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Animal Ghosts or Animal Hauntings and the Hereafter by Elliott O'Donnell


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Animal Hauntings and the Hereafter

"'Come, now,' I said to myself, 'we shall see some fun--the 1911 copper meeting the peeler of 1840. I wonder what he will think of him.'

"To my intense astonishment, however, neither even as much as gave the other a fleeting glance, but passed by unmoved, and, to all appearance, wholly unconscious of each other.

"A few yards further, I espied a negro looking intently in a store window. Just as the strange policeman came up to him, he gave a violent start, turned round and stared at him, gasped, his cheeks ashy pale, his eyes bulging, made some exclamation I could not catch, and, dashing past me, fled. Then, and not till then, did I begin to feel funny. Further on still we came to a crossing. A carriage and pair with a coronet on the panels of the door was standing waiting. Directly the policeman approached, both the horses reared so violently, they all but threw the coachman off the box. One of the men cried out, 'Heavens, Bill, what's that?' But the other and older of the two, who was clinging to the reins with all his might, merely swore.

"Convinced now that I was on the trail of something not human--something in all probability superphysical, and, impelled by a fascination I could not resist, I followed.

"At the top of Wolf Street the policeman paused, then crossing slowly over, turned into Dane Street, down which he continued to ride with the same mechanical and automatic tread. At length, when within a few feet of a certain shop, over which is a flat that has long borne a reputation for being haunted, the horse came to a dead halt, and horse and rider, veering slowly round, looked at me. What I saw I shall never forget. I saw the faces of the DEAD--the LONG SINCE dead. For some moments they confronted me, and then--vanished, vanished where they stood. I saw them again, under precisely the same conditions, two days later, and I have seen them once since. I am not an imaginative or highly-strung person, but am, on the contrary, exceedingly practical and matter-of-fact, no better proof of which I can give than this fact--I am engaged to be married to a Quebec solicitor!"

_An Irish Haunting_

Mr. Reginald B. Span, in a most interesting article called "Some Glimpses of the Unseen," that appeared in the _Occult Review_ for February, 1906, writes as follows:--

"Another strange incident, which also occurred in Ireland, was told me by a coachman in my cousin's employ at Kilpeacon, near Limerick. This man had previously been a park-keeper to Lord Doneraile in Co. Cork. One bright moonlight night, he was coming across Lord Doneraile's park, having been round to see that the gates were shut, when his attention was drawn to the distant baying of hounds, and he stopped to listen, as the sounds seemed to proceed from within the park walls, and he knew there were no hounds kept on the estate. His young son was with him, and also heard the noise, which was getting louder and clearer, and was evidently moving rapidly in their direction. His first idea was that a pack of hounds which were kept in the hunting kennels a few miles away, had escaped and had somehow got into the park, although he had seen that the gates were closed, and there was really no way by which they could have entered. The baying of hounds, as if in 'full cry,' sounded closer and closer, and suddenly, out of the shadow of some trees, a number of foxhounds, running at full speed, appeared in the clear light of the moon. They raced past the amazed spectators (a whole pack of them), followed closely by an elderly man on a large horse. Although they came very near, no sound could be heard but the baying of one or two of the hounds. The galloping of the horse was not heard at all. They swung across the grass at a tremendous pace, and were lost to view round the end of a plantation. The park-keeper knew that all the gates were shut, and that it would be impossible for a pack of hounds to pass out, and he thought the mystery might be solved the next day. However, it never was explained--by any natural cause. No hounds or horseman had been in the park. The mansion was closed, Lord Doneraile being away, and no one had the right of entering the grounds within the park walls. He heard later that there was a story in the neighbourhood about 'the ghost' of a former Lord Doneraile 'haunting' the park--and possibly the spectral horseman was he. I questioned the man and his son closely about it, and am convinced they were not deceived by hallucination, and that their account is perfectly true."