An old friend of one of our investigators took interest in our pursuits and related his story to us. The home he
currently lives in has a long history of paranormal activity dating back before he purchased the property. We
arranged to meet with him and conduct a preliminary investigation of the house whose origins date back to
In an ironic twist of fate, the current owner had no significant background as to the reputation his home had
as a known haunted location until he settled back one night in bed reading a book by a very iconic paranormal
researcher. The book contained accounts of various places he had travelled to investigating claims of the
supernatural. The owner eventually came to a chapter dedicated to one particular home in New England. As he
read on, he quickly came to realize the house being discussed in the book was in fact...his own.
Armed with this startling knowledge, he began a series of inquiries with local people as to what, if anything,
they had heard or were aware of about the alleged hauntings. This quest for knowledge and clarity culminated
in our being contacted.
RISEUP Investigators Present: Ken DeCosta
Geographical and Historical Data
This is a location whose exact location and inhabitants past and present will not be revealed, but chronicling
the history surrounding it is essential to establishing a baseline for the reported activity.
The origins of the home begin in 1760 as a parcel of land was sold to a sawmill owner. There was no mention
of a home here at that point in time. Before his death the sawmill owner conveyed the parcel of land to his son.
In 1795 the son married a local girl named Hannah, it was in this time frame that the existence of a home was
documented. The various rooms in the house have floors made of fir, 1-inch oak, pine, and poplar. It would
stand to reason then that the nearby saw mill probably supplied the raw materials for the construction of the
house. A kitchen with a fireplace were added in 1860.
This sawmill site was closely connected with the Baker Mill on Brook Street and with the original Oak Swamp
Meeting House at Pleasant and Chestnut Streets. The early owners had an interest in all three sites. A successful
farmer who also had a genius for mechanics later operated this mill, a second sawmill, and a gristmill. This mill
was operating at least until 1850, along with a turning mill. Sometime shortly after the Civil War, the mill was
abandoned and fell into ruins.
A local man purchased the 39 acre property by 1791 and it was purchased at auction by a local woman in
1895 who submitted a winning bid of $180.00. She was 19 years old at the time and had been married for three
years. Her husband then bought the house and property on both sides of the street totaling 29 acres in 1913 for
Eventually their son-in-law purchased the property in 1927 and moved in with their daughter - his new wife.
It was sold again in 1933 and saw several owners over the next few years. It was purchased again in 1941 and
then sold again in 1988 for $68,000. It was sold yet again in 1995 and then in 1998. The sale at that time
Previously, what is now the living room was the kitchen with a crane for the cooking pots in the fireplace.
Originally, the library was divided into two rooms, one of which was the small birthing room with its own
fireplace. At one time there was a barn to the east of the house which burned down leaving the remains of a
stone foundation. The garage (below) was originally a barn built at the same time as the house in the late
A rocking chair on the second floor has been known to move on its own without anyone touching it.
The owner once had a number of house cats (plus a dog) that would track something around the living room
that was not visible to anyone else. Curiously, they would seem to do this in unison. (Note: the presence of such
a number of pets will create an element of uncertainty in our minds as to some of the claims as their passage
through the house can easily be misinterpreted as something unusual when they are out of sight.) On the same
subject, a number of people have related seeing a "ghost cat" wandering through certain areas. This also
includes guests to the house.
Objects are known to disappear and then turn up at peculiar times and places. The owner's ex-wife once lost
a necklace somewhere in the home and couldn't find it for literally months. Upon their separation, while moving
out of the house, she found the necklace sitting on the floor in plain sight. Her husband was not present at this
time, nor anyone else. Previously, when the couple began to accept they were not "alone" here, a set of keys
was lost. The wife called to the spirit of one former resident they were certain was present by name asking for
help. The keys suddenly appeared on a table where they clearly had not been before.
Footsteps are heard ascending and descending the staircase. On one occasion, while the owner was upstairs
taking his regular afternoon nap, his wife heard footsteps coming down the stairs and then a door opening and
closing. After remarking how that was a short nap, she turned around to see no one there. Her husband was still
upstairs on the bed and none of the pets were present.
Certain doors in the house constantly open and close by themselves. The small, "crawl-space"-type door to
the attic is one in particular that opens by itself even after it has been latched shut.
Some of the activity surrounds the old barn directly across from the house. While renovating it, there were a
host of unusual experiences that took place. One particularly bizarre turn of events was the night a light turned
on by itself out there. The oddness of this occurrence revolved around the fact that an electrical extension cord
was run from the house to the barn so the light could be plugged in as there was no electricity inside at the
time. After finishing for the night, the light was unplugged. At 3 a.m., getting out bed for whatever reason, the
owner looked outside to see the light on. When he went outside to check he saw it had been plugged into the
Over time more strange noises and activity began in the barn that would repeat over a period of time. The
more work that was done on the barn, the fewer unusual things would happen. Eventually, when the work was
finally completed, the activity seemed to cease. The owner became certain something was not letting him rest
until the project was completed. This is speculation to be sure, but nonetheless quite an interesting claim.
Another building on the property is a garage/workshop that was built by the owner. During the barn
renovations, tools including power saws would inexplicably turn on by themselves, adding to his feeling he was
being "pushed" toward finishing the job.
One particular light inside the house was turned on and off by pull chain. The previous residents once told
him the light would come on by itself as if the chain was pulled. At the time, he thought such stories to be
absurd. He quickly changed his mind.
His ex-son in law once went down to the basement and came back up "white as a ghost" claiming he was not
alone down there and certain visitors to the house, particularly one friend who was a town official did not even
like to venture inside claiming they had a very uncomfortable feeling when doing so.
He has also had his shirt pulled on one occasion by an unseen hand. The pull was quite forcible.
It was a very comfortable night when we arrived and were greeted warmly and openly by the owner who
shared his story at great length. The gentleman has a background as a former military man in the airborne
division, a degree in psychology and a pilot's license. The type of person not prone to flights of fancy or
misidentification. In fact, he had gone to great pains to attempt to explain away most of the phenomena as
naturally occurring and mundane.
While taking our walkthrough of the property with him, Ken mentioned that many times former residents
would carve their names in old beams one might find in an attic or barn as existed there. To everyone's surprise,
a check of the barn revealed just such a thing. The first owner's wife had indeed carved her name in a wooden
beam next to stairs that led to the the barn loft. There we clearly saw the name 'Hannah'. It had not been
previously noticed by the owner in all his years spent there. While not remotely connected to anything
paranormal, it did verify our records and give us a starting place for what we might be searching for.
The inside of the house is nothing short of breath-taking for one so old. It is very clear that there was a high
level of craftsmanship involved in its preservation. While not totally free of them, it is at least less prone to the
common creaks, bangs and knocks most houses of that era would be. It is decorated impeccably and all in all an
extremely pleasant old house.
With such a small group, we would for the most part remain together for the night. Adjoining rooms could
be covered individually while we still remained very close and within earshot of each other. No static cameras
would be used tonight and the owner would be welcome to accompany us. In fact, we felt his presence would be
an asset as he had a wealth of background knowledge of the house's names and history we could call on
The first stop was the living room or "gathering area" where we attempted to listen to the house and see if
we could discern any noises from upstairs that could be misinterpreted as something paranormal. As previously
stated, the house is very sturdy and secure for the most part. This evolved into a lengthy EVP session where we
called on specific people to recognize our presence there. A review of our recordings yielded nothing of any
significance taking place.
Eventually, we went to the second floor which is the hotbed of most of the reported activity. There is a master
bedroom and a guest room separated by a bathroom off a small walk-in area where the rocking chair is located.
We began in the guest room where access to the attic is also located. Cameras were trained on the door and a
thorough check of the thumb latches were performed to see if they could be tripped by anything less than a
human hand. We were comfortable that they could not in any manner as long as they were secured correctly. It
should be noted for prosperity that the gentleman had a spirit medium over to gauge her impressions of the
home one night and she called this door a "portal". We take such claims at face value.
We did get some interesting results on our KII meters inside the room and while it is not a definitive
statement of contact in any way, we nonetheless pursued the line of questioning and the results piqued our
curiosity if nothing else, particularly when specific names were called and repeat hits came to the same
There were indeed a few bangs to be heard downstairs, but with the presence of the family dog contained
there and his anxiousness to keep an eye on his new guests, we couldn't overreact or remotely entertain them.
Marlaina at one point stated she clearly heard a whispered and quite audible voice in the guest room say "Where
are you?", but we did not capture this either on digital recorder or our hand held camera.
In the master bedroom we continued to employ the KII meter and this is when things got really interesting.
While we keep emphasizing the inadequacies and abundance of false positives that surround the device, we
watched as a common thread started to develop through questions and the meter's illuminated responses. There
were no cell phones turned on nor any communication devices used as they were not required in such close
quarters. The house's location is fairly remote and rural and outside interference is extremely limited.
Julie and Marlaina spent a good deal of time on the second floor alone earlier in the night conducting KII and
EVP sessions. During this time they recorded what has to be termed the best find of the evening when they
captured this whispered inquiry as to when their request should be acted upon at 0:08.
"Do I do this now?"
We ended our first investigation of the property armed with new knowledge of its history and would prepare
for a second round in the near future.
Researching the history of a location is not something new to the paranormal field, but we place perhaps a
stronger emphasis on it than most. The odds are not in your favor you will encounter a spirit on every case you
undertake, but we enjoy coming away from it far richer for the historical knowledge we gain regardless of the
results. Historical research can be like opening a book and reading the story of a family, a town or a particular
era. A great amount of intimate details can't be found in public records or documents. In fact, sometimes the
best research is of the oral variety when people share their personal knowledge of a person, place or thing. Of
course, from these stories sometimes legends grow to fantastical proportions and embellishments are the order
of the day, but this is where cross-checking pays dividends.
In this particular case, we were fortunate enough to meet a client who shared our interest in just such a
thing as he conducted a very thorough search into the history of his home which he was more than happy to
share. In this case, we left with a much better idea of whom may be haunting the halls and living quarters of
this colonial-era house. The remaining question is why?
The current resident has come to terms with the spirits that share his home, and in some ways he views
himself as intruding on their presence there. He seeks to commune and co-exist with them and better
understand their desire to remain grounded there. While this on the surface may seem a romantic notion, it
must also be approached with caution. There is always a threat that one may become so fascinated with spirit
communication that it becomes obsessive. We cannot control the level in which anyone chooses to pursue this in
his own personal life, but we strongly urge everyone to not to celebrate those who have passed on at the
expense of life and the living.
The town in which the house is located also bears some mention here: in these parts, Rehoboth is known as
one of the most haunted places in the state of Massachusetts. While it is folly to even suggest that this somehow
validates any claims made in a particular location, one cannot ignore the myriad of stories that originate there.
Rehoboth is, along with Abington and Freetown, one corner of the famed "Bridgewater Triangle", renowned for
its reported paranormal activity that ranges from UFO phenomena to cryptid sightings to spectral intrusions and
"In the middle of the Bridgewater Triangle is Hockamock Swamp. Entering the swamp is like walking back
in time, an untouched stretch of land remaining in a rapidly developing county. There have been numerous
sightings of unclassified animals, unexplained lights and smells and noises coming from the muck since the
earliest writings of Europeans in the area. The Native of the region, mainly members of the Wampanoag tribe,
feared the swamp as well. Hockamock loosely translates to “place of spirits,” but has also appeared as, “place
of darkness”, “place of evil” and “place of dark spirits.” Regardless of the exact meaning of the word, the tribe
seemed to make some connection between the swamp and the spirit world. The question remains; why a
people so in tune with the natural environment around them would label someplace as dark or full of spirits?
The answer might lie in evidence from the present."
- Christopher Balzano "The Cursed County"
While we did not experience activity of the magnitude and scope which had been conveyed to us, we left with
the impression that there indeed is something out of the ordinary about this quaint little home.