House History

The Lady in Black: Spirits of Oak Grove in North Carolina

December 28, 2018

Written by Bill Harris.

“Coming out the woodwork, through the open door
Pushing from above and below
Shadows without substance, in the shape of men
Round and down and sideways they go
Adrift without direction, eyes that hold despair
Then as one they sign and they moan …”-Home by the Sea, recorded by Genesis, 1983.

What is it about old, historic homes that immediately conjure up the idea that it could be haunted? How many films have featured haunted houses? The Amityville Horror, The Haunting of Hill House and on and on. It is ingrained in our society that older houses must have a tale or two associated with them. After all, generations of family members have lived there. Tragedies must have befallen at least once and people have died in these old houses. Surely, some form of energy from their presence must be around. Old houses have a certain mystery about them. Perhaps it’s this mystery that draws us to them. There is that pull to go in these homes and try to understand who lived there and what their story was and maybe to touch the past. Maybe it’s an escape from our own hectic lives. Whatever the case may be, we all enjoy a good ghost story. It doesn’t matter if you believe in ghosts or not. Sometimes the story is what is truly important.

After a brief mention of the Lady in Black in my last article regarding my family’s ancestral home place, Oak Grove, in rural Franklin County, North Carolina many have asked for more about this and so I will attempt to oblige them. I can’t say for sure my house is haunted. I’m one of those people who are not particularly susceptible or open to supernatural occurrences. I remain a healthy skeptic. However, people I love, honor and/or respect tell me that while I may not be open to this “energy” it exists. Who am I to argue? We will hear from these people and allow them to share what they have experienced. This writer will leave to the reader to decide what it means or doesn’t mean.

Let’s start in 1815. Peter Foster, born in 1787 in Mathews County, Virginia has made his way to Franklin County, North Carolina and purchased the house now known as Locust Grove. Locust Grove was constructed around 1790 and legend has it that it was constructed near Devil’s Cradle Creek in the vicinity of Corinth Baptist Church and was later disassembled and moved to its current location near Ingleside.

Peter Foster and his wife, Elizabeth Keeble, raised 10 children at Locust Grove. Peter was the postmaster at Macon, NC (the name was later changed to Ingleside), operated the local tavern which was known as Bell’s Old Store before Peter Foster became proprietor and started a school. As part of the Locust Grove farm, a family cemetery was started behind the house.


While the house still stands and has been fully restored, the cemetery remains overgrown. I have spent many hours in the old cemetery documenting those buried there and finding stones that had fallen. I hope one day it will also be restored. Locust Grove passed out of the Foster Family to the Macon family near the end of the 19th century.

When we moved to Oak Grove, pictured above, the home of Peter Foster’s son, Dr. Peter Stapleton Foster, Locust Grove was owned by a man named George Finch. The house had deteriorated at this point. Once he died, a couple from up north bought it and painstakingly restored the house.

Local historian, Mark Pace and I visited with the owners a few years ago. While we were talking, I told them we had recently had a “ghost hunt” done at Oak Grove. This was met with some raised eyebrows and glances between the couple but, at length, the couple told Mark and me that when they first purchased Locust Grove, they were in the yard of the house one day early in the restoration when a vehicle drove past, slowed, and came back up the drive. An older African-American gentleman inquired what they were doing. Once told that they were restoring the house, the gentleman told them the house was haunted. Whether he went into detail about who haunted the house or what had led him to believe that the house was haunted, the couple didn’t reveal but they did say that things had happened there since they moved in but would not elaborate.

It was obvious to me that something had happened, but I wasn’t going to find what it was from them, nor was I going to press the issue either. Did my Foster ancestor’s not only visit Locust Grove from time to time, but also traveled up the road to Oak Grove? Maybe so. Maybe it’s all coincidence. You’ll have to decide for yourself.

Dr. Peter Stapleton Foster was the second oldest son of Peter & Elizabeth. He had been given a tract of land near Locust Grove before his father’s death.  In 1850 Oak Grove was built. Family tradition states that famed Warrenton architect Jacob Holt was responsible for its construction and it certainly retains many of Holt’s trademarks. The columns along with the door and window surrounds reflect Holt’s work in other houses.

Dr. Foster married Matilda Kearney Williams and they had 14 children, seven of these did not survive to see adulthood. These seven are all buried in the family cemetery at Locust Grove. While we may know where their mortal remains are we may not know where their spirits are or do we?


Oak Grove saw its share of death over the years. Family members would come back to Oak Grove to spend their final days. Dr. Foster’s bed, still in use in 2018, saw 13 people die in it, according to family legend.

The house eventually passed to my mother, Lutie Foster Harris.

After her death in 1988 the house passed to me. Perhaps whatever spirits that may or may not be there passed to me as well. As I say, I’m a skeptic when it comes to ghosts, hauntings and all things related to paranormal activity. I’ve spent too many hours watching Mr. Spock on Star Trek. I must find logical reasons for the things that go bump in the night. Even so, I will admit to things that I have no explanation for.

I knew five people personally that lived in the house: My mother, her sister Kathryn Foster, my great-aunt, Mary Louise Foster, and our cousin, Matilda.

Not once did I ever hear them say anything about ghosts or other occurrences. Either it wasn’t talked about, didn’t happen or they chose to ignore it. The first time something I could not explain occurred sometime around 1977 or 1978. I was 14 or 15 years old and was asleep in my room. This was a small bedroom next to the master bedroom where my mom slept. Whether I was awakened or hadn’t fallen asleep I can’t say, but I remember hearing the sound of someone coming down the steps from upstairs….regular, rhythmic, slowly paced…(the stairs were not carpeted at the time). I went in my mother’s room, woke her up and told her there was someone in the house. She turned on the light next to her bed and I sat down next to her and we listened. About five minutes passed, maybe longer and we heard nothing but silence. I suggested we turn off the lights and for a moment we heard more silence, but then an upstairs door slammed shut.

My mother and I called a neighbor to come and investigate. He went all over the house and found nothing. All windows were closed and all doors had been locked. There was nothing that would have caused a door to slam shut as it did that night. What caused it? I don’t know.

The second incident was sometime in the late 1980s. I was dating a young lady at the time and we were making dinner one night at the house. We had sat down at the table and were waiting on bread that was in the oven when the glass shattered in the oven door frame. No one was near the oven at the time of this incident. Nothing came in contact with the oven door. It didn’t fall out and shatter as it hit the floor, it shattered while in the frame. I took the door to a local repair place in Louisburg and after I told him what took place I asked him what would cause this. He told me that doesn’t happen without something coming into contact with it. It’s tempered glass. It doesn’t just break. This did. I’ve always joked that it was my mother’s way of telling me she was not impressed by my choice in girlfriends.

The third incident occurred three or four years ago. We have two rooms upstairs. One is my son’s bedroom and the other is my music room where I have my record collection and a small music studio. My wife, son, and daughter were downstairs while I was in the music room. I had the door shut and I had to go downstairs for some reason and when I opened the door a small table had been placed in front of the door. This table normally was on the landing several feet from the door, but for some reason, it was now right at the door. I almost fell over it. Naturally, I assumed one of my family members had moved it. I moved the table back to its usual place and went downstairs and asked why they would do that? “Do what?”, they replied. I explained the incident with the table and they all said no one had left the room. They had no clue why it had been moved.

Those are the only three events that I have experienced personally for which I have no explanation. I can’t say why or how they happened. When I walk in the door “out home” I feel that I’m home. I don’t feel anything else. Not so with others who have happened to visit over the years. So let’s hear some thoughts and stories from someone other than the skeptic.

We start with Mark Pace. Mark is a local historian. He probably knows more about the “Old Granville” region and its people than anyone. His grandmother lived a few miles away and whenever they would come to Louisburg they would pass by Oak Grove. Mark was told that Oak Grove was haunted. What the basis is for this no one can say. Mark didn’t tell me this for several years because he thought it might upset me.

Ollie Merritt was a close friend to my mother and my aunt and he lived well into his 90’s. He and his wife bought property from my grandfather in the 1940s. When Ollie passed away in 2013 at the age of 92, I went to his house to visit with his family. While talking with his daughters, they told me that as children they would often visit Mary Louise and Matilda at Oak Grove. This would have been in the 1960s. They loved both of the ladies but the house frightened them. They would not allow the front door to be closed while they were there. They wanted to be able to get out quick.

In the early 1990s, I was a single guy. I was playing bass in a band and generally living the life of a bachelor. A friend and co-band member were staying with me and we met a couple of girls from Winston-Salem who were best friends, Selene Hester, and Connie Rogers. We dated these two for several years and I have remained friends with both. They both, Connie in particular, have often stated that they have experienced unusual occurrences at the house.

While working on this article, I contacted both of them and asked them to tell me what they experienced. According to Selene, “Just really the bed in your mom’s room shaking sometimes, Frankie said he would feel it sometimes too when he and Connie would sleep in there, and occasionally footsteps on the stairs in the hallway. The worst was the day Connie and I were there and we had the door closed from the den to the hallway to keep the heat in and we heard footsteps come from upstairs down the steps and all the way up to the door. We expected the door to open and it didn’t. We finally got the nerve to open the door and no one was there. You can ask Connie about that too.

Also, sometimes it would sound like the front door would open and close even though I knew it was locked. I don’t think I ever really saw anything, just heard stuff.” The bed Selene refers to is Dr. Foster’s bed. Selene would tell me about these things and I really paid zero attention to it. It just never registered with me in any significant way. My logical brain was thinking that the washer was running or some other logical explanation that would make the bed shake.

Connie has been a close family friend for nearly 30 years and usually visits a couple of times a year. To this day Connie will not walk upstairs alone. Connie has always been very sensitive to all things supernatural. While I may be skeptical, I know Connie very well and I know she is not apt to go off the deep end. She is as normal as a rainy day, but very open and receptive to ghosts, spirits or whatever they may be and I’m not going to dismiss her thoughts out of hand.

“The scariest was when I woke up in Emmy’s room and couldn’t move. Also when I started a séance like an idiot and felt a blast of cold air go through me. I also locked the front door when I was taking a shower and I think it was Chris (Editor’s note: Chris was Connie’s boyfriend at the time and a friend of the family) that said it was open when he got back from the store. Selene and I would hear footsteps on the stairs and upstairs and the bed in Emmy’s room shakes. There is just a feeling of never being alone when you know you should be. It is why I am scared to go upstairs alone. It is like there is an extra energy level around you that is almost like static. Makes the little hairs on the back of my neck and arms stand up. I don’t feel it is negative, but it scares me because I can’t see it. I have always known there were spirits there…never doubted it even when you did. I think they are good though…no negative or angry spirits that I have ever felt. I love your house. It has always been a place of healing for me,” says Connie. She further says “I do want to reiterate that it really is a place of healing. It’s my favorite place to go when I am out of sorts. It fills you with energy instead of taking it away. It is the living folks and the dead that draws me back to it”. For reference, Emmy is my daughter and her bedroom has Dr. Foster’s bed in it.

In the early 90’s I had a pig picking at the house. I had quite a few guests and most of us were in the backyard. One of my co-workers was responsible for cooking the pig and his wife, who had never been to the house, decided to walk around and look at the place while her husband was cooking. According to her, when she went into the parlor she got very scared. She felt something was in the room with her and she left immediately. She spent the remainder of the day outside and refused to go back inside.

She wasn’t the only one either. My daughter, Emily,

was dating a young man a few years ago and his mother would not set foot in the house. She would only come on the front porch. The house scared her. She said she felt uneasy and that the house made her feel unwelcome.

It’s my family who has had the most experiences. My wife, Aileen, and I were married in 1993 and she is uncomfortable with going upstairs by herself. She says it makes her hairs stand up on end and she feels like someone is watching you. Emily says she feels a pressure on her as she goes upstairs. Emily, Aileen and my son Alex all have heard footsteps on the stairs. They have witnessed televisions going on and off on their own and have all have seen things. Over the remainder of the article, we’ll explore what has been reported by my family and look at some of the results of paranormal investigations that have taken place at Oak Grove over the last several years.

“Shaking All Over”

While pregnant with Emily, Aileen was awakened by the bed shaking. I was asleep next to her but did not wake up. Aileen says she could look in the mirror across from the bed and see it shaking. Immediately after she woke up she heard a popping sound and noticed an electrical socket arching from where an air conditioner was plugged in.

“Move It on Over”

While a number of people have reported the bed shakes, there was a period about seven or eight years ago where beds would move. We would find them pulled away from the wall by at least a foot and Emily once had her bed move almost to the middle of her floor. The moving beds happened several times very close together but nothing has happened like this since then.

“The Book”

Also around the time the beds were on the move, we had an interesting incident involving a book. A cousin had sent us a book with Christmas stories and it was on the same table on the second landing at the top of the stairs that moved in front of the door to my music room.

The book was not very heavy nor overly large. One night we were all in our living room when we heard something fall to the floor in the hallway. I went to investigate and discovered this book in front of the door between the hallway and the living room. For the book to have landed where it did it would have had to been picked up and tossed. If it fallen it would have went straight down. It’s doubtful the book would have passed through the balusters and even if it did it couldn’t have made it all the way to the door. The book would not have bounced or slid the roughly eight feet to that door. Something/someone picked that book up and tossed it.

“School’s Out”

One night Aileen was studying for a class she was taking. While working on her computer in an upstairs bedroom she heard the noise of footsteps and then someone touched her on the shoulder, whom she thought was our son Alex so she turned around to catch him and no one was there. This was followed by the sounds of more footsteps and then heard the laughter of a small child.

“Paint It, Black”

In this same room, Aileen had decided to embark on a painting project. She enlisted the help of a friend of hers to lend a hand. At some point during the painting of the room both Aileen and her friend heard a voice say “you missed a spot.”

“Smells Like Spirits”

We have all had the occasion of random smells popping up. Cologne, tobacco, and alcohol have been the most frequent smells encountered but on other occasions lavender, marijuana, and decay have also occurred but we have eliminated those last three as Emily frequently uses lavender, the marijuana was likely a skunk and the decay was probably from a dead animal that may have died under the house.

“Pretty Fly for The White Guy”

When Alex was young, maybe three or four, he was all about learning how to play video games. He loved playing his Nintendo Game Cube. One day he was playing and happened to glance out of his window when he saw what he describes as a man all dressed in white walking through the yard close to his window. Alex said he didn’t appear to have a face but only impressions of where facial features would exist. Alex said he was in a suite with a white fedora. Aileen was home at the time and said he was really scared. Alex feels like it may have been an apparition of my father, Lee G. Harris.

While my father never lived at Oak Grove he spent a lot of time at the house from the time he met my mother in 1952 until he died in 1973.

“The Lawnmower Man”

Speaking of my dad, one summer afternoon Emily was outside mowing grass when she spotted a man standing behind the house wearing a suit that resembled the suit he was buried in. When she first saw him he had his back to her about 75 yards away. She sat there and looked at him for a few moments and he then turned towards her. She described him as wearing a brownish suit, a hat cocked to the side, glasses and appeared to be bald. Once again, the theory that Emily has is that this was also my father. My father often wore a fedora style hat cocked to one side.

“Drumming is My Madness”

Alex has played drums for many years and spends a lot of time practicing in our music room. One night during this past summer Alex felt a presence from across the room staring at him intensely while he played. He said it was the only time he ever felt anything negative.

Alex said the atmosphere was dark and heavy in the room and it was becoming darker and more negative as time passed. He has said that an image of a maniacal smile accompanied the feeling. He said he will never be able to forget it.

“The White Lady”

Emily once saw something that she describes as a lady in all white. She was not touching the ground. She said the white lady was wearing what appeared to be old nurse’s clothes that would have been worn in the very early 20th century. Emily said that the white lady asked her to come with her. Miss Mary Louise Foster or Sister, as we called her, was born at Oak Grove in 1890 and was a nurse in Amityville New York for many years. After retiring, Sister lived at Oak Grove until her death in 1976 at the age of 85.

“Private Investigations”

These are just some of the incidents that have happened over the years and these are the ones that we always talk about. As I say, I am a skeptic. Aileen, Emily, and Alex are not. I do find these occurrences fascinating. Eventually, my wife decided it would be a great idea to have the house investigated by a paranormal team after a rather unsettling event happened in our kitchen. Aileen, Alex, and Emily had gone grocery shopping one day and when they returned home they discovered that every drawer in the kitchen was open, all of the cabinet doors had been opened, the oven door was open, the trash can had been knocked to the floor and our dishwasher had been rolled to the middle of the kitchen and its door had also been opened.

In addition to this, an old bell that hung next to our front door was found in the middle of the hall floor. This bell has hung next to the front door for as long as I can remember but, at some point, it went missing. We had no idea where it had gone but it turned up in middle of the hallway that afternoon. Our alarm had been set and was not triggered.

So I did a little research and found two great ladies from Winston-Salem who agreed to come and investigate. They were both very nice but they were limited in equipment. Unfortunately, the investigation revealed nothing since a neighbor decided to throw a huge house party across the street and the music was so loud it was all you could hear. When conducting an investigation quiet is a necessity. While that evening didn’t work out, we were encouraged by the ladies to hold another investigation and get a team that was closer than Winston-Salem. This would lead me Michael LaChiana, founder of the Heritage Hunters Society. His first investigation occurred during the summer of 2010.

Michael is a great guy. He doesn’t just accept an incident as being paranormal in nature. He looks for explanations and if he doesn’t find those then he will look at other possible causes. Plus, he’s a musician and a Beatles fan which helped win me over. He’s not looking for stuff that’s evil or looking to scare anyone. He’s thorough, meticulous and an all-around nice fellow. He usually has great people working with him and top of the line equipment. According to him, they’ve conducted about nine or ten investigations at Oak Grove.

I contacted Michael before I began writing this article and he says “My first visit was very interesting. Unfortunately, Bill had to work, but his family was home. Aileen, Emily, and Alex. They were great to talk with and they shared their different encounters with me. Seeing a lady in a black dress walking around, a young girl and hearing piano.” You can see some of the footage of their investigation here.

There is a house on our property that was lived in for many years by Jeames and Cornelia Terrell. [picture 13] They were brother and sister. I don’t know exactly when they first moved there but they had lived there at least since the 1960’s, possibly earlier.


Cornelia died in the 80’s but Jeames continued on in the house until his death in the late 1990’s. No one knew exactly how old he was but his family speculates that he was at least 100 years old at the time of his death. Jeames was a very gentle, soft-spoken man full of wisdom that only comes from living a long life and having a good dose of common sense. Jeames did odd jobs around the property until his health began to fail. He was very protective over me and my mother and later my wife and daughter. After his death, we have used the house for storage. When Michael did his first investigation he became curious about the house and wanted to conduct an investigation of it. While one team worked in our house, Michael took a couple of other investigators over to Jeames’ house to see what he could find. It was in the middle of summer and this house has no air conditioning of any type. It was over a hundred degrees in the house. You can hear and see the results of the investigation beginning at about the four-minute mark in the video that I linked above. At first, they felt a cold draft but when they reviewed the audio they heard “Forever, For Here”. It was a chilling moment. The voice was definitely African American and the diction was that of someone born many, many years ago. Was it Jeames telling us that he would always be with us?

Michael also says he felt that there was a young girl in the house, upstairs. “There is definitely a girl/young lady who was upstairs with me on one of the visits..when I was saying I was going to move to the next the voice saying ‘yes, thank you’.” Who could this young girl be? One of the many people who died at Oak Grove over the years? There were five children of Dr. Peter Stapleton Foster and his wife, Matilda Kearney Williams who died in childhood: Augustus Omega Foster

who only lived for six months, Joseph Foster, who only lived 11 months.

Frank Foster who lived to be about a year and a half,

Frank Williams Foster who lived to be three and a half

and Lucy Frances Foster who lived to be three and a half. I only have information from the Foster family bible to confirm Lucy Frances’ dates of birth and death. She was likely buried at the Foster Family Cemetery at Locust Grove and she probably had a stone but I believe it has fallen and is buried under debris. Other stones have been found that were previously covered after having fallen and I think this is what has happened to Lucy Frances’ stone. However, Lucy would have been, at three and a half, old enough to talk. Emily and Aileen have frequently reported hearing the sound of a little girl laughing. Perhaps she is who my wife and Michael have had encounters with.

At one point during one of the investigations we were all seated in a room with the lights off and we began to ask questions out loud. Things like “Who is here with us?”, “Is there anyone related to the Fosters, or the Cooke’s with us?” and “what is the cat’s name?”. We have a cat. His name is Henry.

He’s over 20 years old and has been with us since he was a year or two years old. When we listened back to the tape you very clearly hear the answer to the question of what is the cat’s name: “The Cat’s name is Henry”!


Lutie Linwood Cooke was my Great Great Grand Mother. She was the wife of Peter William Foster and was considered to be one of the most beautiful women in Franklin County at the time.

She died in 1914 at the age of 61. In every photo or painting I have seen of her she is dressed in black. When Alex was very small, he would occasionally have night terrors. Once during one of these episodes, we found the front door open and Alex was in the hallway very frightened and he said that the lady in black opened it and wanted him to come with her. Perhaps this was just a bad dream but others have seen the lady in black as well.

My wife’s sister’s son was spending the night with us once and he had a similar night terror. Aileen tried to get him to wake up and tell her what happened and all she could get out of him was “don’t let her get me” repeated over and over. We have thought that the lady in black may well be Lutie Cooke Foster. Aileen has seen her crossing rooms as has Emily. Aileen described her as wearing a 19th-century style black dress with her hair in a bun on top of her head. She didn’t immediately recognize her as Lutie Cooke but later saw a picture of Lutie Cooke and then recognized her. I have yet to encounter her. Lutie Cooke used to own a brooch.

This brooch was passed down through the family and was owned by my mother’s sister, Kathryn.

My daughter was the first girl born in the family since Kathryn’s birth in 1922 and she adored Emily. She felt the brooch should pass to her. Emily kept it in her jewelry box. During one of Michael’s investigations, we asked if Lutie Cooke was with us. Nothing was happening so it was suggested we get the brooch and have Emily hold it. After a few minutes, Emily said she felt the touch of a cold hand on her arm. She said it felt like Kathryn’s hand. Just after this happened the door to the room we were in and where a portrait of Lutie Cooke hangs, opened by itself. Perhaps it was Kathryn or perhaps it was Lutie Cooke. It is interesting to note that Alex’s night terrors and the appearances of the lady in black only occurred after Emily was given the brooch by Kathryn.

After our first investigation, Michael encouraged us to do some investigative work on our own. One day Aileen decided to leave a digital recorder in the hallway to see what would be picked up while she went to pick Alex up from school. She had left a television on which you can clearly hear in the background throughout the recording but you can also hear a number of other sounds. At one point it sounds like our slide lock on the front door is being violently manipulated. This goes on for several minutes but most bizarrely, there are four distinct piano notes.

After hearing the recording I decided to try and replicate the notes. I sat down at the piano and figured out what the notes were and then put the digital recorder in the same place that Aileen had placed it earlier in the day, pressed record and proceeded to play those same four notes. When I went back to listen to the recording that I made they perfectly matched those recorded earlier in the day in tone, timbre, and ambiance.

Another interesting capture is this voice asking “Will you help us?”.

As part of the investigation, there are quite a few cameras in use. I have included a couple of these images captured during the investigations.

“Dancing on the Ceiling”

One other curiosity we’ve never been able to figure out are several footprints that appear on the ceiling beneath the first stair landing in the hallway. They appeared after we had painted several years back. Our kids were too old to have made them and we have not had any other small children in our house at any time. We have no idea where they came from or why they are there. Just one more mystery that we have yet to figure out.

I have lived at Oak Grove since 1976 and visited there from the time I was born until we moved in. So my entire life I have been associated with the house and the property. If there are ghosts or, whatever term you prefer, then they are just members of my family. I don’t fear them. I have never been scared there at all. I have been in many old houses over the years. Some in immaculate condition and some that I wasn’t sure would be able to survive the end of the week.

I’ve been in many with Michelle and Mark throughout the Old Granville area and while I’ve never been “spooked” these places do have an aura about them. I don’t really know of a better term to express what it is about them. I think that’s part of what draws me to these places, in addition to the history, construction, and beauty of them. Some houses have an aura of sadness and others feel light and happy. It’s hard to articulate these feelings but if you’ve ever gone out looking at them or walking in them and around them then you probably know and understand what I’m saying. There is something special maybe even magical about them that draws us to them.

I often try to imagine what my grandfather, Peter Stapleton Foster, must have thought when electricity was installed there and how it changed their lives or when Dr. Peter Stapleton Foster saw the beginning of the construction of the house. What was it like when my mother and her sister were children running through the rooms playing hide and seek. While talking about our experiences that we have shared between us we realized that we don’t have many incidents anymore. Sure, there is the occasional unexplained noise or odd occurrence but pianos don’t play by themselves anymore nor do we find all of the cabinets open. Things seemed to have settled down. Maybe our ghostly friends have decided that we know they are there or have moved on to a different existence or maybe they are just taking a break and will be back to make our lives more interesting.

Sitting at the table listening to Aileen, Emily and Alex tell these stories, which would also wander off topic into other things they remember about living and growing up at Oak Grove, reminded me how much I love my family.

The paranormal experiences are just part of the family tapestry, so to speak. These are shared experiences between the four of us. Hearing them laugh and debate when and where an event happened usually opened up other memories they all wanted to talk about. We sat at the table for over two hours and talked. Just talked. No cell phones or other electronic devices. The four of us around a table as a family. How often does that happen? I also realized that my kids have a combined 40 years of experience of living “Out Home”. Alex is 17 and Emily is 23. It is rare for people of that age to put away their tech and just sit and talk. I have saved the recording I made that night. The laughs, the stories and the love at that table that night was wonderful to be a part of. Another memory in a place that has its share. There are so many memories that are part of a house that is 170 years old. There is an energy here.

“Living here so long undisturbed
Dreaming of the time we were free
So many years ago”-Genesis, Home by the Sea
Songwriters: Michael Rutherford / Phil Collins / Tony Banks
© 1983 EMI Music Publishing, Concord Music Publishing LLC