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April 27, 2005

Haunted Pomfret – Acceptance and Protection

Vanessa and I visited Pomfret often over the next few years – from about 1968 to 1972. While the area seemed to push us away at first, it soon came to accept us and even protect us when we were there. Instead of pushing through molasses at the entrance to the path, we started to feel an openness and even friendliness as we approached the settlement. As if they recognized us as kindred spirits.

Once, as we sat by the well at the settlement house, we heard the sound of running footsteps coming down the path from deeper in the woods. We would have gotten up to investigate but something held us in our places. As the sounds got closer we could see the path where these footfalls should have shown us people in flight. Instead we felt the earth shake and saw only puffs of dust and dirt rise up from the ground as the sound of fleeing footsteps passed us by.

Then one afternoon early in October we went to visit the cemetery and bring flowers to Abigail’s grave. I remember this incident as if from a dream. As soon as we entered the woods we both started floating, the metaphysical atmosphere of the place filled our senses until we were more a part of the spiritual plane than the physical one. This happened often to one or the other of us when we entered Pomfret, but never did it happen to both of us at the same time. Usually one of us stayed grounded to keep the other safe.

We never said a word to each other as we floated down the path picking late flowers for the cemetery. We were about half way to the gravesite when we came across two men in beige uniforms. This in itself was unusual, as we had never seen anyone else in these woods before. As Vanessa and I floated past them, one of them asked us what we were doing. I couldn’t speak, so Vanessa said, “Gathering flowers.” Then he asked where we were going. Vanessa pointed to the right and said, “To the cemetery.” Which was actually off to the left. The other man said, “Beware of fire.” Vanessa said, “Of course.” And we floated away to the cemetery. We didn’t stay long; in fact we felt an urgent need to leave the woods as fast as possible. If we floated up the path, we flew back down again. Although it had only been a few minutes since we had seen the two men, there was no one to be found on our trip back through the woods to the car. And there was no other car or any indication that anyone else was in the area when we got back to the road.

On our way home, Vanessa and I started to compare notes. Where had these men come from if there was no other car parked on the road? Where had they been in the woods and where did they go? It was then that we realized that we had been in a potentially dangerous situation, two young girls alone in the woods being stopped and questioned by those two men. And there was something very strange about those men. They were in uniforms but the badges on their hats didn’t match the badges on their shirts. There was something about the way that they spoke that was strange and disjointed; even the words they used were cryptic. It was as if they didn’t really belong in the woods, outsiders being affected by the spirits there. To this day I believe that those same spirits took over and kept us from great harm that afternoon.

Posted by Linda Dalton at 06:34 PM | Comments (0)

April 21, 2005

Haunted Pomfret - Abigail

Shortly after we found the settlement at Pomfret I began having visions. I kept seeing a young woman named Abigail running through the woods. There was a fire somewhere in the area and she was trying to get to the well by the first settlement house. With each vision, her fear became stronger and stronger. I could feel her running down the path, through the woods, trying to escape. I never got the feeling that fire killed her, only that fire was a very dangerous entity at Pomfret.

Over the next few weeks we began exploring the area beyond the settlement house. The trail ran deeper into the woods, away from the road and civilization. At one point the trail split. We took the right fork and eventually found the bridge where the man from the newspaper article photographed the ghost children. The area around the bridge is eerily quiet, yet peaceful. There is nothing around to remind you that you are only a few miles away from a gas station or an antique store. There the air was still and the feeling serene. As we listened to the murmuring brook we could almost imagine the light sounds of children laughing. And still the visions of Abigail kept getting stronger, to where she was in my mind almost all of the time.

One afternoon we decided to try the other fork off the path. Instead of going straight back into the woods, that path lead off to the left, away from the settlement houses. As we began down the trail Vanessa and I began to rise into the ethereal plane, to the point where we would have sworn that we floated instead of walked. Suddenly I felt Abigail very close by. I caught a scent of warm flowers that lead us up over a rise in the path to a small area enclosed by a low fieldstone wall. At one end there was a small opening in the wall where we could enter. There before us was a graveyard with perhaps a dozen or so old, crumbling gravestones, all from the previous centuries. I floated through the cemetery until I came to a grave that was in a bit better condition than some of the others. On it was the name Abigail Higginbotham, dead at the age of 19.

Posted by Linda Dalton at 07:34 PM | Comments (1)

April 14, 2005

Haunted Pomfret - Part 2

We spent a summer searching the back roads around Pomfret until we finally found the right obscure path, off the right backcountry road, just past the right brook in the woods that led us to the abandoned settlement mentioned in the newspaper article. We were happy to have found the place, but Pomfret was not happy to see us. Once we left the road and began walking into the woods, Pomfret began its subtle attack. At first it just felt like we were walking through molasses to advance down the path. After we passed deeper into the woods the thick air let up but the woods became very quiet and still, almost as if they were listening to us. Then the attack became more pronounced. We found ourselves tripping over roots and rocks that disappeared when we went back to look for them. Branches dropped out of nowhere to slap our faces and scratch our arms. We continued into the woods and the attacks seemed to stop.

After walking for about a mile we came across a small standing stone with a hole carved into the top. It rested in front of the opening to a man-made stone enclosure that appeared to have been built for livestock. Moving further along the path we found the remains of what was once a settlement home, but all that was left was a large square hole in the ground. Within the hole was a smaller square stone area built up to what would have been floor level. This would have held the fireplace within the house. To the side of the house there was a large flat rock covering an open pit that looked like an old well.

This was as far as we got on our first visit. It was getting dark and we didn’t want to get lost in those woods after the sun went down. We turned around and started back down the path. As difficult as it was for us to enter the woods, it was much easier to leave. Instead of hindering our progress, the energy in the woods seemed to push us faster and faster down the path, and out of the woods. Without meaning to we found ourselves running through the woods to the road. Once we passed through the “molasses barrier” near the road we turned around to look back at the path. The area by the path seemed to shimmer, as if it was trying to hide its entrance. If we hadn’t known the path was there we might not ever have noticed it. We might not ever have found it again.

After that trip, the visions started…

Posted by Linda Dalton at 09:15 AM | Comments (2)

April 09, 2005

Haunted Pomfret

Pomfret is a beautiful little town in northeastern Connecticut about 45 minutes drive from where I grew up. When I was 14, my friend Diane (who was 16 and could drive!) found an old newspaper article dated back to the late 1950’s. The article was about a man who had been taking photographs of an old footbridge by some abandoned homesteads in the woods surrounding Pomfret. Later, when he developed the film he found images of children on the prints – children who had not been there when he took the pictures! So Diane, Vanessa and I decided to try to find these woods and do some ghost hunting. The newspaper article only gave vague directions to the area – follow this country lane, cross three creeks, look for a small path leading into the woods. It took us an entire summer, scouring the woods outside of Pomfret to find the right area.

One evening, a day before we were planning a Pomfret excursion, I got a vision. I saw the four of us (Diane’s boyfriend often came with us) going to Pomfret, but we were in a different, larger car with another couple that I didn’t know. When we got to Pomfret and chose a search area, the new guy said that we should split up to cover more ground. He wanted to put Vanessa in one group and me in the other group, as we were the psychics. It was nearly dark and we didn’t have any flashlights, but we went ahead and split up anyway. At this point in my vision I saw Vanessa walking by some brush when a large root shot out, grabbed her leg and broke her ankle.

Then my mother called me for dinner and the vision stopped.

The next morning I told Vanessa about the vision and then promptly forgot about it.

That evening Diane and her boyfriend showed up to take us out for our Pomfret search. They arrived in a different, larger car and they brought two other friends with them. No sooner were we in the car and on our way to Pomfret than Vanessa poked me in the side and reminded me of my vision. Vanessa and I were always able to communicate without talking, so we made a silent agreement not to say anything to anyone until we saw what would happen. We found an area to search that we hadn’t been to before, but looked like the area from my vision. It was getting dark by then and we didn’t have any flashlights with us. Then the new guy said, ”Let’s split up and put Vanessa in one group and Linda in the other.” At that point both Vanessa and I spoke up and told them about my vision. Whether the foliage was going to attack Vanessa or she was just going to fall and hurt her leg, we all decided that we had been warned not to attempt the search that night – and certainly not to split up the group.

What was even stranger about that night was that the new guy turned out to be a wood lore fanatic. He knew that you didn’t explore unknown woods at night without proper light and you would certainly never split up a group under those circumstances. He didn’t know why he, of all people, made the suggestion to separate Vanessa and I. He said it was as if something else entered his head and spoke those words.

This was just the beginning of our Pomfret experiences!

Posted by Linda Dalton at 11:29 AM | Comments (17)

April 06, 2005

Petey - Update

Some of those reading my entry about Petey - the doll my grandmother gave to me that began to take on a personality - were wondering what he looks like. I have now updated the entry to include a photo.

Posted by Linda Dalton at 08:26 PM | Comments (0)

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