Tuesday, March 17, 2009

The Haunting of 13 Stairs Cemetery

Pleasant Ridge Cemetery (aka 13 Stairs Cemetery), located a few miles north of Palo, Iowa (42.061ºN, 91.789ºW, see map, overlooking Lewis Bottoms) is a well-known local site of paranormal investigation. And it keeps on growing in ghost hunting lore.

Published stories about the site have several themes. One theme is that the hill top cemetery is a source of EVP ghostly voices. Another theme is that of nighttime sightings of a red-eye growling dog. Still others concern floating orbs of light.

Evidence of past paranormal investigations sometimes litter the property with spent batteries and melted candle stumps. Years ago authorities restricted access to the road directly in front of the cemetery. Reports of patrols near Halloween also help preserve the intended nature of the graveyard from the curious. Web traffic to this blog post also increases each year near the end of October. Investigate the site yourself to determine if these haunting claims are true.

One unique headstone in the cemetery is that of Thankful Blackburn (some say she was a self-proclaimed witch) who died in 1862. Her now flat laying marker provides a folksy warning to the rest of us:

"Remember friends as you pass by
What you are now so once was I
What I am now so you must be
Prepare in life to follow me."

Hmm, how haunting. Check it out for yourself. Know that.