The Lady in White

This story appeared, although a little differently, in my first book Ghost Adventures.  As a few more details have come out over the years, as well as being further removed from the situation, I’m now able to reveal that this story takes place in my old house.  The people involved are my parent, but I had changed their names in an attempt to avoid that old idea that peole who look into ghost stories ALWAYS have stories that involve their experiences.

Linda and Leo lived in their Goffstown, New Hampshire, home for eighteen years.  Located in a rural section outside of Manchester, it seems the ideal sight for something supernatural to happen, but it wasn’t until the death of a close family member that they were visited by a mysterious and comforting presence.

IMG_E4678“It wasn’t her.  Even when she was young, Millie had a chubby face.  Always had that heavy look.    She was dainty.”

Shortly after the death of Leo’s aunt, Linda was lying on the couch in the den when she felt someone in the room with her.  After a few seconds she looked up to see a young woman dressed in white standing at the doorway, looking up with a blank expression.  “She looked like she was lost and she didn’t realize what was going on.”  After a few minutes, the woman moved a little backwards and disappeared.

Linda described the woman as all in white, wearing a nightgown of see-through linen.  She was in her thirties, was of average height, with long curl red hair that came out the bottom of a scarf or something else on her head.  Linda most remembers the expression on her face, “like she was just passing through,” and the fact she could see through her.

IMG_E4677

The location of the stain…and me back in my rock and roll days.

Over the next year and a half Linda saw the woman about ten more times, always at night, always at the doorway of her den.  “I would stare at her.  I would try to figure out what she was doing there and then she’d be gone.”  Linda says there was nothing that would preface the woman arrival and it happened during any season.  She would just appear.  The woman never tried to talk to Linda.  In fact, Linda says the woman never seemed to see her there and never tried to interact in any way.  She does say that the appearance of the ghost was comforting and soothing.

Linda had had other experiences but she had explained them away.  Once, when her husband was in trouble while taking a trip in West Africa, she had sensed something was wrong and, “sent my guardian angel to help him.”  When he arrived home safe he said he had felt something at the moment she had sent it.  Then there was the mysterious stain on their ceiling that remained although they painted over it several times, bleached it and investigated to find no pipes or trails of water leading to it.

Leo, who is in security, is much more of a cynic and still has trouble explaining away his experiences with the woman in white.  He saw her several times, at the foot of his bed and in the same den and his description of the woman is the same.  She never looked at time but stared straight ahead, with a blank expression, and then be gone in a few seconds.  He doesn’t like to talk about it.  Neither Leo nor Linda mentioned it to until they moved to Nashua, New Hampshire, two years after the appearances started.

Village-Augustina-Postcard-2.pngBoth feel if they had not moved, the woman in white would still visit them.  This leads me to believe the spirit must have something to do with the sight.  When Leo and Linda moved in the house was only two years old.  The first owners have moved out shortly after moving in, but Linda claims it was not under any unusual circumstances.  Before that, the land was undeveloped and owned by a local Catholic school.  The school had a convent which housed several dozen nuns although over the years their numbers have reduced.

goffstownCould one of the nuns who enjoyed walking in the woods behind her convent still remain tied to the land?  Linda feels this might be a good explanation, but is quick to dismiss the head piece as a habit, or the woman, while comforting, as particularly religious.

The current owner of the house says the only trouble with the house has been trying to plow the rock driveway in the winter during their early years there.  They have added a garage to the property and have nothing but good things to say about the property.

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The Country Tavern

This was a classic haunted I first heard about in the early days of researching. I got the story because my parents ate there on an almost weekly basis. The legend was already hot by then, but when I published it in Jeff Belanger’s Encyclopedia of Haunted Places, it’s infamy grew. There is less spoken about the legend today, but the backstory and first hand accounts make it a classic New England haunted tale.

The aged wooden building now known as Country Tavern in Nashua, New Hampshire, has served many purposes over the years.  The flashing video sign and new coat of paint might hide the history to those passing on Amherst Street, but anyone who has been inside knows the past comes off the walls.  The antiques on the walls and exposed beams hint at stories that stretch back, and any waiter or waitress you ask is willing to share the history of Country Tavern’s most famous visitor.  Camille, the owner, looks more like a uncle or old friend than the proprietor of one of the most successful restaurants in “America’s Number One Town to Live in” as he shakes your hand and confirms the story.

At Country Tavern the talk is of Elizabeth.

Originally built as a farmhouse in 1741, the newly restored building was once the house of Elizabeth Ford, the wife of a ship captain.  After one of his long voyages, he returned to find his wife pregnant by another man.  He waited until the baby was born and then killed them both, burying them somewhere on the property.  Some say they were buried directly on the land below where the restaurant now stands.  Other say he dumped them in a well on the property.  Either way, Elizabeth has stayed on the property.

Employees of the restaurant report items being moved and hearing footsteps late at night.  Some say she would regularly cause things to fall and break.  This seems to be the most malicious thing she desires to do, because most stories about her describe her actions as harmless and at times even pointless.  There is no rhyme or reason to what she does.  The sightings seem to be focuses more on women on the premises and her favorite activity used to be to play with women’s hair in the ladies room.

There have been several physical sights of the mother.  She is never seen in detail, but more as a shadow with a face.  She is most often seen looking out the windows to the parking lot in the back of the building.  One customer was in that parking lot smoking a cigarette before rejoining his family inside.  He saw a door on the second floor open and close several times without anyone moving through.  The door then began to swing violently, still with no one appearing.  He questioned the people inside who confirmed no one was in the area at that time.

Although a specialist was brought in during the late nineties to give Elizabeth peace, the owner and staff do not try and hide what they have experienced.  The reports of her activities have all but stopped, but the employees and customers keep the tragic story of mother and child alive.