Over the past ten years, I’ve observed the rise of ghost hunting on television and the paranormal craze it has stirred up. There’s been a lot of good come out of this. Recent advances in experimental “ghost hunting” technology could help us better detect ghosts or even communicate with them.
Not All Is Lost
But, there has been some not-so-good stuff appear on the scene, too, such as people wanting to become famous on TV, the faking of evidence (at least by some producers), and an ignorance toward the past. I, myself, am guilty of the latter and desire to chase down prior work done by early ghost investigators.
One such story I stumbled upon is worthy of researching: the ghost of Nelly Butler. Making her appearance over 200 years ago, the depths at which she went to confirm the existence of the human spirit after the body perishes is astounding. I say astounding because this ghost was confirmed, validated by those who investigated and tried to denounce the haunting at the time. (Read, The First Documented Ghost in the United States.)
History Is Something Ghost Investigators Need to Embrace
What I have come to realize is that we have numerous cases of studies and sightings that are important but seem forgotten because they are not modern day. I wonder if we look at some of the older witnesses and explorers of haunting as antiquated or even “loony.” If so, it is a shame, and I think we are remiss not to uncover what they wrote, what they explored. It was written for us, today. We are their future generations who they wished to communicate their stories to. It’s up to us whether or not to take their word as credible; but to do so, we need to at least consider them to be fellow researchers of the paranormal.
By studying the ideas and findings of our predecessors, I suspect we just may find that some of our beliefs are not new; and I think we will enhance our understanding of ghosts and spirits. Might we become inspired by their journeys, as well? I know I am.