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True Irish Ghost Stories: Haunted Houses, Banshees, Poltergeists, and Other Supernatural Phenomena (John D. Seymour) online
CHAPTER III HAUNTED HOUSES IN MOGH'S HALF
Another night I was sleeping with my little girl. I awoke, and saw a girl with long, fair hair standing at the fireplace, one hand at her side, the other on the chimney-piece. Thinking at first it was my little girl, I felt on the pillow to see if she were gone, but she was fast asleep. There was no fire or light of any kind in the room.
Some time afterwards a friend was sleeping there, and she told me that she was pushed out of bed the whole night. Two gentlemen to whom I had mentioned this came over, thinking they would find out the cause. In the morning when they came down they asked for the carriage to take them to the next train, but would not tell what they had heard or seen. Another person who came to visit her sister, who was looking after the house before we went in, slept in this room, and in the morning said she must go back that day. She also would give no information.
On walking down the corridor, I have heard a door open, a footstep cross before me, and go into another room, _both_ doors being closed at the time. An old cook I had told me that when she went into the hall in the morning, a gentleman would come down the front stairs, take a plumed hat off the stand, and vanish _through_ the hall door. This she saw nearly every morning. She also said that a girl often came into her bedroom, and put her hand on her (the cook's) face; and when she would push her away she would hear a girl's voice say, "Oh don't!" three times. I have often heard voices in the drawing-room, which decidedly sounded as if an old gentleman and a girl were talking. Noises like furniture being moved were frequently heard at night, and strangers staying with us have often asked why the servants turned out the rooms underneath them at such an unusual hour. The front-door bell sometimes rang, and I have gone down, but found no one.
Yours very sincerely, F.T.
"Kilman" Castle, in the heart of Ireland--the name is obviously a pseudonym--has been described as perhaps the worst haunted mansion in the British Isles. That it deserves this doubtful recommendation, we cannot say; but at all events the ordinary reader will be prepared to admit that it contains sufficient "ghosts" to satisfy the most greedy ghost-hunter. A couple of months ago the present writer paid a visit to this castle, and was shown all over it one morning by the mistress of the house, who, under the _nom de plume_ of "Andrew Merry" has published novels dealing with Irish life, and has also contributed articles on the ghostly phenomena of her house to the _Occult Review_ (Dec. 1908 and Jan. 1909).
The place itself is a grim, grey, bare building. The central portion, in which is the entrance-hall, is a square castle of the usual type; it is built on a rock, and a slight batter from base to summit gives an added appearance of strength and solidity. On either side of the castle are more modern wings, one of which terminates in what is known as the "Priest's House."
Now to the ghosts. The top storey of the central tower is a large, well-lighted apartment, called the "Chapel," having evidently served that purpose in times past. At one end is what is said to be an _oubliette_, now almost filled up. Occasionally in the evenings, people walking along the roads or in the fields see the windows of this chapel lighted up for a few seconds as if many lamps were suddenly brought into it. This is certainly _not_ due to servants; from our experience we can testify that it is the last place on earth that a domestic would enter after dark. It is also said that a treasure is buried somewhere in or around the castle. The legend runs that an ancestor was about to be taken to Dublin on a charge of rebellion, and, fearing he would never return, made the best of the time left to him by burying somewhere a crock full of gold and jewels. Contrary to expectation, he _did_ return; but his long confinement had turned his brain, and he could never remember the spot where he had deposited his treasure years before. Some time ago a lady, a Miss B., who was decidedly psychic, was invited to Kilman Castle in the hope that she would be able to locate the whereabouts of this treasure. In this respect she failed, unfortunately, but gave, nevertheless, a curious example of her power. As she walked through the hall with her hostess, she suddenly laid her hand upon the bare stone wall, and remarked, "There is something uncanny here, but I don't know what it is." In that very spot, some time previously, two skeletons had been discovered walled up.