apartment.

"I was away working in Toronto," he said. "I was talking to my mom and we happened to start talking about the closet. She told me my grandmother was asleep one night when she, too, was roused from sleep by the sound of people talking in the living room. She went to check it out and she also heard many voices in the closet."

The grandmother was not one to let noisy spirits invade her closet.

"Being the strong-willed person that she was, she said the Lord's Prayer aloud," Reg said. "When she was finished, she said the voices stopped, never to be heard again."

The use of the Lord's Prayer or even the name of God is a familiar and recurring motif in Newfoundland ghost stories, and it is certainly one I have come across before in family stories.

According to Stith Thompson's "Motif Index of Folk Literature," this is something that occurs in many local stories and legends. It is so recognized as a part of traditional stories that it has been given folk motif number E443.5 - "Ghost laid by adjuring it to leave in the name of God."

Another Newfoundland story that is typical of tales in this genre is from Trinity, and involves a man by the name of Uncle Eli. Much to Uncle Eli's chagrin, some type of ghost kept blowing out the kerosene lamp while he and his family were trying to play cards.

But Uncle Eli was having none of the phantom's antics. He spoke up loudly and challenged the force responsible for blowing out the light.

"If you belong to God, go back to God," directed Uncle Eli. "If you belong to the devil, go back to the devil!"

After he said these words, Uncle Eli then lit the lamp a third time. That time it did not go out, and the family was able to finish their game in peace, with no more ghostly interruptions.

Thanks to Dale for forwarding!

Ghost Stories of Newfoundland and Labrador

Paranormal Activity 3 (Blu-ray/DVD Combo in Blu-ray Packaging)

Journeys into the Unknown: Mysterious Canadian Encounters with the Paranormal


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