I was reading about the history of Atlanta while I was sick and I was reminded of a story I heard years ago. This story takes place at Six Flags Over Georgia and involves the vintage carousel there. The Riverview Carousel is over 100 years old and is considered one of the finest carousels in the world. Originally it was located in Chicago at the Riverview Park. In 1908, Riverview Park was one of the country's most famous theme parks. According to legend, it was shortly after this time, that a young boy was killed in an accident at the park. His ghost was said to be seen playing near the carousel in the years after his death. In time, Riverview Park closed and the carousel was one of the only attractions that was saved. It was sent to Six Flags Over Georgia in 1971 and was quickly restored to its former glory. It seems this was enough to bring the little boy back too.
During the early morning hours and late at night, park workers claim to see a little boy riding a black horse on the carousel. Psychics have claimed to feel his presence and guests have even reported to see him during regular park hours too.
Now I don't know if this story is true. The only time I visited the park, I never got a chance to visit the ride, but I heard this story from a security guard with the park about 15 years ago. Since that time, I have heard the story from a couple of other people. So, make your own decision, but if you go to Six Flags Over Georgia, include a visit to the carousel and maybe you can catch a quick glimpse of the other side.
Today in Mexico, Day of the Dead celebrations are underway. These celebrations stretch back over 3000 years and were made to honor the Lady of the Dead.
The Day of the Dead festivals are actually broken down into a few days, the first day is set aside for infants, children and the young. It is called the Day of the Innocents. The second day is for everyone else. It is the actual Day of the Dead.
Here are a few tidbits about Halloween. I'd like to share them with you.
The original Halloween was actually an ancient Celtic festival of Samhain. The Celts, were around about 2,000 years ago and lived in the area that is now Ireland, the United Kingdom and northern France. Their new year was celebrated on November 1st. This day marked the end of summer and the harvest and the beginning of the dark, cold winter, a time of year that was often associated with human death. Celts believed that on the night before the new year, the boundary between the worlds of the living and the dead became very thin.
On the night of October 31 they celebrated Samhain, when it was believed that the ghosts of the dead returned to earth. In addition to causing trouble and damaging crops, Celts thought that the presence of the otherworldly spirits made it easier for the Druids, or Celtic priests, to make predictions about the future. At that time, these predictions were very important. Life was a fragile thing and any help was huge.
To commemorate the event, Druids built huge sacred bonfires, where the people gathered to burn crops and animals as sacrifices to the Celtic deities. During the celebration, the Celts wore costumes, typically consisting of animal heads and skins, and attempted to tell each other's fortunes. When the celebration was over, they re-lit their hearth fires, which they had extinguished earlier that evening, from the sacred bonfire to help protect them during the coming winter.
Originally, the Irish hollowed out turnips and put scary faces on them to scare away evil spirits. During the Great Potato Famine, many Irish were forced to leave Ireland and come to the United States. Turnips weren't as easy to come by, so the Irish turned to pumpkins instead.
Before the early 1900's, the only people celebrating Halloween were the Irish and Scottish. Most Americans weren't too interested in going to neighbors and asking for treats.
The first Americans brought their traditions to the US and mixed theirs with the Native Americans. This turned into festivals celebrating the harvest. They would tell ghost stories and tell each others futures, dance, sing and give God thanks for that years blessings. Of course some areas this was still frowned upon by the Puritans.
The pagan Celts believed that after death, all souls went into the crone's cauldron, which symbolized the Earth mother's womb. There, the souls awaited reincarnation, as the goddess' stirring allowed for new souls to enter the cauldron and old souls to be reborn. That image of the cauldron of life has now been replaced by the steaming, bubbling, ominous brew of a witches' cauldron.
I would like to share one of my favorite Halloween reads. It was back in the early 90's and I was at a used book store. As I was searching for books, I came upon a large box of graphic novels (fancy comic books). There was one book that caught my attention, The Upturned Stone by Scott Hampton. Don't let the fact that its a graphic novel turn you off to it. The artwork has this Norman Rockwell feel to it. Its beautiful. The story is about 4 boys who are becoming too old for Halloween. Their last Halloween changes their lives forever. It has ghosts, a murder mystery and boys coming of age. I love this book and I can't believe it hasn't been made into a movie yet.
If you are interested in buying it, there is some info on this site too. Thanks, Google.
Its also available on Amazon for $9,998.00. hahaha
Have you ever wondered where the superstition that walking under a ladder brings you bad luck came from? Well, Uncle Ray is here to help.
The ancient Egyptians. They believed the triangle was sacred. So, a ladder leaning against a wall formed a triangle. Walking through it disrupted its energy, so it would bring you bad luck to do so.
Today's Daily Dose is a great article from the Indiana Gazette. It is about the Halloween events in the Sleepy Hollow area. Check it out.http://www.indianagazette.com/a_news/article_1e9a0a3b-7d03-5664-a30f-9dfd25f50ad3.html
Well, my favorite season is upon us. I would like to share 13 of my favorite movies. The kind that get me into the Halloween spirit. Let me know if I missed any of your favorites.
Hope you enjoyed my list. Let me know yours.
Reading, Pa - Mrs Bissinger was the wife of Phillip Bissinger and the mother of Phillip, Lillie and Mollie. In 1875, she found out that Phillip wasn't quite the man she wished he was. He wasn't faithful and it destroyed her.
On Aug 17, 1875 at around 5pm, Mrs Bissinger took her children to lock 49 on the Union Canal and leapt into the canal.
Since that day, she and her children have been said to haunt this area. Their small figures have been seen walking along the canal's edge and people visiting the area have been overcome with feelings of sadness.
Today the San Francisco Giants are playing the St Louis Cardinals in game 3 of the National League Championship Series. Back on this date in 1989, San Francisco was playing the Oakland A's in game 3 of the World Series. It was during this game that an earthquake stopped the World Series.
It went on the be called the Great Earthquake of '89. The quake killed 62 people and injured 3,757. The highest number of deaths, 42, occurred in Oakland because of the Cypress Street Viaduct collapse on the Nimitz Freeway, when the upper level of a double-deck portion of the freeway collapsed, crushing the cars on the lower deck.
It is here that an interesting ghost story has emerged. People riding on the lower level of the bridge now report hearing someone tapping on their windows. It always happens at night and some people report seeing a man, some claim he appears to be headless, moving along in the darkness. He appears to be tapping on the windows trying to catch a ride off of the bridge.
For more information on the earthquake, follow the link below.
Like one that on a lonesome road
Doth walk in fear and dread,
And having once turned round walks on,
And turns no more his head;
Because he knows a frightful fiend
Doth close behind him tread."
-Samuel Taylor Coleridge
Southern Ghosts Daily Dose
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