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December 10, 2016
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community living

Special team to hunt for ghosts at Old Stone House

The Old Stone House is pictured 100 years ago in an antique postcard. Do 19th century ghosts still visit today?
Contributed photo

HASBROUCK, NY — A team of trained ghost-hunters will search this summer for wayward spirits and unhappy spooks at the Old Stone House. A team of experts from New York State Tri-County Paranormal, one of nearly 2,700 similar groups nationwide, offered to look into the various tales.

The historic building, now a regional center for arts education and exhibits, was the site of the mysterious 1840 murder of prominent local politician Anthony Hasbrouck. Some say his lingering specter, even today, is responsible for the strange sounds, odd drafts of wind and eerie glows of light on dark nights in and around the house.

“It’s a really historic building,” said Alana Sherman, who heads a group running the center, “and sometimes weird things do happen in old places even without the presence of ghosts. But, in just a little while, we may know more.”

The Old Stone House was originally constructed in the 1700s, back when the largely forgotten French and Indian War raged throughout the Catskills, and since then has undergone numerous renovations and additions. Over the decades, it has served as a boarding house, restaurant, creamery, post office and school. That wide range of activities, said Sherman, “opens a thousand opportunities for ghosts to linger behind, and sometimes make themselves known in modern times.”

Special monitoring equipment will be set up before twilight on the evening of June 21, designed to “catch” signs of the spirit realm even if they appear for just a fleeting moment. Both visible and audible traces will be sought, the researchers say, with full-spectrum recordings maintained for subsequent detailed study.

After analysis is complete, results will be presented and discussed at a July 31 gathering at the building, with or without any ghosts in attendance.

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