[MA] Bradford College Ghost Investigation – 1. Preparations (start here)

Bradford College, Bradford, Massachusetts – 11 March 2000

Pre-visit preparations

Frankly, I wasn’t expecting much at Bradford. Many ghost stories at colleges like Bradford have scant foundations, and are actually stories traded among students as a way of bonding, being part of the community, and other psychological benefits.

Samantha Farley, of Bradford College, has written an excellent study about this, The Ghostly Legends of Bradford College. Her thoughtful report sparked this visit to Bradford College.

On the morning of March 11th, I’d received a new quartz pendulum in the mail, and decided to try it as part of this ghost hunt. I wasn’t expecting much at the college, so this investigation seemed a benign site for testing the new pendulum.

Before the investigation, my very skeptical son (called “James” in most of my articles) and I tested the pendulum.

We worked independently, so our results wouldn’t influence each other. We asked questions about Bradford’s various legends and locations. We soon realized that very specific questions were necessary to get any results at all.

It’s as if Bradford — or something at it — didn’t want to reveal anything. Not at first, anyway.

We repeated our questions, sometimes several times, to see if our results would be consistent. Usually, they were.

Greenleaf House – pendulum didn’t move when asked if it was haunted.

Tupelo East – very little pendulum movement.

Tupelo West – enthusiastic circling, indicating positive hauntings.

“The Tunnels” – referring to a network of underground tunnels, connecting several of the older buildings.

When I asked about the tunnels, the pendulum remained still. When James tried a variety of questions, the pendulum finally indicated that there was “something weird” there.

Denworth Theatre, upstairs – no response.

  • This may be because I misunderstood the name in conversation, thinking it was “Danforth” when it was Denworth. I’d asked the pendulum if Danforth Hall was haunted.

Denworth Theatre, downstairs – delayed response, in the affirmative.

Academy – consistently even, positive response.

Based upon this, I decided that we’d start with Academy, the site of “Amy and the priest” stories, and then check the tunnels. Then we’d explore Denworth, particularly the downstairs, and finally the Tupelos. If time permitted, we’d check Greenleaf House, just in case the pendulum was wrong.

I was wholly skeptical of encountering anything notable on this casual ghost hunt. I’ve witnessed hauntings at colleges in the past. They’ve always received far more publicity than the manifestations warranted.

I packed two cameras plus extra film, a notepad, the pendulum, and my EMF meter. We left for Bradford College, to meet other ghost hunters at the campus at 3 p.m.

Next, read about our first investigations at Bradford College – Academy, first and second floors

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