Ghost Hunters In Ohio
Chestnut Grove Cemetery - Ashtabula, OH.
The Ashtabula Train Disaster
The Chestnut Grove Cemetery located in Ashtabula, Ohio is the final resting place for many of the victims of the Ashtabula Train Disaster Of 1876. The bridge was owned by the Lake Shore and Michigan railroad, and was the joint creation of Charles Collins, Engineer, and Amasa Stone, Chief Architect and Designer. Collins did not approve of Stone's bridge design, calling it "too experimental." However, he reluctantly approved its construction due to pressure from the company and outside sources.
On the evening of December 29, 1876, the Pacific Express was traveling over the fated bridge, carrying approximately 159 passengers and crew members. Only the first engine made it to the other side, just as the bridge started to collapse. The rest of the train broke away and plummeted to the bottom of ravine below. Approximately 92 men, women and children were killed. Most did not die from the fall itself, but were literally burned alive while trapped inside the crushed cars--the result of oil lamps and stoves which ignited the fatal fire.
The accident occurred after a heavy snowstorm, making it difficult for rescuers to reach the victims. The town firefighters and citizens were ill-equipped and simply unprepared to deal with this kind of disaster. The rescue attempt failed miserably. Approximately 25 of the dead were burned beyond recognition, and were buried in a mass grave in Chestnut Grove Cemetery.
After testifying before an investigative jury, Charles Collins quietly went home and shot himself in the head. He was also buried in the Chestnut Grove Cemetery, several feet from the mass grave. Amasa Stone committed suicide approximately 2 years later. Stone was held partly responsible for the disaster by the same investigative jury before which Collins had testified, and was publicly scorned for many years (Stephen D. Peet, The Ashtabula Disaster, Chicago: J. S. Goodman-Louis Lloyd & Co., 1877).
June 30, 2004 Investigation
On June 30, 2004 the S.H.G.H.R.S. and it's two newest members - Brad and Pat conducted an investigation at the Chestnut Grove Cemetery. We were joined by Jim Varner and his girlfriend - Sherry of The Ohio Ghost Researchers, both who have investigated the cemetery many times over the years and have captured some amazing evidence. Jim was kind enough to share a lot of history about the cemetery, the Ashtabula Train Disaster and his own findings with us. One of the most interesting things we discovered was that the cemetery was originally an Erie (Erielhonan) indian burial grounds. When development began, indian remains were uncovered, so the land was filled in and it then became the Chestnut Grove Cemetery. Many thanks to Jim and Sherry for their valuable insight and their hospitality!
Considering the Chestnut Grove Cemetery contains victims from the Ashtabula Train Disaster, along with the other 3,000 + graves, which have been placed on top of an indian burial ground, it is no wonder there are so many restless spirits dwelling witihin the cemetery. Jim and his Sherry told us they have experienced many strange things in the cemetery, such as being touched and pushed by unseen hands, cold chills and hearing audible voices. Jim has even captured a phantom tombstone in a photo! Be sure to visit their website to see some of these amazing photos!
One thing we noted is there was a constant chill in the air beside the mass grave monument, yet the leaves were not blowing in the trees. We continuously monitored tempatures and electro magnetic frequencies throughout the evening, but no radical fluctuations were detected anywhere in the cemetery. However, our thermo scanner does not read the air tempature unfortunately. We took a lot of photos, video and audio recordings, but most of our focus was in the vacinity of the mass grave monument and the Charles Colins tomb. Below you can view some of the evidence that we captured.
As Always We Urge Everyone To Click Here And Read Our Article About Reviewing Ghost Evidence Before Viewing Our Reports!
Aedryan's Equipment Used
Toshiba PDR-4300 4.0 Megapixel Digital Camera
Anamolous Photos Captured
Aedryan took a total of 163 and Brad took a total of 47 photos throughout the cemetery. Not all of the anamolous photos that were collected on this night will be posted, as we do not want to clutter up valuable webspace with common orb photos. We are only posting the best ones. Other than resizing or brightening, none of the photos have been altered or enhanced in any way.
"Misery And The Beast" - This is the third photo that Aedryan took on this night. It was taken at 8:56 pm, just before the darkness set in. It appears to be two white figures in the bottom right of the picture, hiding behind the tombstone. The guy peering at me on the bottom has his mouth hanging wide open as if he is frightened. You can even see his eye balls and eye brows if you look close enough. The guy above him looks like Satan himself. He has a goat T with a pointy beard and he seems to have a grin on his face. I wonder what he was thinking....
"A Demon At The Gates" - This photo was taken at 9:36 pm. Dozens of other photos were taken of the Charles Collins Tomb throughout the night from all different angles and there is nothing like this in any of the other photos. It appears to be a being with 2 horns coming out of it's head, peering directly at me from the gates of Charles Collins tomb. Could this be a demon?
Large Bright Orb - This photo was taken at 9:50 pm. The orb seems to have ghostly facial features on the left side.
Faces On Crypt - This photo was taken at 10:00 pm. Other comparison photos were taken of this crypt and nothing anamolous showed up in them. There appears to be an old bald man wearing black with other ghostly faces beneath him on the left side of the crypt. You'll also notice 2 bright balls of energy in this photo. They appeared in a few of Aedryan's other pictures that were taken throughout the night as well. There are no lights over there. Only woods....
When we returned to the Chestnut Grove Cemetery on August 31st, we took several more pictures of this tomb and we are sorry to say that, unfortunately we determined the above photo to be a false possitive. What appears to be an old bald man shows up in every photo from every angle. However, the other faces do NOT show up in the new pictures. This is a great example of an "illusion" or trick of the light.
Collins Tomb Orb - This photo was taken at 10:11pm at the Charles Collins Tomb. A Photo was taken of our new member - Pat standing directly under where the orb shows up in this photo only seconds after this photo and it showed nothing anamolous in the photo with him. The orb seems to have ghostly facial features in it and it is Aedryan's belief that this is the same orb that showed up in a few other photos on this night. There were even photos taken where an orb with this same resemblence seemed to be hiding partially behind tombstones. Was it following us around and observing?
Reverend's Tomb Ghosts - This photo was taken at 10:13 pm at the reverend's tomb. A comparison photo was taken seconds later from the right side of the crypt and shows nothing. In this photo there is an apparition of a huntched over old man coming through the door of the crypt. He reminds me of "Igor". His ears seem to be unusually small and his arms are freakishly long with long pointed fingers. If you look to the left of the crypt, you will also notice what appears to be the apparition of a horse forming, partially on the ground and partially in the side of the crypt. The strange thing about this picture is that Jim Varner of the Ohio Ghost Researchers captured a photo in this same area before, which appears to be a man on a horse. Coincidence? Click Here to see a cropped, blown up photo of this remarkable capture!
When we returned to the Chestnut Grove Cemetery on August 31st, we took several pictures of the Reverend's Tomb and we are sorry to say that, unfortunately we determined the above photo to be a false possitive. What appears to be a hunched over old man shows up in every photo from every angle. This is another great example of an "illusion" or trick of the light.
"Stay Puff Marshmellow Man" - This photo was taken at 10:20 pm. We weren't going to put this photo on the site, because we have no idea what it is. It's "head" has a strange resemblence to the Stay Puff Marshmellow Man from the movie, "Ghostbusters". In any case, it seems that "something" was forming over there and I can assure you there is no light over there or anywhere else in the cemetery for that matter. If anyone has any ideas as to what this may be, please let us know.
Ghostly Blue Energy Matter - This photo was taken at 10:51 pm. This same blue energy showed up in a couple other photos as well. Notice the ghostly face within it? Could it have been following us and observing too?
Aedryan's Notes - I captured many other anamolous photos on this night. Lots of orbs and lots of faces peeking around tombstones and elsewhere. Due to the darkness of some of the photos, many are not conclusive enough to stand up to some people's scrutiny though, so they will remain in the S.H.G.H.R.S. Vault.
Aedryan's Video Footage Captured
Aedryan seems to have captured a dozen or more orbs on his video recorder on this night, but due to the darkness and the speed they were moving, they cannot be seen good enough to rule them as conclusive. Here are a couple of the best ones....
Orb Passing By Jim (22:31 Into The Video) - While we were on our way over to the Collins Tomb an orb appeared in front of Jim Varner and circled around behind him then took off. We did not see this as it was happening.
Collins Tomb Orb (47:05 Into The Video) - An orb appears on the gates of Collins Tomb, shoots upward then vanishes.
Aedryan's EVP Captured
Click Here To Hear The EVP's We Obtained On This Night!
Brad And Pat's Evidence Collected
Brad's Anamolous Photos Captured
Brad's Camera - Canon Powershot S50 4.0 Megapixel Digital Camera
"The Boogie Man" - Brad took this picture at 9:38 pm. This photo is very interesting. It was named "The Boogie Man" because if you look in the blown up shot, you will notice that there is a "monsterish" looking face creeping up on the couple of smaller faces in front of it, one of which has the appearance of a baby. This photo once again makes me wonder if many of the ghostly faces that we capture on film could possibly be elementals trying to disguise themselves by blending in with their surroundings. In the case of this photo, could it have transformed into a small tombstone? Just for the record, Jim Varner has captured phamtom tombstones in photos in this cemetery before. There are other things going on in this photo too, but it is very hard to see, so we will not mention it.
"Orb Invasion" - This photo was also taken at 9:38 pm at the mass grave monument, within seconds of the last one. Normally when this many orbs are captured in one photo it will be written off as dust. Some of the more faint ones seen in this photo may very well be, but there is more going on in this picture than meets the eye. In the upper left, there is a red orb and it has a face inside of it with skull like features. There is a blue orb with facial features, green orbs and over all, many of these orbs have a very defined nucleus and even multiple nucleus'. Also, when you zoom in on the little orb on the ground to the left front corner of the monument, you will see that it actually seems to be a little head with a greenish tint to it, coming up out of the ground.
Large Bright Orb - This photo was taken at 9:41 pm at the mass grave monument.
Click Here To Hear The EVP's We Obtained On This Night!
* At this time nothing anamolous has turned up on Brad or Pat's video recordings.
I feel that there were no doubt, many "things" around us on this night. Perhaps even watching us. I do not base this on any strange "feelings", but rather from the evidence we have reviewed. Orbs and even a couple different shades of blue energies that seem to have the same features from photo to photo, whether it be facial features, color, size or brightness, seemed to keep showing up in different areas as if they were following us around. As mentioned before, quite a few other anamolous photos were captured of what appeared to be ghostly faces peeking out from around tombstones and such. A couple examples of these would be in "The Boogie Man" photo and the "Misery And The Beast" photo. I am finding myself truely wondering if many of the ghostly faces that we and other paranormal investigators alike capture in photos, could be Elemental Spirits! For those who don't know, Elemental Spirits are believed to be the earths natural spirits. They are shape shifters so to speak, who are said to take the form of many things, ranging from fire and water to smoke and trees. They are also said to be VERY powerful spirits and nothing to mess with, but they can be helpful as well. This is speculation of course....
At any rate, we feel that our time in the Chestnut Grove Cemetery was very well spent and we made some amazing discoveries. Jim Varner has assured us that the ecotplasm is plentiful there in the fall and winter months, so we look forward to returning around Halloween time for another investigation. Until then, may all of those who suffered so much tragedy in the Ashtabula Train Disaster, find peace....
The SHGHRS Returned To The Chestnut Grove
Cemetery On August 31, 2004
On August 31, 2004 Aedryan returned to the Chestnut Grove Cemetery with a few new prospect members. Brad and Pat have been asked to leave the SHGHRS since our last visit due to total lack of participation. We covered far more area this time than on our first investigation. Aedryan took a total of 256 pictures between 1:30 am and 4:00 am and judging by the photos alone, there didn't "appear" to be a lot of activity on this night, but we believe there was more going on than meets the eye....
Shortly after we arrived we were standing in front of the Collins Tomb while Aedryan was taking some photos of the tomb. At one point (1:55 am) Aedryan was just standing there, holding his camera in one hand in between pictures and he felt "something" shake his camera for a good few seconds. He said it felt like it was vibrating and his camera does not have any kind of feature that does that.
Later on in the night, we were walking back to the Reverend's Tomb and as we were approaching the back of the tomb Aedryan thought he heard "something" walking beside him, but never mentioned it. A few seconds later when they reached the front of the Reverend's Tomb one of the girls said that she heard "something" walking behind her back by where Aedryan thought he had heard it walking beside him.
We experienced no fluctuations in the electro magnetic field whatsoever throughout the whole night, but perhaps the strangest thing we experienced the whole night was radical temperature fluctuations. Ground temperatures ranged from 56 degrees all the way up to 124 degrees! This is totally unexplainable, because it was a cool night and the ground had so much dew on it that all of our feet were soak and wet in no time. For the most part the ground temperature seemed to be 109 - 112 degrees all around us, which is just not possible. Even the tombstone temperatures, which always retain heat from the day (even in the winter) were only about 63 degrees. Many pictures that were taken were focussed on these "hot spots" and yet very few anamolies were captured in our photos. Orbs were even very far and few between.
It was later determined that the battery just needed replaced in our thermoscan. That was causing the sporatic temperature fluctuations we had been getting on this night.
Note: This was a last minute investigation, so unfortunately we were not able to record any weather or solar data for this night. If anyone happens to know of a website that archives weather and/or solar data please let us know.
Anamolous Photos Captured
Collins Tomb Orb - This photo was taken at 1:49 am at the Charles Collins Tomb. It didn't show up in any of the many other photos that were taken of the Collins Tomb.
Yellow Orb - This photo was taken at 2:21 am at the Charles Collins Tomb. A yellow orb seemed to show up in a couple other photos taken in different areas as well on this night.
"Something Wierd" - This photo was taken at 2:31 am. We have absolutely no idea what this is. It appears to be a glowing orange balls of fire or something and the thing behind it resembles a little volcano and it is shooting something out of the top of it. Ecto perhaps? If anyone has any idea what these things are, please let us know.
Back Of Collins Tomb - This photo was taken at 3:20 am at the rear of the Charles Collins Tomb. There seems to be a few orbs in the photo, but another strange thing about this photo is the tombstones at the bottom of the picture. It "appears" to be 2 tombstones, but why does there seem to be a window cut out in one of them, in which you can see right through? There seems to be 2 faces on whatever it is behind them. One is a woman with a long pointy chin and nose and the other is a man. Very strange indeed....
"The Watchers" - This photo was taken at 3:23 am. This photo is very interesting to us, because it appears to be a newborn baby standing upright. There seems to be a robed figure standing behind him and either the robed figure is holing a monsterous looking head or the head is in front of the robed figure. There is also another face beneath that one. The strange thing about this photo is, the last time we investigated this cemetery we captured another photo of what appeared to be a baby with a monsterous looking face behind it. That photo can be seen above as well. We call it, "The Boogie Man".
Click Here To Hear The EVP's We Obtained On This Night!
Video Footage Captured
Unfortunately Aedryan forgot to remove the lens cover from his camcorder, so no video footage was captured on this night. >8>(
Throughout the night all of us were under the impression that "something" was following us. This was mainly due to the constant strange temperatures surrounding us at all times. Whether it was something anamolous that was giving us these radical temperatures or something anamolous manipulating our thermometer itself, we do believe something paranormal was at play. Between that, something shaking Aedryan's camera and two of us hearing something walking beside/behind us as mentioned above, we are pretty certain that we were not alone. We are very intrigued by the EVP's that we have gotten at the mass grave monument during both of our visits to Chestnut Grove Cemetery. I wonder what kind of results we would have if we were to focus 100% of our attention on the mass grave monument next time and just spend our time talking to the spirits, asking them what they need help with and how we can help them. Hmm....
The SHGHRS Returns To The Chestnut Grove
Cemetery On May 1, 2005
Part of the all new SHGHRS team (Aedryan, Tony and Matt) paid a visit to the Chestnut Grove Cemetery on May 1, 2005 for a last minute, random ghost hunt. There was a lot of solar activity going on, so we thought we would take a little trip to our favorite place and see what turned up. Other than the usual constant dark, ominous feeling from being up there, nothing out of the ordinary happened that we were aware of. It was very dark up there on this night, so Aedryan and Matt's pictures turned out horrible. Of course Tony's pictures looked like they were taken in broad daylight with his fancy new camera! There seemed to be an unusual amount of dust in the air in the cemetery on this night. The few pictures that turned out of Aedryan's and Matt's produced "orb invasions" (dust). Aedryan's camera doesn't usually produce those, but Matt's seems to a lot. Even Tony's camera produced a few of them. Aedryan had also commented several times throughout their stay, that he couldn't believe the amount of dust that was showing up in the beam of light ommiting from the light on his headmount.
Anyway, no compelling photos have surfaced from this outing as of yet and we did not take our video recorders out, so we have no video evidence to report. However, we managed to capture at least 15 EVP's on Aedryan's digital audio recorder in only 1 hour and 45 minutes of recording time, some of which seem to be direct communication! We feel that is pretty remarkable!
Electronic Voice Phenomenon
Digital Audio Recorder used: Olympus VN-480PC (LP mode used on this night)
Click Here To Hear 15 Incredible EVP's We Obtained On This Night!
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