A Warsaw man and his cameraman named Bones will be spending Saturday night in the Old Jail Museum hunting for ghosts.
Barry Hayden and Bill “Bones” Elliott will be checking in at 9 p.m. Saturday until 2 a.m. Sunday.
The Old Jail Museum is said to be one of the most haunted places in Kosciusko County, director Greg Steffe said. The building was built in 1870 and operated as the county’s jail until 1982. Up until nearly its closing, the sheriff was required to live there. The jail cells remain in the condition they were left in, as do the living quarters where the last sheriff, Dave Andrews and his family, lived. There has been four suicides, one murder-suicide and a lynching at the Old Jail, Steffe said, and a ghost of a former sheriff walking around in his uniform has been reportedly seen many times.
Steffe, who has been investigating paranormal activity for 15 years, claims he and groups of people with him have not only had conversations with ghosts in the Old Jail but even had the ghosts engage in requests such as turning off and on a flashlight.
“It knocks your socks off,” Steffe said.
Hayden, who is from Warsaw and started paranormal investigating a year ago, will be bringing in newer and more high-tech equipment than what Steffe has used in the past.
Hayden will be using an ambisonic microphone, a doppler radar with 360 degree capability that can see through some walls, a laser grid and an SLS camera, just to name a few. His bag of equipment is full.
The SLS camera stands for structured light source. It will build a structure on his screen from a light source. So, for example, if Hayden is holding the camera up in the pitch black dark and an apparition is in the room, the camera will show him the figure. Bones will be equipped with a night-vision camera that shoots 4K video, and they plan to place several cameras on tripods around the museum to monitor rooms that they’re not in at any given moment.
Hayden said that while the science behind paranormal investigating is complicated, there are generally two kinds people study: residual hauntings and active ghosts.
“Residual hauntings happen whether anybody’s there or not, and they’ll happen over and over again,” he said, likening it to someone hearing footsteps, which is something Steffe reports happens there. “And that is heard consistently, and that is because it is actually imprinted on the building. It’s not like a ghost is walking around currently. It’s something that got imprinted on the building.”
An active ghost is a ghost a that a person can have interaction with, he said.
But what do they want?
“Some ghosts want something, but it’s really an individual experience,” Hayden said. “For some of those people, like say the lynching or the murder-suicide, that is such a tragic way to die and unexpected way to die that they become trapped, but that doesn’t mean they can’t be led to pass over. It’s kind of like they’re stuck. They don’t realize that they’ve passed.”
Hayden said the ghosts do know they’re not “alive.” Both he and Steffe agreed it’s rare for a ghost to touch you, but that all paranormal investigators ought to beware of demons and bringing an attachment home with them.
Hayden and Bones were recently investigating reported paranormal activity in a Claypool home and video footage taken from that reveals two voices being heard – one from a man and one from a woman. Hayden concluded those voices were probably from the couple who had lived and died there. He said he told the man who lives there now – the couple’s adult son – that it seems those ghosts were there to let the man know they’re looking out and watching over him.
“I’m one of the biggest skeptics that there are,” Hayden said. “Anything I capture, I try to disprove.”
Hayden and Bones want the public to know that they’re out there to help and will be launching a YouTube channel at the end of the year called “Enter the Darkk.” The channel will feature videos of their investigations and the evidence that they capture, along with tutorials on the paranormal equipment about proper use and show how some equipment can give a false reading.
Hayden and Bones are available to assist anyone who believes they have a ghost problem and are willing to investigate private residences, he said. Depending on the person’s wishes asking for their assistance, Hayden and Bones can ask for the ghost activity to cease or have the entity leave by doing a cleansing. Anyone who would like to speak with Hayden can contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.