For the last several years we have accepted stories of the paranormal from our readers. While we haven’t landed on anything as extreme as an Amityville Horror tale, there have been a few unexplained stories that we share for the sake of entertaining the idea that there might be something out there.

Our first story was submitted by a woman named Melissa.

A Visit From a Friend?

I was living in the carriage house part of Reed’s Lakeview in Duluth. I’d heard stories of activity in the main house. I was very much a Christian then. This was after I ran away to Minneapolis and came back to Duluth (that’s a tale for another time) in 2004. Anyway, there were three rooms in the carriage house, two people per room. My housemates were either gone or down in the smoking room. I was alone in the room, and I showered. When I exited the shower and entered my room,

I noticed this heavy wind chime ornament that belonged to my roommate swaying back and forth. She came back upstairs and I told her about it. I figured maybe she had left the room just before I saw it. Her cat had been with her and then went in the room to the right (from the outside looking in). It wasn’t my roommate or the kitty. We sat there a bit dumbfounded. I was trying to convince myself it was angels or the Holy Spirit. Her kitten suddenly walked into the room and something struck me in the weirdest way and I said, “Katie?” Katie was my best childhood friend who passed away in a car accident a month or so after I reunited with my birth mom. Her death was a huge deciding factor in me moving to Duluth. Anyway, my roommate and I looked at each other and went silent. Then she tells me, “I see a vague silhouette browsing through my clothes in the closet.” My eyes were saucers and my was heart beating furiously. I wanted it to go away because I was scared, yet enchanted. Then my roommate told me she felt her sit next to her on her bed. And a moment later she was gone. She then told me when I thought it was Katie that she telepathically or whatever told her to stay because I needed her. I told her it was interesting that she browsed my roommate’s clothes because they had similar fashion tastes. It was a night I’ll never forget.

The next story gets even more intense with unexplained happenings in a home. A woman named Alicia shares her account of living in a house that seems to still be inhabited by some former tenants.

Sharing a Home with those from Beyond

When I first moved to Duluth in October of 1998, my mother, her girlfriend (who didn’t believe in ghosts), my sister and I lived in a rental home located just below 5th street on 27th Ave W. I had been spending most of my time living in a shelter for troubled youth, treatment, and foster care. However there were several occasions where I was permitted to go home for a weekend visit. I never noticed anything until I was home on my first weekend visit. Growing up, we had several experiences with ghosts, so it was nothing new to my family, but my mom’s girlfriend was in for a rude awakening.

The first time I experienced something in this house I thought it was in my head, the usual denial stage, finding a logical reason for what you’re experiencing at the time. But things shortly became abundantly clear.

We had a smoking room set up in our basement. Behind me, off in the distance, off in the darkness we stored our exercise bike that nobody ever used. It was the kind that had a large metal cage in the front with a wheel that acted as a fan. At the top of this cage was a screw, it just hung there in the hole, it wasn’t really screwed into anything. I remembered from our previous apartment that when using the bike you could hear that single screw just rattle around when using the bike. While smoking a cigarette I heard the bike slowly but surely starting to make noises, I blamed the air ducts, it was winter. The sound began to grow louder and louder and then there it was, that single loose screw rattling around in its hole at the top of the cage incasing the front wheel. I immediately, without looking, put my cigarette out and ran upstairs. I chose to smoke out on the front porch after that.

We would all notice little things, like the dog’s eyes wandering across the room as if she was watching something walk through. Creeks and cracks that sounded as if someone was walking around, even though you were the only one home. But you know how it is, when you move into a new house, it makes its own noises that you have to get used too. Really, I could go on and on about this house but I’ll get to the point with a story I experienced, one my sister would experience regularly, and one my mother and her girlfriend experienced.

I was home on a weekend visit, using the restroom off of the kitchen near the back door. Right above the pissing pot was a window that had some white blinds, overlooking the small backyard, alley and garage. I heard a plane flying overhead so I pulled back the blinds. The sound got louder and louder as I gazed out the window at the sky, I remember thinking, “this things gotta be right over us.” But then I realized the sound was actually coming from the other side of the bathroom, it was the air duct.It was like a jet engine inside of the air duct.

As I was realizing this, turning my gaze toward the air duct, I heard yelling. Very distinct, deep, yelling. Very short and quick, almost like a single sentence filled with anger. Following that I heard a screech, “WHAT!” It reminded me of something one might hear off a Poltergeist movie. I hurried up out of the bathroom and walked up to the eat-in table in the kitchen. My mother’s girlfriend and my sister were sitting at the table. It was early in the day, I believe they were drinking coffee. I looked at them and asked, “Why are you guys fighting?” They both looked up at me and in unison said, “we aren’t fighting.” I was confused and responded with, “well I heard yelling.” They told me to sit down. “Alicia, we didn’t want to tell you this because we didn’t want you to be scared while you were here, but the house is haunted.” They shared a couple different experiences they had with me.

My sister confessed to me, after I became aware that there were most definitely ghosts in our home, of some of her experiences. The one that got her the most was the noises she heard coming from her bedroom closet. ALMOST every night. Yahtzee. A hand held Yahtzee game she had for long card rides. “Beep. Beep. Beep beep beep beep beep. Beep. Beep. Beep beep beep beep beep.” As the “player” played through their hands and “rolled” the dice. After a discussion with my sister regarding her experience with the Yahtzee game I told her to take the batteries out. To be honest, I can’t remember much more of the story other than that I thought, well… If they can play Yahtzee, maybe they can play video games. I sat in my room, at my Super Nintendo, explaining to thin air how to play Donkey Kong. I would place the controllers in a very specific position each time I left the house, just to see, maybe, just maybe they might move by the next time I came home… They never did. I guess Super Nintendo is just too complicated while in another realm.

Next, the story I heard my mother tell a lot, the one she remembers the most. The one that gave her girlfriend her first rude awaking to the existence of an afterlife.

The stairs in the back of the house, running from my mother’s bedroom, down into the kitchen, in the olden days those would be known as the “servant stairs” or the stairs for “the help”, they were very old and creaky stairs. Though rarely used by us, when they were it was noticeable to basically everyone in the house because they were so loud.

My mother kept hearing someone walk up and down these stairs, back and forth, all throughout the night interrupting her sleep. Which, by the way, YOU DO NOT WAKE UP MY MOTHER UNLESS THERE’S A FIRE. Finally one night she had enough, she wanted this resolved or some mutual agreement made so she could finally get some rest. Sitting up out of bed she yells, “ALRIGHT THAT’S ENOUGH! COME IN HERE AND SIT DOWN SO WE CAN TALK ABOUT THIS!” At this point my mother’s girlfriend woke up and was already feeling scared. The creaking stopped at the top of the stairs near the base of their bed. Next thing my mother knows her girlfriend SCREAMED on the top of her lungs, airborne, her body slammed against the back of the headboard and wall standing on two feet. No, she was not thrown through the air. My mother asked, “What? What’s wrong? What happened?” Panicked, gasping for breath her girlfriend said, “HE SAT ON MY FEET!”

Last but not least, my mother’s girlfriend could no longer deny the existence of ghosts. I’ll tell it how I was told and from my experience hearing about it. Upon coming home from wherever I was at the time, I find my mother’s large and heavy oak desk directly in front of the attic stairs right outside my bedroom door. Examining how odd it was for it to be there, really out of sorts kind of even blocking the front stairwell. Then I noticed it, not only was a 200lb desk in front of the door, it was padlocked shut. “Strange”, I said. Moving down the stairs towards the living room I thought, well maybe they just really didn’t want me playing around up there, the roof needed repairs, etc. But I asked, “Why is the desk in front of the attic door and why is the door locked shut? Can’t we still store some things up there?”

My mother’s girlfriend pointed to her forehead at a sore red mark and said, “This is why.” At first thinking, oh it must just be too dangerous up there, she began to explain. My old bed frame I had since I was a small child was falling apart. They took it upon themselves to just shove a second box spring under my bed to lift it off the ground so they could toss the bed frame. Across the bottom of this bed frame was about four to five long wires with hooks on either end so they could latch to the frame and help support the wait of it all. My mother’s girlfriend had decided to toss those up in the attic to get them out of the way. She reached the top of the attic stairs, not even going all the way up, and tossed them into the darkness. Before she could even turn around to go back down the stairs they ALL came FLYING right back at her, hit her dead in the forehead.

Later, I was told by my mother that upon speaking with neighbors, a father and his two daughters died of carbon monoxide poisoning in this home. One daughter being a little older (in the attic) and one daughter being a little younger. My mother having had many experiences in her life communicating with ghosts and now considering herself a medium had a theory on what was happening. The father and older daughter were aware of their deaths however the youngest was not, leaving her trapped. (There’s more stories that would make sense as to why she was thinking this like hearing the little girl asking, “Why is she sleeping in my bed Daddy?”)The father was not permitting himself or his oldest to “move on” so to speak as to not abandon the little one. The father frustrated, pacing on the stairs, the oldest getting in screaming matches with him much like a living teenager, throwing temper tantrums in the attic also frustrated. It all fits.


Paul Whyte

A South Shore native and University of Wisconsin-Superior journalism graduate. Lifelong musician, and former open mic host. Passionate about the music scene and politics.

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