In early September, 2014, SDPRS traveled to the historic mining town of Julian, California, to conduct a follow-up investigation of the Pine Hills Lodge – a picturesque mountain location, which offers various events, weddings and overnight stays.  The lodge is a perfect getaway for anyone wishing to have a break from city life and surround themselves in the beauty and serenity of Julian’s mountain landscape.

Here is a historical description of the lodge, which comes straight from its brochure:

History of the Pine Hills Lodge

Pine Hills, once the gathering place of San Diego County's socially elite, continues to offer excellent accommodations in a rustic setting. At the turn of the century, the lodge was originally built as a romantic hideaway in the mountains amongst the surrounding apple orchards and forests. The history of the Lodge is a fascinating part of its unique ambience.

The Pine Hills Lodge was built in 1912 by Col. Ed Fletcher, a prominent real estate developer and banker in San Diego. The Lodge was designed by world famous architect Richard Requa, known for many of the structures in San Diego’s Balboa Park and Zoo. The bark-on wood log construction is considered irreplaceable and was done by builder Charles Engebretson.

In August 1925, the Lodge was sold to Fred A. Sutherland, owner and operator of the Sutherland Stage and Yellow Cab. He was a friend of Jack Dempsey, the prize-winning professional boxer. Sutherland built a gym at the Lodge and convinced Dempsey to come to the lodge to train for his second fight against Gene Tunney. On September 23, 1926, Dempsey lost the fight, but the gym he trained in remains standing to this day.

Over the years, the gym was used as a local movie theater. In the era of the 1920’s- 1940’s cabins and tree houses were built to accommodate the demand for more guests visiting the property. The tree houses are now gone. In 1980 the new owner, Dave Goodman, transformed the gym into a dinner theater for local amateur productions of known plays. After a 23 year run the theater closed in 2004 as the demand waned.

Since the purchase in 1998, major renovations have been completed, restoring "the famous Lodge" to its former splendor. In July 2003 the Lodge was acquired by new owners who plan to continue the legacy of rustic ambience. Under new management, the Lodge staff aspires to rekindle a reputation for delectable foods, gregarious service, and above all, a genuine feeling of tranquility and amicable hospitality; a step back in time to a romantic hideaway.



SDPRS first learned of the lodge’s haunted history in 2011. Since that time, the team has conducted two overnight paranormal research investigations at its premises, with this past September’s being the most recent.  The team will be working on a follow-up project in early November, 2014.

Like many other haunted locations, the Pine Hills Lodge has a wide array of paranormal claims, ranging from apparitional sightings, disembodied voices and footsteps and a general eerie feeling of unseen eyes watching your every move.  Additionally, the geology of Julian’s mountains contains quartzite, limestone and other geological attributes, which are known to retain spiritual energy.  Furthermore, Ley Lines can possibly explain why some locations are spiritual highways and Julian is no exception, as many Ley Lines run straight through the town and its adjacent mountains and hills.

From reading the brochure, you are aware that Mr. Dempsey utilized the gym as a practice location for his boxing.  The gym was also used as a theater for various plays.  There is a theory that postulates why theaters are known to have ghostly energy: it’s because of the vast array of emotions felt from hundreds of people, which seem to have an everlasting stay at their respective location.  It is theorized that ghosts and spirits thrive on these various emotions to manifest and communicate with the living. Could this be one of the reasons why the gym-turned-theater at the Pine Hills Lodge houses paranormal activity? 

There is another reason, a sad one in fact, why this particular area may house ghostly energy: an accident occurred during Dempsey’s reign, where a large wooden beam fell down and instantly killed a worker.  On both of our investigations, we have communicated with male energy inside the structure.  It is our sincere hope that this male energy finds peace and moves on to where he needs to be.

Each member of the SDPRS team has also experienced high strangeness in the projection booth area of the former theater.  We have all seen the residual sighting of a shadow figure repetitively walk past the projection window on numerous occasions.  We have since tried to recreate this phenomenon to see if there is some logical explanation, but to no avail.  Intuitive impressions suggest that this shadow figure is the ethereal form of a past projectionist who loved his job at the theater.

Another interesting phenomenon that surrounds this structure is the consistent knocking sounds heard while inside its premises.  We have investigated this occurrence only to discover that it isn’t a phenomenon at all, but the natural sounds of acorns hitting the structure or woodpeckers pecking on the outside walls.  In the morning after our investigation, we actually witnessed a woodpecker doing its thing and the sound was 100% reminiscent of the knocking sound we heard during the previous night’s research.

We have concluded that this gym-turned-theater houses paranormal activity that is both intelligent and residual in nature.  It is definitely considered a “hot spot” on the property.  We don’t have a lot of tangible evidence from this particular structure as most of our experiences are subjective in nature.  With that said, we will say that this so-called hot spot definitely has some mysterious high strangeness going on.

As far as the main lodge portion, which also includes a restaurant and pub, paranormal activity seems to be centered upstairs where the rooms are located. On numerous occasions, the owners and their staff have heard disembodied voices and footsteps.  While upstairs, and especially while in Room 6, people have seen the peripheral sighting of a shadow figure walk down the hall. One of the cleaning crew employees also attested to this phenomenon, as she described her sighting of a tall dark figure as it walked past the door.  For September’s research project, both Nicole Strickland and Maria Garcia stayed in Room 6 and Nicole discussed seeing the identical figure out of her peripheral vision while unpacking equipment.  There are speculations that this figure is the ethereal form of a past lodge owner.

Interestingly, vacationers have also smelled the phantom scent of smoke while upstairs in their rooms.  It must be noted that the upstairs portion of the main lodge experienced a fire during the 1930s or 1940s.  Thus, could these phantom smells be the residual imprints of the fire that occurred?  We had a guest investigator with us during our most recent investigation.  Toward the end of our project, we decided to do some EVP sessions in Room 3, which is where one of the past owners stayed while running the lodge.  Room 3 is situated directly across from the room that caught fire many years ago.  Our guest investigator, Gina, experienced acute coughing attacks during our EVP work in Room 3 only to improve once she left the room.  Was Gina’s body tapping into the residual energy left over from the fire?

During our EVP session, we had two recorders and a video camera running and Maria captured two interesting EVPs:  1) a male voice saying “Hello” and 2) a response to Nicole’s statement about us helping to relay a message to family members or friends, which sounds like “Let Me Go” or “Let Me Know.”  On our investigations, we always offer to help the energies and let them know that we can relay their message, should they have one to relay.


Some of the other adjacent structures on the property have also experienced paranormal activity.  Again, disembodied voices, footsteps and audible noise phenomena have been witnessed.  However, the energy seems playful and curious.  If you are in the mood to stay in a rustic ambience in the company of a ghost or two, the Pine Hills Lodge is the place for you. 

Stay tuned as we update this blog with experiences and/or captured evidence from our upcoming November research project.

Until then,

Happy Hauntings

"Hello"  in Room 3

Male Response in Room 3

 
 
This post features a couple of individual case summaries from the SDPRS investigation of the historic Warner Grand Theatre in San Pedro, California. http://www.warnergrand.org

Sarah Long’s Report

Warner Grand Theatre Report

Equipment Used: Audio recorder, full spectrum camera, digital camera.

Orchestra Pit: 9:00- 9:40

Nicole, Alex, Maria and I conducted an EVP session using audio recorders and the Ovilus X. I saw lights near the top corner of one of the far walls, but these could be explained away by ambient lights outside. About fifteen minutes into the session I saw a light flash by the middle of the room; this could not be immediately explained and about 20 seconds later the Ovilus said “flash.”

I did not capture any EVP’s or light anomalies at this location.

Projection Booth:

We took pictures and conducted another EVP session with the Ovilus, which started acting up. Maria put batteries on a table near the entrance of the room and witnessed them moving, but was unable to capture it on camera. We saw a light that faded in and out on one of the walls, but determined it was from a traffic light outside.

I did not capture EVP’s or light anomalies at this location either.

Sunken Lobby: 10:30-11:30

Jerry joined us in this room with his Ovilus, which also started acting up during the session. Maria and Jerry felt cold spots that came and went where they were sitting. I took pictures of them each time they mentioned the cold spots. Maria, Alex and Nicole also saw light anomalies coming from the restrooms.

EVP’s captured were:

At 3:34: Right before the Ovilus says “dictionary mode,” I heard what sounds like a woman about to say “dictionary” before the Ovilus cuts her off. She audibly finishes the word while the Ovilus is speaking.

At 7:10: I hear what sounds like a child saying “Hi.”

At 8:50: I hear a woman saying “Victor.”

At 26:50: After Nicole asks if there’s a woman wearing a white dress and green hat, I heard a female mumble and “white.”

 Photos captured:

What seems to be two light anomalies moving along the ceiling. I had my camera set to flash but I don’t think they are reflections of my camera light. But at this point I don’t think it can be confirmed as paranormal.

___________________________________________________________________________________________

Nicole Strickland’s Report

I.  SDPRS Investigators present:  Nicole Strickland, Alex Higgins, Maria Garcia and Sarah Long

     and Jerry Reynolds.

II. Locations investigated:  Sunken Lobby, Orchestra Pit, Dressing Rooms and Projection Room.

III. Equipment used:  Sony night-shot video camera, Ovilus X, audio recorders, IR digital

       camera, regular digital camera, E-pod, IR illuminator.

IV.  Investigation time:  Investigation started at 9pm and ran until 1am.

V.   Report Summaries

Sunken Lobby:  10:30 to 11:30 approx. The sunken lobby was an interesting place to investigate.  Jerry told us of the time that he caught a photo of a female in the female restroom.  All of us were feeling significant cold spots in the area.  There were vents on the back wall, which could have accounted for some, but both Maria and Jerry felt drastic cold spots around them at various times.

At one point, I saw a dark grey shadow morph just to the left of the men’s restroom up toward the ceiling.  Alex and Maria also noted seeing anomalies in that same area as well.  On various occasions, Jerry noticed movement inside the men’s restroom directly in front of the mirror.  Later on, I went downstairs and spent about 5 minutes in the men’s bathroom and I intuitively picked up a strong sense of a male wearing a dress suit.  I picked up that this entity enjoyed the theatre and visited it quite often; he enjoyed the performances.

I also felt a strong presence of a female near the women’s restroom and at one point, I went inside the restroom to do an EVP sweep.  I picked up that this woman was not a performer or worker, but also someone who came to the theatre quite often; she was wearing a long green dress with a matching fancy green hat.

I also sensed the presence of a small female child in the sunken lobby as well.

Photos:  No photo anomalies present in any photos I took in the sunken lobby.

Video: 

1)  On my video camera, I obtained an EVP of a woman saying, “Wearing a white one” in reference to my question:  “Is the woman wearing a green dress with a matching green hat in here?”  I was intuitively picking up on a young woman wearing an evening gown in the sunken lobby and this EVP is confirmation of her presence.

2) I also obtained a weird light anomaly in the sunken lobby, which to me does not resemble dust or a bug as it distinctly has its own flight pattern.  You will see the anomaly enter the frame coming toward the direction of my video camera and then turns in the right direction.

EVP and ITC:  Times are listed in recorder times (RT)

1. When Jerry had his Ovilus X running in White Noise mode, at 1:16:55, Jerry and I saw a shadow by the men’s restroom within seconds of each other.

2. At 1:17:30, I heard an audible voice phenomenon (AVP) of a woman say “Hello,” which corroborates my sense of a female in the sunken lobby.

3.  At 1:18:45-47: I captured an EVP of a woman talking.  I tried stretching and slowing down the clip and I still couldn’t quite make it out…it does sound like the last word is “dancing.”

4. At 42:36-42, We asked the energies to give us their name and the Ovilus said the word, “Ed.”  It was on phonetic mode.

5.  At 46:18-21, an EVP of a female saying, “Hi” occurred.

6.  At 58:09, Jerry reports an extreme cold spot by him.  Note that at 59:00, I saw a black mist near the men’s restroom.  Maria then felt an extreme cold spot at 59:27 and she notices movement in the exact area that I noted seeing a black mist.  At 1:00:46, I walked directly into a cold spot over near the men’s restroom.

Meter Fluctuations:  The temperature occasionally dropped a couple of degrees, but this could be explained away due to the ventilation in the area.

Orchestra Pit/Dressing Rooms: 9:00 to 9:40 pm approx.  This area is a paranormal hot spot.  While in this area, I heard intermittent whispering inside the pit.  All of us heard audible talking, but we determined that it was coming from the investigators up above on the stage.  We also saw weird flashes of light, but we fully examined the area and determined that it was also coming from up above the stage.

We did a lengthy EVP and ITC session and some of the Ovilus X words seemed to directly coincide with the area we were located in, which will be explained later on in the EVP and ITC section.

This is also a section of the theatre where I picked up the presence of two children, one female and one male.  What is interesting is that Jerry caught an EVP of a child saying, “papa.”

I also walked outside of the orchestra pit and walked around some of the dressing rooms.  The dressing room located directly south of the orchestra pit was interesting as I strongly felt the presence of a female who was very curious of my presence.  I later learned from Jerry that another investigator he was with on a different investigation also sensed a female in the exact area.   I also went to another dressing room and met up with Jerry during an EVP session.  On a couple of occasions, I heard audible voice phenomena (AVPs) from inside the dressing room.

Photos:  no photo anomalies present inside the orchestra pit or dressing rooms.

Video:  

1)  In the middle dressing room, I captured a figure in the mirror, but this could very well be Alex Higgins as she was walking around the area during this time. 

2)  I also captured another light anomaly while stationed in the orchestra pit looking down the stairs and out through the entrance door.  However, I do feel that this was either a flashlight or IR light illuminating against the wall.

EVP and ITC: Times are listed in recorder times (RT)

1. At 2:19:28:  I asked entities to tap the recorder as a way for us to confirm their presence and there were two distinct taps.

2.  At 3:30, I heard an audible whisper.

3. At 4:52-58, I caught an EVP of a man saying, “Peter.”  I later learned that other investigators caught the name Peter as well.

4. 9: 54-56, I caught an EVP of a female voice.

5.  At 14: 38-48, the Ovilus said the word, “Shepherd” as perhaps an actor’s name or part of a movie title.

6.  At 18:17-24, the Ovilus was acting up along with a simultaneous EVP of a male saying, “yeah.”

7.  At 19:25-31,  the Ovilus said the word, “clairvoyant” along with another simultaneous EVP of a woman saying, “Hello.”  The Ovilus later said “clairvoyant” again.

8.  22:40-47:  Sarah was inquiring about the instruments played and mentioned that she used to play the flute, when the Ovilus said, “Read” or “Reed”  as in perhaps, reading sheet music or the reeds on types of instruments.

9. 22:54-59:  An EVP was captured of a man talking, but I could not decipher what he was saying.  The EVP did sound like it occurred from a different dimension.

10. At 24:32-39: Maria was asking a question about how to go about playing an instrument in the theatre, when the Ovilus said the word, “members” possibly referring to having to become a member to perform.

Meter Fluctuations:  none reported

Projection Booth:  9:40 to 10:30 approx. In my opinion, the projection booth was by far the most interesting place to investigate.  Alex, Maria, Sarah and I were the only ones up in the booth for about 45 minutes.  When we first got there, the Ovilus said the word “batteries” 8 minutes into the session.  So, Maria thought about an experiment where she lined up three batteries on a table and offered the energies to use the batteries if necessary.  Right after this, Maria saw that the batteries rolled a little bit.  We tested the table out and none of us accidentally touched the table, so we could not figure out why they rolled.  However, when we investigate the theatre again, we want to test out the flooring near the table to see if perhaps a slight movement on the part of an investigator could cause something to move on the table.   Maria re-set the batteries and filmed them for about 45 minutes to see if they would roll again, but upon her video review, they did not roll again.

On the other end of the projection booth, Maria and Sarah noticed a light that intermittently showed up on a wall.  We examined this and determined that it was the stoplight from across the street causing the light to appear. The light on the wall appeared when the stoplight changed from red to green.

Photos: no photo anomalies in the projection booth.

Video:  Not applicable as I did not run video in the projection booth.

EVP and ITC: Times are listed in recorder times (RT)

1. Again, at the beginning of the session, I asked the energies to tap my digital recorder to confirm their presence and I noticed three taps on the recorder at 1:15 into the session.

2.  I asked if there was a projectionist in the room with us and at 2:07-14 the Ovilus said the word, “toast.”

3. At 3:23-33, I caught an EVP of a male that said, “get out.”

4.  At 4:51-58, I caught an EVP of a female talking.

5.  At 23:20-30, I asked the energies the theatre’s nick name but saying, “what is the other name of this theatre, the castle of your, what?”  (in hopes that one of the energies would answer by saying, “dreams.”)  Well, my wish was granted because after I said, “…castle of your, what?”  a disembodied voice of a female says, “dreams.”  This was my favorite EVP of the night.

6. At 27:14-20, a female says, “hello.”



Impressions and Recommendations: The SDPRS team will definitely revisit and conduct another investigation at the Warner Grand in the next few months. We would like to try out a few more investigation experiments as well. There is definitely a wide array of activity in the theatre.  There is a big power source in the area of the dressing rooms that produces a high amount of EMF, which can help the energies manifest.  Considering the history of the theatre, one wouldn’t think that it would retain a lot of spiritual energy; however, ghosts are attracted to a lot of places that have seen tons of human traffic and human emotion, which can partially explain why theatres across the U.S. seem to be paranormally active.

 
 
The SDPRS team was honored to investigate one of Anaheim’s historic gems, the notable White House Restaurant.  Back in the 1920s this beautiful and ornate structure was nestled among an orange grove and quickly became known as one of Anaheim’s hidden treasures.  Today, it is a thriving Northern Italian cuisine restaurant, owned by Italian immigrant Bruno Serato.  Many celebrities have dined at this beautiful establishment and the restaurant has traveled many, many miles to share its exquisite cuisine with guests from far away.  Additionally, the restaurant as garnered several coveted awards, including the highly prestigious DiRona award.  Most gracious of all is the fact that Bruno Serato serves meals, free of charge, to children and families in need.  When you visit the White House Restaurant, you will be won over by the welcoming charm, delectable cuisine and the love, respect and appreciation of an owner who thrives in giving back to his community.

To learn more about the home’s extensive history, please click on the link: 

http://www.anaheimwhitehouse.com/about/history.php

Team members for the investigation included Nicole Strickland, Heidi Boucher, Sarah Long, Sean McKeig and one our consultants, Jerry Reynolds.  However, before our investigation, we enjoyed the fine award-winning Italian fare in a private room of the restaurant.  A warm thank you is extended to the hospitable restaurant staff for accommodating us and allowing us to have full run of the house for the entire night.

We started our investigation upstairs in the Obama Room by conducting an EVP and ITC session.  There are claims that a small girl enjoys the upstairs portion of the restaurant and has been seen and heard by several people.  Intuitively-speaking, both Heidi and I visualized this small girl as having long curly brown hair.  Sarah, Sean, Heidi and I all had personal experiences while seated in this small room.  Interestingly, we all reported seeing white mists and darting shadows and at one point, the table I was seated at moved of its own volition.  We ruled out the shadows and mists as being natural reflections of light.

Intuitively-speaking, both Heidi and I were strongly picking up the presence of a male doctor, most likely Dr. Truxaw who owned the home for 50 years and had a reputation for “never refusing to help anyone.”  He was also responsible for delivering 3,500 babies, spanning three generations.  Our Ovilus X device was spewing out the words, December, sensors, woman, slow, morning, failed, second, honor, practice, western, repeated, SIDS, liver and cancer, which seemed to correlate with the questions we were asking the doctor.   One of our questions, “Did you treat a little girl?”  yielded an answer of  “Alice” via the Ovilus.  At one point, we asked, “How many of you are with us tonight?”  An answer of “five” came through the Ovilus, perhaps, indicating the presence of five family members.  Note that the Truxaw family consisted of five members.

Meanwhile, Jerry was outside the Obama Room trying to recapture an occurrence that happened when he investigated the house back in May of 2011, where one of the heavy doors moved by itself.  I even felt the door that moved and it’s quite heavy, so a slight draft or vibration could not move it.

Heidi was also intuitively picking up on the male presence of someone who tended to the farms.  This presence was communicating to Heidi saying that he remembers the harvests that occurred on the land.  Heidi is a strong intuitive and additionally picked up that this male presence was also responsible for holding a small injured girl in his arms as she was dying.  Could this be the small girl who reportedly haunts the upstairs portion of this restaurant?

Sarah and Sean investigated the wedding banquet room and were able to capture the chandelier moving of its own volition.  They thoroughly examined the room for any vents and/or drafts that could explain the chandelier’s movement, but failed to come up with a logical explanation for why it was moving.  More intriguing about this experience is that the chandelier started moving after Sean asked the entities to move it.  I want to note that this same phenomenon has been witnessed by other paranormal investigators as well.

The restaurant’s kitchen, itself, is an ominous, foreboding and spine-chilling area of the house.  Two creepy incidences occurred while we were investigating the premises:  water turned on by itself in the kitchen and the closet light just outside of the kitchen turned on by itself, which Heidi witnessed with her own eyes.  Both Sarah and I reported seeing a shadowy figure, on two separate occasions, walk through the main hallway that leads to the kitchen and restrooms.

I captured a phenomenal EVP near this downstairs hallway during this investigation.  This EVP occurs over Sarah’s discussion of the video showing the moving chandelier and contains two separate entities talking:  a small child and a male, perhaps a father figure.  When listening to this audio piece, you hear a small child say, “Mommy, I want to go and play.”  Right after this child says the word “play” a male voice can be heard saying, “You did.”  Jerry hears the child say something entirely different, which is “Mommy, help me…help me.”  This leads me to wonder if people are meant to hear EVPs differently.  In my opinion, I feel that this EVP is a residual catch; a long-ago capture of two people talking to one another. 

One of the most phenomenal aspects of this investigation was the amount of visual sights we observed.  Furthermore, it must be said that many of us experienced phenomena with most of our five senses.  As for me, I experienced oddities with my sight, hearing, smell and touch.  Other than Waverly Hills Sanatorium, I have never investigated a place where I saw so many light anomalies, mists, shadows and figures.  On two separate occasions, I saw two distinct apparitions:  one in the kitchen and one upstairs.  At one point, I smelled the strong fragrance of flowers while seated in the long dining room upstairs.  I tried to explain this smell away logically, but to no avail.  I am interested to know more about the perfume that Louis Truxaw wore, as I felt her presence several times throughout the night.

While doing another EVP and ITC session upstairs in the long dining room, we obtained some interesting Ovilus results, containing the names/words, happy, abstain, batteries, syntax, Victor, did, visited, process, there, etc.  In fact, we were talking about the little girl when the ITC device spewed out the word, happy.  Of course the Ovilus is an experimental device and it’s always beneficial to utilize it in conjunction with another piece of equipment, however we found the words on the Ovilus to correlate with our EVP sessions.

Overall, the White House Restaurant was one of the most pleasurable and intriguing places that we have ever investigated and I hope to go back in the near future to learn more about its haunted history.

Please check back as we will be adding photos to this blog!

Again, a heartfelt thank you to the restaurant staff for making this investigation possible!

Grazie,

The San Diego Paranormal Research Society

 
 
The SDPRS team conducted an overnight investigation of the Cosmopolitan Hotel, in Old Town, San Diego on October 23, 2010.  Seven team members were present for the investigation, as well as an observer who is a relative of one of the hotel staff.  We were able to obtain a few interesting results, which will be explained in the following paragraphs.

     The Cosmopolitan Hotel has an expansive history of 175 years, originating with a gentleman by the name of Juan Lorenzo Bandini, a pioneer who settled in the area in the 1800s.  He built his huge home from 1827 to 1829.  The home was quite large and accommodated his family well. 

     After Bandini’s death, stage master Albert Seeley had his eye on Bandini’s original structure.  He envisioned transforming the original residence, making it a place for travelers to revel in comfort and entertainment.  The year 1869 marked the debut year for the Cosmopolitan Hotel, where Seeley added a second story to the premises.  The hotel was an L-shaped Greek Revival hotel.  However, in 1888, Seeley sold the Cosmopolitan.

     The building’s next role was a functioning canning facility for an olive factory in 1900.  Then, in 1928, Bandini’s grandson, Cave J. Couts Jr. obtained ownership of the former hotel.  The building soon re-emerged as a functioning hotel, complete with a restaurant, wired electricity, gas and new décor. 

     James H. and Nora Cardwell then came into the picture in the 1950s, taking proprietorship of the structure, where it became a lavish tourist motel.  The year 1968 marked an important time for the building as well as Old Town:  the hotel was sold to the state of California and Old Town San Diego State Historic Park was born.

     On the afternoon of October 23, 2010, the SDPRS team arrived to the Cosmopolitan Hotel, which is now renovated to resemble and match its original décor.  We checked into our room, which is one of the most haunted rooms in the hotel.  We unpacked our arsenal of equipment, settled in and relaxed for a few hours prior to the investigation.  Around 5:00 p.m., we decided to partake in some delicious Mexican fare at the renowned Casa Guadalajara, which is located on the corner of Taylor Street and Juan Street at one of the entrances to Old Town San Diego State Historic Park.  After finishing off our meals and digesting a bit, we then walked back to the haunted Cosmopolitan Hotel to get ready for the night’s investigation.

     Our psychic medium and spiritual growth consultant, John, arrived after walking around the premises.  He briefed us on the many paranormal hot spots of the hotel and was even able to come into contact with the famed Isadora Bandini, probably the most noted specter at the hotel.  One of the investigators, Joy, filmed John as he briefed us, which became a part of the investigation case file. 

     After John left, we broke up into three smaller teams.  Team A consisted of Charlie, Delia and the investigation observer.  Team B consisted of Sarah, Joy and I.  Team C was inclusive of Audrey and Maria who investigated our haunted room for most of the night, as it is one of the most active spots in the hotel.  Team A started in the inside bar area, game room and wine room.  Team B started with an EVP session in the dining room areas.  After about an hour or so, Team A and B merged to conduct an ITC session in the wine room, which proved to be the most interesting part of the night.

     We had several pieces of equipment running in the wine room during the ITC session.  The Mel-8704 meter, Tri-Field meter, Ghost meter, temperature sensors, video cameras, digital and analog audio recorders were all running during this session.  Charlie’s AM/FM radio scanner, which he modified for ITC purposes, was smoothly scanning the various bands, when all of a sudden, it stopped mysteriously on Native American chanting.  First of all, the radio scanner is not supposed to stop by any means and demands the physical touch of pushing a button to effectively stop scanning.  Second of all, if this was of paranormal origin, stopping on Native American chanting would coincide with the history of Old Town in general. 

     A few moments later, Delia said out loud, “Please stop the radio (scanner)” and it stopped on its own volition.  Again, very mysterious! The wine room as it is today was formerly the kitchen area and at one point, when we asked what the room was used for, a response came over the radio scanner that firmly said, “Cocina,” which is the Spanish translation of kitchen.  Another interesting piece of ITC evidence that we obtained was when I asked who was in the room with us.  Right after my question, a female voice said, “Isadora.”  Isadora is not a common name by any means and it was very possible that the late Isadora Bandini communicated with us.

     Sarah, Joy and I also acquired some interesting EVP results from our session we did in the general dining room areas.  At one point Joy saw shadowy figures in the room and was touched by an invisible force at one point.  Music was very popular during the Cosmopolitan’s heyday and Sarah was able to capture very faint piano and harp music.  Both a piano and harp were present in the hotel during our investigation.  We made sure to secure the area as well, so no outsiders could creep in and interfere with our investigation.  I even heard disembodied footsteps pacing back and forth, which were not caught on recorder, however.  Perhaps most interesting about this session is the fact that our EVPs seemed to coincide with the history of the hotel and what John intuitively picked up.  John picked up the presence of a small boy named Stefan who used to live on the premises and I may have captured an EVP that corroborates what John intuitively felt.

      Here is a summary of some of the EVPs we obtained during this session:

  • I asked, “Is the little boy here?”  A child’s undecipherable response can be heard.
  • I also asked, “What is your name?”  The same child’s voice can be heard saying “Stefan.”
  • There were many wine glasses situated on the various tables, so I decided to conduct an experiment to see if any entities could tap the wine glasses.  I then asked, “Just for fun, can you please tap a wine glass as it is confirmation for us to know that you’re really here?”  A female response of “No” came right after my question.
  • I also asked, “Who built this hotel?”  A faint female voice responds with “Albert” as in Albert Seeley perhaps.
     Later on, Team A and Team B merged to conduct another EVP session in another portion of the dining room on the opposite side of our first EVP session.  At one point, all of us audibly heard what sounded like child laughter.  We examined this with a critical eye and determined beyond a reasonable doubt that there were no living children outside the premises or inside the premises.  Plus, the sound most definitely emanated from inside the very dining room area that we were situated in.  Little did I know that upon reviewing my audio, I would capture an EVP that directly coincided with the laughter.  About 20 seconds after we report hearing the child laughter, I obtained an EVP of a small child saying, “Happy.” 

     Maria and Audrey had some interesting personal experiences upstairs in the haunted room.  Maria also caught some interesting EVPs, such as, “Prey for me,”  “Maria,” “I love you,” and “Get out of here.”  Both of them also heard some weird sounds that they couldn’t account for.

We will be conducting future investigations at the Cosmopolitan Hotel as a part of a research project.

http://www.oldtowncosmopolitan.com

 
 
The Star of India is a historical legend that is now retired and berthed in the San Diego Harbor.  The ship was originally named the Euterpe and constructed in 1863, having sailed an impressive 21 around-the-world trips.  She is the fourth oldest ship presently afloat in the United States and her current docked home is at the San Diego Maritime Museum.  Investigators Present:  Audrey, Charlie, Richard, Delia and Nicole (stayed together as group for entire investigation).

Time of Investigation: 10pm to 3am

Type of Equipment used:  IR camera, digital cameras, voice recorders, video camera, laser, Ovilus, dowsing rods.

My responsibilities: Conducting the investigation as a lead investigator and conducting EVP sessions throughout the investigation; setting up the video camera and utilizing the IR camera.

Main Deck: While on Main Deck in the dining room area, all of us noticed that one of the lights above the dining room table would sway on a consistent basis while the other lamp stood still.  We tried debunking the swaying, but could not come up with a logical reason as to why the one lamp swayed continuously.  We are not saying it is paranormal, but what I suggested is that maybe it could be a residual phenomenon from the ship’s sailing days.

I acquired a few EVPs in the dining room area (See audio clips on CD).  One of the clips said “Help me” shortly after I was asking questions about what types of illnesses occurred on the ship.  Another clip contained a male saying “hello, hello.”  Another clip contained disembodied talking.   At one point, I heard a rustling sound come from Captain’s quarter that was filmed on video.

All of us heard intermittent footsteps directly above us on the Poop deck.  We did confirm the sounds to be footsteps.  I kept sensing energy shifts in this area…it would seem active and then die down a little, but there always seemed to be some consistent level of energy present. 

Tween Deck:  In my opinion, Tween Deck seemed to be the most active in terms of residual and intelligent hauntings.   I heard audible voices and heard disembodied footsteps numerous times while investigating this deck. 

I also acquired various EVPs on my digital recorder and my video camera (see audio clips on CD).  We kept hearing the voice of a young female on this deck and she seemed to always be on the opposite side of the deck.  I also did some laser experiments and on a couple of occasions, saw the laser light break with the movement of a shadow figure.  I also saw a shadow figure move in the same area that other investigators have reported seeing shadow figures.

I also heard disembodied footsteps on the Main Deck toward the aft section of the ship.  On a couple of occasions, the footsteps seemed to be moving in fast motion as if the entity was running.

Orlop Hold:   We did a group EVP session down in the Orlop Hold and I acquired a few different EVPs and audible voice phenomena.  (see audio clips on CD).  At one point, we all heard the sound of a chair being dragged across the floor, which came from the other side of the deck.   I also heard the sounds of someone rustling about on the Orlop Deck.

Audio:  Acquired various EVPs on all decks…mostly class Cs and Bs.

Video:  Took video of Captain’s Quarter room and Passenger Room on Main Deck.  Also took video of some areas on Tween Deck.  Captured some EVPs on video.  No anomalies on video.

Photo: Took some digital photos of various areas.  Captured a decent-sized orb in the front west-end Captain’s Quarter hovering over the bed. (see photos on CD).  There is another suspect photo on Tween Deck, which possibly shows mist either going up or going down the stairs toward the stern side of Tween Deck.

IR Photo: Took various IR photos on all the decks and there is one photo that is suspect.  Need to re-visit the area to see if a manniken is present.

Laser Experiments:  On Tween Deck, laser experiment did reveal the light breaking up on a few occasions.

Temperature Differentials: Did not use any temperature equipment, but did notice some cold spots in certain areas.  Note: portholes were open in various areas of the ship.

EMF:  Mel-meter did spike on a couple of occasions on Tween Deck.

Personal Experiences:  I had many personal experiences while investigating.  Mainly, I heard numerous disembodied footsteps and audible voice phenomena.  While on the Orlop Hold, I felt as though something touched my face as we did the group EVP session.  On the Tween Deck, I also saw a shadow figure and noticed my laser light breaking as shadows would go across it.

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hout a doubt, the Maritime Ghost Conference—sponsored by the popular San Diego Ghost and Paranormal Meetup Group (SDGAP)—was a tremendous success. As a fundraiser, all proceeds went directly to the San Diego Maritime Museum.  I have to truly commend my friends, Dave Hanson and Cheryl Bailey,–leaders of the SDGAP group—for their streamlining effort and dedication to this one-of-a-kind conference.  Lets just keep our fingers crossed that our good friends are in full swing to bud MGC2 for next year!!  Hint, hint!

I am also truly humbled to have been selected as a speaker for this conference.  Since this event was located on a known haunted ferry boat, it was apropos for me to speak about none other than the legendary RMS Queen Mary, one of the most historical vessels of all time, and currently moored in Long Beach, California.  Since there was a consistent nautical theme running throughout MGC, many of the other great presentations focused on other famed haunted ships, including the USS Hornet and Star of India, which is, by the way, a close physical neighbor to the Berkeley.

Nicole Strickland—Presenting on the ghosts of the RMS Queen Mary

Throughout the entire day of this beloved conference, I felt my soul rejuvenating every minute.  Why, you ask?  Well, to be quite honest, I am not positive on the exact reasons why; but, I can tell you that it may be one of those things that is meant to remain mystical.  It was fantastic to mingle with familiar faces and meet some new ones.

Delia Rugamas—private residence case manager for the San Diego Paranormal Research Society—also attended the conference and it was great to see her there!  Delia has twelve plus years under her belt as a paranormal researcher and is a specialist when it comes to private residence cases.

It was also great to see good friend David Berck—host of Paradigm Shift Radio. I must say that I have been a guest on David’s radio show, as well as co-hosted with him a few times.  Surely, one of my favorite paranormal-talk internet radio shows!

It was an early Halloween treat for me to acquire the opportunity to investigate the Berkeley on both Friday and Saturday night.  Friday night’s investigation was nothing less than surprising and interesting.  It was also a great opportunity for many conference participants and speakers to conduct a collaborative para investigation.

Jerry Reynolds—independent investigator—and I conducted some research down in the Gallery and heard some anomalous voices with our naked ear.  Interestingly, I was touched on my lower back with what seemed like a gentle hand.  Upon review of my audio, an EVP of a child was captured seconds after I said, “Oh, something just touched me.  Can you tell me your name?”  The angelic voice of a child can be heard saying, “Hi.”  Later, Matt Schulz, Sharon Gaudette and Jodi (Matt’s sister)—all members of the ParaXplorer Project—reconvened in the Gallery to do some work, which proved to be insightful and exciting at the same time.  Since Friday night was my premiere night on the ferry boat conducting research, I will honestly say that the Berkeley is now added to my repetoire of para research project locations.

The next day, I was talking with Matt Schulz, founder of ParaXplorer Project, about our previous night’s excursion on the ferry boat and I said, “I really enjoyed the Berkeley, I put it right up there with the Star of India.”

I was honored to meet Pacific Paranormal Investigations, another professional and well-liked paranormal research team in the San Diego area.  PPI was gracious enough to allow me to attend Saturday night’s investigation on the Berkeley, and I joined other true researchers, including OC Soul Searchers, another valuable team from Orange County and fellow members of the San Diego Ghost and Paranormal Meetup Group.

One of the most exciting events occurred in the Boiler Room.  We all collectively gathered inside this once boiling hot area and conducted an EVP session.  About 20 minutes into the session, all of us audibly heard a young female child call out “Mommy.”  Needless to say, this emotional EVP was also captured on all of our recording devices and video cameras.  To hear the EVP, please visit my PODBEAN page and click on the category “Maritime Ghost Conference.”  OC Soul Searchers also made a video showcasing this same audio capture and you can view it directly on the team’s website.  In my honest opinion, this Class A EVP is one of the  most clear and decipherable audio pieces I have captured to date.

Nicole Strickland-in the Boiler Room of the Berkeley

This experience left me with these pervading questions: “Who is this child?  Is she looking for her “mommy?”  “Is she earth-bound or spirit?” “Does she need help?”  I am starting to do my own research into the vessel’s history to possibly find out who this child may be.  It always tugs on your heart strings to get anomalous voices of children and all I want for them is to find peace and comfort.

Okay, back to why I feel the MGC was a success.  First of all, a good chunk of proceeds went straight to the maritime museum.  Furthermore, attendees had the opportunity to hear about ghostly stories and high strangeness on a variety of well-known ships.  Additionally, and maybe most important, this conference allowed like-minded individuals to further ignite existing friendships and to make new ones along the way.  It was a chance for us all to talk about our experiences, insights, thoughts and ideas, an open discussion, if you will, into the vast mystical realm that we call “paranormal.”

Until next time!

Nicole Strickland

Founder/Director of the San Diego Paranormal Research Society

Southern California Area Research Director of the Ghost Research Society
 
 
Paranormal Revelations - Star of India / San Diego 08/30/2014

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  The Star of India is a historical legend that is now retired and berthed in the San Diego Harbor.  The ship was originally named the Euterpe and constructed in 1863, having sailed an impressive 21 around-the-world trips.  She is the fourth oldest ship presently afloat in the United States and her current docked home is at the San Diego Maritime Museum.  Investigators Present:  Audrey, Charlie, Richard, Delia and Nicole (stayed together as group for entire investigation).

Time of Investigation: 10pm to 3am

Type of Equipment used:  IR camera, digital cameras, voice recorders, video camera, laser, Ovilus, dowsing rods.

My responsibilities: Conducting the investigation as a lead investigator and conducting EVP sessions throughout the investigation; setting up the video camera and utilizing the IR camera.

Main Deck: While on Main Deck in the dining room area, all of us noticed that one of the lights above the dining room table would sway on a consistent basis while the other lamp stood still.  We tried debunking the swaying, but could not come up with a logical reason as to why the one lamp swayed continuously.  We are not saying it is paranormal, but what I suggested is that maybe it could be a residual phenomenon from the ship’s sailing days.

I acquired a few EVPs in the dining room area (See audio clips on CD).  One of the clips said “Help me” shortly after I was asking questions about what types of illnesses occurred on the ship.  Another clip contained a male saying “hello, hello.”  Another clip contained disembodied talking.   At one point, I heard a rustling sound come from Captain’s quarter that was filmed on video.

All of us heard intermittent footsteps directly above us on the Poop deck.  We did confirm the sounds to be footsteps.  I kept sensing energy shifts in this area…it would seem active and then die down a little, but there always seemed to be some consistent level of energy present. 

Tween Deck:  In my opinion, Tween Deck seemed to be the most active in terms of residual and intelligent hauntings.   I heard audible voices and heard disembodied footsteps numerous times while investigating this deck. 

I also acquired various EVPs on my digital recorder and my video camera (see audio clips on CD).  We kept hearing the voice of a young female on this deck and she seemed to always be on the opposite side of the deck.  I also did some laser experiments and on a couple of occasions, saw the laser light break with the movement of a shadow figure.  I also saw a shadow figure move in the same area that other investigators have reported seeing shadow figures.

I also heard disembodied footsteps on the Main Deck toward the aft section of the ship.  On a couple of occasions, the footsteps seemed to be moving in fast motion as if the entity was running.

Orlop Hold:   We did a group EVP session down in the Orlop Hold and I acquired a few different EVPs and audible voice phenomena.  (see audio clips on CD).  At one point, we all heard the sound of a chair being dragged across the floor, which came from the other side of the deck.   I also heard the sounds of someone rustling about on the Orlop Deck.

Audio:  Acquired various EVPs on all decks…mostly class Cs and Bs.

Video:  Took video of Captain’s Quarter room and Passenger Room on Main Deck.  Also took video of some areas on Tween Deck.  Captured some EVPs on video.  No anomalies on video.

Photo: Took some digital photos of various areas.  Captured a decent-sized orb in the front west-end Captain’s Quarter hovering over the bed. (see photos on CD).  There is another suspect photo on Tween Deck, which possibly shows mist either going up or going down the stairs toward the stern side of Tween Deck.

IR Photo: Took various IR photos on all the decks and there is one photo that is suspect.  Need to re-visit the area to see if a manniken is present.

Laser Experiments:  On Tween Deck, laser experiment did reveal the light breaking up on a few occasions.

Temperature Differentials: Did not use any temperature equipment, but did notice some cold spots in certain areas.  Note: portholes were open in various areas of the ship.

EMF:  Mel-meter did spike on a couple of occasions on Tween Deck.

Personal Experiences:  I had many personal experiences while investigating.  Mainly, I heard numerous disembodied footsteps and audible voice phenomena.  While on the Orlop Hold, I felt as though something touched my face as we did the group EVP session.  On the Tween Deck, I also saw a shadow figure and noticed my laser light breaking as shadows would go across it.
 
 
TO READ ALL ABOUT OUR EXPERIENCES AT THE RMS QUEEN MARY HISTORIC SHIP, PLEASE VISIT


http://www.spiritedqueenmary.com