Oct 23, 2012 Possible Ghost Sighting Report

ghost sight

My name is Matthew Dolnack and I visited the Fort this past Tuesday, Oct. 23rd. As I was walking the alleys surronding the dry moat, I heard footsteps behind me as I walked. Thinking they were echos I stopped only to hear the footsteps continue for a few more seconds. This happend 3 seperate times in the long alley. I am positive no one was behind or in front of me as there were only a few people visiting the fort at that time. I carried on walking not hearing the footsteps again. I asked the woman working the gift shop if it was a common occurance and she said all sort of things happen at the fort, explaining how Ghost Hunters had investigated and deemed the fort haunted. I have seen the episode and it was the main reason I wanted to visit the fort.

I was taking pictures of the fort during my visit. When I returned home to the Pittsburgh area I downloaded the photos looking for anything paranormal. Well, I think I caught something in a photo. I'm not sure where it was taken in the fort, but I'm sure you would be able to tell. In the photo there is something in the upper right hand corner, near where the vaulted ceiling meets the wall. It wasnt there when I took the photo, and looks like it is illumuinated, blocking out the features of the masonary behind it. I have attached the photo for your review. Hopefully I caught something, for more evidence of the fort being haunted.

I plan on traveling back to Maine next year and I will surely be visiting the fort again, hopefully having an encounter or two!
Thank you for taking the time to read my e-mail and for looking at the photo.


Matthew Dolnack

Ghost activity heats up at Fort Knox as Halloween approaches

By Abigail Curtis, BDN Staff
Posted Oct. 19, 2011, at 5:59 p.m.

PROSPECT, Maine — A recent photograph that purports to show a family of ghosts at Fort Knox is generating interest in otherworldly matters just in time for Halloween and the annual Fright at the Fort event.

The photo was taken two weeks ago by paranormal investigator Hannah Baird from the East Coast Ghost Trackers, according to the group’s co-founder, Jamie Dube of Orrington. Tinted a lurid green, the picture was snapped at about 3 a.m. in the entryway to the 19th century granite fort.

Dube said the image shows a little girl with a bonnet, a caped figure and a little boy, among others who are clustered at the photo’s left-hand side.

“This is a big find for us,” he said Wednesday. “It just validates what we already know … We want to show people here that there is life after death.”

He said that scientific skepticism notwithstanding, and despite the fact that the fort never had a shot fired at it in anger, he and the other eight ghost trackers believe that the fort is haunted. Dube has been giving ghost tours this fall at the fort and every time he led a group through its cold corridors and dimly-lit rooms, he has noticed a “lot of action” from the resident specters.

“There were half a dozen people physically touched at the fort,” he said. “It blew their mind.”

Among those people, he said, was a little girl named Molly who felt something grab her elbow as she was leaving the officers’ quarters to try to pull her back in. She turned, thinking it was her mother. But there was no one there.

“There’s a lot of stuff that goes on [at the fort],” Dube said. “Not to mention the poltergeist activity.”

He and the other ghost trackers know of some of this ghostly activity because of their forays into Fort Knox armed not with weapons but with an arsenal of 21st century tools. Among those are special cameras, detectors that measure electromagnetic fields and even something called the “Ovilus PX” — a device with a built-in dictionary that purportedly allows ghosts to talk. But it’s not to be confused with Ouija boards of seance and sleepover fame.

“Everything we use is all electronic equipment from today’s world,” Dube said, adding that the ghosts they detect are not scary or evil. “They’re very cooperative with everything we’ve done.”

Leon Seymour of the Friends of Fort Knox, the nonprofit group that staffs the fort, called the photograph “interesting” and the ghost trackers “wonderful.”

Ghosts, he said, have become very hot in terms of popular culture.

“You can’t turn a channel without stumbling into a ghost show,” Seymour said Wednesday in a telephone interview. “Many people are interested in this.”

He called the paranormal a market niche for the fort, which also hosts a summertime psychic fair that brings in more ghost hunters, tarot card readers and other believers. But he also jokingly said that he had nothing to do with the picture, even though it was snapped just a few weeks before the annual Fright at the Fort event.

As Seymour spoke, the sounds of screaming could be faintly heard in the background. That’s from the commercial for the Halloween event, which this year will feature a pig room, a special appearance from the Pirates of the Dark Rose and such old standbys as the terrifying clowns.

It will be the last time that people will be able to be frightened so economically, Seymour warned. The ticket prices will double next year from $5 to $10.

“We think we have a very good product this year, but next year will be an increasingly horrifying experience,” he said.

Last year, 9,000 people attended Fright at the Fort and he is hoping that this year’s visitors will meet or beat the record of 10,000 people.

It is the biggest special event fundraiser for the Friends of Fort Knox, with proceeds being spent on special projects at the fort. It grossed more than $45,000 last year and is such an important source of revenue that for the first time officials have taken out rain insurance.

Although, Seymour reflected, the event pulls in die-hard fans from all over. In 2006, despite the governor having declared a state of emergency because of heavy rains and high winds, 600 people showed up. And he has already sold advance tickets to someone from Quebec.

“If we were in a really solid population center, I’d be running this the entire month of October,” Seymour said. “But we do very well.”

This year, fright-lovers are invited to the fort’s dark passageways from 5:30 – 9 p.m. Friday, Oct. 21, Saturday, Oct. 22, Friday, Oct. 28, and Saturday, Oct. 29. Visitors are asked to arrive no later than 8:30 p.m., and additional information is available at the website: www.fortknox.maineguide.com.

The East Coast Ghost Trackers will be sharing spooky stories about their investigations at 7 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 20, at the Milo Town Hall. They also will be presenting the group’s pilot television show at 6:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 28, at the Alamo Theatre in Bucksport.

Retired Trooper sees ghost at Fort Knox 8/13/2011

What follows is an email received by the FOFK on 8/14/2011 describing his experience.

First, please allow me to introduce myself. I am not what many, even myself, might shake your head and call crazy. I am nearly 52 years old, a retired NH state trooper and father of three. My profession made me a "facts" kind of person. If I do not see things for myself or, see conclusive and even scientific evidence, I am not easy to convince. If I had not experienced what I did today, and had heard this account from another, I would chuckle and say okay, you saw a ghost and that's a neat thing, good for you. I would be convinced the recounting was from a whack job! But today, at the north end of the two step alley from about 15 yards, I saw an apparition. I can not tell you if it was male or female. It happened suddenly and lasted only a second. I observed this apparition to be a white object that if it had legs, would stand about 5'8". I did not see a head or arms or legs. At first I thought it may have been a woman in a white night gown however, as I discussed what I saw with my girl friend, added to my consideration, that men of the civil war era, often wore long white night dresses. This "object" appeared suddenly in the arched door way and moved from my right to my left and disappeared. I went to the end of the alley to see if there was anyone, another visitor, moving down that hallway but, when I arrived at the end of the alley and looked left, it was a solid brick wall. There was no place a human could have gone. I wanted to pass this along for your consideration. Thanks, Keith Rayeski, Nottingham, NH


Ghost Hunter’ show finds unexplained activity at Fort Knox

By Rich Hewitt, BDN Staff

PROSPECT, Maine — The results are in.

“This place has some serious activity going on.”

That was the “reveal” Wednesday night on the SyFy Channel’s “Ghost Hunter” show that featured the investigation of Fort Knox back in February.

“They definitely believe it’s haunted,” said Leon Seymour, executive director of the Friends of Fort Knox, who was featured on the show giving the “Ghost Hunter” crew a quick tour of the fort.

About 50 people gathered at the Bucksport Golf Club to watch the show on a big-screen TV.

“It was a lot of fun,” he said, adding that the locals got a chuckle from the crew’s complaining about the cold and how they felt as if they were out in the “wilderness.”

The show’s stars, Jason Hawes and Grant Wilson, and co-star Amy Bruni roamed the 19th century stone fort with high-tech equipment searching for evidence of paranormal activity.

The ghost hunters didn’t see any ghostly figures in any of the areas where they investigated, but they did pick up some unexplained readings on their instruments. In Long Alley, where there have been reports of ghost sightings, there was a strange anomaly on their thermal imaging camera that they could not explain. And something broke through the laser grid that they had set up. They also heard some “crazy breathing.”

“It sounds like it’s right next to me,’’ Hawes said from the darkened alley “It sounds like it’s coming closer and closer.”

Near the cannon mounts, the crew also heard loud footsteps when there was no one there.

While there were no spooktacular apparitions during the show, being featured on the popular SyFy Channel show definitely conjured up some interest in Fort Knox.

According to Seymour, the Friends’ website got 951 hits by midnight Wednesday and another 270 by late Thursday afternoon, coming from all over the country. This time of year, the site usually gets about 60 or 70 hits a day, Seymour said.

“It certainly had the effect of getting the fort out all around the country,” he said.

GHOST HUNTER TV PROGRAM-Wraps Up Fort Knox Investigation

(Prospect) The Friends of Fort Knox working in partnership with the Maine Department of Conservation’s Bureau of Parks and Lands report that the SyFy Channel’s, Ghost Hunter TV program, has concluded their paranormal investigation of the State Historic site. The investigation and filming took place recently when a production crew arrived at Fort Knox, where Friends’ of Fort Knox executive director, Leon Seymour, provided the Ghost Hunters a tour of the site and recounted visitor reports of paranormal experiences.

The paranormal investigation took place amidst brief snow showers. As part of their investigation, the Ghost Hunter’s production company interviewed individuals who had reported as having a paranormal experience at the Fort to the Friends. One of those interviewed by the crew was local radio personality, Sky Taylor, who reported hearing various sounds and even seeing an apparition. Also interviewed was, Bureau of Parks and Lands Historic Site Specialist, Tom Desjardin, who provided the production company with a brief history of Fort Knox. The Ghost Hunter film crew also spent a good deal of time shooting exterior shots of the Fort from various locations and some shots of the Town of Prospect.

At the conclusion of the investigation, Ghost Hunter stars, Amy Bruni and Grant Wilson, presented their paranormal investigation findings to Friends’ executive director Leon Seymour. This portion of the investigative process known as the ‘reveal’ will be kept confidential until the TV program airs. Ghost Hunter producers told Seymour that he expects the Fort Knox episode to air this spring.

While filming the investigation the Ghost Hunter group stayed at the Four Points Sheraton, Bangor and kept local food establishments in Bucksport busy with take out food orders.

The Friends of Fort Knox report that they are giving some thought to having a ‘screening party’ the night the episode airs on the SyFy channel. The organization says that they will release details of the ‘screening party’ and how the public may obtain tickets in the near future.

The visit by the Ghost Hunter group was more than a year in the making. It began when the Friends of Fort Knox revived an email from the producer of the program in December 2009.

Over the past several years, local paranormal investigating groups have approached the Friends of Fort Knox to enlist their help facilitating nighttime research. Some of these paranormal research groups such as Bangor Ghost Hunters, Central Maine Paranormal, East Coast Ghost Trackers and Maine Supernatural have posted their investigation results on the Internet.

A good deal of preparation was necessary to ensure that the TV production crew would have easy access to the Fort due to the series of local snow storms. Bureau of Parks and Lands’ park manager, Mike Wilusz, other Bureau staff and Friend’s contracted local snow removal personnel, plowed, shoveled, removed ice and sanded to provide a safe environment for the crew in the frigid temperatures.

The following information describing the SyFy Channel’s Ghost Hunter program is taken from the Wikipedia Internet site: “Ghost Hunters is an American paranormal reality television series that premiered on October 6, 2004 on the Syfy Channel (previously SciFi). The program features paranormal investigators Jason Hawes and Grant Wilson who investigate places that are reported to be haunted. The two originally worked as plumbers for Roto-Rooter as a day job while investigating locations at night.
Since the show’s success, the series now takes precedence in their lives, but they are still honorary employees with the company and continue to do jobs for them if time permits.”

The Friends of Fort Knox, formed in 1991, work in partnership with the Bureau of Parks and Lands to preserve Fort Knox and enhance its educational, cultural and economic value for the people of Maine. The Friends sponsor numerous special events including Civil War reenactments, the annual Fright at the Fort Halloween scare fest, medieval tournament, pirate day and Scottish Tattoo. Last year, the Friends funded extensive repairs to the Battery ‘B’ retaining wall, wharf area and initiated erosion control measures.

Individuals interested in learning more about the Friends of Fort Knox, special events and the history of the historic site are encouraged to visit the following web site: fortknox.maineguide.com


Worker ‘creeped-out’ by ‘Fright’ at Fort Knox

By Rich Hewitt Bangor Daily News 10/22/08

PROSPECT, Maine — When the Cowardly Lion stood in the Haunted Forest wringing his tail saying, “I do believe in spooks, I do believe in spooks,” he had good reason.

He was surrounded by trees with faces, flying monkeys, a wicked witch and, yes, spooks.

Now, Teddy Cooke, 19, of Verona Island has a good reason to say the same thing.

Cooke, who works as a tower and gate attendant at Fort Knox Historic Site and the Penobscot Narrows Observation Tower, didn’t have to deal with the Wicked Witch of the West, but he did have a close encounter of some kind last Saturday night inside the fort.

“It creeped me out,” he said.

It happened Saturday night as Cooke was closing up the fort after the annual Fright at the Fort event. He wasn’t one of the ghouls, trolls or ogres stationed in the fort to spook the nighttime visitors. Cooke was part of the tech crew, in charge of the fog, the lights and the scary audio for the event.

The fort was dark except for the “Fright” effects.

“My job was to lock up, shut down all the electrical stuff, the fog machine and the strobe lights,” he said. “I was going to the upper level of the officers’ quarters when I saw it — it was the back of a leg moving at the end of the hall.”

At that point, he said, he thought there was a straggler from the Fright event, and he called out to say the fort was closed and to follow him out. There was no response.

From the hall, a set of stairs leads up to a long corridor known as “Two Step Alley.” Cooke walked up the steps and as his eyes reached the level of the floor, he saw the dark shape of someone walking down the alley.

“About halfway down, I could see the figure of a person,” he said. “There was a red floodlight at the other end and it clearly blocked out the light.”

He called out again, but there was no reaction.

Cooke said the figure looked like a “solid shadow.” He saw no face or details, but could tell it was walking, not gliding. It did not react or turn when he called. And it made no sound that he heard.

Although he said he felt a little jittery, he didn’t feel any emotion or any presence from the figure.

He reached for his flashlight and the figure was gone.

“I looked down for just a second and when I looked up again, there was nothing there all the way to the end of the alley,” he said. “At this point, I’m still thinking it’s a person. There are pillars all the way down the alley, and I thought they may have ducked behind there. I thought maybe someone was going to jump out and scare me.”

Cautiously, he checked each pillar all the way down.

No one was there.

“There’s no way anyone could have gotten down the alley in that time,” he said. “Up until I got out I thought it was a person. I don’t know what it was. I got out of the fort as quickly as I could.”

Cooke admits to being a fan of the “Ghost Hunter” television show, but said he wanted proof before he’d believe in ghosts. He says he has it now.

“I considered myself a skeptic until something happened so that I would know,” he said. “This was kind of that ‘it’ that happened.”

Some might discount Cooke’s account as imagination, but he’s not the first to have a supernatural experience in the fort. According to Leon Seymour, executive director of the Friends of Fort Knox, there have been reports for years from visitors and fort staff of unusual happenings.

“I’ve heard hundreds of stories,” he said. “People having their hat taken off, people being pushed.”

The fort is a likely spot for spirits, according to Sky Taylor, a Bangor radio announcer and co-founder of the Down East Paranormal Society.

The granite and the fort’s proximity to the water all help to store and conduct spirit energy, Taylor said.

Taylor and her husband have had unexplained encounters in the fort before, one of them in the same area where Cooke saw his spirit on Saturday. Several years ago, she brought in a psychic, who confirmed there were spirits dwelling in the fort.

Although no one actually died inside the fort, Taylor said, the spirits could be soldiers who had strong ties to the fort. One might be Sgt. Leopold Hegyi, who spent 13 years at Fort Knox and died in a house across the road from the fort where he lived.

Taylor produced a special radio broadcast about the spirits at the fort and included the story from a former guide at the fort during the 1980s. The guide reported that on one of her tours, a soldier showed up at the edge of the group. She assumed it was one of the Civil War re-enactors who hold encampments at the fort.

She learned later that none was at the fort that day.

“A little later, she saw a photo and said [the soldier] looked just like Sgt. Hegyi,” Taylor said. “If anyone had ties to this place, it was Sgt. Hegyi.

Although Hegyi’s widow, who lived in New York, collected his belongings after the sergeant died, she did not claim his remains. He is buried in a cemetery a short distance from the fort down Route 1 in Stockton Springs, Taylor said.

Cooke is not sure what he saw, but he’s convinced he saw something. He’s a little “uneasy” about going back in for this weekend’s version of Fright at the Fort, and admits that anytime he comes back into the fort, he’ll recall this incident.

“I’m not sure I’d want it to happen again,” he said. “But I’d be excited if it did.”