Monday, March 3, 2014

'Ghost Adventures' Recap: 'George Washington Ghost'

All images courtesy of the Travel Channel
BY NOWAL MASSARI

This week takes the Ghost Adventures Crew to their first investigation in the major New York borough of Manhattan. Here they will be hitting up the oldest home in the area, the Morris-Jumel Mansion. Built in 1765, the home served as headquarters to George Washington in 1766 during the Revolutionary War. Eventually, Washington and his men fled farther north and the home was occupied by the British Army and the Hessian mercenaries they had hired.

While taking the initial tour of the home, Zak asks the manager if everything is original to the building, to which she informs him that it is. It’s commonly believed that natural materials are able to absorb and hold onto energies and vibrations of the past. There have been many reports of paranormal activity in the home, including the office manager, who claims to have seen a soldiers booted foot walking down the stairs. According to legend, a soldier died on the stairs after tripping and falling onto his own bayonet. In 2013, the Acoustic Archives went into the home to do some routine recordings and to their surprise, they captured many EVPs, one of which was a young woman singing.

In 1810, Stephen and Eliza Jumel purchased the house and in 1832, Mr. Jumel fell and tripped on a pitchfork and eventually succumbed to his wounds. As legend would have it, his wife Eliza, took the bandages off of his wounds and let him bleed to death in order to gain his vast fortune. Eliza Jumel died at home in her bed, which is still in the house, in 1865.

Legendary paranormal researcher, Hans Holzer, conducted a seance in the house and made contact with Stephen Jumel, who confirmed that his death was no accident and his wife was to blame. After this encounter, the spirit of Stephen Jumel was never seen or heard from again. The same can’t be said of his wife, however.

A group of students were waiting for the Morris-Jumel Mansion to open for a field trip, when a woman came out onto the balcony and told them to either quiet down or leave. Not long after the woman disappeared, another woman came to let the students and their teacher into the house for their tour. The teacher told the tour guide about the woman on the balcony, to which she discovered there was no one inside the home. Once the tour began, the group stopped in front of a portrait of Eliza Jumel and they all said that was who they had seen on the balcony.

The group interviews an archivist named Emilie, who confirms that deaths have in fact occurred inside the mansion, including a young woman that hung herself in the attic. Deciding that they may need some serious equipment for this historic home, they decide to call upon inventor and skeptic, Bill Chappell. After confirming that Bill will be joining them on the lock down, they receive a call from a GA team member. The owner of Katie’s Bar, located about an hour from Manhattan, has heard they were nearby and desperately wishes for their help in uncovering more about the dark forces that haunt his establishment.

Once inside Katie’s, they speak with the owner, Brian, about the location. The foundation used to be a hotel, which burnt down in 1909. Surveillance footage at the bar shows a drink hose lifting off the handle and flinging onto the bar on its own, and another time it captures a glass forcefully flying out of its rack and hitting bartender, Dominique, on her leg. Upon speaking with another bartender, the crew discovers that Charlie Kline, owner of the Smithtown hotel next door, fatally shot himself in the head after getting in trouble during the Prohibition.

Zak, and owner Brian, believe that the negative energy from that event is what has lead to the problems in the bar. Brian believes that the entities like to see him struggle and become depressed, because they were in the same situation. Brian also reveals to Zak that he witnessed a tough biker get punched in the stomach by an unseen force after the man began taunting the spirits.  

Now that there are two locations to investigate, the group splits in two, with Zak and Aaron taking on Katie’s Bar and Nick, Billy Tolley and Bill Chappell investigating the Mansion.

After lining the bar upstairs with EM pumps to give the spirits more energy to feed off of, Zak and Aaron conduct a spirit box session to communicate with Charlie Kline. After receiving no responses, they decide to head into the basement. Once they are downstairs, Aaron notes some noises coming from upstairs and Zak says how different the feeling is down there. Suddenly, Zak begins to feel dizzy, and right after announcing this wave of dizziness, they both hear a series of loud knocks. Zak has Aaron briefly turn his light on to make sure that they are still alone, when something is heard moving back in a corner. Aaron goes to investigate the source when a black garbage bag is ripped off of the ‘EXIT’ sign in front of the stairs.

Pre-lock down the guys made sure to secure this sign with the black bag and a lot of gaffers tape, so that the light from the sign wouldn’t interfere with the investigation. When they replay the video footage, you can see and hear the force with which the bag was ripped down. At the same time the bag was ripped from the sign, a white misty anomaly forms and quickly dissipates over the bar. The excitement from this activity continues when Zak and Aaron hear noises directly above them, almost as if someone dropped something on the floor. No movement is caught on the cameras placed around the upstairs bar. Following this activity, the pair decide to immediately conduct another spirit box session. Zak asks a series of questions, ending with “What does that sign say?” Almost immediately, a voice responds with a coy “Exit.” Zak turns around to Aaron and says, “Did you just hear that?! Exit! I just freaked the f*** out man!” (This is quite possibly my most favorite moment in "Ghost Adventures" history, thus far.)

Back at the Morris-Jumel Mansion, Nick and company are attempting to capture some EVPs while Bill Chappell follows with the Kinect camera. Nick begins to feel nauseous when he enters another room, stating that there is a weird energy around him. He has Bill bring the handheld Kinect device to see if there is anything in the room with him, but nothing is picked up. While this is going on, Nick unknowingly captures an EVP, but can’t make out what it says upon listening to it. Then as suddenly as it came on, the strange energy passes and Nick feels normal again.

Moving upstairs, the guys head into what was once George Washington’s bedroom. For 20 minutes they conduct a spirit box session, with no responses. Nick request that the spirits tell them to leave or make a loud noise to scare them works, when a loud noise is heard by the trio. What they assume to be the stomping of a soldier is so loud and forceful, Billy Tolley actually felt the floor boards beneath his feet moving. Nick asks who made the noise, and in their first spirit box response, a male voice comes through and admits, “It was me.”

Billy is standing in the corner of the room and says that he feels something strange next to him, so Bill Chappell breaks out the handheld Kinect and begins tracking the area. A strange anomaly appears behind Billy, which was where the stomping came from, and he says that he sees a dark shadow in the corner. At first the anomaly appears to be low to the ground, then it seems to jump up to the ceiling, and finally it stretches out into a full sized figure that seems to be climbing on Billy. The infrared camera, which also tracks the distance of an object from itself, backs up the mysterious form by showing a strange blue mist-like anomaly behind Billy, with movements that match what was captured on the Kinect identically. Semi-joking with Bill  “the Skeptic” Chappell, Nick asks him to explain what just happened. Stunned, he says that he can’t.

To conclude the dual lock-down, Zak and Aaron meet up with Brain to show him what they captured inside of Katie’s Bar. Seemingly unfazed by the bag being ripped from the sign, when they play him the audio of the response saying “exit,” he says that he has heard that voice before, but doesn’t elaborate.

Despite not communicating with the spirits of some of America's forefathers, looking at you George Washington, the boys of "Ghost Adventures" have yet again pleased their fans with compelling audio and visual evidence. Keep next Saturday locked down and tune your TVs to the Travel Channel to witness the guys head into  the old mining town of Bannack, Montana!

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