By: Mitchell Peebles – THE VILLAGE REPORTER
As the Halloween season approaches, many people travel to “haunted” corn mazes and spook houses where they look to get their fix of ghouls, goblins, and ghosts. In fact, the haunted house business is now a multi-million dollar industry. What many don’t realize though is that you don’t have to travel very fair at all in order to get up close and personal with the paranormal, in fact, area residents can have a first hand haunted experience right in our own back yard, and unlike those haunted corn mazes and spook houses, these ghosts are not paid employees.
The Fulton County Historical Museum has long been the subject of haunting rumors. The building, located at 229 Monroe Street in Wauseon, was originally the town’s High School from 1868-1897. It was then the location of the Wauseon hospital from 1905-1930. Then in 1945, the building was turned into an apartment complex, resident’s of which were the first to claim that they had experienced unusual, otherworldly goings on. Ever since then, more and more people say that they too have been witness to hauntings and spirits in the museum. Some of these reports include the smell of cooking coming from an oven that is not even hooked up, the site of a “man” that wanders in the museum and smokes a pipe that can be smelled, and there is even a audio recording from the church gallery in which the organ can be heard playing, even though there was no one playing it at the time. The elderly ghost of a depressed nurse who hung herself in what is now the museum attic is said to haunt the museum, and there have been multiple reports of children claiming that a little boy was in the window of the museum, and would ask them to come and play. There have been several paranormal investigators who have visited the museum, all of which have said that the building is brimming with activity. Investigators report being touched, doors being slammed, and have gotten recordings of giggling, knocking, and voices of what they believed to be spirits residing in the museum.
Now, museum guests can experience these hauntings and spirits for themselves as the Fulton County Historical Society is offering “Haunting History Tours” to area residents. The tours had been a regular event that the Historical Society put on, but in 2006 the tours were put on hiatus after a guest became extremely scare and distraught after having experienced an encounter with some sort of paranormal activity inside of the museum. The hiatus ended last year, when the Historical Society decided to start the haunted tours back up again, and provide visitors with a frighteningly good time.
The one hour tours will take place on October 18th, 19th, 25th, and 26th, and will start at 6:30, with a new group of 8-10 visitors leaving the Wauseon Train Depot every 15 minutes, and take place rain or shine, or in this case, darkness. Museum volunteers will lead the guests from the Depot, to North Park, into the museum, and then back to the depot. The volunteers include storytellers who will be dressed in clothing of the late 1800’s and early 1900’s, and will tell of the haunted lore of the museum, and lead visitors through the supposedly haunted building. Tickets are only $10 dollars for adults, and only $8 dollars for members and children aged 13-17. The last two tours of the night are reserved for guest for are 18 years old and older.
Spots for the tours are quickly filling up, so make your reservations soon! Reservations can be made by calling the Fulton County Historical Society at 419-337-7922, or emailing them at firstname.lastname@example.org. Do not miss this great opportunity that the Historical Society is providing this Halloween season, because if you do, it just might haunt you for weeks to come!
Mitchell Peebles may be reached at email@example.com