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Today is April 19, 2021

Mississippi Seen

Raising the spirits

By Walt Grayson

Raising the spirits

It was after midnight. The flashlight lay on the floor of the darkened room. There were five or six of us standing around watching it. One of the crew called out, “On the count of three, turn on this flashlight. One. Two. Three.” And the flashlight lit up by itself! “If you want us to leave, turn it off.” And all of a sudden, the room was totally dark again. Only we didn’t leave. Someone else called out, “If you’re a female, light the light again.” And it lit. Someone else asked, “What’s your name?” Now, I’m new to ghost hunting, but even I figured that would be a tough question to answer by just turning a flashlight on or off, unless they spelled it out in Morse code.

This was a ghost investigation. Why was I there? Well, there are a lot of ghost hunting television shows running right now and one of the people I work with at the TV station knows a guy who is the head of a paranormal group. They do “investigations” of old houses, hotels, theaters and places like that all the time. So, a few of us tagged along with his group to see what we could see — or what we COULDN’T see, as would be the case with ghosts.

I guess I come by ghost hunting through heredity. My granddaddy tracked down every ghost story he could in Itawamba County. He WANTED to see a ghost. It would prove that there is life after death. He never found anything that he couldn’t explain.

In the back of our minds, we have the idea that we’d like to do our own version of a ghost hunting TV show but different from the ones already running. We’re still working on how that would actually look.

I think there is a desire to prove life after death. Even the disciple Thomas wouldn’t believe Jesus had risen from the dead unless he could see for himself. When he saw, he believed. And it didn’t take a flashlight blinking, either.

Years ago, I did a story about one of the old tour homes in Natchez that was supposed to be haunted. I interviewed the manager. She lived on the premises. So, after the home closed for tours for the day, she would be there all alone until the next morning. I had to ask her if there was anything to the ghost stories. She told me about a few of her experiences. And as I was leaving, I asked her if it would be okay to run some of her ghost tales on television. She said, “By all means. It helps so much with security!”

So maybe that can be our take — we’re not ghost hunting — we’re helping with security to scare people so they would never try to break in. ‘Course, any house that scary I’d never go into in the first place. But it may work. Blink once if you think you’d watch a show like that.

 

Walt Grayson is the host of “Mississippi Roads” on Mississippi Public Broadcasting television and the author of two “Looking Around Mississippi” books and “Oh! That Reminds Me: More Mississippi Homegrown Stories.” He lives in Brandon and is a Central Electric member. Contact him at walt@waltgrayson.com.

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