; Phantoms and Monsters: Pulse of the Paranormal

Saturday, December 01, 2012

Lancaster, Ohio: Why So Much Paranormal Activity?

I received the following email last evening:

Hello, I rent office space in the building at 117 W. Main Street in Lancaster, Ohio. My partner and I have been in the building quite late on occasions because we are just starting a home health company. We hear noises and the lights in the hall are on motion sensor and they go on and off all the time. We don't really pay it much attention because we are so used to the strange noises and the unexplained flickering lights it's just a "natural" thing because its all the time. My partner had heard through the grape vine through some of the other renters in the building that it was haunted. Well tonight my partner had left early and as did most of the other renters and I was there alone. It was only around 6:30 but I was almost done typing what I was working on. I had repeatedly heard noises in the hall almost like a high heel shoe tapping on the wood flooring in the hall. I also heard a tapping inside my office. The hallway lights going on and off as usual. I had a paper on the corner of my desk and I thought I saw it slipping off of the desk so I slammed my hand down to catch it so that it would not fall. I moved the paper onto a stack of papers on the desk, it was no longer hanging off. I went back to typing and looked down and the stack of papers was moving as if it was being pulled off of my desk right in front of me! I got up and left in a hurry I was shaking by the time I got outside I was so shocked and scared! BT

Oddly enough, I have received several inquiries over the years referencing the same general location in Lancaster, Ohio. As well, there have been news articles on the phenomenon in downtown Lancaster, Ohio:

Several Lancaster, Ohio Businesses Coping With Eerie Events

Something mysterious, and perhaps paranormal, is going on in Lancaster.

A few local business owners have enlisted a local paranormal group to get some answers to some hair-raising events.

Tammi Jo's Café and Catering co-owner Tammi Neighbor has had several eerie events in her restaurant, 111 N. Columbus St., since opening less than a year ago.

"There's too many things going on for it to be a coincidence," she said. "One time the restaurant was full, and we heard a whistle come from the center of the building. Everyone turned and looked, but there was no one there."

Neighbor's list of spooky events include a vase moving from one location to another day to day, water faucets turning on by themselves and a crate of rags spontaneously combusting.

Neighbor researched the building's history and learned it formerly belonged to an occult group before they were driven out of town.

She contacted The Ohio Paranormal Seekers, which will make several sound and video recordings to determine if spirits roam the café.

The group will investigate four Lancaster businesses, including two places on either side of Tammi Jo's Café. They will analyze Tammi Jo's Café, Paperback Exchange and Westerman's Tuxedo Junction on Saturday. He will investigate the Tavern at the Mill Sept. 10.

"I was sitting there talking to Vicki (Westerman, co-owner) and heard someone talking upstairs. I apologized for keeping the owner from her other customer, but she said she was the only one there," he said. "I thought she was messing with me, but I went upstairs and there was no one there."

Westerman said she didn't hear the voice, but she also doesn't doubt the possibility of the building, 113 N. Columbus St., being occupied by some presence.

"It would be interesting if they did find something," she said. "But I wouldn't move. I've never felt unsafe here."

Tavern at the Mill owner Ron Hawk said the building, 431 S. Columbus St., has been known as a haunted building for many years. His employees discovered an old newspaper article detailing the death of a 19-year-old man named Luke who was killed in the elevator shaft in 1919 in the Tavern.

"I'm not the type of person to believe in ghosts or spirits, but a lot of my employees do," he said. "Nothing they find, or don't find, will surprise me."

He said employees have mentioned hearing pool being played while no one was by the table and the juke box turning on for no apparent reason.

"A lot of my employees are afraid to go down in the basement by themselves," Hawk said.

He has no plans of moving his business from the 115-year-old building, regardless of the findings by the paranormal investigators.

"I have a lot of money invested there," he said. "I'm not going to let any supposed ghosts scare me out of there."

Paperback Exchange owner Leanne McClellan said on two separate occasions she left a piece of mail on her desk before closing and each time the items were gone the next morning.

"The first time it happened I thought I was losing my mind, but the second time made me think more," McClellan said.

"I'm the only one that works here. Unless we have a ghost, I have no clue where it went."

She said it will be business as usual even if ghosts or spirits are found to be staying in the used bookstore at 109 N. Columbus St.

"I don't anticipate they'll find anything, but it's all in fun," she said. "After all, everyone loves a good ghost story." - Lancaster Eagle Gazette


I received the following email in reference to a post from August 23, 2009 where several businesses in Lancaster, Ohio were experiencing paranormal activity...Lon

Re: ghosts in Westerman's tux shop........

"The shop which is now Westerman's used to be McClurg's. McClurg's sold and serviced musical instruments and sold supplies for them. Before that I believe it was a music store by a different name. I was young when I met the former owner of that place who used to be mean to everyone. After I and my younger brother interacted with him in different ways he became a nice man again. He passed away some time after and so it became Mr. McClurg's store. During the time Mr. McClurg had it, the employees from the previous store still worked there. We'd often hear this one employee yell about someone standing behind him that disappeared. My younger brother and I had gotten to know this employee from that former store and we'd gotten to know that former owner. The owner had been mean to this employee then turned to become very nice to him which unnerved him. He got into a habit of looking over the employee's shoulder to see him working on instruments. Their previous interaction was that of the employee not seeing the owner watching over him and then flying into a rage at the poor quality of work he was doing. So, then, when he turned over a new leaf the employee was still gun shy so to speak and would jump at realizing the guy was behind him. The owner passed away but according to this employee he didn't leave. It wasn't just that either. The owner was still looking over the employee's shoulder from time to time! The employee would yell before the ghost of the owner disappeared before our eyes! The ghost of the owner was looking at us and smiling like he'd done this as a practical joke on the former employee. The employee got so nervous over time that the last time it happened he said enough was enough and that he was looking for a new job. He gathered his things and walked out the door saying good riddance to the place. The owner went after him asking what he was doing. They argued but the owner couldn't talk him into staying. The man said he just couldn't take it anymore. The owner looked creeped out to be standing there in the place knowing he was the only worker there at the time. He did everything he could to get us to stay a bit longer, lol. Mom was doing errands that day and couldn't stay. Once in the car she said she didn't know what had gotten into him. My little brother told her that he knew what had gotten into him and filled her in. She tried to blow it off but then asked the owner about it when she returned to pick up her order. He told her it was all true and that he'd seen the former owner many many times in there still working on instruments. He often found the tools, especially the soldering iron, plugged in and hot. Mom trembled all over and told him she'd pray for him and have her friends pray for him. He asked her not to tell anyone as it would probably cause business to go bad. She understood and said she'd only talk to close friends and that they'd keep it quiet. My sisters who knew about this told all their friends and soon teenagers were filling the store but none were shopping or buying. The owner told each one if they weren't shopping they'd have to leave. He soon realized why they were there and chided mom for talking too much. He said that now no one would come to buy anything from him and he'd be ruined. It actually worked out well for him since people were very interested in the man's ghost. While they were there they would buy things too and business was great. In time it died down and the business was back to normal once again. So, that's the story about the ghost in Westerman's."

Downtown Lancaster, Ohio Businesses Still Experience Ghostly Activity 
The historic Mill building on South Columbus Street has all the looks of a haunted building, and now local ghost hunters say they have the proof.

Chad Houghs, leader of Earthbound Spirits Paranormal, a Lancaster-based group seeking to find answers to paranormal existence, spent a stormy October night investigating Mickey's Bar and Grill, 431 S. Columbus St., former location of the Tavern at the Mill.

Houghs said the team collected evidence that proves the existence of paranormal activity at Mickey's.

"There are definitely spirits, ghosts, whatever you want to call it," he said. "They are intelligent because they were answering questions we were asking them."

The finding confirms what Mickey's Bar and Grill owner Mickey Eaton said he already knew.

"It's definitely haunted, that's my take," he said. "Otherwise I'd be all right closing at night alone; it kind of freaks me out."

The team collected audio and visual evidence. During the video, the team members can be seen on infrared video sitting in the dark attempting to talk to the spirits.

On multiple occasions, a twist to turn on flash light turned on for a few seconds before being turned off -- all happening with no human being within a few feet.

Houghs collects two forms of audio evidence. One uses a normal audio recorder, and another uses a high frequency antenna to pick up signals that are then translated into words.

During various audio clips, team members can be heard clearly asking various questions and there are several responses heard softer than a whisper.

He said many responses went unnoticed by the team during the hunt because of the high frequency; words were heard after playing back audio recordings.

Two of the clearest sounds were that of a response that said, "Please be friends," and a slight cat meow.

"We caught some good evidence on this one. It just seemed like everything was happening perfectly," Houghs said.

At another point, the co-owner's name, "Mike," appears to be heard.

Despite the successful hunt, Houghs realizes skeptics will doubt the findings.

"(They should) get their own electronic recorder and go do it themselves. Then you'll answer your own questions," he said.

Mike Eaton, Mickey's father and co-owner, challenges skeptics to test their beliefs and strongly agrees the building is haunted.

"If there is such a thing as spirits, they're here -- believe me, they're here," he said. - Lancaster Eagle Gazette

Click for video

NOTE: Here's the Google Map link for Lancaster, Ohio. Besides the emails and news articles, I have heard about several other paranormal incidents in Lancaster, Ohio. Does anybody have any idea why the activity is so prevalent there? Could this town be in a high energy zone? Here are more strange tales from the area - Little Green Haunted House - The Mudhouse Mansion in Lancaster, Ohio - Ghost Rider and Horse in Lancaster, Ohio. Lon

Haunted Ohio: Ghostly Tales from the Buckeye State (Buckeye Haunts) - There is a series of 5 books available

Haunted Ohio: Ghosts and Strange Phenomena of the Buckeye State (Haunted Series)

Weird Ohio: Your Travel Guide to Ohio's Local Legends and Best Kept Secrets