Wednesday, March 7, 2012

A REAL Poltergeist Story from Texas

The house, according to Google Streetview, May 2011

803 Poppet's Way, Crosby, Texas:  This address, located within the Newport subdivision outside Houston, is a real life Poltergeist story:

The upscale neighborhood first began acquiring modern residents in the 1980s. Ben and Jean Williams were the first to begin reporting problems...mundane things at first like toilets flushing and lights flickering. They also had a tree in their yard covered with strange markings, and rectangular sinkholes began appearing in their backyard.

In 1983, neighbors Sam and Judy Haney began putting in a swimming pool in their backyard and unearthed two coffins containing the bodies of a man and a woman. After some research, the neighbors got in contact with an elderly man named Jasper Norton, who was formerly employed as a gravedigger. He told them the area was once the site of the Black Hope Cemetery and that as many as 60 people, many former slaves, were buried there. The two bodies uncovered in the Haney yard belonged to Betty and Charlie Thomas, former slaves who were buried in the 1930s.

The land the subdivision sits on had remained in the custody of one family from a time prior to the Civil War, to up until when the property was sold in the 1970s to real estate developers. This family owned and operated a plantation, and after the Civil War, continued to employ many freed blacks as farm hands.

It is argued that the former owners of the property did not disclose the inclusion of a small portion of the land that was deeded for use as a Potter's Cemetery, however, it is claimed that the buyer was quite aware of its presence. Eyewitness testimony states that developers bulldozed several wooden crosses and a picket fence during the early stages of development.

In any event, Ben and Jean were the first to build a home on what was the cemetery in 1980, followed soon after by the Haney's. Out of respect for the dead, the Haney's made the tough decision to rebury the Thomas' in the yard, but shortly afterward, the Haney's started reporting hauntings in their home...disembodied voices, etc. Other neighbors were also experiencing activity and began moving out, but the Williams' and the Haney's decided to stay.

Unfortunately, the Williams' began to experience more and more problems. Their grand- daughter became ill, and the sinkholes began opening up. Ben even reported seeing an apparition hovering over his sleeping wife. The Haney's were also still experiencing problems and unexplained illnesses decided to file a lawsuit against the neighborhood's developer. The jury found in favor of the Haney's but the judge overruled the decision. The Haney's, now broke, filed for bankruptcy and fled the home.

The Williams' decided to try their hand at a lawsuit, but decided to gather more evidence first. In their quest, they found an older resident who told them that the strange markings on the tree in their yard actually marked the spot where two young girls were buried. Jean started digging but when exhaustion took over, her 30 year old daughter Tina began. After no more than 30 minutes, Tina suffered a major heart attack and died two days later. The Williams simply abandoned the house after that, seven years after they had first built it, and fled to Montana. The later went on to help co-author the book based on their experiences, the Black Hope Horror.

No current residents are experiencing problems in the neighborhood as reported by a local investigation team who has investigated and researched the area.

(Above photo property of THIS excellent site on the Black Hope Horror. Please visit for more information and more photos.)

UPDATE 2012:  I'm pretty sure the first time I heard of Poppet's Way was on one of my favorite TV shows as a kid...Unsolved Mysteries.  The segment featuring this real-life Poltergeist story can be found on YouTube!  The Black Hope Horror segment appears first in the episode.


  1. I know no one is saying anything but still why so many foreclosures still in The Newport subdivision

  2. I've lived in Newport my entire life and have yet to have any experience with ghosts. Resident since 1979. I think the foreclosure would be because folks can't afford their houses.

  3. I just moved to Newport and the history is part of the attraction for me. I have had no experiences but there is a strange emblem that looks like a face on one of the trees. I think it deserves respect.

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  5. Hello yes the hauntings are real My family lived in the area for 5 years yes it was very real!!