If there is a ghost hunting show on TV, Louie and I have probably watched it together. We started years ago with Ghost Hunters, and more recently have watched Ghost Adventures, Ghost Brothers, Paranormal Lockdown, Ghost Asylum. . .the list goes on. We even rewatch episodes when there are no new ones. Now this is not to say that we believe everything that we see, because we definitely have our opinions on what is real and what is not real. But we have always wanted to do a real ghost hunt with professional equipment.
We finally got our opportunity when the local Society For Anomalous Studies partnered with the Milton Historical Society to open up two locations for a fundraiser. The money raised would go back to the Milton Historical Society. As soon as I saw the event, I knew that Louie and I had to do it! My parents, Jerry and Elaine, also were excited to join us. Tickets for the event were $50/location and included a reveal party that will happen in October.
The location the four of us had chosen was Goodrich Hall in Milton, WI. Goodrich Hall was built by Joseph Goodrich, founder of Milton, for the Milton Academy that he established in 1844. Milton Academy later became Milton College and Goodrich Hall served as a dorm for male and female students. At first, there was no indoor plumbing and the large building was heated with wood burning stoves. Eventually, Goodrich Hall became a Milton College faculty building. Milton College was a private and very prestigious College. Financial trouble forced it’s closure in 1982. At the time it closed, it was the oldest college in the State of Wisconsin. It is now used to house an antiques store.
Last night was finally the night. Louie and I arrived a little before 8 pm and met up with my parents. We were told that we could not take cell phones into the hunt because they could interfere with the devices. Also no pictures. The group of 25 people were split into smaller groups and assigned a floor. We were to stay on that floor for about one hour and then would rotate to the next floor. This was so that we all could have a chance on each level and the grounds of the house.
Louie, my parents, and I were assigned to start in the basement. The first ten minutes of the session was used for an investigator from the Society of Anomalous Studies to explain the different equipment that we would be using. It was so exciting to actually hold the equipment that Louie and I had seen so many times on TV. For the basement we had access to a Mel Meter, EMF detector, FLIR camera, IR camera, and Spirit Box. There were also stationary IR cameras and a laser grid set out to catch anything that we may miss. We did get a few spikes on the EMF detector, but whether that is due to paranormal activity or electrical wiring is to be determined. We also heard a few names come through on the Spirit Box.
The first floor of the house was dedicated to using IR cameras. We were each given our own cameras and able to walk around. In one of the rooms I seemed to have captured a strange anomaly that sat at the ceiling for about one minute before suddenly disappearing. I am excited to see if the image is debunked by the investigators.
The second floor was to explore using recording devices and a Spirit Box. We received no activity on our Spirit Box on this level, and will have to wait until the reveal to find out if our recording devices captured anything. On this floor my mom and dad smelled a sudden rush of freshly baked bread. It only lasted a short time and when they left the room and returned it was gone. The strange thing is that the room that we were in was filled with antique baking dishes. It is theorized that spirits can attach themselves to objects and follow the object wherever it goes. It will be interesting to see if any other evidence was captured on this floor.
My favorite floor was the third floor. The third floor is the current living quarters for the couple that own the building. While on this floor we got the opportunity to use the Ovilus. The Ovilus is a device which uses electrical currents to translate energy into one of 2000 words in the internal dictionary. In theory, a spirit can use the energy to “speak” to the investigator using these words. The exciting part about this floor is that while one Ovilus used by a different group in the back rooms revealed no words, our Ovilus said five pages worth of words in our small notebook. While many words seemed random, a few in particular seemed to match with a story that happened next door to the grounds. Back in the day, two children drowned on the adjoining property. One child, Tommy, witnessed it. Instead of alerting anyone, he walked to school. By the time the children were found it was too late. A few of the words that came across were “Tom” and “saw”, one right after the other. Paranormal? Maybe. Interesting? Definitely.
Our last area we were to investigate was supposed to be the Goodrich Hall grounds outside. However, a thunderstorm rolled in and our group was unable to make it outside. Instead we got to sit in the monitor room and learn how the investigators review evidence during and after their sessions. It was very interesting. We also got to try a device called the XCam. The XCam makes a stick figure like grid of each person in the room. It can then pick up anomalies that can show up as a stick figure where there is not a person. A stick figure kept appearing next to Louie, including on top of his head. It would dance, flail it’s arms and legs, then disappear. Very interesting.
The investigation lasted until 1 am and, despite the heat and humidity, we had such a great time. We will not find out the results of our investigation until October 21st. Our family will be traveling back to Wisconsin for it. I can’t wait! Whether you believe in ghosts or not, it is still a very interesting experience to use the equipment to search for the paranormal. One more item off of the bucketlist checked!