By Jasmine Ferrell, Staff Writer
For my last and final haunted entry, there was no question about where I would focus. It had to be Salem, a moderately short journey on the commuter rail. Ever since I was accepted to a Boston school, I’ve made it a goal to visit Salem during the Halloween season because there simply is no comparison. But as there is such an abundance of things to do, I’m only going to really dig into two locations that are the best of the best.
The Old Burying Point in Salem is rumored to be the second oldest recorded cemetery in the nation and hosts some historical names like the ancestor of Nathaniel Hawthorne. It is a common misconception that all graveyards are go-to haunted sites, and the Old Burying Point doesn’t have a vast ghostly history. It’s like wise old Andrew said on the first ghost tour I wrote about, “If you were a ghost, why would you haunt the place where you’re buried and not the place you lived?”
Visiting this site is purely for history and atmosphere, but it won’t let you down. It doesn’t get creepier than walking through this graveyard in the dead of night during the month of Halloween. Just try and ignore the joyful sounds overflowing from the carnival across the street, or better yet, just picture it as one of those disturbed carnivals. You know the ones.
When it does come to haunted places, Salem has plenty to offer, but the most famous and recognized is the Joshua Ward House.
This house was built on the property of Sheriff George Corwin who served during the infamous Salem witch trials. That being said, the house supposedly has plenty of angry spirits attached. One ghost besides Corwin himself, who was actually buried under the house for some time, is that of a man accused of witchcraft. Corey was placed under a board piled with rocks in order to force a confession, but instead he died under the massive weight. Don’t worry, though. He got his revenge and cursed the sheriff and all who followed in his footsteps.
Side note: While looking for this house, be careful not to confuse it with the John Ward House, a mistake I made that caused my camera to die well before I found the actual house.
Salem is the perfect way to spend an October night, but before you give in and pay for all the intriguing tours, bizarre museums and carnivals, be sure to take a look at the interesting raw history. Just follow the red line painted oh-so-conveniently and create your own personal haunted experience for free. (You can’t beat that.) Whether you believe in ghosts, or you are a complete skeptic, get in the spirit and listen to a couple ghost stories and visit some haunted places. Why not even bullshit some of your own? It’ll be your five minutes of ghostly fame where everyone else is completely under your power. Just make it a good one.