Saturday, May 31, 2008

Laurel Grove Cemetery

I guess I'm on a cemetery kick today, well I'm really just trying to play catch up on some much needed, and much missed blogging. When one of my best friends from North Carolina was in town two weeks ago, we went all over Savannah, and spent a lot of time exploring cemeteries in the area. Laurel Grove which isn't quite as popular as Bonaventure, and is off the beaten path is one of those.
Laurel Grove was developed in 1850 when Colonial Park Cemetery and others were filling up way to fast. Families actually were offered to moved deceased relatives from these cemeteries to Laurel Grove for free, which many did. The cemetery is built on a portion of the old Springfield plantation, and is named for the native laurel oaks which once filled the land. The cemetery was also developed as a segregated cemetery, and today is managed as two cemeteries. Laurel Grove North is the white section, and Laurel Grove South is the black section. As we explored we came upon many a strange sight. A section where babies were buried has a sign up called "baby land." This freaked me out to much, so I didn't take a picture, but Ramsey did, so when she emails me the pictures I'll post it for ya'll, even though it creeps me out just a tad bit. Also odd to us was the "Stranger's ground," which is scattered throughout the whole cemetery. I am assuming that these are burial sights of unknown people. There were no gravestones here, just lone signs. Their is a whole section of confederate soldiers graves here as well. Some of them are marked unknown, others not. This is a beautiful section of the cemetery, and very open, as a vast majority of the cemetery is shady and covered in Spanish moss that grows like wild fire down here, but we do love it so. The confederate section of the cemetery is reportedly one of the most active as far a paranormal activity goes. As Ramsey and I slowly drove around, she caught at one point movement out of the corner of her eye, which freaked her out a little, but of course we high tailed it to the place she saw the movement, and we were welcomed by a rather large monument with the name "Smith." Laurel Grove is quiet and pleasant, and has quiet a peace to it. You feel as though you are walking among spirits there, but it wasn't creepy at all. Like I said it's off the beaten path, so thank the good Lord we didn't have to herd through the tourists as we did at Bonaventure, (not that we don't like ya'll), but we really got to explore. Of course I am bombarding you with pictures of our Sunday morning in Laurel Grove Cemetery, I sure hope you enjoy!!

Colonial Cemetery On A Summer Day

Here are some pictures from Brent-Boy's parents visit to Savannah. You can hop on over to Mrs. Dawn's blog The Feathered Nest
to see some more pictures of their trip and our adventures here in Savannah. The following pictures are of Colonial Cemetery, one of the oldest in Savannah, and one of my very favorites!! Enjoy!!

Friday, May 30, 2008

Lily Dale

I'm currently reading a book that has sparked my interest and has kept me nose first in it's pages. It's about Lily Dale, the oldest Spiritualist community in America that resides in Chautauqua County, in southwestern New York. Spiritualism became very popular in the late 1800's early 1900's. I'm sure ya'll all have heard of seances and table knocking. This is a town that is full of spiritualist, mediums, and people that not only talk, but seem to commune with the dead on a regular basis. I'm quite taken by Lily Dale, and I guess in a way I hold it close to my heart. My Aunt Susan who was my father's sister passed away in 2001 due to colon cancer that had relapsed and basically took over her body. She fought it for a very long time, and it still came back. I remember being told that she and her husband visited a community like this in Florida before she passed, searching for a cure and healing. Even though she didn't get either as far as the cancer goes, I sure do hope that she got peace of mind. I moved home right before she passed, and I remember my sister and I visiting her at the hospice center to say what we knew was going to be our goodbyes. Cancer is a horrible thing, heart wrenching and heart breaking. My aunt was a shell it seems before she passed. I remember her joy, love, and the fact that she was the biggest clown in the family. She would bend over backwards for you, and I spent many a summer with her, where she treated me like a princess. She gave me my nickname "Lady Em," that is what she called me. She was one of the most loving people I have ever met, and I know she is at peace now.
The author of the book Lily Dale The True Story of the town that talks to the dead, is one of my favorites. Christine Wicker is the ultimate skeptic, just like myself, but she has eyes to see, and ears to hear when the truth comes ringing through. It's a very interesting book that will have you thinking hard and then laughing hard the next minute. It's wonderfully written and reminds me that even though we may pass physically, our spirit lives on. And I know that my Aunt Susan is flitting around on angel wings, even though she had them while she was alive, making people laugh and doing what she did best here and I'm sure she does best there, love. Aunt Susan this one is for you!!
~Your Lady Em~

Monday, May 26, 2008

432 Abercorn-The Benjamin J. Wilson House

Alright ya'll, I've been pushed in the right direction regarding 432. The following is information found at The Georgia Historical Society here in Savannah, the county websites, and my new favorite books by Savannah author Al Cobb.
432 or The Benjamin J. Wilson house was built in 1868 and completed in 1869 by Mr. Wilson who moved to Savannah after The Civil War, or as we like to call it down here, "The War Between the States." The house has sixteen rooms and two stories, and the present owner started renovations, but as it states on the one of the county websites, the renovations have stopped and the house has been "left to deteriorate."
Now here's the juicy stuff. Ya'll know I've been rooting around for information on this house for some time now. Lord did I look high and low trying to find something out!! Well who would have thought that what I was looking for was right under my nose the whole time!! I picked up Al Cobb's book, Savannah's Ghosts in the bookstore two weeks ago, read it, fell in love and realized I need to buy his other books as well. So off I went on Saturday with Mrs. Dawn from The Feathered Nest to Barnes&Noble for some much needed bookstore and girl time. I then bought Danny's Bed- A Tale of Ghosts and Poltergeists in Savannah, Georgia. Well wouldn't you know when I got to the last pages of this wonderful book I was staring straight at a story on 432 Abercorn!! In his book Danny's Bed, Al Cobb tells about this house that I think I've fallen in love with. It is haunted but not by the "ghosts" we've heard and been told about. In 1973 the family that lived there at the time had some ghostly encounters with ectoplasm leaking down the wall, and an apparition materialize in front of one family member, but the spirit was that of a women who was wearing what seemed to be turn of the century clothing climbing up the stairs. The family reported furniture being knocked over, boxes being moved, and orbs being seen in the house. It was found out by the author that a man committed suicide in the 1940's on the second floor of the house. The owner now says that she has had no encounters with the paranormal at all. Interestingly enough, Al Cobb's son saw the spirit of the women upon visiting the house, and they have caught photo's of ghostly mists. I'm not giving to much away here because I want you to run to the bookstore or order these books for yourself. If you are interested at all in the ghosts stories of Savannah then I highly recommend these fabulous books.
Here is a list of Al Cobb's books for you!!
Danny's Bed A Tale of Ghosts and Poltergeists in Savannah. Georgia
Savannah's Ghost's
Savannah's Ghost's II
All these books again are written by Savannah author and native Al Cobb and they are worth it!! They are $9.95 each, and I do hope you order them, because they have fascinated me, taught me things I never knew about Savannah, and kept me on my toes!!
I hope ya'll all had a wonderful Memorial day and a great weekend!!