My House Ghost

With Halloween almost here, I thought I'd share stories about the ghost in our house. I should first note that I scare very, very easily. I have frequently screamed when I'm in the kitchen at work by myself and someone comes in suddenly. And I get scared when watching scary movies and later thinking of them when I wake in the middle of the night to use the bathroom. But I've rarely felt scared in my house. When these things happened, they were definitely freaky, but I've never been scared for my safety. I guess it's funny that I'm scared when I watch movies but not so much when actual things happen in my own house!

We bought our house 12 years ago. We don't know its age, but it shows up on a map dated 1890, so it is at least 125 years old. I'm sure it has a rich history, but I do not want to know about it so we've never investigated.

The first incident happened shortly after we moved in. We had invited my husband Dave's gradeschool friend and her husband and two daughters over for dinner. One of her daughters was about five years old, and the other was just an infant. Dave and I had been doing some work in the house. One of the things we did was to take off the old, very heavy wooden doors in the house to open it up. If you've had these solid wood doors in you house, you know how heavy they are. One of the doors was propped against the wall. We had just eaten dinner, and the five-year-old girl was kinda running around the house. All of a sudden she came to a dead stop in the frame of the door that separated the dining room from the hallway, facing the door that was propped against the wall in the hallway. Then, the door moved away from the wall and fell right into the door frame where she was standing! There was absolutely no way a door that heavy could have moved on its own. We all immediately jumped up and checked to make sure she was okay, and she was. We all agreed it was very weird! After a bit, we moved into the living room. We had music playing, but the TV was off. All of a sudden, the DVD player (or was it VCR back then?) turned on and started playing! Okay, more weirdness. Then, shortly after that, the baby, who was sitting in her mom's lap, looked up at the ceiling in the corner of the room and started waving and giggling. When the five-year-old was out of earshot, we asked Dave's friend whether she had an imaginary friend at home, thinking maybe they brought a ghost with them. Dave's friend said no, that nothing like that had every happened before. Well, they never came back to our house after that!

I'm not sure of the timing anymore, but not too long after that, I was getting ready to leave for work in the morning. I was walking down the stairs, and one of my cats was walking down in front of me. I have no idea what exactly happened--it all happened in the blink of an eye--but I saw my cat go flying OVER the top of the banister and into the dining room as if he'd been thrown. I ran down after him and found him completely puffed up with all his fur on end and completely scared. There is no way that he jumped over the banister, and if he had he wouldn't have been able to jump as far as he did to land where he did. Plus, he was obviously extremely scared.

Ghost-like Dave on the stairs.
At the bottom is where the cat flew over the banister and into that room at the right.

Things quieted down after that and nothing happened for a few years. Then, we adopted a new cat, Elsie. My other cats had feline leukemia, so she had to be isolated for a period of time in another room until her vaccination and booster kicked in. (Sidenote: I would not adopt a healthy cat into a home with other feline leukemia cats, but Elsie was in a shelter with a special situation and couldn't be adopted out, so I was her last hope. The vaccination did work for her, though, and she doesn't have feline leukemia.) It was in the summer, and we had all the windows open. Shortly after I got home from work, I went into the room where Elsie was on our second floor to spend time with her. Our house is very tall. Part of our basement is above ground, and our ceilings are very high. So the room I was in was about 20 feet from the ground and not very close to the neighbors. As I was petting Elsie, I heard loudly, as if someone turned on a radio or TV right outside the window, a child's voice calling in a really spooky voice, "Mommy.....Mommy." I ran from the room to tell Dave and made him go outside to check to see if anyone was outside. He did and didn't see or hear anything. He thought I had just heard someone's TV, but the voice was so close, and it was the kind of tone you hear in scary movies. Okay, that incident did scare me!

Around that time, our neighbor next to us told us about seeing a ghost in his house. He and his girlfriend were watching the Steelers game on a Sunday afternoon. During a commercial, she got up to go to the kitchen. He said she saw her freeze in the door and then walk backward into the room. She had seen the ghost of a little boy in a striped shirt on the stairs with his hand on the banister.

Also around this time, the house next to him (two doors down from us) was being renovated, and some of the workers walked off the job and wouldn't come back because they said strange things were happening. Unfortunately, I don't know the specifics.

All this was about five years ago. Then, absolutely nothing happened. We didn't see or hear anything else....until a few months ago.

This was when I was training and going to bed really early. Dave came to say good night to me, then shut the bedroom door and walked down our front stairs. He said that he heard heavy footsteps right behind him. He thought it was the dog following him down, since the dog sounds like a horse when's he going down the steps. But he didn't remember the dog being upstairs, so he turned around and when he did, a cold chill passed through him. He said he actually felt cold for about 15 minutes afterward. Dave does not get scared like I do, but he was really freaked out. He said he really wanted to come back to be with me so he didn't have to be alone but he didn't' want to scare me. I'm happy he waited to tell me until the morning!

I've been waiting for other things to happen since then. I wake up most nights in the middle of the night to use the bathroom, and I am always wondering if I'll see or hear something. But I haven't.

Ghost-like Dave in our house, showing our Halloween window decorations one year.

Our neighbor says he absolutely knows there's a ghost in his house and has told us many stories of other things happening, mainly little pranks. I think it's interesting that I have heard a child's voice and his girlfriend saw the ghost of a little boy. Incidents happened when there are children in our house (we don't have kids) and incidents involving the cats. The other thing that's interesting to me is that the ghost seems to come and go. Maybe it's the ghost of a young boy looking for other children or pets to play with? Maybe he is moving between the houses on our street?

While I'm curious, I absolutely don't want to mess with anything that could be in our house. I have heard that bad things happen to people who go looking for them. That's why I don't want to have a house history done. I don't want to find out that a little boy died in the house, for example. Whatever has been in our house hasn't done any harm to us (though he did throw the cat!) so I just want to leave it alone.

Have you ever heard of a story like this, where a ghost moves between houses? Has anything like this happened to you?

Have a fun Halloween weekend!

Ghost-like Dave on our roof, with Pittsburgh's Downtown in the distance.

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