Are you intrigued by haunted places and things that go bump in the night? Then you might want to book a room for this Halloween at one of our nation’s many haunted hotels and B&Bs.
While The Travel Channel and Bed & Breakfast.com offer a number of suggestions, Haunted Rooms.com claims to “have the largest and most comprehensive directory of the most haunted hotels and creepy ghost tours in the US.”
A place you won’t find on any of their lists is one in Lawrenceville, Virginia known as the Brunswick Mineral Springs Bed & Breakfast.
Brunswick Mineral Springs B&B was built back in 1785. Just to put it in perspective, the United States was only nine years old when this magnificent, three story plantation-style home was built. Moreover, of the hundreds of hotels and B&Bs across the country that have been reported to be haunted... Brunswick Mineral Springs B&B has something very few of the others have... It's own family cemetery.
Guests of the Brunswick Mineral Springs Bed and Breakfast have reported hearing whispered voices and footsteps, seeing doors open or close and even seeing apparitions.
A shrouded woman has been seen near the fireplace in the front parlor. Colonel Williams, a Confederate soldier who once lived at the home and is buried in the family cemetery, has been seen sitting on the bed in the second-floor suite named after him.
I will never forget one of the times I stayed in that room. As I sat on the bed, my husband stood near the dresser on the other side of the room unpacking our suitcases. Suddenly, I clearly felt the bed move as if someone had just shoved their hands against the tall footboard. I wasn’t afraid. I somehow knew the Colonel was simply saying “hello.”
Ravenscroft Jones, also buried in the family cemetery and whose suite is right across the hall, was also known to be somewhat of a “prankster.” Guests staying in that suite have been known to find small personal items moved to places where they know they didn’t place them.
The most frequently mentioned appearance guests have reported seeing is “the little girl in a blue dress.” According to John W. Pritchett -- who has chronicled the cemetery on the website, Cemeteries of Brunswick County, Virginia -- among the four children of John Ravenscroft Jones (father of Ravenscroft Jones) and Mary Rice Jones (all of whom are buried there in unmarked graves) is Mary Armstead Jones (born October 10, 1857 – Died April 7, 1856) who was nine years old when she passed away.
About six years ago, a rare event occurred when no less than three separate ghost hunting groups teamed up to investigate the happenings at the Brunswick Mineral Springs B&B.
“According to the website,” Sylvia Allen reported for the Brunswick Times Gazette in May of 2011, “NC HAGS is a paranormal investigation group based in Raleigh, N.C. The group's goal is to investigate areas that claim to have paranormal events, to document their findings, and to present them to the one searching as they experience them.
Allen added that NC HAGS member Eddie Howell “said it is kind of unusual for different groups to work on a project together but when he explained the invitation, two other groups wanted to be in on the hunt - Don and Beth Wilson with Ghosts of Raleigh and Michael La Chiana and Steve Boyette with the Heritage Hunter Society. Other members of NC HAGS are Jeff Tracy and Mike Turmage.”
According to the video of the investigation posted by NC HAGS, team members heard voices, felt as if someone touched them and some saw shadows on the third floor. One even saw the famed “little girl in the blue dress.”
I recently contacted Eddie Howell, who has graciously agreed to make a return trip to conduct a follow-up investigation with the original team after the holidays so... stay tuned.
Because of the colorful foliage in the area, rooms at the Brunswick Mineral Springs B&B book quickly in the fall. But for those looking for something a bit more adventurous, Halloween offers guests the perfect opportunity to experience something a little… different.