Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

Haunted Crime Scenes

Ghost Hunting at the Borden House

Book cover: Ghost: Investigating the Other Side
Book cover: Ghost: Investi-
gating the Other Side

In Ghost: Investigating the Other Side, the author stayed in this house overnight at a time when there were no other guests. She took several ghost hunting instruments with her, and camped out in the upstairs room where Abby Borden was so brutally hacked to death by someone who was clearly angry at her. The stories told about that room feature an older woman who tucks people into bed. Following is an excerpt that details that experience:

"One technique that seasoned ghost hunters use is known as EVP, or electronic voice phenomena. You set up a recorder and you may get a voice that you can't hear but that registers on the recorder. People claim to have heard voices of someone they once knew or to hear their name being called. I personally once got a very clear and plaintive, 'Help!' at a haunted B&B in Gettysburg, near the battlefield.

"So I got in bed in the John Morse room where Abby had met her fate and turned on the recorder. I actually did sleep and dreamed of a woman talking to me. In the morning, I reached for the recorder and... it was off. Some time during the night, for some reason unknown to me, I must have shut it off..."

Or not. At no other time did the author have such an experience, though she recorded in many other places before and after. The tour guide that day described experiences she'd had of being locked out while taking people into different rooms. In addition, people arrived to describe experiences they'd had, from a strange white mist emanating from the kitchen to cold spots to the noise of doors slamming.

The Lizzie Borden Bed & Breakfast
The Lizzie Borden Bed & Breakfast

The author heard about two psychics who had come to the house had insisted after reading the spiritual vibes that Andrew had been killed in the kitchen and dragged to the couch, and that one owner's dog had refused to go up the front staircase. A greeting placed in the rooms had include a note to guests: "If a door should open or close on its own, or a light go on or off, please take this in good humor, as we are mere mortals and cannot control our supernatural guests. They are generally well-behaved, but sometimes tend to get a bit mischievous."

The new owners appear to have the same sentiments, as they offer tours, a gift shop, and re-enactments for guests, as well as a breakfast akin to what the Bordens ate before meeting their demise. It's also possible that the lucky guest might see Abby... or Lizzie.

And speaking of family massacres, let's drop into New Jersey for a sensational crime that produces its own spectral aftermath.

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