Visitors from the present looking to connect with visitors from the past
GALION — With its partially repainted exterior and interior lights on at odd hours of the night, one might wonder what is happening at Gill House
Gill House, on the corner of Gill Avenue and Harding Way West, has an interesting history, told many times over the years. Bloomer and Nellie Gill and their four children moved in following its completion in 1904. It wasn’t built on a vacant lot. The house directly behind Gill House on Gill Avenue was moved from the corner lot to make room for the new mansion.
The question today might be: Why are there lights on — sometimes just the beams of flashlights — seen by passersby late at night?
Jane Palmer Baker tells of Galion’s men in blue stopping in to see what was going on in the house, knowing no one lived there. Once assured it was nothing more than ghost investigators, Baker said they were happy to leave her and and visitors to do their thing.
Baker serves as the “Ghost Host” when paranormal investigators arrive from all over Ohio, and from as far away as Ontario, Canada. Other investigators have come from Arkansas, Maryland, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Florida, Indiana and Kentucky.
All this investigative activity has come about without any advertising. Weekend bookings are already scheduled through November. Brenda Sopher Treisch is primarily responsible for handling group reservations and managing the schedule.
She said Gill House’s busiest months are March through November.
Groups were booking visits to explore the paranormal occurrences when only one room in the house had heat! With heat in more parts of the house, their season of visitors may expand.
One might be surprised to learn there are paranormal investigator groups all over Ohio.
One of the first to find paranormal activity in Gill House was a group from Cincinnati. Paranormal investigators have specialized tools, such as “ghost boxes,” also known as “spirit boxes.” These devices operate by picking up radio waves. Investigators report hearing voices, and are sometimes able to understand what a voice is saying.
Other investigators have arrived with equipment such as cameras, monitors, recorders, as well as electromagnetic devices to assist in exposing as much present paranormal activity as possible.
Both women report that paranormal investigator groups are composed of serious and respectful people. Very seldom do they encounter a visitor who is skeptical about paranormal activity.
They say apparitions can manipulate electrical charges in the house, especially in battery-operated devices. Both have stories to share of experiencing unexplained power failures, particularly in the basement of the home.
Groups prefer to examine paranormal activity in the night-time hours. Baker says tours are scheduled from 6:00 p.m. until 3:00 a.m., though few visitors stay that late. Dedicated investigators can pay for additional hours into the early morning.
Some groups want to learn the history of Gill House. Local historian and preservationist Thomas Palmer can be available to review its history, including the story of a staircase that goes nowhere. Investigators may also be interested in the connection between a site and its area’s history, also visiting area cemeteries where possible.
Visitors to Gill House from various groups report similar paranormal activity, such as a little girl, or a girl in white. Baker and Treisch do not allow groups to conduct séances. Such activities have been reported to have caused a breach in the portals to the paranormal.