In October, every year, it was our “Super Bowl” of paranormal investigations. This was not only because the veil the thinnest, but everyone was “in the mood.” We had so many great opportunities come up through the years. We investigated top notch locations, and fed the media, long before Ghost Hunters or any other ghost hunting programs came out on television.
October of 1999 was an incredible month for South Jersey Ghost Research, which was in full swing. Dave and I had a successful group, and we had an opportunity to do some more fun things in investigating and community awareness about ghosts and the paranormal. We were given an opportunity to investigate Fort Mott State Park and Finn Point National Cemetery in Salem, NJ, on top of giving a seminar on ghosts and investigating on October 28th! But first, we investigated the grounds to see if we could gather data for the seminar.
On September 24th, 1999, SJGR had the opportunity to meet at Finn’s Point National Cemetery, which was right up the street from Fort Mott, to conduct a walk through in both locations. Finn’s Point had gained notoriety for a 1997 murder of the caretaker by Andrew Phillip Cunanan. He then travelled to Florida and murdered Gianni Versace at his mansion. Even before we heard about that, my hair rose on the back of my neck when I was around that house. It ust had that feeling about it.
It was a clear night, in the mid 60’s, and we had the walk of the cemetery, which was small. The cemetery was only for the soldiers of the fort, dating back to the Civil War. Finn’s Point was supposed to be the location for the battery.
According to the state website “the original plan for the Battery at Finn’s Point was abandoned and construction of new fortifications began in 1896. Large caliber weapons, three 10-inch and three 12-inch guns, were installed on disappearing carriages. When completed, Fort Mott contained cutting-edge military technology. This fortification was officially renamed Fort Mott on December 16, 1897, to honor Major General Gershom Mott, a decorated veteran of the Mexican American and Civil Wars.” Instead, the cemetery “became a cemetery in 1863 for Confederate prisoners of war who died while in captivity at Fort Delaware.” According to the Veterans Affairs website, Fort Delaware had an estimated 2,502 men died while imprisoned.
What I found interesting about Finn’s Point; it wasn’t like other cemeteries. Most of the area was wide open, with no markers. There was a large monument with a list of the dead, but other than that, a hundred or so stones. In one instance a member of our team visually saw a soldier by a tree in the cemetery. Naturally, the team followed up but didn’t receive anything big or pronounced. After that we decided to move forward down the road into the fort.
As we were walking, I felt like we were being followed. I was taking pictures as we walked as were other team members. We all received orbs in the photos.
Once we got to the fort, it was an incredible sight. Several “batteries” lined up, with the ability to walk through them. It reminded me of a playground but for ghost investigators. As we walked through the batteries, I kept feeling like I was surrounded and being watched. Like the spirits knew we were there and were wondering why.
Other than visually seeing shadows, feeling ourselves being watched, and the orb photos, the night was calm, and collected. This made it a great location for investigating. Then we were invited back to do a seminar close to Halloween!
Before our seminar we were given the opportunity to investigate a location in Birdsboro, PA on October 1st, 2022. This location was featured in Charles J. Adams III book Ghost Stories of Berks County. In the story, the “past owners Robert A. Baker and Scott S. Zabower moved into the old farmhouse in 1977, they were not interested in the paranormal. But they soon could not deny what was happening in and around the house: cupboard doors opening and closing on their own; lights and other electrical items turning themselves on; and, most disconcerting, a misty form often seen coming down a staircase.” We were called in by some promoters to investigate the claims and see what we could find in the already staged “haunted house.”
When we arrived at the house, in the back woods of PA, it was an ominous sight. The house was abandoned and looked as if it was “torn to shreds.” We focused more on the outside of the house since the inside was now a “haunted house” for Halloween. I remember coming around to the rear of the house and seeing something out of the corner of my eye in the yard. While that was happening, another investigator on my team, Harry, saw a human form move in the distance.
When we entered the house, Harry and Dave felt a cold spot in the corner of the room. Unfortunately, with all of the exposed wires, we could not get an effective EMF reading.
When I was in the basement with a couple investigators, I saw a light shine along the side of the wall, yet there was no light source around that could have caused that anomaly. When I took a photo to collaborate with my sighting, I caught an orb, and when I took another photo as a reference shot, and nothing was there.
Taken at 9:01pm. No Orb.
Taken at 9:10pm. Orb Centered.
Taken at 9:14pm. No Orb.
As the night progressed, there was little evidence coming out of the data. My thoughts were we overstayed our welcome.
After a month of waiting and organizing, SJGR threw its first Ghost Seminar!
I was driving around in the golf cart with park personnel making sure things were going as planned. We had an incredible turn out! Had some rowdy drunks, but other than that, everyone enjoyed themselves. We had demonstrations of equipment in the office for a classroom style overview. Then groups went out to the bonfire and heard ghost stories, ending with an actual walk-through of the batteries with investigators and equipment. It was a blast!
I was also featured on a Parody in the Channel Six Action News snip Don Polec's World in October to parody The Blair Witch Project. It was great fun!
 New Jersey State Park Service; Fort Mott State Park Overview; Park History; Last Updated 23 September 2022, Accessed on 15 November 2022 at https://nj.gov/dep/parksandforests/parks/fortmottstatepark.html.  Veterans Affairs; National Cemetery Administration; Finn’s Point Cemetery; Last Updated 28 May 2020, Accessed on 15 November 2022 at https://www.cem.va.gov/cems/nchp/finnspoint.asp.  Reading Eagle; Reading Eagle; Exeter house may be haunted, but not by Lizzie Lincoln [Ask the Eagle Reports]; Created on 28 December 2018, Accessed on 15 November 2022 at https://www.readingeagle.com/2018/12/28/exeter-house-may-be-haunted-but-not-by-lizzie-lincoln-ask-the-eagle-reports/.