Octagon Hall participates in world's largest ghost hunt

Jodi Camp/Franklin Favorite

Explorers of Spirit Phenomena (ESP) investigators, other paranormal investigators and volunteers from Octagon Hall talk about different experiences they have had during their hunts on September 28, the National Ghost Hunting Day. The members of ESP were at Octagon Hall to participate in the World’s Largest Ghost Hunt later that night.

Octagon Hall was one of 72 paranormal sites to partake in the "World's Largest Ghost Hunt" event on National Ghost Hunting Day on Sept 28.

"The goal of World's Largest Ghost Hunt and National Ghost Hunting Day is historic preservation," said Terri Rohde, of Explorers of Spirit Phenomena (ESP). "We want to draw attention to them so that they don't get destroyed and don't fall into ruin and so that we can save and preserve our history instead of destroy our history."

Rohde was one of three members of Explorers of Spirit Phenomena, a Florida based paranormal investigation agency, to come to Octagon Hall to participate in the hunt. The other two members included Tracy Watts and Tammy Rush, who is the intuitive reader with the team.

The World's Largest Ghost Hunt happens on the last Saturday of September to start the Halloween season, according to the National Ghost Hunting Day website. The teams are located all over the world with the most hunts happening in the United States. The website notes that hunts also took place in Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia, Argentina and the Philippines in correlation with the day of recognition.

Each team had a list prewritten questions for the hunt and a medium, which is an individual who is believed to have the capability of communicating with the dead.

"The cool thing is everybody's evidence is then submitted like a real scientific investigation type thing," Rohde said. "The evidence is all reviewed and it is put into like a table."

Participants are then able to look at the table to see which words are most common and then labeled as high frequency words.

Rush said her role in past years was to write down whatever words or thoughts came into her head during the hunt. She said sometimes she would write what she was feeling in general.

Prior to the hunt, Rush said she did not visit all of the rooms in the house.

"I don't like to do any research," Rush said. "I feel like that doesn't give me integrity if I do my research."

Even though she had not visited all the rooms she said the areas she did visit had an overwhelming sense of energy.

"It is like some rooms are still a little suffocating and you can kind of feel the abuses and the tragedies," Rush said.

While the members of Explorers of Spirit Phenomena were at Octagon Hall during the day, visitors came by to look through the house. Elizabeth Spears, 8, said she has been visiting Octagon Hall since she was 2-years-old.

"I like coming here and seeing how much paranormal stuff is here," Spears said.

She said sometimes she will come and it will feel hot, then it will feel cold or she will hear a noise one visit and not hear it the next time.

On Saturday at 8 p.m., ESP with Debbie Shapiro and Barry Gaunt, both paranormal investigators and volunteers with Octagon Hall, streamed live to start their ghost hunt.

For more information on National Ghost Hunting Day or the World's Largest Ghost Hunt, visit http://nationalghosthuntingday.com/. For more information on Octagon Hall Museum, visit https://octagonhallmuseum.com/.

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