LookBack10.8

The old house in this photo, from the estate of Susie Cook, is very old — note the rock chimney. It was an old Trousdale County house like this one that may have had two ghosts!

With this being the month with Halloween we are retelling some ghost stories.

Last week we met the ghost of a murdered man walking the deck of a steamboat. This week we meet the ghost of an unhappy woman.

Not that I believe in ghosts, mind you, but I do know that many theories exist for why they walk the earth instead of staying put in their coffin.

One theory is that ghosts are people who died unhappy and are staying around to deal out justice on the people made them so miserable. Well, that could be a lover who jilted them, or relatives who cheated them out of an inheritance, or a brother who made fun of their big ears.

In this case we don’t know why the lady in question was unhappy, but we do know that she didn’t like children, animals or other people in her home!

I am using the actual account of the couple that had the misfortune to buy a small farm and to live in what turned out to be a haunted house. The wife wrote down her misadventures with this vengeful spirit.

“I was introduced to the female ghost, who is by no means shy, on my first night in the house. My husband and I had gone to bed extremely tired from moving. I remember how dark and quiet the night seemed, unlike our city house. I was deep in sleep when suddenly my husband awakened me as his arm came down hard across my stomach.

As I opened my eyes in surprise, he was reaching for the light and trying to explain. He said that while he slept, something had awakened him and he thought in the shadowy darkness that I was sitting up in bed.

He then realized it was not me, but another woman bending over me, her long hair hanging around her face!

Thinking someone had broken into the house, he reached out and upward to grab the intruder by the hair, when suddenly she was gone… and his closing fist came down hard on me!”

The couple had disturbed the house ghost by moving in, and the ghost did not want to share her home!

There would be more events where the woman and her husband would see the lady’s ghostly form or in the middle of the night feel the weight of her body as she sat down at the foot of their bed!

The ghost showed her anger at animals in the house when the couple’s cat had three tiny kittens. The woman put them in a basket and sat it on the kitchen table, planning on taking a few pictures.

She left the room to get her camera and when she returned, only a minute or two later, the basket — kittens and all — was gone!

A quick run around the house found them neatly placed by the front door, the kittens still inside and not harmed by their other worldly adventure. And the ghost had left the woman with the firm impression that she wanted the cute little kittens “out the door.”

Visiting children would complain that they had been slapped in the face by an invisible hand!

So who was this unhappy spirit?

Well, the home was very old — one of the oldest in the county and had seen several generations of Trousdale County families in its many years.

One legend handed down by the family was that a man had been murdered in the front yard.

Was the ghost mourning the loss of her husband?

Over the years many women had walked its floors, given birth and raised countless children, had their hearts broken and mended and witnessed the passing of parents and family members.

The sad woman could be any one of those women.

Because the new owners sometimes heard what sounded like a man whistling just outside the house, as if he were walking around the old home and entertaining himself.

They assumed that a second ghost also haunted the home, or was he the long-lost lover of the unhappy woman? Was he coming by the house to call on her and, being in a happy mood, pursing his lips together to whistle a simple tune?

Did her parents drive him away? Did he go off to war and never return? Did he find another woman’s perfume more enticing and simply stop coming to visit? Or was he the murdered man?

Well, we may never know.

The couple lived in the old house till old age and bad health forced them to move. The next owners have let the house sit unoccupied. We guess the ghost is happy to have the place to itself once again!

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