HAUNTING AT THE COTTAGE
My daughter, Barbara, and I have enjoyed going to Eureka Springs, Arkansas, for several years. One of our favorite trips was in 1993. We were staying at a cottage inn on this particular trip. The house had three floors, and the only other guests in the house were in the basement. The owners of the house live in a small house at the back of the property. Barbara and I had adjoining rooms upstairs. Each bedroom had a bath just outside the bedroom door.
When we arrived, we just wandered around the house looking at the wonderful antiques and furnishings. At one point, Barbara was upstairs taking photographs and I was downstairs. Each time she took a picture, I could see the flash. I don't know how.
There is a very large porch, which runs the whole length of the house on the back. We went out to sit on the porch swing. There were two ceiling fans on the porch, which were going full blast, but there was no air coming from them. At the time, we thought nothing of it. Before we went to bed that night, we looked through the rest of the house. The other bedrooms upstairs were all beautifully furnished and all the bedroom doors were open and all the windows were closed.
When we finally went to bed, we each locked our bedroom doors from the inside. Sometime during the night, Barbara was awakened by her bed shaking. She remembers thinking there must be a train going by. Then she realized she was in the middle of Eureka Springs, and there couldn't be a train. Having no other explanation, however, she went back to sleep.
When I went to bed, I put all my rings and bracelets in a small glass dish that was on the nightstand next to the bed, underneath the lamp. The first time I was awakened, there was a “figure,” either a child or a very small woman, looking at my jewelry! It was only there for a second, and thinking I was dreaming, I went back to sleep. The second time I awoke to the sound of rustling material and I thought Barbara was going through my room to get to the bathroom. I couldn't understand why she would be going that way, because she had a bathroom just outside her bedroom. The next thing I knew, this “figure” was again looking at my jewelry and turned to look at me. When “it” realized I was looking back, “it” went back around the end of my bed and went through the door to Barbara's room.
When I awoke the next morning, I immediately looked to see if my jewelry was still there. It was. I called out to Barbara and asked her if she had gone through my bedroom to the bathroom. She hadn't. I then told her the story and she told me about the shaking bed.
Barbara then related to me that she had been told stories about ghosts at this cottage, but she had not told me because she didn't want me to be afraid. We decided to get up and get ready to go downstairs for breakfast. When we walked out onto the landing, all the other bedroom doors were shut and the windows were all open. Also, when we had gone to bed the night before, all the lamps in the upstairs hallways were on. Now they were off.
When we finally made it downstairs, the man who owned the house was fixing breakfast. We asked him if he had been upstairs and closed the doors and turned off the lights. He had not been in the house at all since the previous evening. I asked him if strange things happened there sometimes. He asked us to tell him our experience. When I told him about the “figure,” he took me to one of the photograph albums he kept in the living room. He showed me a picture of the smallest young woman sitting in a large chair, looking very childlike. She was the wife of the first Governor of Arkansas who had built this cottage. She did not die in the house, but lived there for some time. The woman in the picture looked very much like the “figure” I had seen in the bedroom.
According to the owner, this little woman was not the only visitor they had from time to time. His wife had seen a tall, thin man many times when she was cleaning or rearranging furniture. Also, he told us that doors would close for no reason. He also said that the drawers and cabinets in the kitchen would open and close all the time. He told us that he doesn't publicize these things because some people might be afraid to come. But when he is asked, he will tell you whatever you want to know.
He told us a story about a couple that had stayed in the same room I had. They complained the next morning that the air conditioner had stopped working during the night. When he went upstairs to investigate, he pulled a very large chest away from the wall and discovered that the air conditioner had been unplugged. After we finished breakfast, Barbara and I did a thorough search of the house to see if we could find hidden doors or some way for someone to project an image into the rooms. We found nothing.
When Barbara went back to work, she told this story to a friend. The friend told her about a Tulsa dentist who had a similar experience at the same cottage. His wife was taking a bath, and he had pulled a chair out from the wall and was reading the newspaper. His wife called to him to bring her a towel, so he laid his newspaper on the bed and took the towel to her. When he returned to the bedroom, the chair was back against the wall and his newspaper was folded neatly on the bed.
Barbara and I have stayed at the cottage since then, and absolutely nothing out of the ordinary happened. We plan to stay there again in the fall. In my 70 years, I have never seen anything I could not explain, except this. I don't have weird dreams, don't hear things that go bump in the night, and have never before or since experienced anything like this. These things did occur, and I no longer give funny looks to people when they relate they have had strange things happen to them.
By: M. J. B.
HAUNTING AT THE COTTAGE