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Ghosts of Frederick, Maryland

ChickieNob loves ghosts.  Like if ghosts ever want a liaison in the living world, she would be a great hire.  She doesn’t find ghosts scary; instead, she likes to point out that when ghosts interact with the living world, they aren’t trying to scare us.  They just want to be acknowledged.  Exactly, she points out, what humans want while they’re living, too.

So going on a ghost tour seemed like the perfect activity.  We drove out to Frederick, which has a particularly ghost-y historic district.  Also, the website for the tour stated that Frederick is Maryland’s most haunted city, and websites never lie.  Why would we bother with Baltimore or Annapolis if they were the second or third most haunted cities when we could go straight to the creme de la creme and get the deluxe ghost experience?

You buy the tickets in a dessert bakery called Cakes to Die For with a hearse parked in front of the building.  (Chickie was enamoured with the black, glittery skull near the front window of the shop.)  Afterward, we joined the tour guide, Matthew, who started leading the group toward the old city hall.

Where he properly freaked us out.

The tour started out with a drawn and quartering story from around the time of the Revolutionary War, and then Matthew casually pointed out that the little, brick walkway we were standing on — one of four little, brick walkways — marked the path the horses took when they SNAPPED THE MAN’S BODY INTO FOUR PIECES.  While I was trying not to throw up in my mouth, the ChickieNob pointed that a light had mysteriously just gone on in the empty building.

Just the ghosts, trying to be acknowledged.

It was actually the most fun I’ve had with a history lesson.  The guide was a great storyteller, and he took us from building to building, telling us really cool tales about the old inhabitants or strange ghost sightings.  We talked about Barbara Fritchie (the flag waver… or non-flag waver) and spite houses and the Baltimore cotillion.  And ghosts ghosts ghosts ghosts ghosts.  Ghosts who trash bathrooms, ghosts who sit at the foot of your bed, ghosts who move your stuff around because YOU AREN’T ACKNOWLEDGING THEM.

We would not be so foolish.

It was such a fun evening, despite sweating like the Airplane! pilot.

Have you ever been on a ghost tour?


1 Cristy { 09.04.16 at 10:03 am }

I predict you have a ghost hunter in your future. Combined with history buff, she’s be a force to be reckoned with.

Sounds like it was a fun evening! And with Halloween around the corner, I hope there are many more.

2 loribeth { 09.04.16 at 10:33 am }

Frederick, Maryland, was home to one of my favourite authors, whose real name was Barbara Mertz but wrote under the pen names Barbara Michaels & Elizabeth Peters. Her Barbara Michaels novels in particular are thrillers with ghosts & supernatural events. Chickie Nob might enjoy them when she’s just a bit older — my sister & I discovered her when we were in junior high and still love her stuff. (You might too!! lol) Her Peters novels tend to have more humour (& history) in them — she wrote several series focused on particular characters, including Vicki Bliss, art historian, Jacqueline Kirby, librarian, and (most famously) Amelia Peabody, Victorian-era Egyptologist. She passed away a few years ago 🙁 but I got to hear her speak & have a book signed by her when she appeared at an event at the Royal Ontario Museum in the fall of 1998. This was just after I lost Katie (& right around her due date) and it was such a tonic for me. I got rid of a lot of books when we moved this spring, but I definitely kept that one! 🙂


3 Brid { 09.04.16 at 12:22 pm }

For years we’d been talking about going on the ghost tour in Halifax, Nova Scotia, and we finally went last year. Best decision ever! Same as you, our tour guide was an incredible story teller, plus he was a bit of a weirdo with a huge heavy Nova Scotian/Maritimer accent. We heard stories about faces in windows of the oldest church in the region (and beyond, I think, but can’t quite remember); this was a window that was blown out in the Halifax Explosion. There were multiple stories about actual physical paranormal phenomena. A patch of wooden floor under the spot that a soldier hung himself turns dark for a certain period of the year–right around the anniversary of his death, of course; there’s a window in a house that is entirely black–this house has had multiple owners, the panes of glass have been replaced many times, but the glass always turns black; plus we had shipwrecked sailors, stories about the Titanic, brides with lost loves, cemeteries with trapped souls, mysterious rooms with furniture that doesn’t stay put, and other creepy occurrences. So fun! Glad you all got to try one! I would highly recommend this type of activity!

4 Lori Lavender Luz { 09.04.16 at 5:12 pm }

I took a haunted tour of Denver one time years ago, and it was so fun. I’d love to do such a tour with you and the ChickieNob!

How might a person get a ghost to CLEAN her bathroom?

5 Chris { 09.04.16 at 5:14 pm }

I didn’t realize Elizabeth Peters had passed away. My mom got me hooked on the Vickie Bliss novels years ago, but after my moms death I haven’t kept up and so missed that. Bummer!

6 torthúil { 09.05.16 at 4:09 pm }

Glad you had fun! Yes, I’ve been on a ghost tour: for our honeymoon. My foot was broken and we were advised to take the ghost tour of Jerome, Arizona (awesome place by the way) because there would be more driving and less walking. That didn’t seem entirely true: my husband carried me up and down a lot of flights of stairs lol. But we had a great time even though we didn’t take it as seriously as some others did. I can’t say I saw any ghosts but it was a fun way to learn some history and mythology.

7 jamie { 09.05.16 at 7:41 pm }

NO WAY!!! I don’t do ghost hunting. I am a wuss.

8 Ashley { 09.06.16 at 9:27 am }

A few years ago my son and I visited Harper’s Ferry in West Virginia and we went on an evening walking ghost tour. I enjoyed hearing the history, plus the town is adorable and quaint, although hilly so we walked a lot of stairs. I’m not a believer in ghosts but my son is. He said he saw a mean ghost (we had been told a story about the ghost pushing someone off a portico in what is now a government building) that scared him and he wanted to leave as soon as the tour was over. I would still recommend taking the tour. The guide is an older gentleman, very knowledgeable about the history of the town, also a musician and he dresses the part of an old-time story teller, real beard and all!

9 SunbonnetSmart.com { 09.07.16 at 12:24 pm }

Hello, Mel! Sounds like lots of fun. I didn’t know Frederick had ghost tours. We LOVE them. Have partaken of the tours in Gettysburg, PA and Williamsburg, VA with great fun and success. Mark Nesbitt has a Ghost Tours shop on the main street of Gettysburg, Baltimore Street, along with many YouTube videos: http://bit.ly/2cdpbgg Here’s his web site: https://ghostsofgettysburg.com/ #LotsaFun Thanks for sharing yours, Much Love, Fondly, Robin

10 Charlotte { 09.11.16 at 9:49 pm }

Gah, somehow I forgot to comment on this one!
I had NO idea Frederick had a ghost tour, I will definitely have to check that out, as it’s only about 20 minutes from where I live now.
I actually went on a ghost tour in Scotland year ago, it was the first time I had ever heard about them and didn’t know it was a thing. I still have the tour guide’s business card that read “Adam Lyle-Deceased”. It was one of the coolest things I ever did. Being in Europe made it especially cool, and since I was afraid any other ghost tour wouldn’t live up to my first experience, I haven’t done one since. Perhaps it’s time to finally break that streak.

(c) 2006 Melissa S. Ford
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