Monday, August 31, 2009

Ghost Hunt!

Last month, my husband and I had the pleasure of staying at the Palmer House Hotel in Sauk Centre, MN. The stay was a gift from my sister and brother-in-law for Christmas. The Palmer House has a reputation for being haunted, and we requested one of the most haunted rooms. We were booked in Room 22.
We arrived at the hotel on Thursday afternoon. Immediately upon entering our room, we both felt somewhat light-headed. I especially noticed this feeling in the small hallway in between the sleeping area and the bathroom. The best way I can describe it is that there was a fun house effect. I think the floor slanted slightly, which contributed, but later that night and the next morning I did not have any strange feelings there at all. We went down to the lobby to read some of the ghost stories that other guests have shared, and I felt fine once again.
We ate at the hotel's restaurant and enjoyed a wonderful meal and great service. Afterward we were lucky enough to be able to chat with Kelley, the owner, as well as another couple who was interested in ghost hunting. Kelley agreed to take us into the basement, where some of the activity has occurred, and also gave us permission to investigate wherever we liked in the hotel. She was a very gracious host.

The other couple who we met at the restaurant investigated with us. My sister, niece, and nephew also joined us.

The first thing we did was turn off all the lights and turn on the victrola in the Palmer House lobby. Kelley told us that sometimes this prompts a reaction from the resident ghosts. It was really fun to stand there and listen to the music, imagining guests of the past coming down to enjoy a dance in the lobby.
We used EMF (electro-magnetic field) detectors, digital camera, video camera, and an EVP (electronic voice phenomenon) recorder. Unfortunately we had forgotten our EVP recorder and did not have an EMF detector yet, but the other couple we investigated with was kind enough to loan us one of their EMF detectors. We have since found one just like it at a garage sale! What a find.

My husband, Tim, uses the EMF detector in the Palmer House lobby near the steps. He got really strong readings in this area, but when we went to the basement we discovered that there was a line running underneath the floor, explaining the phenomenon.

This is the children's play room, on the third floor. I got a creepy vibe from this room, but later when we were investigating, I didn't really feel anything.

Tim uses the EMF detector. Also pictured is my niece.

Investigating near the steps.

A view of the lobby.

The bar/restaurant area.
This is such a fun place to hang out and have a bite to eat and a beer.

The lobby area. Music was being played on the victrola in an effort to draw out some ghosts.

Our room. The rooms were very comfortable and nice.
It was the perfect mix of old and modern.

Fireplace in one of the hallways. The chair next to the fireplace, where my husband is sitting, has been known for paranormal activity.

This photo was taken in the basement. The basement is very large and has many rooms. The owners found some bones in this area underneath the stairs. The bones were sent in for analysis but were subsequently lost. My husband got some EMF readings in this spot, even though it was just dirt.

After our investigation, we tried to sleep. I actually fell asleep pretty quickly, considering that I kept hearing howling and barking noises. I'm quite positive there were no dogs staying there. We also heard what sounded like a ball being thrown against a floor or wall.
Coincidentally, my husband, my sister, my niece, and I all had terrible nightmares that night. My nephew was the only one who did not. I awakened from my nightmare at about 2 a.m., and was awake for about half an hour. Just as I was falling back to sleep, my husband (in his sleep) shook me awake to point out the skulls that were floating above the bed. Of course he has no recollection of this, since he was asleep when he said it. It made it rather difficult to fall asleep, though.
The Palmer House is a great place to stay. I encourage anyone who is in the area to stop by and check it out. Everyone was extremely friendly and accommodating, and we had a fabulous time. I can't wait to stay there again.

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