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Investigation Three - Placerville Haunts - HPI-sponsored event

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Articles Orb - perhaps dust?On August 18'th of 2007, I investigated, as a member of HPI, a number of potential haunts in Placerville, California.

We visited the following locations on this tour:
  • Hangman's Tree Bar
  • The Hillsider Saloon
  • Historic Cary House Hotel
  • The Cozmic Cafe- or Pearson's Soda Works.
  • El Dorado County Chamber of Commerce
  • Hidden Passages Bookstore
  • Tomei's Restaurant
  • The Druid Monument
  • The Sequoia House Restaurant
  • The Placerville Union Cemetery
Our first stop was the Hangman's Tree Bar. On entry, I cast my eyes around the place, took photos and basically didn't get much of anything. My gut feel is that the ghost doesn't come out on Saturday afternoons! LOL! There was a haunted tree that is the location where some poor souls met their end and even my normal third-eye activity wasn't picking much beyond some minor residual energy in that place. So either it was dead all the time or perhaps just in a lull and waiting for evening to kick in for things to get moving.

Another of our venues was the Cary House Hotel. I did some EMF sweeps and concluded that quite a bit of the wiring in this and most of old Placerville is riddled with EMF leakage. Still, this observation did not explain some of the pictures I captured, which I share with you in this article. I did capture an orb photo, seen at the beginning of this article. I did catch a couple of successive pictures of orb activity on the stairs as one HPI team member was descending the stairs. I am uncertain as to if this staircase has had prior activity noted, but it was odd to see these captures.

HPI team member being touched.Winding our way up Main Street, we ended up at Empire Antiques and it was here that a number of people noted odd occurences. My own EMF meter reacted wildly (with 1.0 and better) readings with a boot that was drawing a lot of attention from several HPI members. I cannot explain the reaction of my Extech EMF meter, since the boot was not connected to any electrical circuit at the time. This remains a mystery for now. In the same vicinity, one team member reported being touched and a photo of her experience at that moment is recorded for posterity.

I did record, somewhat earlier, an orb that became visible on the far left side of one of the photographs I took inside the Empire. It was extremely odd in that I had taken a multitude of reference photographs and this one captured some sort of energy in that part of the building.  I'll never understand orbs... They are such strange things. Are they spirit or are they dust? Are we being fooled by them or are there a range of orb types and activities that bring them out into the open?

We stopped briefly at the Hillsider Saloon and I immediately picked up on the presence of what I believed to be an older man in the room. I was talking about this with Donna who thought it might be a woman (going on memory here, learning to take notes on investigations!). My pictures of this bar didn't pick up anything, but I literally felt that presence in there.

These are the questions that haunt investigators like myself. I for one do think it is significant enough to record their presence and then proceed from there, but not to draw conclusions about hauntings solely from seeing these on photographs, whether film, video or digital media. 

Orb in Empire Theatre - Upper leftThe Empire did cast it's magic well and I was able to leave feeling I had at least witnessed a few strange events in this building. There was some talk (recorded on video) of two women who worked at the Empire talking about the ghostly furnace there in that building and how someone had experienced a run-in with a ghost while in that lower part of the building. The scuttle was that this person made a hasty retreat after running face-to-face with the ghost.

Another point of visitation was the El Dorado County Chamber of Commerce. We managed to wangle an invite in and got to tour the building with pretty much a free run of the place. I pulled out my EMF meter and did discover that the wiring of the place did have EMF spikes popping up all over the place. In talking with the young woman who was running the place that day, she did say that she was aware of the haunts, but had not had any real experience with ghosts there to speak of, although she didn't like to be there alone whenever possible.

Orb on second level of Cozmic CafeWe stopped for lunch at the Cozmic Cafe, a really nice restaurant at the upper end of Placerville. It boasts an actual mine entrance as part of the facility and there are places to eat and just sit with Placerville rock surrounding you like a blanket of cold mist, particularly satisfying on a hot summer's day like this investigation.

We did some localized investigation in the Cozmic Cafe. There are reportedly a few spirits know to hang out at this historical landmark and I was lucky enough to capture one orb in the upper floor, just near the bar area. In our gallery of photos, I took repeated photographs of the area and this have reference photos to show the scene with and without the orb for comparative purposes.

The lower section of the mine, purportedly haunted by a miner, didn't have much to offer that day, other then a sense of a mystery as one looks past the gate which limits how far you can go in and which makes one wonder just how far the mine goes back into the mountain. Perhaps one day, I may get a tour of this mine to alleviate my curious nature.

We departed to visit the Placerville Union Cemetery after visiting the Druid monument. Our walk back was sprinkled with talk of other buildings and times and I give Shannon and her staff high marks for a very enjoyable tour. Our tour of the cemetery was peaceful enough and I didn't pick up a single thing in that cemetery. So, after 30 minutes or so, we moved on to the Sequoia House directly across the street from the cemetery.

Possible orb located at the Sequioa House RestaurantOur investigation of the Sequoia House Restaurant left me rather bemused in that we didn't really get much there, except some odd feelings I felt in the upper bedroom area of the building.

One of the photographs I took shows a faint orb at a spot where there have been sightings at one time or another of someone standing in the window. While I do not remember the specifics of this haunt, I do know I felt something different in this room and it had my senses on edge.

HPI led a first-class tour and I, for one, was not wanting it to end. I left that day tired, but very excited at the tour and all the people and experiences I had encountered that day. Again, great fun, great people and a big thanks to the town of Placerville for opening it's doors to us that day!

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