March 31, 2020
This story comes from Spirits of Frederick by Alyce T. Weinberg.
Hope you enjoy!
“”First I thought I needed my head examined, but when other people started hearing the noises I decided maybe there was something to this. There really is a man, about fifty from the way he walks, two ladies who trip delicately, and a baby who cries that haunt that house,” says Elaine Gates.
The house described was built in 1810 on East Church Street. It is a three-story brick house, with a handsome antique gas-lit carriage lamp gracing the wall, a side yard that is covered with ivy and shaded by old, gnarled trees. Inside the iron gates there is a handcrafted, surrealistic sculpture that peeks at passersby.
The Gates’ – who owned the house at the time, were teachers and artists. Elaine, the wife, noticed that painting tools would disappear from the room she used as a studio, only to be returned a few days later. Exactly where they were supposed to be.
They had a “ghost” that first appeared one Christmas, and around the same time they could smell lilies of the valley so strong it was as if they had just been picked. When the man appeared, they could feel a cold draft… He likes to go to a specific guest room and anyone who stays in that room would hear him. In the morning, guests would ask if the owners heard anything during the night. The guests would say that they heard someone walk up to the bedroom door and stop. This person never knocked or anything. Several times they heard a baby crying in the front room. It would echo so loud that it sounded like it was right in the same room.
after doing research, the Gates’ found that the people who put the addition on the house were named Bopst. They had two daughters, one of which never married. The father died in the room where the man comes to. They were Catholic, the wake being held in that room.
Chanting has been heard at night… it was Latin, the mournful sounds grew and grew.
There was a doctor, an optometrist, who believed the house was cursed. He said that everyone who has owned that house, has died in it, some of them mysteriously. The daughter of the family that never married, fell on hard times and started renting out the rooms in the forties. One girl, who rented out a room on the third floor, was pregnant, not married and didn’t have any money. This doctor – the optometrist – was called to deliver the baby. The baby didn’t live long and shortly after, the girl hung herself in the stairwell on the top floor of the house. The baby that died is probably the one they hear crying.
Whenever the Gates’ would have a party, doors would open and slam by themselves. If the guests would ask about the noises, they would usually say it was nothing. During the holidays – Christmas and Thanksgiving – there seemed to be more activity, more things would disappear.
One winter, Elaine was alone in the house, reading in the kitchen. The cat was sleeping in her lap, the dog laying at her feet. She heard a loud crash…thinking it was a car that had skidded into a street sign, she went and checked but nothing was amiss. When her husband got home he went to the front of the house and came rushing back, asking what had happened. She followed him to the living room and stood in the doorway – speechless. Someone had tried to destroy everything on the mantle. A huge, three and a half foot Italian candlestick was in the middle of the floor, broken, a life size head was broken, rugs were overturned, a set of slave manacles were halfway across the room.
The Gates’ owned a beach house, and apparently the ghosts followed them there. While guests were sleeping, they were awakened by loud stomping in the attic. When Elaine went up to check, she found the attic undisturbed.
Elaine says the ghosts are fine, but wishes they would break valuable antiques and scare guests away.
Hope you have a great day!
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linked to Amazon: The Big Book of Maryland Ghost Stories by Ed Okonowicz; available on kindle (2461 KB) , hardcover and paperback; 444 pages, published by Stackpole Books; Reprint edition (August 16, 2010); “Turn these pages and enter the world of the paranormal, where ghosts and ghouls alike creep just out of sight. Author Ed Okonowicz shines a light in the dark corners of Maryland and scares those spirits out of hiding in this thrilling collection.” (AMAZON) I am an Amazon Associate and may make money with qualified purchases. thank you!