2009
08.27

Williamsburg Ghostwalk

I previously posted about a trip to Williamsburg, Virginia with the promise that I would post a review of the Ghost walk as well as any evidence captured. 

Tavern walk ghost tour.
The tour started out at Shield’s Tavern in colonial Williamsburg and we were informed by our tour guide that we would not be hearing old ghost stories, that the stories she was telling happened within the past 10 years. As earlier posts suggest the popularity of the paranormal field can have its disadvantages, in this case it resulted in about 50 people on this tour.

At Shield’s Tavern we were given a brief history of the site including the renovation/restoration process, this was to setup the first story. Apparently to turn the original building into a tavern with a full kitchen while keeping the historical accuracy of the site required building the kitchen underground along with a tunnel system to the street behind the tavern. So the first story involved a former manager who was locking up for the evening when she got through the tunnel turned around and noticed a light was on in the upstairs office. She thought nothing of this and went back up to turn the light off, when she got back outside again she looked up and guess what, the light was back on. There was another worker waiting for a ride, she confirmed with him that she just turned the light back off, at this point she dragged him back into the tavern. When she reached the office again she noticed that the entire room was in disarray after cleaning up she turned the light back off and said out loud I’m tired do whatever you want but leave the LIGHT OFF! She gets back outside and looks up again to see that the light stayed off but her and her co-worker noticed the silhouette of a man in a tri-cornered hat.

After hearing this story our tour guide proceeded to tell us that historical records showed that the original tavern was owned by a man named Marot. Mr. Marot was murdered and a friend of his was indicted and eventually acquitted of the murder. After a few more tales about apparitions and cold spots we were informed that a few psychics had been on the ghost walk previously and confirmed that Mr. Marot was still hanging around in the building.

Our next stop was the Brickhouse Tavern which is also used as a hotel where visitors who want the full colonial experience can stay. Here we were told about 2 sisters who visit yearly and during their first stay at the Brickhouse tavern experienced some paranormal phenomena. It started out with a faint smell of tobacco, one sister knew it was tobacco since her husband smoked a pipe and was familiar with several different brands. During their first night one sister wakes up hearing a thumping sound near the foot of the bed then it gets closer and she feels a pressure on her chest and cannot move. Eventually she forces herself awake with a scream and the pressure goes away.

After hearing this story I started to loose some of my enthusiasm. This story is a textbook example of Sleep Paralysis:

A sleep disorder where a person half-awakens during the night. This causes the brain and the body to be out of sync and renders the individual paralyzed. Commonly those who experience sleep paralysis get the feeling of pressure on their body, as if some force was holding them down. Hallucinations often occur, mainly auditory but those who can open their eyes often see beings trying to attack them. Old superstitions used to call this ‘the witch on your back’ before science found an explanation.

Having experienced this first hand I know that it can really have an effect on a person and I can understand how it can make someone feel as if they had a paranormal experience. I decided to keep my feelings to myself but do feel that the tour guides should do a little research into some of the claims. Without doing the research you lose some credibility making it harder to believe the other claims.

We ventured on to the “most haunted building in colonial Williamsburg”. Here we were told the story of a security guard that was making his rounds and never checked back in. When the security team went to his last know whereabouts they found him crouched in the basement holding his gun in a cocked position. He never mentioned what he saw but whatever it was caused him to quit on the spot. He now works at the University of Virginia and still won’t talk. We were also informed that this site is famous for generating photos with anomalies specifically “an intense ball of light called an orb, that’s what a ghost looks like in a picture.”

Well anybody who has visited this site before knows how much the members of PPS LOVE orbs. Ha ha, yeah right, if you haven’t read our post about orbs or think they are really the manifestation of a spirit please click here We were also told that once during the ghost tour one of the tourists spoke up and pointed out a black mist coming out of the keyhole, at this point someone in our group said “its pitch black over here, how can you see a black mist” those were my thoughts exactly.

We had one more stop on our tour which had an interesting story about a young hostess and a romantic ghost who really liked her.

Overall I did have fun, the stories were interesting and the tour guide did a good job. She was entertaining and knew how to tell the stories she was told. During the tour I kept my mouth shut to those around me, I didn’t want to ruin their fun which is why I waited until now to offer my thoughts. I really don’t recommend going if you belong to a paranormal group, unless you believe in orbs.

So to the company sponsoring this ghost walk or any ghost walk for that matter: Please do some more research into the claims before repeating them to your tour groups. When you speak about these things as absolute truth and someone can find a logical reason immediately you lose credibility with the rest of your stories.

After the tour was complete I walked back to Shield’s Tavern where we began the tour, luckily everyone else had left and I had my recorder running. I snapped a few pictures before returning to the hotel and I was very surprised to see an image in one. Click here to be taken to our images page, the picture in question is the first one on this page the second and third pictures are the same just zoomed in and highlit.

2009
08.17

Williamsburg

This past weekend I visited Williamsburg Virginia, while I did not go as an investigator, I did take my recorder.

We spent most of Saturday at Yorktown first visiting the battlefield and ending up at Yorktown settlement. From Yorktown we went to colonial Williamsburg for the rest of the day. That night we returned to colonial Williamsburg to take part in the Tavern Ghost Walk.  I used my recorder at each location and kept it running for the duration of the ghost walk.

Over the next few days I will be analyzing the audio files and pictures for any anomalies and will post them on the website along with a review of the ghost tour.

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