January 27, 2009

As Promised

As promised I visited two of my favorite old homes today. The first is Endview Plantation. (Here is a brief history of the plantation)

Built in 1769 by William Harwood. By the outbreak of the Civil War, Endview had passed out of direct ownership of the Harwood family and was purchased by William’s great-grandson Dr. Humphrey Harwood Curtis. Dr. Curtis was one of two physicians in the county at this time. The 1860 census shows that Curtis owned $8,000 worth of real estate, $21,000 worth of personal property and 12 slaves. By 1861 Dr. Curtis was off fighting the Civil War, but returned home and retreated with his family to Danville VA. for the remainder of the war. Federal troops occupied the Endview property and remained in and around the area until the end of the war. In early 1864, the Federal government confiscated the plantation and relocated seven African-American families there to farm. The Curtis family returned after the war and within a few months regained possession of there things.

As you can see the farm and land has a rich history so it is no surprise that the home is also associated with hauntings.

Reports have said that a woman has been seen crossing the road from the cemetery towards the house during re-enactments that are held at the Plantation. This woman is known as the woman in white. Reports also show that the room, that was used as a nursery has curtains that open after they have been closed for the night. Civil War re-en actors who would stay in the cabins (built for them to stay in during re-enactments) have reported ghostly happenings. Doors open and close on their own, cold spots appear even in the summer, and many of them felt a presence when they were alone and heard disembodied voices.

With these stories in mind I arrived early and joined a tour. No photos were allowed in the home itself but I did get a lot of shots of the outside.

These last two photos are graves of the Curtis family. I may be mistaken but I believe the child's grave is their child (They had 11). It is documented that one child a girl age 8 died in the home. She was suffering from intestinal worms and the "cure" at that time was arsenic. Her father being a DR. administered the dosage and she was given to much and died.

After I walked around the grounds near the house, I went back a bit further to the natural spring.

It is a bit hard to see in this photo, but when I visited last summer it had quit a bit of water in it. We were told that this spring was one of the main reasons that soldiers stayed here on the property during the war as it was one of the only natural springs in the area.
I continued on and found the Hargrove Cemetery. Several children and adults are buried here, and it is believed that there are several more unmarked graves.

Beyond this area through a field is where the famous "haunted" cabins were. I had never been back there and must admit I was a bit nervous. After all I was the only one walking around the property and could not see the house from where I was at. It is the dead of winter and this place looked creepy...I wondered how long it would take anyone to find me if something happened ha ha..
I took a deep breath and moved forward.

What I found back there were a bunch of old run down cabins that were once used for the re-en actors. It made me wonder why there are no longer in use. I felt very uneasy in this area and didn't stay long.
I had been at Endview awhile and knew I needed to hurry if I was going to make the tour at Lee Hall

I was very disappointed in this tour and will not waste your time talking about it. The tour guide was very brisk and rushed us from one room to another.
The only interesting part of this home was at the end. I met a lady and her daughter who had been on the tour with me at Endview. It seems that they were also interested in ghost and we started talking. It turned out this was the highlight of my day because the daughter (who is about 10) "see and feels" ghost. The mom "senses" things and together they were a lot of fun. The daughter said she felt a friendly presence there at Lee Hall. She mentioned this to the tour guide. Of course she phoo phoo the idea and within a minute of us talking to her the men's bathroom door swung open on it's own and hit me in the leg. We all started laughing and the daughter told the tour guide...well the ghost you don't have just went into the bathroom. I loved it.

Anyway and the mom, daughter and I started talking we of course turned the conversation back to Endview. I asked them if they had walked the grounds to the old cabins and they had said no, then the daughter told her mom she wanted to go and told her mom that she wanted me to come along..

Since the two homes are on the same road it took less than five minutes to return to Endview where we were told we only had a half hour before they closed, so we hurried to the back area where I once again took some photos. Both mom and daughter felt creepy and the mom said she felt as if someone was there. I am far from psychic but had to agree. I don't think it had anything to do with the cabins, but more with the land. Perhaps it was the spirits of the slaves or the soldiers of long ago. I suppose we will never know. While there the mom and daughter both turned on the recording area of there cell phone. Mom asked...Is someone here, Can you tell me your name, why are you here (with time between each question to hear an answer)
Then she played it back. If I hadn't been there I wouldn't have believed it, but clear as a bell when asked CAN YOU TELL ME YOUR NAME..I heard a clear whisper..STEVEN
We had a name..Steven..

One my first trip to this plantation I did not especially feel like it was haunted. Now I am not so sure. I suppose it depends on what you believe. Do spirits linger? Can they interact with the living?
Here is one thing that did happen that I haven't mentioned...
Take a close look at these two photos

Do you see the difference?
Yes the door is open..
The first photo was taken at 1:23
The second one was taken at 3:36
Could someone have come down the path in those two hours and opened the door? Of course they could have. We can always debunk the photos. After all I wasn't the only person to take a tour that day...but maybe, just maybe it was STEVEN, going out for a walk...

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Blogger PaleMother said...

Hi Patty,

I really enjoyed this post and I'm so glad that I found your blog. I've been blogging for about a year myself. I haven't posted much about my interest in the paranormal there, although I have been interested in it all of my life. I subscribed to your blog yeseterday and I wanted to introduce myself.

About three years ago, I found this message board on ivillage:


There I met and befriended a medium ... one who specialized in 'soul rescues'. He did the kind of work that most practioners won't touch ... cases that involved not only 'regular' earthbound spirits, but also the most unsavory kinds of non-human entities -- the ones that people often encounter after using ouija boards and other forms of channeling when they are not equipped to deal the consequences.

He help many people and during his time on the PE board, he taught a few of us a lot about the paranormal in general. He and I lead the board for a while as community leaders and we were great friends. Unfortunately, he passed away suddenly last June.

The board is still going, but I'm always looking for interesting online venues for people with an interest in the paranormal. Lately I've been scouting for good PE blogs ... they are hard to find. So I was very happy to find you -- I think that I followed a link on an (unrelated topic) blog that had a post about the author's ghost story ... I think I followed a commenter who said she was interested in ghost stories and I found your blog listed in her favorites. I look forward to reading some of your archive

I was lucky enough to live in Virginia for five years ... northern Viginia. I loved it and I miss it very much. I'd go back in a heartbeat and I still have relatives there ... in Herndon, Charlottesville and Richmond. I'm thinking of taking my kids to Williamsburg this year. I bet it's a wonderful place to go ghost hunting. One of my favorite places to visit on day trips was Little Washington in ? ... Rapahannock?

My family likes to vacation in Cape May, NJ ... which has the largest concentration of Victorian era buildings in the US. The whole town is a historical landmark and the history of the place goes all the way back to the 1600's. The vibe there is wonderful and there is a lot of activity. A medium named Craig McManus has written three books about hauntings there that I think you would enjoy very much. It's possible to visit many of the B&B's and other places that he writes about. You would love it.

I have a couple of friends from the PE board that are also interested in the paranormal and I will send them your link, because I think they are likely to enjoy your blog as much as I do. A couple of them are very interested in Gettysburg and in paranormal photography. I think you might enjoy their comments, if they ever pop in.

I'm sorry you've had some negative experiences on the blog with commenters and people objecting to content. I hope that doesn't discourage you at all. It seems like you do a very nice job here.



1/29/09, 9:45 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello Patty
Great read on Endview Plantation and Lee Hall. I visited both about 2 years ago. Great Plantations and history stories of the families. One thing I really liked is that in the up-stairs bedroom of the Endview Plantation you can still see the engravings that the Union soldiers left on the fire place mantel when they took over the house. I did wonder around the spring and back to the cemetery and cabins.It was summer so it wasn't so creepy. Sorry you have a bad tour guide at Lee Hall. You need to go back and maybe a different one will be there. I'll have to get out my pictures and take a second look at them. maybe I'll see something!

2/8/09, 9:54 PM  
Blogger Goat Creek Grandma said...

Hi Patty,

I just came over to check out your other blog here as I have always been fascinated with the paranormal. I enjoyed reading about your recent visits and your meeting with the Mom and Daughter. I so want to visit a place like this.


2/15/09, 9:19 AM  
Blogger Jeanne said...

There is so much history in your area. It is a great place to go 'Hunting'. Am really enjoying my visit to your blog. :0)

10/7/09, 7:52 AM  

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