I have always been fascinated by ghost stories. Well, fascinated and terrified. I wasn’t really allowed to watch horror movies as a kid. Religious upbringing and all that. I actually didn’t see “The Exorcist” until I was in my mid-20s so I was pretty out of the loop for a few years in regards to scary films. When I was about 10, I watched “Scream” at a friend’s house and my heart nearly beat out of my chest. Everyone else thought it was no big deal but scary stories and movies had more power and import for me since they were entirely verboten in my household.
I got all my ghost stories from books of terrifying tales and late-night legends around the campfire in Boy Scouts. In a way, that was even more terrifying than a horror movie because I was forced to fill in the gaps and details with my wildly overcharged imagination. I distinctly recall working myself up until I was actually shaking from fear simply by letting creepy scenarios play out in my head.
This fascination with the paranormal and the frightening things that lurk in the dark continues for me even today. When I first moved back to Longview in 2011, I spent many nights staying up late watching “Ghost Adventures”. Yeah, I know it’s a corny show and there are allegations that much of it was staged. Still, I had no friends, no job and little to do so I’d plunk down in a chair and suck up marathons of this show. I’d wander through the dark house to smoke a cigarette on the back porch and nearly jump at shadows as my mind raced with thoughts of EVPs and mysteriously thrown objects.
Watching that show really made me want to try ghost hunting. I had no equipment, no money and no haunted locations to explore but the desire was there all the same. Once, while over at my girlfriend’s house, we heard strange noises from her daughter’s room, which was empty at the time. I took out my phone and conducted an impromptu EVP session. I got no eerie, disembodied voices on the recording but I still thought it was a fascinating experience.
Now, I’m very lucky to be good friends with a guy who has actually been on many ghost hunts right here in East Texas. He’s conducted his own ghost tours and gone on hunts with official paranormal groups in Tyler. In addition to having this fascinating hobby, he’s also a world-class storyteller, probably the best one I know.
His name is Adam and I’m confident that you’ll dig his tales of haunted houses and spooky locations. I sat down with him to listen to a few of his ghosting stories. I enjoyed them so much that I’m sure I’ll have him back on the Dispatch to relate more tales. Check out our conversation and, if you like his style (as I’m sure you will), be sure to check out his Twitch stream. I’ve been on the stream a few times and it’s doing really well so be sure to show him some love. Enjoy the episode, fellow travelers through Nowhere.
Ever been on a lake where the Spanish moss hangs like spiderwebs and shadows dart beneath the surface of the green-brown water? There’s one in my corner of the world that has a story to tell.
Caddo Lake was part of my childhood. I swam in it, canoed on it and fished in it, albeit unsuccessfully. I knew it had a history but I was scant on details.
I decided to tell you about this lake for two reasons:
- My own unbridled curiosity.
- It’s a damn good story.
History often bears out the telling. In fact, it frequently demands it.
There were people here, long before white folks showed up. Matter of fact, they were doing a very good job of running the place until they were abruptly and violently usurped from the symbiotic relationship they had with the area.
There’s no accounting for the greed of men who come from far away for the sole purpose of taking what they want.
But the land remembers. Though the people are gone, the trees, the hollow places and the still air in the forest are possessed of a keen recollection.
You all know what happens when you do wrong for a long enough stretch of time. It catches up to you.
I’ll tell you about one way in which Caddo reached up and delivered vengeance on the people who tried to claim it. You see, there are some kinds of wild that you can’t tame. We’d do well to remember that.
The 1980s were big and they were loud. Big, loud music and bigger, louder hair. When you think about this decade, you probably picture Poison music videos and d-bags in Armani suits snorting coke in the bathroom. I basically hate this whole decade, though I was born in it. (True, there were a few bright spots: Nirvana’s first album, the Pixies, Violent Femmes, the NES and a couple of great horror flicks.)
We might forget that small towns still existed in that weird and wild decade. They were just as small and insignificant as they are today, though perhaps the mustaches were a bit more heinous back then.
Okay, that’s enough joking. This is a serious episode.
You heard about Kilgore, Texas in Part 1 of Creepy Sh#t. Well, it was much the same in the ’80s as when I went to school there from 2005 to 2007. But one hot, ugly day, something happened in Kilgore that would send a shiver down the necks of local folks for the next two decades.
An empty restaurant, scattered trash, everything in disarray. That was the first discovery in a sickening chain of events that preceded the sight of a gruesome crime scene. It was and is the worst murder that town has ever seen.
Five lives, snuffed out in the dirt.
Few things are as terrifying as random, sudden violence. Listen in to learn about the mass murder that sent a small town reeling and set off a manhunt that didn’t conclude until just a few years ago.
Welcome to The Nowhere Dispatch. In this very first installment of Creepy Sh#t, I’ll tell you about one of the creepiest events in my life. This episode speaks to the spirit of the Creepy Sh#t series, or at least what I’m hoping to accomplish with these recordings. You see, this series isn’t about ghosts, goblins and all of the various things that go bump in the night.
Rather, it’s about the tickling feeling you feel on the back of your neck when you know that something is not where it should be. It’s about the frightening weight you feel in your guts when you see that what you thought was a shadow simply…isn’t one.
It’s about the close space between what’s real and what can’t possibly be happening. It’s about the inexplicable and the unknowable, the kinds of things that you forget about until, well, you remember and then you can’t shake the feeling that you just can’t possibly wrap your head around the event.
One day, in college, my friends and I took a trip into the woods. What we found there has stuck with me to this day and there are some questions that I don’t believe that I will ever shake about the painting.