I love history. And when it comes to the paranormal, nothing is more exciting to me than digging through old records and finding some historical event that could possibly explain the strange activity taking place at a location. Or better yet, disproving the hauntings, but finding the historical event from which the urban legend sprang from.
But I also have a rather strange relationship with historians. Some believe that what I’m doing is nothing short of what has become known as “woo-woo”—basically any unconventional idea or belief that has no scientific or historical basis. Then, there are some historians who “get” me and understand that I’m simply looking for documented, historical evidence that might be a possible explanation.
The Cleo Redd Fisher Museum Of The Mohican Historical Society gets me.
I’m absolutely over the moon that they have invited me out to give a special presentation, Ohio’s Historic Haunts: Researching the Origins of Ohio’s Ghost Stories and Legends, which will be held on October 21st at the historic Ohio Theatre in Loudonville, Ohio. Best of all, the event is free and open to the general public!
Here’s the official press release for the event. There’s additional contact information at the bottom.
Many locations in Ohio, including some that are historically significant, have developed a reputation for being haunted or had a strange legend associated with it. While it might be almost impossible to prove the validity of the paranormal tales that surround them, one thing is clear: these stories help to keep history alive. But the questions remain: How did these stories get started? More important, are any of them tied directly to actual historic events? And do any facts support the strange and ghostly lore?
Rather than rely on second-and third-person accounts, author and paranormal researcher James A. Willis has spent the better part of two decades sitting down with owners, employees, and patrons of Ohio locations that are said to have strange and spooky tales attached to them. By compiling literally hundreds of hours’ worth of one-on-one interviews, along with thousands of pages of historical research, Willis was able to piece together unique histories for each location, including eyewitness accounts from people who believed they experienced paranormal activity.
But Willis is never content to stop with first-person accounts or even historical research. He also visits each and every location he’s researching, often with high-tech “ghost-hunting” equipment, and spends hours at each location, attempting to collect empirical data to see if he could experience a paranormal encounter himself.
What were the results of all this research and site visits? This special presentation will reveal all! So come along on a journey with Willis as he travels to the crossroads where history and folklore collide, and visit the fascinating Ohio locations where the past comes alive—in more ways than one!
James A. Willis is the author of numerous books including Weird Ohio, Central Ohio Legends and Lore, Ohio’s Historic Haunts, and The Big Book of Ohio Ghost Stories.
This free event kicks off the museum’s Fall & Spring Speaker Series, and is generously sponsored by Landoll’s Mohican Castle. For more information, contact the CRF Museum at 419 994-4050 or firstname.lastname@example.org