“WHITE HOUSE HAUNTINGS” #WeirdDarkness
IN THIS EPISODE: 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, Washington D.C., United States of America. It’s not just a nightmare during elections – it’s haunted all the time!
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WEIRDO WEB LINKS…
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“Monster In The Pantry” episode: https://weirddarkness.com/archives/7511
STORY AND MUSIC CREDITS/SOURCES…
(Over time links can and may become invalid, disappear, or have different content.)
“Lingering Lincoln” from History.com: https://tinyurl.com/y22gofph
“Lincoln’s Ghost” by Troy Taylor: https://tinyurl.com/y6zvkfyd
“Ghosts In The White House” from History.com: https://tinyurl.com/y8kdrlxz
“Is The White House Haunted” by Theresa Vargas for The Washington Post: https://tinyurl.com/y9wh4566
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On a lonely night in 1946, President Harry S. Truman went to bed at 9 p.m. About six hours later, he heard it.
Knock. Knock. Knock. The sound against his bedroom door awakened him. He wrote to his wife in a letter, “I jumped up and put on my bathrobe, opened the door, and no one there. Went out and looked up and down the hall, looked in your room and Margie’s. Still no one. Went back to bed after locking the doors and there were footsteps in your room whose door I’d left open. Jumped and looked and no one there! The damned place is haunted sure as shootin’. Secret Service said not even a watchman was up here at that hour. You and Margie had better come back and protect me before some of these ghosts carry me off!”
I’m Darren Marlar and this is Weird Darkness.
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Coming up in this episode… 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, Washington D.C., United States of America. It’s not just a nightmare during elections – it’s haunted all the time!
Now.. bolt your doors, lock your windows, turn off your lights, and come with me into the Weird Darkness!
STORY: LINGERING LINCOLN==========
Abraham Lincoln, the sixteenth President of the United States (1861-1865), is remembered for his vital role as the leader in preserving the Union during the Civil War and beginning the process that led to the end of slavery in the United States. He’s remembered for his character, his speeches and letters and as a man of humble origins whose determination and perseverance led him to the nation’s highest office.
He is also remembered for his untimely death—and his supposed afterlife in the White House.
For years, presidents, first ladies, guests, and members of the White House staff have claimed to have either seen Lincoln or felt his presence. The melancholy bearing of Lincoln himself, and several instances of eerie prescience on his part, only add to the legends of the Great Emancipator’s ghost.
By the time of his 1864 reelection, deep lines etched Lincoln’s face and heavy black circles underlined his eyes. During his five years as commander in chief, he had slept little and taken no vacations. There may have been more to his sadness than even he would admit: Lincoln dreamed of his own death.
Ward Hill Lamon, a close friend of the president’s, wrote down what Lincoln told him on an evening in early 1865: “About ten days ago I retired very late…,” the president told Lamon. “I soon began to dream. There seemed to be a deathlike stillness about me. Then I heard subdued sobs, as if a number of people were weeping. I thought I left my bed and wandered downstairs … I arrived at the East Room. Before me was a catafalque, on which rested a corpse wrapped in funeral vestments. Around it were stationed soldiers who were acting as guards; and there was a throng of people, some gazing mournfully upon the corpse, whose face covered, others weeping pitifully. “‘Who is dead in the White House?’ I demanded of one of the soldiers. ‘The President,’ was his answer. ‘He was killed by an assassin.’”
It was not the first time Lincoln “saw” his own death. Soon after his election in 1860, he’d seen a double image of his face reflected in a mirror in his Springfield, Illinois, home. One was his “real” face, the other a pale imitation. Lincoln’s superstitious wife, Mary Todd Lincoln, did not see the mirror images, but was deeply troubled by her husband’s account of the incident. She prophesied that the sharper image indicated that he would serve out his first term. The faint, ghostlike image was a sign, she said, that he would be renominated for a second term, but would not live to complete it.
On April 14, 1865, President Lincoln was shot by a Southern sympathizer, John Wilkes Booth, in the back of the head as he watched Our American Cousin at Ford’s Theater. He died at 7:22 the next morning, April 15, 1865.
It is true that tragedy had stalked Lincoln long before his first presidential term. His beloved mother, Nancy Hanks Lincoln, died when her son was nine. When Lincoln’s first love, Ann Rutledge, died of typhoid fever, he lapsed into a melancholy that may have led to his emotional breakdown a few years later.
In 1842, at the age of thirty-three, Lincoln married Mary Todd, but the union was not a particularly happy one. Mary had a mercurial temperament and a strong belief in the supernatural. It was her influence that led to her husband’s interest in spiritualism, though he always regarded it with some skepticism.
The Lincolns had four sons, but only Robert Todd lived to adulthood. Edward died at age four and young Willie succumbed to a fever during his father’s first term as president. Tad died at 18, after his father’s death. Lincoln was shattered by Willie’s death and often visited the crypt where the child was buried. He would sit for hours, weeping copiously. At Mrs. Lincoln’s urging, seances were held at the White House with the hope of communicating with their dead sons. The results of these seances were not entirely satisfying, and it’s believed that Lincoln attended only two of them.
Liz Carpenter, press secretary to Lady Bird Johnson, told author John Alexander that Mrs. Johnson believed she’d felt Lincoln’s presence one spring evening while watching a television program about his death. She noticed a plaque she’d never seen before hanging over the fireplace. It mentioned Lincoln’s importance in that room in some way. Mrs Johnson admitted feeling a strange coldness and a decided sense of unease.
STORY: LINCOLN’S GHOST==========
There is no doubt that few presidents left the sort of mark on the White House that Abraham Lincoln did. His impact on the history of America has been immeasurable and in 1864, when he sought re-election, he did so with the idea that his plans were unfinished. When he was assassinated, his plans for reconciliation between the North and South were interrupted and his work was left incomplete. In fact, some would say that it remains incomplete, even today. Perhaps this is why his spirit is so often reported at the White House and may explain why he is our nation’s most famous ghost.
Although there are few reports of Lincoln’s specter haunting the White House of the late Nineteenth Century, there is nothing to suggest that his spirit was not present. In the years following his death, staff members and residents often reported mysterious footsteps in the hallways. However, one of the earliest reliable reports from someone who actually saw Lincoln’s apparition came from President Theodore Roosevelt, who took up residence in the house nearly forty years after Lincoln’s death. “I see him in different rooms and in the halls,” he admitted. In truth, it comes as no surprise that Roosevelt may have “attracted” the ethereal presence of Lincoln as he greatly admired the former leader and quoted his speeches and writings often.
During the terms of President Calvin Coolidge, his wife Grace actually encountered Lincoln. She stated that he was dressed “in black, with a stole draped over his shoulders to ward off the drafts and chills of Washington’s night air”. She explained that one day as she passed by the Yellow Oval Room, she was startled to see Lincoln staring out the window in the direction of the Potomac, his hands behind his back. Lincoln turned and looked momentarily in her direction and then vanished. During his tenure in the White House, the room had been Lincoln’s library and he often stood at the same window, looking out with his thoughts filled with the course of the war. At that same window, Lincoln’s spirit has also been seen and felt by others, including the poet and Lincoln biographer, Carl Sandburg. He also stated that he felt Lincoln’s presence close to him in the Yellow Oval Room.
President Herbert Hoover also admitted to hearing mysterious sounds in the White House. Although he never acknowledged that it was Lincoln’s ghost, Hoover left no doubt that he had heard something in the darkened corridors that he could not explain.
By the time that Franklin Delano Roosevelt began his long series of terms as President, Lincoln had been dead for nearly seventy years. However, his ghost remained, unwilling or unable to leave the White House. During Roosevelt’s administration, Lincoln was at his most active, perhaps because of the concerns about the perilous state of the nation during the time of the Great Depression and World War II.
Eleanor Roosevelt told reporters that she had never seen Lincoln, but she admitted that she had felt his presence late at night when she used the Lincoln bedroom as a study. She often said that she sensed him “standing behind her, peering over her shoulder”. She also admitted that she sometimes heard his “footsteps in the second-floor hallways”. Mrs. Roosevelt also told of an incident that occurred with one of her staff members, Mary Eben. Her secretary had passed the Lincoln bedroom one day and noticed a tall, thin man who was sitting on the edge of the bed, pulling on a pair of boots. She then realized that the figure was Abraham Lincoln! As the late president had been dead for about seventy-five years at the time, she was understandably frightened and she ran screaming back to her office. Mary became just one of the many people who saw Lincoln’s ghost during Roosevelt’s time in the White House, including the President’s valet, who once ran out of the mansion, shrieking in fear that he had just seen Abraham Lincoln.
In addition to the residents and staff members of the White House, a number of notable visitors also encountered Lincoln during this time. One story relates to Queen Wilhelmina of the Netherlands, who spent the night in the White House during the War years, while in exile from the Nazis. It was said that she was sleeping in the Rose Room when she heard an insistent tapping on the door. As the hour was quite late, she assumed the summons must be important and she quickly opened the door. There, standing in the doorway, was Abraham Lincoln.
According to a White House staff member, the Queen surprised President Franklin D. Roosevelt, and a number of cocktail party guests, the next evening when she recalled her encounter. She told them that after seeing the apparition, everything went black and she later woke up on the floor. By this time, the ghost had vanished.
The late British Prime Minister Winston Churchill never discussed Lincoln’s ghost, but many believe that he may have encountered him while visiting the White House. Churchill was always quartered in the Lincoln Bedroom during his stays, as were all visiting male heads of state, but the next morning, he would normally be found sleeping in a room across the hall. He confessed that he never felt comfortable in that particular room but refused to discuss what made him so fearful of it. It is told, however, that once British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, while staying at the White House, had just stepped out of a hot bath (in that same room Queen Wilhelmina of the Netherlands had stayed). Churchill was of course, completely naked – aside from a cigar – when he encountered Lincoln’s ghost by the fireplace. Cooly, Churchill spoke saying, “Good evening, Mr. President. You seem to have me at a disadvantage.”
Of all of the presidents who encountered Lincoln’s ghost, the best known was President Harry S. Truman, who made no bones about the fact that he believed the White House to be haunted. He once recalled an incident that took place in the early morning hours, about one year after he took office. He was awakened that night by knocking on his bedroom door. He got out of bed, went to the door and opened it, but found that no one was in the hallway. Suddenly, the air around him felt icy cold but the chill quickly faded as President Truman heard the sound of footsteps moving away from him down the corridor.
He later wrote to his wife, Bess, who often stayed at their family home in Missouri because she didn’t like Washington, and stated that, “I sit in this old house, all the while listening to the ghosts walk up and down the hallway. At four o’clock, I was awakened by three distinct knocks on my bedroom door. No one was there. Damned place is haunted, sure as shootin’!”
During his time in office, President Dwight D. Eisenhower made no effort to deny the experiences that he’d had with Lincoln’s ghost. He told his press secretary, James Haggerty, that he frequently sensed Lincoln’s ghost in the White House. One day, he explained that he was walking down a hallway and the ghost of Abraham Lincoln approached him from the opposite direction. Eisenhower took the encounter in stride — after the horrors of war, the specter of Lincoln was probably a welcome sight. Surprisingly, Haggerty told of the President’s ghostly experience on a network television program, despite the long-held White House position on a strict “no ghost” policy.
Jacqueline Kennedy, who occupied the White House with her family and husband, John F. Kennedy, exactly one hundred years after the Lincoln’s lived there, admitted that she sensed Lincoln’s presence in the mansion. Although there is no record of President Kennedy ever encountering the ghost, Jackie told reporters in 1961 that she found the White House to be “cold and drab” and disliked much of the furnishings. With this in mind, she undertook a major renovation. When she had completed the widely publicized refurbishment, the White House was freshly painted and redecorated. This is when Lincoln’s ghost began to stir again. Likely, he was unsettled by the massive alterations in the house and it was during the restoration that Jackie began to encounter his ghost. When he occupied the White House, Lincoln paid little attention to the furnishings and once was very angry with Mary when she spent too much money decorating “this damned old house”.
Despite official denials, members of the first families continued to encounter Lincoln’s specter. When Gerald Ford was in office, his daughter, Susan, publicly acknowledged her belief in ghosts and made it clear that she would never sleep in the Lincoln Bedroom – or “that room”, as she called it. According to one account, Susan actually witnessed Lincoln’s spirit.
The late President Ronald Reagan even mentioned Lincoln’s ghost in a 1987 press conference. He told the reporters who were gathered that he was never frightened by the spirit. “I haven’t seen him myself,” Reagan said, “but every once in a while our little dog Rex will start down that long hall, just glaring as though he’s seeing something.” He also added that the dog would bark repeatedly as he stopped in front of the Lincoln bedroom. Reagan said that if he opened the door to the bedroom and tried to get the dog to come inside, Rex would growl fiercely but refused to step over the threshold.
There were no reports of Lincoln’s ghost during the Bush administration and both the President and Mrs. Bush denied seeing Lincoln or any other ghost in the White House. However, during the Clinton years, there were at least two sightings of Lincoln’s apparition. One encounter was admitted by President Clinton’s brother, Roger, who stated that he had sensed Lincoln’s presence in the White House. In the second instance, a Clinton aide admitted that he had seen Lincoln walking down a hallway but the story, which was briefly reported in the news, was quickly denied and dismissed by the White House as a joke.
No reports of Lincoln’s ghost filtered out of White House during the tenancy of President George W. Bush or, but no one knows what stories will be told in the years to come.
Does the ghost of Abraham Lincoln really walk in the White House?
Some of our country’s most influential leaders have certainly believed so. But why does he still walk here? Is the apparition merely a faded memory of another time or an actual presence? Does the ghost appear, as has been suggested, during times of crisis, when perhaps the assistance of the president who faced America’s greatest crisis is most needed?
Stories of a ghostly President Lincoln wandering the corridors and rooms of the White House persist even to this day, but are not officially acknowledged. The gangly prairie lawyer with the black stovepipe hat and the long, sad face was the kind of man around whom legends naturally collect. If one were to believe in ghosts, one would have to believe that the benevolent spirit of Abraham Lincoln, one of our greatest presidents, still watches over the nation he fought so gallantly to preserve.
President Harry Truman had no idea why Lincoln’s ghost was still present in the White House. In her biography about the president, Margaret Truman stated that her father certainly had no ambitions to haunt the White House himself.
“No man in his right mind would want to come here of his own accord,” he said.
Personally, with the state our country seems to always be in nowadays, I kind of find it comforting to think that someone with the nickname of Honest Abe might be overlooking the folks working in and around the Oval Office.
Keep listening, there are more stories of White House Hauntings when Weird Darkness returns!
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If you missed the Weird Darkness Halloween Live Scream on Halloween night, I did post it as an episode of Weird Darkness that night as the clock turned over to November 1st if you want to give it a listen – or you can watch the actual video by visiting the LiveScream page at WeirdDarkness.com. The curse has been broken, we did not have any audio errors this year, nor did we have any video errors. It was a lot of fun and I was enjoying it so much I didn’t really pay too much attention to the clock – we ended up going for a full three hours of me telling stories and answering comments. It was also great to see more generosity in the last couple of hours towards our Darkness Challenge campaign. Our goal for the year 2020 was to raise $2020, and at the time of my recording this we are at $2,175! We actually reached our goal at the beginning of the Live Scream, and then surpassed it. I’m going to leave the fundraiser open in case a few others hear those episodes late and still want to donate, but thank you so much to all of you who were so generous in your giving, for sharing the link with your friends and family, and for understanding how important the fundraiser was. When I finally close it out, probably on Black Friday to give everyone enough time to get late donations in, I know that Kathryn Goetze, the founder of The International Foundation for Research and Education on Depression is going to be overjoyed – and it’s all thanks to you, our Weirdo family! If you do want to make a last-minute donation, you can still do so by clicking the DONATE button at DarknessChallenge.com.
STORY: GHOSTS IN THE WHITE HOUSE==========
The most famous address in America—1600 Pennsylvania Avenue—is also perhaps the country’s most famous haunted house. Presidents, first ladies, White House staff members and guests have reported feeling ghostly presences, hearing unexplained noises and even running into actual apparitions—even on the way out of the bathtub, in one particularly famous case… and Honest Abe wasn’t to blame for all of the sightings.
In addition to its political ghosts, the White House has long housed unsettling specters of a different, more bump-in-the-night kind, if numerous former leaders and their staff members are to be believed.
Whether one embraces or mocks the paranormal, the many accounts that have spilled out of America’s House over two centuries give ghosts an undeniable place in the country’s history.
The sightings, which have been documented in eerie detail by scholars and newspapers, involve a daughter who pleads in vain to help her doomed mother and a first lady who is, sadly, perpetually stuck doing laundry.
Jared Broach is the founder of the company Nightly Spirits, which offers tours of haunted areas in several cities across the country. But when Broach started the tours in 2012, he offered only one: The White House.
“The White House has the best ghost stories, and I’d call them the most verified,” Broach said. “Honestly, we could do a 10-hour tour if we really wanted to.”
One of his favorite stories is about David Burnes, who sold the land where the White House sits and whose voice has been reportedly heard in the Oval Office. “I’m Mr. Buuuuurnes,” Broach would always say during tours when he got to that part of the story.
Asked if he believes in ghosts, Broach said “for sure” and then pointed to more prestigious authorities.
“If I said no, I’d be calling about eight different presidents liars,” he said.
Abigail Adams and her husband John, the second president of the United States (1797-1801), moved to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue from the former U.S. capital in Philadelphia. At the time, Washington, D.C. was still just a town, built mostly on swampy land on the banks of the Potomac River. Because the East Room of the new White House was the warmest and driest, Abigail used it to hang the wash. Her ghost, clad in a cap and lace shawl, has reportedly been seen heading towards the East Room, arms outstretched as if carrying laundry.
A lesser-known early White House personality who has been said to haunt its halls was David Burns, who sold the government most of the land on which the city of Washington—including the presidential residence—was built. Lillian Rogers Parks, a seamstress who chronicled her 30-year career working at the White House in a 1961 memoir, told the story of a valet to President Franklin D. Roosevelt who reportedly heard a disembodied voice coming from a distance in the Yellow Oval Room, saying “I’m Mr. Burns.” During Harry S. Truman’s administration, a guard heard a similar voice; thinking it was then-Secretary of State James Byrnes, he went looking for him, only to learn that the secretary hadn’t been at the White House that day.
In 1824, Andrew “Old Hickory” Jackson was defeated by John Quincy Adamsin one of the most contentious presidential elections in history. Elected president four years later, the surly Jackson continued to hold grudges against those who had supported his opponent. In the early 1860s, First Lady Mary Todd Lincoln–who believed strongly in the occult, and reportedly held séances in the White House to commune with the spirits of her dead sons–told friends she had heard Jackson stomping and swearing through the halls of the presidential residence. The Rose Room, Jackson’s bedchamber while he was president, is believed by some to be one of the most haunted rooms in the White House.
Jackson’s ghostly presence also showed up in the White House correspondence of Harry Truman, America’s 33rd president. In June 1945, just two months into his first term, Truman wrote to his wife Bess of the spooky quality of his new residence: “I sit here in this old house and work on foreign affairs, read reports, and work on speeches–all the while listening to the ghosts walk up and down the hallway and even right in here in the study. The floors pop and the drapes move back and forth–I can just imagine old Andy [Jackson] and Teddy [Roosevelt] having an argument over Franklin [Roosevelt].”
Among other spirited stories are those about Annie Surratt. Some have sworn her ghost knocks on the front doors, pleading for the release of her mother, Mary Surratt. Why would she do so? Because Mary Surratt was convicted of playing a role in Lincoln’s assassination… and was later hanged for it.
The ghost of Dolley Madison, if the stories about her are to be believed, seems to have chosen a better eternal pastime: taking care of the garden. During the Woodrow Wilson administration, staff members reported seeing her ghost as they were about to move the Rose Garden. They apparently decided afterward to leave it where she wanted it.
The first lady is also connected to another storied Washington location. When the British burned down their home during the War of 1812, she and President James Madison moved to the Octagon House on the corner of 18th Street and New York Avenue NW, making it the temporary White House. Unexplained occurrences there have been linked to the deaths of three women, including two daughters of the wealthy man who built the house. In both incidents, according to newspaper accounts, the women had argued with their father about who they wanted to marry and then fell from the same staircase.
“Bells could be heard in the house when no one was there to ring them,” reads a 1969 Washington Post article about the location. “A specter of a girl in white could be seen slipping up the stairway; terrifying screams and morbid groans could be heard emanating from the house. Some insisted that it was impossible to cross the hall at the foot of the stairwell on certain days, without unconsciously going around some unseen obstacle on the floor.”
Newspapers once treated stories about ghosts with far less skepticism than they might today. A Washington Post article published Aug. 13, 1907, describes the police department’s effort to address paranormal activity in Georgetown with the headline: “Spooks Baffle Police.”
“Despite the vigilance of Capt. Schneider and his officers of the Seventh Precinct, they continue night after night their weird and ghost-like tricks,” the author wrote. “The police are unable to stop the shower of gravel and stones, which appear to be the favorite means of manifestation of these materialistic ghosts; nor are they able to discover whence they came.”
The headline for a 1903 Post story, which ran next to an advertisement offering a lawn swing for $3.95, said: “White House Ghosts: Changes in the Mansion Have Driven Them Away.”
In the article, a longtime White House servant lamented how renovations had cleared the mansion of the spirits that kept him company on lonely nights. He described them as gliding up public stairways and down private ones.
“It’s the truth, the gospel truth,” said Jerry Smith, who is described as spending a quarter century at the White House. “Times are not what they used to be about the house. Ever since I first went to the White House, I have seen the spirits of Mr. Lincoln and other Presidents as they died. But you know that they don’t like new places, and I never see a sight of Mr. Lincoln or Gen. Grant.”
After Truman wrote to his wife about the knocks on his door, the president’s daughter wrote him back. Margaret Truman, in a 1986 biography of her mother, said she and her mom were skeptical of the existence of ghosts, presidential or otherwise, and she wrote her father saying so.
In his reply, he said, “I’m sure they’re here, and I’m not so much alarmed at meeting up with any of them.”
“I am sure old [Andrew Jackson] could give me good advice and probably teach me good swear words,” he wrote, according to the book. “And I’m sure old Grover Cleveland could tell me some choice remarks to make to some political leaders. … So I won’t lock my doors or bar them either if any of the old coots in the pictures out in the hall want to come out of their frames for a friendly chat.”
When Weird Darkness returns, I’ll answer your emails, YouTube comments, and Apple Podcast reviews in the Chamber of Comments!
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CHAMBER OF COMMENTS==========
Here in the Chamber of Comments I answer your emails, comments, podcast reviews, letters I get in the mail, and more. You can find all of my contact information, postal address, and social media links on the CONTACT page at WeirdDarkness.com. While you’re there, you can join the very active “Weird Darkness Weirdos” Facebook Group, and hang out with me and the rest of our Weirdo family! And you can drop me an email anytime at: darren @ weirddarkness.com.
(YouTube comment from Pope Chucky): My new home for all things ‘unique’.. since ‘Ghost-to-Ghost’ AM basically went away I’ve been looking for a new home.. yet u have me hooked, and probably will burn all kinds of phone batteries PLOWING” through all the vids on your channel! Blessed Samhain, and happy Dia de los Muertos!
REPLY: Thanks, Chucky! Comparing the podcast to Art Bell’s Ghost-to-Ghost is quite possibly the best compliment I could ever receive!
(Review from ADudeThatPlayedTheGame): I repaint a lot of 100 year old houses in the Salt Lake City valley, and I always listen to your podcasts while I’m working, and it makes painting old houses a lot more enjoyable, because it I’m always getting weird feelings in dim lit rooms or in basements. Love what your doing man keep it up!
REPLY: Thanks for the review, ADudeThatPlayedTheGame. You do realize that ghosts typically don’t like it when you start redecorating their house or do new construction and stuff, right? If you’re wondering why you are getting weird feelings while you’re doing your job… well, there you go! But I’m glad I’m there to keep you company while the spirits torment you!
(Email from Michael): Hey Mr. Marlar. Just wanted to wish you a happy birthday! Watched most of the live scream and enjoyed it thoroughly. Had to go to bed around 11:30 central since I’m a pastor. Anyway, you closed out our Halloween celebrations this year. My wife and I have a tradition of starting the Christmas music after Halloween. I know for some that is annoying but if there were some good Thanksgiving songs we would do that first. Anyway, hope your birthday was blessed with rest and joy. Blessings – Michael
REPLY: Thank you, Michael! Yeah… I guess there aren’t many (or any?) Thanksgiving songs to get you into the holiday mood, are there? Here at Marlar Manor all the Halloween stuff has already come down and we’re decorated for Thanksgiving – mostly Fall decor, with a couple of turkeys here and there, a couple of pilgrim figurines too, and wooden placards giving all the thanks to God. On Black Friday the Christmas tree goes up. We don’t play Christmas music though. I do, but my bride doesn’t – she just has never been a fan of holiday music. She LOVES the season, she does all the decorating and the amount of work she does every year is over-the-top incredible, but the music just isn’t her thing. Meanwhile, I’m in my studio organizing scary stories while listening to “O, Holy Night” and “Mary, Did You Know”. I guess it’s true – opposites DO attract!
(Review from Tub Quality Reglaze): Darren I’m a fellow weirdo in Christ I enjoy listening to your show; it is so relaxing and bone chilling at the same time; keep up the good work and keep shining that light at the end of the show it is greatly appreciated.
REPLY: Thanks, Reglaze! Good to see someone else has also picked up the phrase “Weirdo in Christ” and started running with it – I was hoping that would take off!
(Email from someone who just calls herself the letter “C”.): Hello Darren. I am one of your weirdos from North Carolina. I started following your podcasts about a month ago and have been a daily listener ever since. I love your show so much. I played your narration of “The monster in the pantry” for my kids and they loved it. Anyway today is Nov 1st 2020. And it’s been the strangest Halloween I can remember. This past Thursday we had a tropical storm come through our area knocking out my power. It is now Sunday morning and I’m in my car listening to your replay of last nights live feed as I write this to you. We are still without electricity. I wanted to share last nights events. I have felt apprehensive about this Halloween. With it being a full moon and no power it felt very ominous plus the lack of activity on a night that would usually be so lively but because of Covid it’s so quiet. We attended a truck or treat and then came home and had a small fire outside roasting marshmallows and having hot chocolate trying to make the best of this situation. My children were happy and we had a good night. But I kept feeling apprehensive. I don’t know why. Probably because it was so creepy and dark and quiet and the moon felt like it was staring me. It was so bright even when the overcast came. It looked all night like the sun was about to come up when it should have been pitch black outside. I had nightmare’s last night for the first time since I can remember. The children and I have been sleeping on the sofa’s pullout bed and staying warm using my emergency kerosene heater which does an amazing job at warming the house. I set up an outside kitchen using stones from my garden and a grate and beside it a second fire pit with a tripod and chain to hold our iron dutch oven over that fire. Between the two I was able to make a good meal and felt like I had overcome this struggle and successfully made lemonade out of these lemons. Then last night it rained. Soaking our fire wood and taking away my ability to cook for my children over the fire. So I went to get in the car to go pick up food, but it wouldn’t start. I dismissed both of these unfortunate events as just more bad luck until just a few minutes ago. I went to use the bathroom and I looked up above the door and I kid you not the molding that frames the bathroom door was ripped away from the wall. I think I was mid-sentence making a joke for my seven year old son’s amusement when I noticed it and just stopped. My children are very young and it’s just the 3 of us living here. There is literally no explanation for this. I do not understand how the molding could be pulled away like that. I pushed it back in place but I even had to get a step stool to reach it and had to use a bit of force to move it back in place. So it isn’t like it was loose and just fell away. I would very much like to hear your thoughts on this. I found this to be pretty unnerving on its own aside from the other bits of misfortune this weekend. It doesn’t help that in the 12 years that I’ve lived in this house there have been more than a few bizarre events that have taken place that have made me come to expect unusual things and maybe on a different day I’ll share some of these. I’m just not sure anyone will believe that I didn’t make them up. Also please excuse any typographical errors. I’m submitting this on my phone and wouldn’t you know it the screen is broken so I am having a bit of difficulty proofreading my submission. Thank you for your podcast. I could and have listened for hours on end. And I’ll be sharing you very soon with my father who I know will love the show as much as I do. Thanks again. “C.”
REPLY: First, before I forget, for those who’ve not heard the episode “Monster in the Pantry”, I have placed a link to it in the show notes. Okay… wow, “C.” I’m going to call you Carol if that’s okay, I just want something other than “C” because that sound like the word “yes” in Spanish and it also sounds like another word for ocean and I just don’t want this to be confusing for anyone listening. Carol – I have to admit, as I was listening to your story I was kind of along for the ride with you. At first thinking, dang… that’s rotten luck. Then, well crap, that really sucks. Then, holy crap, this lady is having a horrible day! And finally I was to the point of almost yelling “CALL AN EXORCIST!!!!” I don’t think you have to go that far, but the more you described what was happening, the worse and worse it got. Daaaaaaaaang. While some amount of this could be chalked up to simply having a not-so-good-very-bad-day, taking into account that power does go out once in a while, weather does happen, cars break down – and when they do it’s never at a convenient time… once you got to that bathroom door molding, you can’t help but think something is working against you. I don’t know where you are in your spiritual walk or what faith you follow, but if this were my family I’d be huddled together praying for God’s protection first, asking Jesus to remove the dark spirits that might be tormenting you. We don’t know that’s what is happening, but it never hurts to go to God and ask. Since much of this seems to be centered around your house and property, I’d find some oil and bless the house with it – make the mark of the cross over every door and window – every entryway into your home – and while doing so, ask God to bless your house and those who live there, and to protect them from evil. If you don’t feel comfortable in this task, call a local church and ask for help from them – a pastor or deacon could do it, or at a Catholic church a priest could come and bless the house. While you’re at it, bless the car too. This all sounds like silly nonsense to non-believers, I know, but my bride and I have done it since the beginning and we’ve always felt His presence with us even in the tough times. I hope this helps.
(Review from Dishing Urges) I love how frequently this podcast comes out and, of course, I love the subject. Darren’s voice is so great and the stories keep me enthralled. I especially love creepy pasta Thursday. Especially The Neverglades!!!
REPLY: Thanks for the compliment, Dishing Urges! I have to admit, The Neverglades are a lot of fun for me to narrate as well!
I’ll answer more of your emails, comments, and letters next time! Again, you can find all of my social media and contact information on the CONTACT page of the website, or drop me an email at darren @ weirddarkness.com.
SHOW CLOSE, CREDITS, A LITTLE LIGHT, AND A FINAL THOUGHT==========
Thanks for listening. If you like the podcast, and you haven’t already subscribed, be sure to do so now so you don’t miss future episodes! And also, please – tell someone else about the podcast. Recommend Weird Darkness to your friends, family, and co-workers who love the paranormal, horror stories, or true crime like you do! Every time you share the podcast with someone new, it helps spread the word about the show – and a growing audience makes it possible for me to keep creating episodes as often as I do. Plus, telling others about Weird Darkness also helps get the word out about resources that are available for those who suffer from depression. So please share the podcast with someone today.
Do you have a dark tale to tell of your own? Fact or fiction, click on “Tell Your Story” on the website and I might use it in a future episode.
All stories in Weird Darkness are purported to be true (unless stated otherwise), and you can find source links or links to the authors in the show notes.
“Ghosts in the White House” and “Lingering Lincoln” from History.com
“Lincoln’s Ghost” by Troy Taylor
“Is The White House Haunted” by Theresa Vargas for The Washington Post
Weird Darkness theme by Alibi Music.
WeirdDarkness™ – is a registered trademark. Copyright ©Weird Darkness 2020.
If you’d like a transcript of this episode, you can find a link in the show notes.
Now that we’re coming out of the dark, I’ll leave you with a little light… “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves.” – Philippians 2:3
And a final thought… “I am not bound to win, but I am bound to be true. I am not bound to succeed, but I am bound to live by the light that I have. I must stand with anybody that stands right, and stand with him while he is right, and part with him when he goes wrong.” – Abraham Lincoln
I’m Darren Marlar. Thanks for joining me in the Weird Darkness.