"...we should pass over all biographies of 'the good and the great,' while we search carefully the slight records of wretches who died in prison, in Bedlam, or upon the gallows."
~Edgar Allan Poe

Wednesday, November 8, 2023

Newspaper Clipping of the Day

Via Newspapers.com

The following item from the (Davenport, Iowa) “Morning Democrat” for August 22, 1891 is a brief Ohio poltergeist tale with no further information that I could find, but I thought it was worth sharing for one delightful detail that I think will please you, as well:

St. Mary's, O., Aug. 21. People living at Byer, a small village in Jackson county, are greatly agitated over some strange developments in a haunted house. The house is a frame structure, built by Thomas Woods, who formerly lived in it and kept a saloon.

Five years ago a jewelry peddler stopped there over night and in the morning was found dead in bed, with his throat cut from ear to ear. Since then five persons have died in the home, viz: Thomas Woods, Walker Benson, Teresa Byers, Mrs. Thomas Woods, and James Seery. Some time ago the place was rented to Charles Henderson, and on the second night after his family moved in strange noises were heard and chairs and tables were hurled about the house by invisible agencies. The children screamed with fright, and said they saw a man with a mule's head. The frightened family moved out shortly after midnight.

They could not stand it until morning. Citizens say they heard strange noises while sitting up with the last person who died there. The neighborhood has become intensely superstitious over the place. Two men lately attempted to remain in the house all night, but were so frightened by 1 o'clock in the morning that they quit in haste. A well-known townsman, Mr. Thomas Ray, is going to try a night of it there by himself. He says that if his nerve does not fail and he is permitted to live until morning he will report all there is to it.


  1. This story is fantastic. It immediately reminded me of a similar-but-reversed ghost (which I think you might have covered in an earlier post?) reported from Virginia of a dog with a woman's head, who it was said "gets into the yard and scatters the milk pans and the wood pile, uttering the while most horrible noises. Upon some occasions it comes up to the door and rattles the knob." (Link to Richmond Times Dispatch, 10 April, 1903: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn85038615/1903-04-10/ed-1/seq-4/#date1=1903&index=0&rows=20&words=Charles+Cooke&searchType=basic&sequence=0&state=Virginia&date2=1903&proxtext=charles+cooke&y=0&x=0&dateFilterType=yearRange&page=1) I couldn't find any more information about this one either, sadly. I just love the completely one-off unexpectedness of old ghost stories, and wish more modern ghost reports were even half as creatively terrifying.

    1. Yes, I did cover that one a couple of years ago! And you're right, ghosts just aren't what they used to be.

  2. A man with a mule's head? It sounds like they never got to the Bottom of it...


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