Friday, July 27, 2018

Ghosts Kill...A Friday Funny!

"The reason ghosts don't kill people in real life is because if they did, those people would become ghosts and it would become really awkward."

Just a lil' something to keep in mind the next time you get freaked out by a ghostly manifestation! 

Friday, July 20, 2018

It's a Ghost!

Yeah, you can add this to the list of things that I laughed way more than necessary at. In fact, that's also the thought of the Forkly Vegan, the Facebook page that shared this little gem! I hope you also get a kick out of this Friday Funny.  Stay cool out there, remember to eat your veggies, and have a great weekend!

Friday, July 6, 2018

Boooooks! A Literary Friday Funny

I fully support a library endorsing ghost.  As readers to Theresa's Haunted History know, I LOVE my home library of paranormal non-fiction and West Virginia history.  And, as this little bookish boo has suggested, my son and I have been going to OUR local library at least once a week to partake in their awesome summer programs.  

So go visit YOUR local library this month!  You can find my suggestions on what to check out at the following link:

Let me know down in the comments or over at Theresa's Haunted History Facebook what YOUR favorite paranormal books are, or what your favorite haunted library is...mine is the WV's Kingwood Library

Thursday, July 5, 2018

Book Review for Haunted Leicester

Title: Haunted Leceister
Author: Andrew James Wright
Published 2005 by Tempus Publishing
Amazon Purchase Information

I am such a lucky girl!  My boyfriend, Aaron, does a podcast with his friend called Amigos!  Amigos! is dedicated to the old Amiga system and its games, and has developed quite an impressive following over the relatively short time they've been doing this.  Much of the fan base and the website staff live in Europe, so I'm often given the opportunity to share in some of the goodies that are sent in to the show.  I've tried lotions from Australia, various candies from at least 4 different countries, and now...I've been gifted a totally awesome book from the UK!  Aaron sometimes mentions what I do on the show, so one of his awesome connections sent me a copy of Andrew James Wright's Haunted Lecicester and I couldn't be happier.

Haunted Leicester is a slim, 95 page volume jammed with the spooky goings-on of Leicester and surrounding areas.  I've never been to Leicester, but after reading this book, I feel like I've walked its supernatural streets and visited some of its most haunted inns, pubs, churches, and homes in person.  I'm always fascinated by the history of the UK---people live in, work in, and regularly visit buildings that are hundreds of years old, while here in West Virginia, we're lucky if we have access to places that date back before the Civil War.  No wonder that England has such a rich, full history of ghost lore!

Several places that especially sparked my interest were the Wygston's House, or Costume Museum, where a ghostly young boy by the name of Jonathan likes to cause a bit of mischief, and the Fish Market, where a man accidentally slipped back into another time while perusing the modern market.

All of the stories were really interesting, though, and the book was well-written. There was an appropriate amount of history added to enhance the stories, but not so much that it bogged down the casual reader.  This is a definite must-read if you plan on visiting the Leicester area, if you're an Anglophile, or if you just appreciate a good, old-fashioned collection of regional ghost tales.

I'd like to extend a very big, heart-felt THANKS to Chris Foulds for sending me this book!  It has become an appreciated part of my international ghost stories library. 

Wednesday, July 4, 2018

Happy Independence Day from Theresa's Haunted History!

I'd like to wish all my readers a very happy Fourth of July!  If you're here in the United States, have a great and safe time celebrating our country's Independence Day. If you're NOT located here in the states, have an exceptionally awesome Wednesday!

Make sure you check out the Haunted America section of the blog for a spooky romp around the 50 states...and be sure to also check Theresa's Haunted History Facebook for some bonus patriotic paranormal goodies throughout the day.  Stay spooky, ya'll!

Tuesday, July 3, 2018

Onamazu: Japan's Earthquake Causing Catfish

I've lived my entire life nestled in between the Ohio and Kanawha Rivers, so all my life I've heard the stories of the giant catfish, some as big as school buses, that inhabit the two rivers.  Aside from scaring the heck out of a few underwater welders doing bridge work (and MAYBE being responsible for the Kanawha River being known as the River of Evil Spirits), our tri-state catfish seem to be pretty tame. Japan hasn't been so lucky.

The Land of the Rising Sun is home to a catfish creature known as the Onamazu.

A namazu-e or catfish motif earthquake art, entitled Shin Yoshiwara ┼Źnamazu yurai or "The cause of the great catfish at Shin Yoshiwara".-Source

Obviously, I cannot fully explain Shintoism adequately in one blog post, but the important thing to note is that Shinto is a traditional Japanese religion dating back to the 8th century. It incorporates the worship of ancestors and nature spirits and a belief in sacred power ( kami ) in both animate and inanimate things. -Source: Google Dictionary

Onamazu is one of the kami, and lives UNDER the islands that make up Japan.  It spends most of its days buried in the mud, subject to the rule of the god, Kashima, who uses a stone to keep the giant Onamazu restrained.  However, as soon as Kashima turns his back, the Onamazu begins to thrash about.  The result is an earthquake hitting the country.

The legend is believed to have some roots in history.  It is believed that catfish, like many other animals, have a built-in warning system that alerts them to major geological disruptions, such as earthquakes.  It was thought that the early citizens of what is now Japan noticed the fact that just before an earthquake struck, the catfish in the region became more active. 

Source: Bertel Schmitt

Shinto ceased to be the official religion of Japan in 1945, but references to the Onamazu can still be found throughout the country.  Whiscash, a catfish Pokemon, was originally named Namazun. Onamazu appears in various forms in other media, such as video games, but what I find most interesting is that there is a catfish (excuse me, Onamazu) proudly used in the Japan Meteorological Agency's earthquake early warning materials.

Throughout July and August, ALL EIGHT planets in our solar system will be together on the same side of the sun, an event which historically has coincided with increased earthquake activity.  If you're in Japan over the next 60 days or so, keep an eye out for a big, creepy Onamazu.  And, if you're NOT---well, I guess it wouldn't hurt to keep an eye on your local rivers as well!  I know I'll be monitoring the Kanawha and Ohio River catfish as the tri-state has been known to have had a few good-sized quakes over the years!

Monday, July 2, 2018

UFO Tourism in West Virginia

West Virginia is a weird place.  Like, REALLY weird, but that's okay because it makes our humble little state an ideal place for paranormal enthusiasts!  We've got ghosts and haunted places.  We've got cryptozoological creatures.  And, we've got some really cool places with a UFO connection!

In honor of World UFO Day, I wanted to share with you just a quick Top 5 UFO Tourism sites throughout West Virginia! All of these locations are open to the public, most year-round, and would make an excellent stop for anyone interested in ufology, the search for extraterrestrials, or the just plain bizarre. 

1. SETI Tour at Greenbank Observatory: Did you know that the search for extraterrestrial intelligence is taking place right here in the Mountain State at the Greenbank Observatory? And, for $40, you can learn all about the research being done. SETI tours are held on special days throughout the summer and early autumn. According to the website: "Our SETI Tour celebrates Green Bank's research to Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence! The tour begins with an exclusive presentation inside the control room of our historic 85-1 telescope where the search began with Frank Drake's Project Ozma. From there, guests enjoy rare admittance inside the 140' telescope where Jill Tartar's Project Phoenix took place and then go beyond the gates surrounding the normally-restricted Green Bank Telescope (GBT)! The tour ends in our Drake Lounge where participants are greeted by a Green Bank Observatory astronomer and learn about the future of SETI as the GBT embarks on the new Breakthrough Listen Initiative.If you have ever wanted to be inside our operation control rooms or speak with one of our radio astronomers in person, then this is the opportunity of a lifetime!"


2. Pt. Pleasant WV (Mothman and the 1966-67 UFO Flap):  Few people realize that in conjunction with the flap of Mothman sightings in the late 1960s, there was also an increase in reports of ghosts and hauntings, psychic phenomena, other cryptids, and even UFOs!  Everyone has a different theory of exactly what Mothman might have been, and one theory links him to being of an extraterrestrial origin.  Today, Pt. Pleasant is FULL of spooky spots to visit linked to West Virginia's favorite mystery.  If you cannot attend the yearly Mothman Festival held in September, you can still visit year-round and see the Mothman Statue in downtown, the Mothman Museum, and even the actual TNT area where many believe Mothman lived while in town.

3. Braxton County's Flatwoods Monster:  Over the past few years, Braxton County has REALLY embraced its monster/UFO heritage, which dates back to at least 1952.  It was that year, when a group of boys near Flatwoods saw what they thought may have been a meteor, or even a plane crash.  They ran to get the mother of two of the boys, and together, the group set off in search of potential wreckage.  What they found was a horrifying THING, that many believe was from outer space.  While the actual site where this happened is on private property, there is still plenty to see and do around town.  Stop by the Flatwoods Monster Museum to learn more about the creature, shop for souvenirs, and just see a wonderful collection of art and artifacts related to the monster.  Grab lunch at The Spot, where you can purchase unique souvenirs and order from a UFO themed menu.  And finally, don't forget to hunt throughout the area for the Braxton County Monster Chairs!  Find all five and win a small prize!

4. Gray Barker's UFO Files:  Gray Barker is one of the most controversial, yet famous names in the study of ufology----and he lived right here in West Virginia!  Today, his extensive research and publications can be found housed at the Clarksburg/Harrison Public Library, located in the haunted Waldomore Mansion.

5 .Nethken Cemetery: So, this is obviously the weirdest location on the list. According to Bob Teets, a WV journalist who published a book about UFOs in the state, the Nethken Cemetery in Elk Garden (Mineral County) experienced a very creepy UFO-related incident back in 1967. For awhile, residents of the area had noticed strange lights appearing over the hill. One night, Reverend Harley DeLeurere and two male members of his congregation decided to stake out the area.  They were not disappointed!  They saw what they described as a big turtle shaped object with lights hover over the cemetery.  The object shot a beam of light down, which shone directly onto a fresh grave.  It has been theorized that the person buried there had had an alien implant, and that the craft had come to retrieve it. 

From Find-a-Grave: Photo by Cheryl Sue Cox

*So let me know...have you been to any of these locations, and if so, what did you think?  Do you have any other locations you think should have made the list?  Let me know over at Theresa's Haunted History's Facebook, where you'll find all sorts of World UFO Day fun, including a giveaway!*

Sunday, July 1, 2018

Theresa Takes on July's Ultimate Blog Challenge!

Woohoo! It's time for another round of the Ultimate Blog Challenge, in which I challenge myself to create a new post every day for an entire month.  That's 31 blogs this month, but I feel confident.  Back when I attempted the challenge in April, I ALMOST completed it---I was short just THREE blogs for the month.  In my defense, I was suffering from a super-crazy, super-painful bout of TMJ, but this time, I have no excuses.  I'm either going to complete this challenge or die trying...and if that happens, I'll have plenty of hands-on ghostly experience to hopefully share during the next challenge!  

Please check back daily for fun and spooky new content concerning all things weird, ghostly, and paranormal throughout West Virginia, the tri-state, and beyond.  And, if you'd like to see a certain location or topic featured, you can find me over at Theresa's Haunted History of the Tri-State Facebook page.  Also, if you're a blogger yourself, definitely check out the link above to the Ultimate Blog Challenge.  It's free and open to everyone.