This October, Lima, I’ve Got Something Special For You!

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I may have taken part in a bunch of the Lima Lantern Tours over the years, but nothing compares to what’s going to happen in Lima on October 3rd!

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Let’s be honest: My love for all things Lima goes deeper than Kewpee, the Greely Road Crybaby Bridge, and even that spooky, off-limits building way up in the hills. Lima’s just a weird place, plain and simple. So why wouldn’t a weirdo like me love it? And I’d like to think that over the years, Lima has returned the love. It certainly felt that way on the numerous Lantern Tours I took part in. But something in me felt that this year, I needed to give Lima a little something extra. Something special they wouldn’t soon forget.

You see, I tend to get very animated when I share my own personal ghost stories. I wave my arms and I pace back and forth—two things that can make for some awkward moments when you’re snuggled so close together in the back of a trolley making its way down Main Street in Lima, Ohio.

--From the 2010 Lima Lantern Tour

–From the 2010 Lima Lantern Tour

But more than that, it sometimes became hard to tell my ghost stories because Lima is just so chock full of strange and spooky history that I often felt I was stomping on all the other cool stories. So I would often hold back on my storytelling, especially since many of my stories needed to be seen to be believed in that it’s often hard to explain exactly what our video cameras picked up on an investigation or what the spooky noises really sounded like. To be honest, there’s not much room on a trolley car for a projector and video screen. So by and large, my favorite ghost stories remained untold.

Until now.

On Saturday, October 3rd, I’ll be heading over to Lima’s Encore Theater and giving you something truly unique: A special presentation that will feature the best of the best of my collection of ghost stories. Not only that, but I’ll be bringing along audio, video, and photographs of strange and spooky things I’ve captured over the years. Things I can’t explain.

And since I included Lima’s own Literacy Council in my upcoming book, Ohio’s Historic Haunts, what better time to let everyone in on some behind-the-scenes secrets of my investigations inside that building?

Want to know the different types of equipment I used? Curious as to what “evidence” I walked away with? Want to hear and see the “evidence” for yourselves? Well then, October 3rd will be your chance!

Upstairs Hallway at Literacy Council, showing placement of some of the equipment I used during my overnight investigation

Upstairs Hallway at Literacy Council, showing placement of some of the equipment I used during my overnight investigation

I’ll also be taking your questions and will be hanging around after the presentation to ensure you get all your ghostly questions answered. And since my book, Ohio’s Historic Haunts, is coming out on September 30th, a mere three days before the Lima appearance, I’ll make sure I bring along loads of that book (as well as some of my other titles) for you to purchase and have signed.

Put another way: You might have seen me in Lima before, but you’ve never seen me like this!

Tickets are only $5.00 each with proceeds going to Downtown Lima, Inc., an organization dedicated to creating and maintaining a dynamic, vital, and sustainable downtown. So for just $5.00, you’ll get to hear some great strange and spooky stories and help downtown Lima. It doesn’t get any better than that!

BTW, while this presentation is suitable for all ages, given the subject matter, it is not recommended for children under the age of 10.

So what are you waiting for? Click here to order tickets.

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Ohio’s Historic Haunts: Name That Location #7!

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Let’s jump right into this since we’re less than 2 weeks away from the release of Ohio’s Historic Haunts.

Here’s the photograph that will appear on page 202 of Ohio’s Historic Haunts:

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This one’s kinda tough, isn’t it? Well, let me give you a couple of hints. First, you’re looking at a freight elevator. Second, the photo was taken on the third floor of the building. The reason the photo includes so much of the floor in front of the elevator is because something rather horrific is said to have taken place here.

So, can you name the location?

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Click here to get caught up on all the other locations from Ohio’s Historic Haunts.

Information On Ohio’s Historic Haunts Pre-Release Book Signing

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While the official release date for Ohio’s Historic Haunts is September 30th, the publisher, Kent State University Press, has decided to release some copies ahead of time. The reason for this is a super-cool pre-release book signing on the campus of Kent State University!

So on Saturday, September 26th, you can swing by the Kent State University Book Store (located at 1085 Risman Drive [124 Student Ctr], Kent, Ohio) and grab yourself a first edition of Ohio’s Historic Haunts. I will be there between the hours of 2 and 4 pm and will be more than happy to sign your book (and anything else you want me to) for you. After that, you can proudly walk to your car carrying your autographed first edition, a full 4 days before the general public has a chance to get their hands on a copy!

This event is free and open to the public. For more information, visit the campus book store’s website here. 

Hope to see you all there!

If you can’t make it on the 26th, I will have copies available for purchase at all of my upcoming presentations and appearances. You can always grab a copy off Amazon, too!

Ohio’s Historic Haunts: Location #6 Revealed!

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Welcome to location #6 from Ohio’s Historic Haunts: The Sullivan-Johnson Museum in Kenton, Ohio!

Like any great museum, Sullivan-Johnson is packed full of multiple histories, if you will, from local locations as well as ones from across the county. So much so that as you walk through the building and marvel at the historical artifacts tucked into virtually every corner, it’s easy to forget that this museum used to be a private home, owned by members of the Sullivan and Johnson families.

Museum display showing members of the Sullivan-Johnson family

But if you linger in the rooms, you can almost feel yourself being transported back to simpler times. When that happens, the rooms take on a warm, almost cozy feeling. No wonder that some believe ghosts from both families—Sullivan and Johnson—have taken up permanent residence here. It’s the type of place that once you visit, you never want to leave. Of course, there’s no denying the possibility that all of the historical pieces at the Sullivan-Johnson Museum may have a ghost or two attached to them, too.

So who or what is haunting the Sullivan-Johnson Museum? Well, you’ll just have to pick up a copy of Ohio’s Historic Haunts and see if you can answer that one yourselves.

Back steps, where ghostly footsteps are said to be heard

For now, my lips are sealed. I will tell you, though, that during our visit to the Sullivan-Johnson Museum, we had the unique opportunity to spend some time chatting (and ghost hunting) with a lovely woman who not only knew the last member of the Johnson family to live in the house, but who had also developed a long-standing friendship with her, as well.

Did having someone who had a close personal relationship with one of the alleged ghosts help stir up anything in the house? For the time being, I’ll just say my answer is a definite “maybe”! I will say, though, that one of the ghosts said to make its home at the Sullivan-Johnson Museum is also believed to be quite particular as to what portraits of her get hung up in the house…and even in the local library!

Some of the equipment we brought with us for the overnight at the Museum

Pick up your very own copy of Ohio’s Historic Haunts at Amazon, Kent State University Press, Barnes & Noble, or at most Ohio bookstores!

Click here if you want to check out all the other locations from Ohio’s Historic Haunts that I’ve revealed so far!

Release Date For Ohio’s Historic Haunts Moved Up!

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You asked for it and Kent State University Press made it happen: The official release date for Ohio’s Historic Haunts has been moved up! The book will now be released on September 30th, 2015.

This means that the book will be available for purchase at all presentations and appearances beginning October 1st. There’s an outside chance they will be available at the September 26th appearance at Farnam Manor, too. Fingers crossed.

For those of you who pre-ordered the book, they should be shipping out shortly. But it appears as though Amazon will still be running their “25% off pre-order sale” on the book until the official release date, September 30th. So click on over there if you want to take advantage of that.

The book is also available through Kent State University Press as well as all other online book retailers.

Ohio’s Historic Haunts: Name That Location #6!

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WIthout further ado, allow me to present the photograph that will appear on page 32 of Ohio’s Historic Haunts.

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Sorry for the odd crop, but in the full photograph, there’s a historical marker on the left side and a big ol’ sign with the location’s name on it on the right side. Figured it wouldn’t be much of a test if I left either of those in!

So, can you name the location?

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Need to catch up on the other 5 locations that have been revealed to date? Click here!

Ohio’s Historic Haunts: Location #5 Revealed!

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Welcome to location #5 from Ohio’s Historic Haunts: The Lima Adult Learning Center/Literacy Council Building on West Spring Street in Lima, Ohio.

This one stumped most of you, which is one of the things that attracted me to the building in the first place. You see, to be honest, the house doesn’t look like anything that spectacular from the outside. The inside, however, is an entirely different story.

Originally, the house on Spring Street served as the opulent home to two of Lima’s movers and shakers, Clair and Lulu Tolan. Clair was a successful businessman who would eventually become the owner of the Tolan Block of buildings near Spring and Main Streets in downtown Lima. Their home on Spring Street reflected that success and it was often home to elaborate parties.

Gorgeous stained glass along the main staircase

Upon Lulu’s death in the 1950s, the building began to be used as a commercial building and several different businesses would take up residence inside the home. And with each new tenant came new changes to the building’s interior. The last business to call the building home was Fred and Doty Accountants, who stayed until approximately 2005. After that, the building was boarded up and abandoned.

Several years later, the Northwest Ohio Literacy Council took control of the building and began attempting to restore the home to its original glory. After having sat abandoned for a few years, perhaps this restoration is what brought the ghosts back around: They wanted to see what all the fuss was about.

Upstairs Hallway at Literacy Council, showing position of multiple sensors we used during our night in the house

It’s hard to say with any certainly who the ghosts are at the house on Spring Street. One thing is for sure, though: They have made their presence known on multiple people on more than a few occasions. Having said that, I’m sure you’re all asking the same question: Did anything happen the night you spent inside the house for Ohio’s Historic Haunts. The short answer is “yes”, something did indeed happen. Several things, in fact. But you’ll just have to wait for the book to come out for more details from me!

Well, that’s not entirely true. I will be in Lima on Saturday, October 3rd for the Lima Lantern Tours. Rumor has it I’ll be giving away all sorts of secrets about what happened inside the house on Spring Street while I was conducting research for my book. So stay tuned!

Chimes that are said to ring on their own, even when there’s no one around them

Can’t wait to find out what happened inside the Literacy Council building? Grab yourself a copy of Ohio’s Historic Haunts right here.

Just want to catch up on all the other locations that I’ve revealed so far? click here!