Category: parapsychology

American Exorcism

American Exorcism:

Mariani, M. (2018).  American Exorcism: Why Are Exorcisms on the Rise? The Atlantic.  

Exploration of demonic possession, which on closer examination appear to be cases involving dissociation and psychokinesis

Random Event Generator (REG) Outcomes at Historic Shepherdstown…

Random Event Generator (REG) Outcomes at Historic Shepherdstown and Museum Ghost Expedition 2018: Evidence of a Consciousness Bridge and a Decline Effect?

Graphical display of Random Event Generator (REG) experiment results captured by Maryland Paranormal Research ® at Historic Shepherdstown and Museum

Random Event Generators (REGs) are statistical devices commonly employed in parapsychology to test mind-matter interactions, specifically microscopic psychokinesis (micro-pk) activity.

  • REGs generate a random walk from a sequence of 200-bit trials per second of binary [0,1] events. [The device flips a coin 200 times per second.]
  • A simple random walk is obtained by cumulating the errors (or normalized errors) from each run. For some purposes, it is convenient to compute the cumulative error squared
  • REGs also display a parabolic boundary at the 95% confidence level.  Hence random walks have a 1 in 20 chance of ending outside parabola bounds

At Princeton University, REGs were used to study global consciousness fields as part of the Princeton Engineering Anomalies Research (PEAR) program spanning nearly three decades.  This global network of REGs is now managed by the Global Consciousness Project (GCP).

The Historic Shepherdstown and Museum Ghost Expedition 2018 REG experiment ran continuously over two epochs spanning several hours inclusive of direct radio voice (DRV) communication sessions.  

  • The first epoch commenced 7.43 pm on Aug 11 2018 and lasted approximately 4.5 hours. The REG experiment exhibited random walk trending that was mostly above baseline levels.  Overall the REG experiment delivered a medium Z score (-0.962) that was statistically significant at the 17% level (in a one tailed test), suggesting higher than chance levels of psi functioning
  • The second epoch commenced 12.27 am on Aug 12 2018 and lasted approximately 2 hours. The REG experiment exhibited random walk trending that was mostly below baseline levels.  Overall the REG experiment delivered a medium Z score (-0.997) that was statistically significant at the 16% level (in a one tailed test), also possibly suggesting higher than chance levels of psi functioning
  • But was that really the case?  The runs appear to be symmetric (mirror images) with respect to the baseline.  However, the difference in valence (direction) might be attributed to declining levels of group participation and engagement.  The maximum number of participants in the communication sessions peaked during the 11pm – 12am time frame. Apart from the investigation team, most visiting participants had departed by 1 am 
  • The experiments suggest it is important to know the underlying dynamics of group engagement in interpreting REG outcomes.  The significant down trending in the second epoch could have been due to a “decline effect” in psi functioning as engagement gradually dwindled down.  This is not a decline effect in the traditional parapsychological sense of a lowering in effect sizes, but moreso a decline in psi functioning arising from lower engagement

These outcomes lend support for indications of implicit psi during the

Historic Shepherdstown and Museum Ghost Expedition 2018.  They appear consistent with REG experiments elsewhere.  A similar type of decline effect may have appeared in the Lexington Market Ghost Expedition in 2017.  The psi functioning is implicit, working on subliminal or unconscious levels. The conscious focus of participants is on the engagement itself

  • It is not possible to precisely know the sources of psi functioning (or field effects) on the REG, whether it is from post-mortem or living agencies (e.g. experiment participants and/or experimenters themselves).
  • REG results in isolation can’t provide evidence of a haunting. A haunting involves recurring activity experienced in varied physical forms seemingly sourced to post-mortem agencies, appearing to have an affinity for a location or parts of a location
  • Instead REG results may be conservatively interpreted as a consciousness bridge that at least bears close relation to efforts to communicate with post-mortem agencies, the attention given to that communication, and perhaps from the communications themselves
  • The outcomes seen here are not unlike those encountered when REGs are positioned near sporting events, where implicit psi from crowd engagement and attention appears to drive REG trending

The last image is an example of lens flare in infrared light.  The camera is pointed directly at a light source, which in this case is the Microsoft Windows Kinect Structured Light System (SLS).  The SLS emits a grid of infrared laser light, which is also reflecting off the surface of the lens, generating the elliptical shapes

REFERENCES:

Comparison of Random Event Generator (REG) Outcomes In Sequential Paranormal Investigations of Haunted Locations. (2016, Jun 4). Maryland Paranormal Research ®

Maryland Paranormal Research ®. (2017, Oct 8). Ghost Expedition Lexington Market Underground.  Maryland Paranormal Research ®

Nelson, R. (1998). The Global Consciousness Project: How the Measurement Works. Global Mind.

Princeton Engineering Anomalies Research. (2010).  Scientific Study of Consciousness-Related Physical Phenomena. Princeton University School of Engineering and Applied Science.

Psyleron Inc., (2008). Random Event Generators: What is a Random Event Generator?  Psyleron Inc., Consciousness Technologies and Research.

Random Event Generator (REG) Outcomes in Baltimore County/Dundalk Historic District Ghost Expedition: Support for a Consciousness Bridge? (2017, Oct 5). Maryland Paranormal Research ®

Random Event Generator (REG) Outcomes in Frederick County/Brunswick Heritage Museum Ghost Expedition 2017: Evidence of Psi Functioning? (2017, Oct 20). Maryland Paranormal Research ®

IMAGES:

Maryland Paranormal Research ®. (2018, Aug 11).

Historic Shepherdstown and Museum: Random Event Generator Experiment at 1943 EST on Aug 11 2018. ©  Maryland Paranormal Research ®. All rights reserved.

Maryland Paranormal Research ®. (2018, Aug 12).

Historic Shepherdstown and Museum: Random Event Generator Experiment at 0027 EST on Aug 12 2018. ©  Maryland Paranormal Research ®. All rights reserved.

Maryland Paranormal Research ®. (2018, Aug 11).

Historic Shepherdstown and Museum: Underground Vault. ©  Maryland Paranormal Research ®. All rights reserved. 

Random Event Generator (REG) Outcomes in Baltimore…

Random Event Generator (REG) Outcomes in Baltimore City/Lexington Market Underground Ghost Expedition 2017: Evidence of a Consciousness Bridge?

Graphical display of Random Event Generator (REG) experiment results captured by Maryland Paranormal Research ® at the Lexington Market Underground 

Random Event Generators (REGs) are statistical devices commonly employed in parapsychology to test mind-matter interactions, specifically microscopic psychokinesis (micro-pk) activity.

  • REGs generate a random walk from a sequence of 200-bit trials per second of binary [0,1] events. [The device flips a coin 200 times per second.]
  • A simple random walk is obtained by cumulating the errors (or normalized errors) from each run. For some purposes, it is convenient to compute the cumulative error squared
  • REGs also display a parabolic boundary at the 95% confidence level.  Hence random walks have a 1 in 20 chance of ending outside parabola bounds

At Princeton University, REGs were used to study global consciousness fields as part of the Princeton Engineering Anomalies Research (PEAR) program spanning nearly three decades.  This global network of REGs is now managed by the Global Consciousness Project (GCP).

The Lexington Market Underground Ghost Expedition 2017 REG experiment ran continuously for nearly four hours inclusive of audio and direct radio voice (DRV) communication sessions.  

  • The overall run commenced 3:21 pm and ended 7:19 pm on Oct 8, 2017. The REG experiment exhibited random walk trending that was almost entirely below baseline levels.  Overall the REG experiment delivered a medium Z score (-0.636) that was statistically significant at the 26% level (in a one tailed test), indicating on balance higher than chance levels of psi functioning
  • However, there was a outdoor festival type event that had occurred in the early evening hours adjacent to the Lexington Market Underground.  Communication efforts were ended due to the volume of external music and crowd noise and the echo-chamber acoustics in the underground.  Interestingly, the effects of disengagement may be seen in uptrending in the REG toward baseline continuing through the close of the expedition    
  • Before the festival event there had been sustained trending well below baseline for nearly a three hour period.  The lowest Z score (-2.430) during this interval  was statistically significant below the 1% level (in a one tailed test).  This would seem to indicate that psi-functioning was strongly beyond chance before the break-off in engagement

These outcomes lend support for indications of implicit psi during the Lexington Market Underground Ghost Expedition 2017.  They are consistent with REG results such as in the Dundalk and Brunswick ghost expeditions conducted subsequent to the Lexington Market Underground.

  • It is not possible to precisely know the sources of psi functioning (or field effects) on the REG, whether it is from post-mortem or living agencies (e.g. experiment participants and/or experimenters themselves).
  • REG results in isolation can’t provide evidence of a haunting. A haunting involves recurring activity experienced in varied physical forms seemingly sourced to post-mortem agencies, appearing to have an affinity for a location or parts of a location
  • Instead REG results may be conservatively interpreted as a consciousness bridge that at least bears close relation to efforts to communicate with post-mortem agencies, the attention given to that communication, and perhaps from the communications themselves
  • The outcomes seen here are not unlike those encountered when REGs are positioned near sporting events, where implicit psi from crowd engagement and attention appears to drive REG trending

REFERENCES:

Comparison of Random Event Generator (REG) Outcomes In Sequential Paranormal Investigations of Haunted Locations. (2016, Jun 4). Maryland Paranormal Research ®

Maryland Paranormal Research ®. (2017, Oct 8). Ghost Expedition Lexington Market Underground.  Maryland Paranormal Research ®

Nelson, R. (1998). The Global Consciousness Project: How the Measurement Works. Global Mind.

Princeton Engineering Anomalies Research. (2010).  Scientific Study of Consciousness-Related Physical Phenomena. Princeton University School of Engineering and Applied Science.

Psyleron Inc., (2008). Random Event Generators: What is a Random Event Generator?  Psyleron Inc., Consciousness Technologies and Research.

Random Event Generator (REG) Outcomes in Baltimore County/Dundalk Historic District Ghost Expedition: Support for a Consciousness Bridge? (2017, Oct 5). Maryland Paranormal Research ®

Random Event Generator (REG) Outcomes in Frederick County/Brunswick Heritage Museum Ghost Expedition 2017: Evidence of Psi Functioning? (2017, Oct 20). Maryland Paranormal Research ®

IMAGES:

Maryland Paranormal Research ®. (2017, Oct 8). Lexington Market Underground: Underground Vault. ©  Maryland Paranormal Research ®. All rights reserved.

Maryland Paranormal Research ®. (2017, Oct 8). Lexington Market Underground: Abandoned Restaurant. ©  Maryland Paranormal Research ®. All rights reserved.

Maryland Paranormal Research ®. (2017, Oct 8). Lexington Market Underground: Random Event Generator Experiment at 1521 EST on Oct 8 2017. ©  Maryland Paranormal Research ®. All rights reserved.

Ghost Expedition Montgomery County, Silver Spring Maryland:…

Ghost Expedition Montgomery County, Silver Spring Maryland: Burnt Mills West Special Park/Robert B Morse Water Filtration Plant

The Burnt Mills area in Silver Spring, Maryland takes it name from a mill that was said to have burned down there sometime before 1788.  From an antique copper stencil, veteran local journalist J. Harry Shannon (aka “The Rambler”) suggested in 1916 the burnt mill may have been known as “Glen Cairn Mills Family Flour

Milling operations in Burnt Mills date to 1745 when then area was patented as the Mill Seat.  The area’s terrain and rapid waterfalls enabled the operations of a series of grist, saw and flour mills.  

The earliest records of a flour mill at Burnt Mills date to 1803 when the property known as “Beall’s Industry” was sold by Walter Beall to Peter Kemp and James William Perry  

Nathan Lufborough acquired the flour mill and land, described in an 1823 deed as “one hundred acres more or less”.  He had intended to sell the mill in 1847 but he died before the sale could be completed, leaving the property to his heirs 

The flour mill at Burnt Mills was owned by James L. Bond from 1858 to 1886.  Bond sold the property to his sons-in law.  The last owner was Dr. George W. Bready who acquired the flour mill and land in 1906

In 1913, The Rambler rendered the following portrait of the old flour mill in the Sunday Star

The shingle roof of the mill is green, dark and old, with moss, but  nearly everything else about the mill – the miller, of course, included –  is whitened by the flour and meal ground there, and which has been grinding there so long that no man’s memory runneth to the contrary  

Near the mill is the miller’s house, bowered in the shade of numerous  close-growing trees and the home of Dr. William T. Brown, surrounded by  shrubbery, orchard and vineyard

The mill produced three grades of flour and stone-ground corn mill. The technology of the mill improved over time. A roller mill replaced mill stones around 1895. A turbine replaced the wheel in 1911 

In 1922 the mill was sold to the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission (WSSC) and was subsequently demolished in 1928.  After the mill had closed, it was briefly used by the Boy Scouts as a meeting hall

In 1879, Burnt Mills (Four Corners) was a farm community with a population of 125 persons.  In 1934, the Robert E. Lattimer Land Company developed the area as a community of country estates known as Burnt Mills Hills.  The development preserved the area’s topography of rolling hills and streams and farm lanes

WSSC began construction of a water filtration facility in 1930.  The plant featured a “state of art” design, by WSSC Chief Engineer Robert B. Morse, for rapid sand removal and water treatment.  The plant had two filter assemblies, two pumping stations and a new concrete dam.  Pumping stations were designed in the Georgian Revival style to give the appearance of large colonial houses rather than a public utility

  • The low-lift pumping station moved cleaned (sediment free-water) to filter assemblies where lime and ammonia were added
  • The filter assemblies featured circular rings that were used for each stage of the filtration process, which included coagulation, filtration, and delivery

The late Robert Brooks Morse (1880-1936) was married to Carrie Emma Ross-Morse (1883-1979). They had two children: Caroline Allen Morse (1903-1905) and Katherine B. Morse-Devereaux (1904-1984)

  • He was trained as a civil engineer at Johns Hopkins University (A.B. 1901) and at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (S.B. 1904).  He became Chief engineer at WSSC since its inception in 1918
  • Unfortunately, he died prematurely at age 55 due to blood poisoning, months before the water filtration plant opened.  WSSC named the water filtration plant in his honor

The water filtration plant did not have the capacity to meet rising service demands from suburban growth and it was closed in 1962. The Maryland-National Capital Park and Planning Commission acquired the former water plant in 2000.  Today they are recreational facilities known as Burnt Mills West Special Park (the high-lift pumping station) and Burnt Mills East Special Park (the low-lift pumping station)

There are no haunting legends associated with historical Burnt Mills nor the Robert B. Morse Water Filtration Facility. However, there may be potential for transcommunication experiences owing to area history.  The ghost expedition will focus on “drop-in” communication,

and not on evidence for a haunting

The ghost expedition will also participate in National Ghost Hunting Day (NGHD), an event sponsored by Haunted Journeys magazine.  Connectivity and live streaming will be provided by SHINDIG. Digital marketing services for the event are being provided by CyberSpyder. The event will attempt to build a global “consciousness bridge” that will last two hours

Data from random event generators (REGs) belonging to the Global Consciousness Project  (GCP) that are in proximity to participant locations will be monitored over the event. 

REFERENCES:

Beall, J.R. (1931). The history and construction of the mill at Burnt Mills, Maryland. Initiation Thesis. Records of Phi Mu Fraternity, Special Collections, University of Maryland Libraries.  University of Maryland, College Park. Hosted at archive.org

Boyd, T.H.S. (1879). The history of Montgomery County, Maryland – From its earliest settlement in 1650 to 1879. Baltimore, W.K. Boyle and Son

Bushong, W. (1994, May). Robert B. Morse Water Filtration Plant. M33-22. Maryland-National Capital Park And Planning Commission. Maryland Historical Trust

Find A Grave, database and images. Memorial page for Robert Brooks Morse (13 Sep 1880–31 Jan 1936), Find A Grave Memorial no. 135832899, citing Chebeague Island Cemetery, Chebeague Island, Cumberland County, Maine, USA. Maintained by townsendburial (contributor 47629974)

Historic Preservation, Montgomery County, Maryland. (1996, Mar 6). Montgomery County Atlas (MCATLAS) Map Viewer: ROBERT B. MORSE COMPLEX (WSSC). Resource Number: 33/022-000A. Maryland-National Capital Park And Planning Commission. Montgomery County, Maryland

Kelly, C.L. (2012). Burnt Mills Hills. M33-29. Maryland-National Capital Park And Planning Commission. Maryland Historical Trust

MONTGOMERY COUNTY, MARYLAND HISTORICAL CHRONOLOGY. (2018). Maryland State Archives

Montgomery Parks. (2016, Aug 15). Burnt Mills West Special Park. Maryland-National Capital Park And Planning Commission

Montgomery County Planning Department. Montgomery County Atlas (MCATLAS) Map Viewer: Burnt Mills West Special Park. Montgomery County (MD). Department of Parks. Montgomery County, Maryland

National Ghost Hunting Day: The World’s Largest Ghost Hunt. (2018).  Haunted Journeys

Shannon, J.H. (1913, Jun 22). With the Rambler. Sunday Star, Washington DC.  Reprinted in Neighbors of the Northwest Branch

Shannon, J.H. (1916, May 14).  With the Rambler: Tramping the Northwest Branch. Sunday Star, Washington DC.  Reprinted in Neighbors of the Northwest Branch

Sutton, R. (2016, Jun 16). Burnt Mills Dam has a long history in Montgomery County. Ross Sutton Blog. Keller Williams Real Estate

Williams, B.J. (2017).  Exploring Collective Consciousness: Could There Be Some Implications for Paranity?. National Ghost Hunting Day Collective Consciousness Article. Psychical Research Foundation

IMAGES:

Historic American Engineering Record. (1968). REAR ELEVATION of high-lift pumping station. Robert B. Morse Water Filtration Plant, 10700 and 10701 Columbia Pike, Silver Spring, Montgomery County, MD.  Library of Congress

Historic American Engineering Record. (1968). FRONT ELEVATION of high-lift pumping station. Colesville Road (also called U.S.Route 29 or Columbia Pike) is in foreground. Robert B. Morse Water Filtration Plant, 10700 and 10701 Columbia Pike, Silver Spring, Montgomery County, MD.  Library of Congress

Burnt Mills Flour Mill prior to its demolition – Figure 1. (c 1928).  From Beall, J.R. (1931). The history and construction of the mill at Burnt Mills, Maryland. Initiation Thesis. Records of Phi Mu Fraternity, Special Collections, University of Maryland Libraries.  University of Maryland, College Park. 

Hosted at archive.org

Burnt Mills Flour Mill prior to its demolition – Figure 2. (c 1928).  From Beall, J.R. (1931). The history and construction of the mill at Burnt Mills, Maryland. Initiation Thesis. Records of Phi Mu Fraternity, Special Collections, University of Maryland Libraries.  University of Maryland, College Park. 

Hosted at archive.org

Historic American Engineering Record. (1968). GROUND FLOOR of high-lift pumping station. Note the main stairway and columns. Robert B. Morse Water Filtration Plant, 10700 and 10701 Columbia Pike, Silver Spring, Montgomery County, MD.  Library of Congress

Historic American Engineering Record. (1968). ATTIC of high-lift pumping station showing steel framing and concrete slab roof units. Robert B. Morse Water Filtration Plant, 10700 and 10701 Columbia Pike, Silver Spring, Montgomery County, MD.  Library of Congress

Historic American Engineering Record. (1968). OFFICE SPACE ON SECOND FLOOR of high-lift pumping station. Robert B. Morse Water Filtration Plant, 10700 and 10701 Columbia Pike, Silver Spring, Montgomery County, MD.  Library of Congress

Historic American Engineering Record. (1968). BASEMENT of high-lift pumping station. Note steel I-beam and pump foundations. Robert B. Morse Water Filtration Plant, 10700 and 10701 Columbia Pike, Silver Spring, Montgomery County, MD.  Library of Congress

National Ghost Hunting Day: The World’s Largest Ghost Hunt. (2017).  Haunted Journeys

Montgomery Parks. (2016, Aug 15). SOUTHEAST ELEVATION. Burnt Mills West Special Park. Maryland-National Capital Park And Planning Commission

Furnacetown Snow Hill MD Ghost Expedition 2018 /Worcester County…

Furnacetown Snow Hill MD Ghost Expedition 2018 /Worcester County (“Maryland”)

http://maryland-paranormal.com Direct Radio Voice (DRV) stream (“Maryland”) captured by Maryland Paranormal Research ® at Furnacetown Living Heritage Village [Snow Hill MD] Ghost Expedition Jul 28-29 2018. Several responses were heard in response to a (location) control question regarding the county and name of the state (“Maryland”).  There was also a reference to Worcester  County. Audio was captured with a SONY DCR SR45 Handycam with an onboard ZOOM condenser microphone.  The DRV stage consisted of a: P-SB7 ITC device; MACKIE 402-VLZ3 Mixer; HARMON DIGITECH 1066 Vocal Processor; ART EQ-351 31 Band 1/3 Octave Graphic Equalizer;  TIMEWAVE DSP-599zx Digital Noise Filter and a BOSE speaker.  Audio was analyzed with PRAAT software which provided the wave forms and voice print.  The audio was also enhanced with noise filtering and normalization using AUDACITY. [AUDIO ENHANCED][HEADPHONES RECOMMENDED]

Furnacetown Snow Hill MD Ghost Expedition 2018 /Worcester County…

Furnacetown Snow Hill MD Ghost Expedition 2018 /Worcester County (“Yes, Behind You”)

http://maryland-paranormal.com Direct Radio Voice (DRV) stream (“Yes, Behind You”) captured by Maryland Paranormal Research ® at Furnacetown Living Heritage Village [Snow Hill MD] Ghost Expedition Jul 28-29 2018. Several responses were heard in response to questions regarding the whereabouts of Sampson Harmon. One communicator indicates (“Yes, Behind You”).  Audio was captured with a SONY DCR SR45 Handycam with an onboard ZOOM condenser microphone.  The DRV stage consisted of a: P-SB7 ITC device; MACKIE 402-VLZ3 Mixer; HARMON DIGITECH 1066 Vocal Processor; ART EQ-351 31 Band 1/3 Octave Graphic Equalizer; TIMEWAVE DSP-599zx Digital Noise Filter and a BOSE speaker.  Audio was analyzed with PRAAT software which provided the wave forms and voice print.  The audio was also enhanced with noise filtering and normalization using AUDACITY. [AUDIO ENHANCED][HEADPHONES RECOMMENDED]

Furnacetown Snow Hill MD Ghost Expedition 2018 /Worcester County…

Furnacetown Snow Hill MD Ghost Expedition 2018 /Worcester County (“They is Wrong”)

http://maryland-paranormal.com Direct Radio Voice (DRV) stream (“They is Wrong”) captured by Maryland Paranormal Research ® at Furnacetown Living Heritage Village [Snow Hill MD] Ghost Expedition Jul 28-29 2018. Several responses, some errant, were heard in response to a question regarding presidencies and voting rights during the lifetime of late Sampson Harmon.  One communicator appears to exclaim (“They is Wrong”). Audio was captured with a SONY DCR SR45 Handycam with an onboard ZOOM condenser microphone.  The DRV stage consisted of a: P-SB7 ITC device; MACKIE 402-VLZ3 Mixer; HARMON DIGITECH 1066 Vocal Processor; ART EQ-351 31 Band 1/3 Octave Graphic Equalizer; TIMEWAVE DSP-599zx Digital Noise Filter and a BOSE speaker.  Audio was analyzed with PRAAT software which provided the wave forms and voice print.  The audio was also enhanced with noise filtering and normalization using AUDACITY. [AUDIO ENHANCED][HEADPHONES RECOMMENDED]

Furnacetown Snow Hill MD Ghost Expedition 2018 /Worcester County…

Furnacetown Snow Hill MD Ghost Expedition 2018 /Worcester County (“I Know Her Family”)

http://maryland-paranormal.com Direct Radio Voice (DRV) stream (“I Know Her Family”) captured by Maryland Paranormal Research ® at Furnacetown Living Heritage Village [Snow Hill MD] Ghost Expedition Jul 28-29 2018. Several responses were heard in response to questions regarding the Purnell family. One communicator responds (“I Know Her Family”). Audio was captured with a SONY DCR SR45 Handycam with an onboard ZOOM condenser microphone.  The DRV stage consisted of a: P-SB7 ITC device; MACKIE 402-VLZ3 Mixer; HARMON DIGITECH 1066 Vocal Processor; ART EQ-351 31 Band 1/3 Octave Graphic Equalizer; TIMEWAVE DSP-599zx Digital Noise Filter and a BOSE speaker.  Audio was analyzed with PRAAT software which provided the wave forms and voice print.  The audio was also enhanced with noise filtering and normalization using AUDACITY. [AUDIO ENHANCED][HEADPHONES RECOMMENDED]

Ghost Expedition Jefferson County, Shepherdstown WV: Entler…

Ghost Expedition Jefferson County, Shepherdstown WV: Entler Hotel/Historic Shepherdstown

Shepherdstown is considered the “oldest city in West Virginia” with a history predating the French-Indian War.  

The town was chartered in 1762 by the royal Virginia governor as Mecklenberg, named for Charlotte of Mecklenberg-Strelitz, wife of King George III. The name of Charlottesville had already been granted to another town in the colony. Thomas Shepherd was named the trustee of the town of 222 acres which had been granted to him in 1734.  Eventually the town would be named for him in 1798

Shepherdstown is also known by the nickname of “The Old Unterrified” due to its contributions to the nation’s wars. Shepherdstown was said to have provided more soldiers in the American Revolutionary War than any other town of its size in Virginia. In response to General George Washington’s call for volunteers in 1775, the Mecklenberg company of 97 men commanded by Capt Hugh Stephenson made the famous “Beeline March“ from Morgan Spring to Cambridge Massachusetts, ranging 600 miles in 24 days

According to the Shepherdstown’s Register in 1850, the town ”sent nearly three complete companies to the field“ in the War of 1812 and contributed to ranks of several other companies.  Troops from Shepherdstown, led by Lieutenant Bennett Riley, repulsed the British attack at the Battle of Plattsburgh.  During the capture of Fort George, a Shepherdstown resident, Michael Durnhoeffer, leapt upon the wall of the fort amidst a barrage of artillery fire, and yelled out, “HURRAH FOR OLD SHEPHERDSTOWN”

During the Mexican War, Colonel John Francis Hamtramck led the 1st Virginia Volunteer Regiment.  He was mayor of Shepherdstown from 1850 to 1854, and from 1853 to 1858 served on the Jefferson County Court. He died at his home in Shepherdstown in 1858.  The Hamtramck Guard (The Shepherdstown Light Infantry) was sent to Harpers Ferry to quell John Brown’s raid on the federal armory in 1859.  In the Civil War, this group became Company B, 2nd Virginia Infantry, Army of Northern Virginia

Battles took place all around Shepherdstown throughout the Civil War due to its proximity to Pack Horse Ford, a crossing of the Potomac River.  After the Battle of Antietam in 1862, Shepherdstown became a giant makeshift hospital for thousands of confederate wounded  

A Confederate rear guard, led by General William Pendleton, repulsed Union attacks on forces withdrawing from Sharpsburg in the Battle of Shepherdstown.  The 118th Pennsylvania, known as the Philadelphia Corn Exchange Regiment, suffered heavy losses against battle-hardened confederates, amounting to 269 casualties from 737 men

The properties making up the Entler Hotel were built in 1786 by Philip Adam Entler Jr and expanded in 1790 by Daniel Bedinger. The hotel returned to Entler family ownership in 1824 and was managed for many years by Daniel Entler and his wife Margaret, and later by their oldest son son Jacob.  

The Entler Hotel was a societal hub for Shepherdstown. However, the hotel suffered losses from caring for confederate wounded in the Civil War. After a devastating fire in 1912 which destroyed much of downtown German street, Entler family heirs sold the property, which after renovations opened as the Rumsey Hotel

In 1921, the property was acquired by Shepherd University and renamed Rumsey Hall where it served as a student dormitory, faculty housing and later as storage.  In 1973 the hotel was added to the National Register of Historic Places.  In 1978, the city acquired the building and renovations were begun by Historic Shepherdstown in 1979.  The property reopened as Historic Shepherdstown and Museum in 1983

The Entler Hotel is thought to be haunted by the ghost of Peyton Bull Smith.  He was killed in a duel by his business partner Joseph Holmes on Tuesday, Nov 3, 1809 at daybreak. Smith was carried to the hotel where he died.  Noises, moans, and footsteps haunt the hotel.  Other folklore legends include a gambler shot himself after losing cattle money and the daughter of the hotel manager died in the 1910 fire within the hotel

Though less widely known, haunted activity in the form of imitative noises is also said to occur in the vicinity of the Schomaker & Co piano on the first floor.  The piano was originally owned by John Henry Schau and his wife Elizabeth Catherine Cookus-Schau (she was also called “Aunt Betsy”). The couple resided on German Street in Shepherdstown.

The paranormal television show Ghosts of Shepherdstown featured a series of haunted locations that were loosely clustered around the Town Run, a tributary of the Potomac river that runs through the center of the town

The ghost expedition sought “drop-in” communications in connection with the history and legacies of the Shepherdstown

REFERENCES:

Civil War Trust. An Interview with Nicholas Redding. American Battlefield Trust

Dandridge, D. (1910).  Historic Shepherdstown. The Michie Company Printers, Charlottesville, Virginia

Digital Exhibit: Schomacker & Co. Piano. (2016). Historic Shepherdstown and Museum

John Francis Hamtramck. (2018). Digital Exhibit. Historic Shepherdstown and Museum

Langmyer, M. (2016). The Entler Hotel – Restoration. Historic Shepherdstown and Museum

Langmyer, M. (2016).  Shepherdstown and the American Civil War.  Historic Shepherdstown and Museum

Langmyer, M. (2016). The Battle of Shepherdstown.  Historic Shepherdstown and Museum

Lehman, M.C. (2016). The Entler Hotel – History. Historic Shepherdstown and Museum

McGee, T. (1972, Oct 6). National Register of Historic Places Nomination: Rumsey Hall (Entler Hotel). National Park Service

McGee, T. (1973, Apr 2). National Register of Historic Places Nomination: Shepherdstown Historic District. National Park Service

Norris, D.A. (2018). Battle of Shepherdstown. American Battlefield Trust

Our Own Ghost of Shepherdstown. (2016). Historic Shepherdstown and Museum

Price, J.C. and Woods, D.C (2016). The Entler Hotel – A Chronology. Historic Shepherdstown and Museum

Rogers, J.E. (2013, Jan 13). Daniel Entler (b 1785 – d1866) and Family. Memorial ID 103540248. Find A Grave

Rumsey Hall (Shepherdstown, West Virginia). (2018, Apr 27). Wikipedia

Shepherdstown: Battle of Boteler’s Ford. (2018). American Battlefield Trust

Shepherdstown Gets Over Fire. (1912, Nov 16). The Daily News, Frederick, MD. Newspapers.com

SHEPHERDSTOWN, WV “SEMI-QUINCENTENNIAL” 250TH ANNIVERSARY AND CELEBRATION. (2012). Corporation of Shepherdstown WV

Shepherdstown, West Virginia. (2018). Wikipedia

Stoner-Reed, P. (1987, Sep 26), National Register of Historic Places Nomination: Shepherdstown Historic District (Boundary Increase). National Park Service

Thomas, J.B. (2018). War of 1812. Digital Exhibit. Historic Shepherdstown and Museum

IMAGES:

Acroterian. (2008, Nov 29). Entler Hotel (Rumsey Hall), Shepherdstown, West Virginia. Wikipedia

Highsmith, C. M., photographer. (2015). The historic Entler Hotel, now the city visitors’ center, in Shepherdstown, West Virginia. Shepherdstown United States West Virginia, 2015. -04-29.  Library of Congress

Rumsey Hall, looking north or front view. (c 1925). Rumsey Hall Gallery. Shepherd University

Rumsey Hall as the Entler Hotel, looking northwest up German Street. (c 1880). Rumsey Hall Gallery. Shepherd University

Shepherdstown during the Civil War.  Historic Shepherdstown archives. Historic Shepherdstown and Museum

Waud, A.R. (1862, Oct 11). Sketch of the Philadephia Corn Exchange Regiment Fording the Potomac Near Shepherdstown. Harper’s Weekly. p. 652. 

Historic Shepherdstown and Museum

Boteler’s Ford, Potomac River near Shepherdstown. Point at which Confederate Army crossed after battle of Antietam

(c 1861-1865).   Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress

Ruins of bridge, across Potomac River at Shepherdstown.  (c 1861-1865).  

Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress

Rumsey Hall as the Entler Hotel after the fire, looking west up German Street. (1912, Nov). Rumsey Hall Gallery. Shepherd University

The Entler Hotel when the Town bought in 1979. (1979). Historic Shepherdstown and Museum

The Foundations of Survival Research: D. Scott Rogo (SurvivalAfterDeath.org)

The Foundations of Survival Research: D. Scott Rogo
(SurvivalAfterDeath.org)
:

Rogo, D.S. (1986). “The Foundations of Survival Research” in Life After Death. The Case for Survival of Bodily Death. Guild Publishing, London. Reprinted in Survival After Death, International Survivalist Society