The Women’s club
Mansfield, Ohio is a treasure trove for paranormal investigators. In addition to the Reformatory, the Bissman Building and several others, there is the Women’s Club. The house itself was built in 1840 as the home for prominent citizens Henry and Lucretia Hedges. It was a private home for many years, part of an upper class neighborhood. The women of Mansfield consolidated their many clubs (sewing, cooking, and art) into one and decided to meet at a central location, this home. Bothe Henry and Lucretia died there. Lucretia granted it to the Women’s Club. Today it is across from the Renaissance theatre, another site of paranormal activity. While the Women’s Club is no longer available for investigations, it does have a long history.
It was just Greg and I this time, and we began in the “Children’s Room” in the tower at the front of the house on the 3rd floor. This is where the mothers, grandmothers and aunts would send the young ones to play while they were having their meeting. While using the spirit box, we had an incredible number of EVPs and a great interaction with the spirits there, especially a young child. I asked, “Are you looking out at the street?” “Yes,” was the reply, “They’re meeting!” “You should know better!” a female voice told us when we asked, “Can we stay and play?” I asked, “Did you come here with your mommy?” A child-like voice not on the spirit box told us, “I told you, Fussy was an old witch.” We’re not sure what that means. I offered to play music. “We like music, don’t we?” was the answer. This implied that there was more than one spirit there, that one child was talking to another person. We had already heard what sounded like a woman’s voice. The K2 meter was active as well. I asked, “Do you know Twinkle Little Star?” I played it on my phone with a video. A child-like voice replied, “I watch!” “Twinkle, Twinkle,” she sang. We heard this with our own ears at the time! “Thank you, thank you, nice lady!” She or he must have been right behind me! The K2 flashed and the temperature on the SB11 changed. I had reached across the SB11 and clarified that the change might have been me. “It was,” a voice disclosed. The “child” spoke again. “Twink! “I’m alone here.” When I offered to play another song, we heard, “Pick me up!” While playing Yankee Doodle, the voice told us, “I like Doodle!” She responded several other times. There was another spirit there, however, and she wasn’t very cordial. She told us, “It’s not anyone, bitch!” and “Turn it off, bitch!” We think she means the SB11. Since the house was rumored to be part of the Underground Railroad before the Civil War, we asked about it. We asked if someone had been hiding here. “Help me!” a voice said, not coming through the SB11! We asked about Canada. “White slave!” was the response. We also had the flashlight go off and on by request, and in answer to the questions, “Are you teasing us?” and “Are you playing?” The response was yes to both.
We moved into the large attic room, but had little activity there.
In the original grant, there was to always be a bedroom kept for a woman in need. In the woman’s bedroom, we encountered several spirits. There were apparently at least three, a man, a woman and a child. We used the laser light, and a childish voice queried, “Lights?” When we turned on the spirit box, the EVPs we heard included: “I love you,” “Go away!” “Gammy!” (a call to a grandma?) and “Mama, help me!” These sounded like a small child. From the apparent women, we heard, “Go and play. Leave ‘em!” Instructions to the child, perhaps? In answer to our questions, “Has somebody been mean? Did he beat you?” a male voice told us “Yeah, a good night’” and “No beatin’ last night!” When we declared that we had traveled from Florida to come here, we heard an EVP “Hey, you guys traveled. We didn’t know!” These responses were all very relevant and interactive.
We decided on the parlor next, a lovely room from the early 1900s. We set the Mel meter on the Baby Grand Piano. Through the Spirit Box, we heard what we think was a conversation between spirits. “I want it back,” a male voice demanded. “You already got it,” said another. “I said I want it, Woody,” insisted a female voice. A female sounding voice informed us, “I like grownups!” One of the chairs was a favorite of one of the spirits, we were told. I was sitting in it. We said we would switch. “Let me see you switch!” declared a voice. We did. We told the spirits that Greg had a camera and we’d like to take their pictures. “Alright,” said a childlike voice. When we requested somebody to light up the K2 mete, a voice responded, “I’ll see if I can!” Another voice demanded, “Get off my chair!” Maybe I was sitting in the wrong chair after all! I commented that it was a beautiful room. “I see it!” was the retort. The Mel meter on the piano registered a .8. When I mentioned it was a beautiful room, a voice retorted, “I see it!”
On the adjacent stairs, a voice told us “We have looked for you.” We wondered if they were looking throughout the house, or had heard we were in the neighborhood. Again using the spirit box, a voice pleaded, “Let us out!” There was banging! There are stories that the house was a stop in the Underground Railroad. The Mel meter showed a 1.0.
We had interesting activity in the Dining Room. Several entities interacted. The spirit box was a great communication device once again! We were instructed to “Write this down!” “I call MaryJo! Where are you?” spoke a voice that sounded like an older woman. Sensing an angry presence I asked, “Are you angry?” “I’m gonna come get you!” growled a voice. Someone was trying to intimidate us. A youngster’s voice called, “Hey, you mad at me, Mom?” Seeming to give validity to the Underground Railroad story, a voice called, “Save us!” A voice which sounded like a woman’s spoke, “They’re recording.” “Do you like music,” I asked. “I like it!” a voice answered. “What kind?” I questioned. “Aretha!” was the reply. It would seem there is a more contemporary spirit there, too, if Aretha Franklin is a favorite!
We spent a long time in the cellar, since it is supposed to be a center of activity. We heard a noise throughout the session that we couldn’t place. We don’t think it is paranormal, but can’t decide what it is – something like an air raid siren, but it was the middle of the night. There was a loud moan at one point. A voice demanded, “Let go of my sister!” Perhaps this was another reference to the Railroad? A woman’s voice, not through the spirit box said, “Greg on camera. A big one.” In answer to a question about the drinking gourd, a secret map for the escaping slave, a young voice stated, “I never knew it.” Greg felt his hand be touched. “Did you touch my hand?” he queried. “I don’t know!” was the whispered response. The Mel meter registered a 3.0 at its highest! We did see a possible orb. A voice told us to call him Eric. Another said his name was Linc.
We’re glad we were able to investigate the building! We do believe that there is paranormal activity, and several spirits residing there. We were especially excited about the child in the attic singing for us! Since it is now privately owned, we are thankful we had the opportunity to acquaint ourselves with the spirits there. We would certainly go back if we could.