By Katie McBride
Imagine you are lying in your comfortable bed in your dorm room. It’s 3 a.m., and you’ve been asleep since midnight. All of a sudden, you wake up with a start. Your roommate is gone for the weekend and your door is locked, but you feel like you’re not alone. You look around and don’t see anything, but you feel a chill run down your spine and can’t fall back asleep.Instead of brushing off that feeling and pretending it’s nothing, perhaps you should investigate a little more. Numerous students have reported similar instances in different buildings across campus. Some said they woke up to find a figure standing at the end of their beds.
This eerie sensation may actually be the work of the paranormal on Eastern’s campus. Many students said they have experienced a haunting in different places on campus.
One such haunted building is Sullivan Hall. Now a residence hall for honors students, in the 1970s the hall was reserved for nursing students. During that time, a nursing student allegedly committed suicide on the fourth floor, and her ghost now haunts the hall, according to www.theshadowlands.net.
The Kentucky Regional Paranormal Society actually came to Sullivan Hall in June 2005 and performed several experiments, according to its Web site, kyghostwatch.com.
They found the residence hall had once been the location of a Civil War hospital, and the basement was used as a morgue for the dead soldiers.
However, they heard more stories about Victoria, the nursing student, than the morgue spirits. The team decided to visit Victoria’s old room and found many cold spots and orbs in the closet area. And their batteries kept dying.
“Down in the basement of Sullivan Hall, there was a university infirmary,” said Charles Hay, a former university archivist. Hay mentioned Victoria and said he had heard tales about Sullivan being haunted.
“We are certain this historic building does indeed have a story to tell as it tries to tell its story every day,” the paranormal society Web site said.
Sarah Porter, a sophomore living in Sullivan, said she has scared herself into thinking there is something around her when there isn’t.
Porter said she was in the basement doing laundry at 1 a.m. when she heard a clinking noise. She was worried there was something, or someone, that could be coming after her. But when she investigated, she found it was only a night desk worker buying a can of pop.
“I don’t really know if I believe it. People have it in their minds that there is something there when there really isn’t. But maybe it’s one of those things you have to see it to believe it,” Porter said. “I’d like to know if it’s true or not.”
Keene Hall is another residence hall in which students have experienced the paranormal. A man, who once lived in Kenne, committed suicide on the top floor after a fight with his girlfriend.
Students living on the 16th floor reported feeling they were being watched, waking up in the middle of the night and seeing a man at the end of their beds and hearing strange sounds with no explanation, according to www.theshadowlands.net.
But one of the most well-known ghosts on campus is called the Blue Lady. She haunts the Keen Johnson bell tower and the Pearl Buchanan Theatre.
The ghost is a theatre student who attended Eastern in the 1930s, according to an article in the Nov. 20, 1980 edition of The Eastern Progress.
She was in the bell tower practicing a scene from a play. She was wearing her costume, a blue dress, and was allegedly so immersed in her character that when she got to the suicide scene, she actually hanged herself.
Since her death, there have been numerous sightings in Keen Johnson. The article cites students who claim the Blue Lady is a benevolent ghost who shows up only when things are going well.
The existence of these ghosts has not been confirmed, but many students have reported seeing them.
Hay compared the ghost stories to the myths surrounding Daniel Boone.
“We know more about Daniel Boone, the myth, than the reality,” Hay said. “We know it’s not true, but it’s perceived as reality when it’s really not reality. That’s how some of these things happen.”
If campus doesn’t have enough ghosts to satisfy your taste, you might want to explore some of off-campus haunts.
The ghost of a 16-year-old girl who was raped and murdered near the bridge haunts Four Mile Road. She is called Little Egypt, according to www.theshadowlands.net.
If you go to the bridge on a rainy night just before dark, call her name, crack the two front windows of your car and she will come into the car as a puff of wind. She will ride with you to make sure you are not the people who killed her, and if not, she will get out.
However, rumor holds that if the windows are not cracked and she can’t get back out, she will wreck the car.
Still, one of the most haunted places in Richmond is White Hall Mansion. Tourists have reported seeing a woman and a small boy and have heard a baby laughing. One child even reported seeing babies in the mansion after a tour, according to www.theshadowlands.net.
There are many different stories surrounding the White Hall Mansion, according to www.ghosthunter.com.
Members of “Ghost Chasers International” went to White Hall in February 2002. They said the mansion is definitely haunted.
“At one point Patti [Starr] asked Kathleen to hold out her hand, and then she asked the spirit present to please go over to Kathleen’s hand. There were four digital cameras going off at the same time and all four cameras got an orb around Kathleen’s hand,” according to a report on www.ghosthunter.com.
Patti Starr and Chip Coffey of “Ghost Chasers International” will be at Eastern Nov. 15 to show some of their findings and go on a live ghost hunt.