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Vintage Recipe Books.
Saturday night; Halloween weekend. The gang and I
wanted something different to do. We had spent all of
our previous Halloweens going trick or treating around
the neighborhood. We were older now, Id been driving
for a few months already, and we were itching to
create our own Halloween tradition. Being older meant
no more kid's stuff, no more begging, no more hanging
with mom and dad, and no more passing out ridiculous
candy treats to tiny sticky rug rats. We had a
reputation to protect. This gang was on its way to
becoming real men and couldn't be bothered with the
The gang consisted of me, Turk, and Half Pint. We
had been thick as thieves since we first met. Turk got
his nickname a couple years ago, when he fought with
the local bully. Everyone watching said that Maurice
(his real name) looked like a turkey killing a snake,
stomping and striking out with bony fist. Since that
fateful flight, everyone called Maurice, Turkey, finally
shortening it to Turk. The name stuck with him for the
rest of his life. Gotta say though, Turk was much
better than Maurice. O, yea, he won the fight.
Now Half Pint, he lived at the end of the street and was
younger and shorter than us. If you think his height had
anything to do with his nickname, you would be
wrong. He was christened "Half Pint" during one hot,
sticky summer's day. It happened sorta like this...
Looking back, I should have realized the night was starting out weird. How many mothers would
let you do what you want without all the questions?
Trust me when I say, three guys out on a Saturday night are in no hurry to put flowers on a
grave. We took our sweet time, goofing off, talking to some girls we knew, wasting time,
kicking it at the local pizza shop. Seriously, we had forgotten all about going to the haunted house
in Columbus even. I blame that on the girls. It was getting late, now. By the time we were on the
road to deliver the flowers, it seems I had even completely forgotten Mom's directions, how to
get the east side of town, or where the graveyard was. I had been there before, but who pays
attention to the location of a graveyard? I knew where the east side of town was, but something
wasn't quite right, I couldn't seem to get here. I couldn't figure it out and the guys were just
goofing off. No help there. I was going to get in so much trouble..
Staring, our jaws dropping, we watched as an old man, all dressed up in a black topcoat and high hat began to close the
rickety, rusty wrought iron gate. I ran up to him and begged him to let us in the cemetery. I pleaded with him, explaining my
mom's favor and how she wouldn't let us go to Columbus, if we didn't get this chore finished. Shamefully, I confessed to
him about our messing around at the pizza place and our reason for being so late. I could see Half Pint and Turk's heads
bobbing up and down in agreement out of the corner of my eye.
With a wink and a nod, he told me the festivities had already begun, but if we were sure we wanted to participate, we would
be more than welcome. We would have to leave the car behind and ride inside the horse-drawn carriage with him.
Ok, so we would miss the haunted house in Columbus, but, hey, no big deal. At least I would get the flowers delivered, and
a haunted cemetery versus a haunted house didn't sound so bad. The guys didn't seem so sure, but went along with the
program after some quick persuading.
Was I throwing caution to the wind and trying to save a little on the cost of gas to Columbus from Chillicothe? Whatever my
reasoning, we walked though the gates and headed towards the carriage. Half Pint stayed a little behind us, and for once
wasn't saying a word. As I turned to give Half Pint a look of encouragement, I noticed that the wrought iron gate looked
freshly painted from this side. I didn't feel so encouraged myself anymore.
The fog was thick as pea soup. Actually, I've never even
seen pea soup, but that's how they always describe it in
the movies. It was thick though, you couldn't see any of
Chillicothe from the overlook in the cemetery. The fog
was almost like a wall surrounding the graveyard. Could
this night get any weirder? I was about to find out.
Walking towards the carriage, I could tell it was the real
deal. Cool, I thought, look at that horse, that's the biggest
blackest horse, I've ever seen.
One of the actors approached the carriage, as we came to a jerky halt and stepped
down. He introduced himself as Nathaniel Massie, and said he had landed on the
west banks of the Scioto River, April 1, 1796. He claimed he came to help build a
new town, explaining that it was some sort of government grant, ¦a "new" program
called the Northwest Ordinance passed by Congress in 1787.
Shaking my head trying to make sense of what he told the three of us, did I hear
that right? Surely he said 1987, didn't he? Must be this night air playing tricks on
my hearing, I said to myself. Oh, then I got it. It was a part of the performance.
Mister Massie continued on, saying he was most proud of how he had surveyed
and plotted out the town site. He told us he liked the name Massieville, but later
changed it to Chillicothe, a local Indian word. He talked about his pride in the
town's growth and heritage over the ensuing years.
The old man, our guide, sorta limped on ahead of us as he directed us to get back
into the carriage.
"You ok, pops?". The old guide barely acknowledged I had spoken.
Turk elbowed me in the ribs, "Quit. Dude might leave us here, since we ain't
Mr. Massie began to fade away into the fog, and I marveled at the quality of the
special effects. Genius for such a small town acting company as this was. What
they can't do with computers todayâ€¦
Our guide drove us further into the cemetery. Seems the gaiety was all around us now. Our next
visitor seemed to approach the carriage from out of nowhere. He introduced himself as Edward
Tiffin, the first Governor of Ohio. He told us the story of how he served as the Chillicothe
Postmaster in 1799, then how he was part of the delegation to meet and greet President Monroe,
when the President visited Chillicothe on August 27, 1817. "Governor Tiffin told of how President
Monroe spent the night in the Adena mansion.
The Governor waved his arm in a welcoming gesture, pointing towards the evening's celebration.
As he did so, several young girls who looked to be about our age, ran over and asked us if we
would like to join in the dancing. They looked really cute all dressed up in their Victorian
costumes. As tempting as this invitation was, we declined. We all babbled like idiots, trying to
politely explain our flower delivery mission. I felt like a fool for turning the girls down, and I was
sure Turk and Half Pint wanted to join the party.
They looked at me as if I had completely lost my mind, but were loyal to the end, so they stayed
on by my side, rather than joining in with the dancers. And something wasn't quite right. It
gnawed at my stomach turning it into knots.
Gee this is creepy. I thought the dancing was further back in the cemetery, but I guess the fog
was playing tricks on my eyes again. The music sounded like it was just behind the trees located
nearby. Must have driven in a circle, I said to myself.
Yet, there was just a feeling that I couldn't seem to shake. I think Turk and Half Pint felt it, too. I
knew this was a haunted house graveyard type Halloween tour, but...still...I couldn't quite place my
finger on it.
Our guide walked us over to meet the next newcomers. They introduced
themselves as Thomas Worthington and his wife Eleanor Van Swearingen
Worthington. Geesh, what a name, I thought. They were dressed splendidly in formal attire.
"Check out his walking stick." Half Pint could barely contain his excitement..
"Must have spent a fortune on eBay for those get ups," Turk said in my left ear. I nodded in
agreement, a veritable fortune. Mr. Worthington noted we had already met his brother-in-
law, Edward Tiffin. Eleanor asked if we had ever visited their home. They had named their
home, Adena, and explained that it had been completed in 1807, and was designed by
"Of course," we replied, "everyone goes to Adena on school trips."
She remarked that we looked familiar. Too much acting if you ask me. She made it sound
as if the mansion were really theirs. Ha!
Mr. Worthington told us he had served as one of Ohio's first two U.S Senators. He was later
elected the sixth governor of Ohio. Quite suddenly, the couple grabbed each other and
danced away into the fog. As they faded from sight, I couldn't help think this was getting a
little too corny.
Hum...Wasn't there a haunted inn in Columbus...the Worthington Inn on High Street? I don't
know why that came to mind. Must be this crisp fall air, the fog, the full moon, and the
moss hanging off the trees, that kind of thing makes me think of hauntings and such. This
was the first time I noticed the moss... hang on a second, ¦we don't have moss hanging on
trees in Ohio!. How did they do that?
We stared as the next man approached the carriage.
He introduced himself as the 10th governor of Ohio.
He explained that he had served in the Indian
Campaign of 1790 and as a surveyor in laying out
Chillicothe. He helped to organize the state militia in
the early 1800's. In the war of 1812, he commanded
a regiment of Ohio Volunteers and marched with Hull
to Detroit. His military dress looked so real.
Good costume department. Every detail just right,
like something straight off the History Channel.
As we climbed back in the carriage for another ride with our guide, we encountered one last visitor. The old man introduced him as the
25th Ohio Governor, William Allen. He told us he had moved to Chillicothe in 1817, while living with his sister and brother-in-law, a circuit
"What's a circuit rider?" I asked.
Mr. Allen looked shocked, "A circuit rider is a term for a professional who rides in a regular sort of circle to various towns to provide
services. Most often as a judge, in the sparsely populated American West, where he would hold court
in each town on a regular basis, perhaps once a week or once a month."
Ohio was considered the American West at one time. He continued on to say that he had attended boarding school in Virginia and
completed his education at the Chillicothe Academy. He was a lawyer, a U.S. Congressman, a Senator for Ohio, and frankly, a little full of
himself, if you ask me. While in the Senate, he boasted, he did not miss a single day's session or floor vote. Too bad today's politicians
can't meet his record. He made his home at Fruit Hill, now called Brewer Heights, and also mentioned that he had a statue in the Statuary
Hall in Washington D.C.
Trying to join in the festivities, I asked him if he had ever visited D.C. to see it. He replied he had been dead these many years, thus no
longer traveled far.
"Quick comeback," I exclaimed. Yeah, right! Keep in character, after all it's for Halloween and they were putting on a show.
Our guide, the old man, motioned us to climb in the carriage again, then
returned us to the front gate. "Hey, what about the flowers for the grave?" I
asked, as he motioned for us to get out. "I need to put these flowers on my
mom's friends grave." He reached out a wrinkled hand and took the flowers from me, "I'll attend
to it, young sir." he answered. "You run along, now." As he and his horse clipped-clopped off
into the fog, I shouted, "But you don't know which grave it is."
He just turned his head, tipped his black stove pipe hat and grinned a sly
grin. With that last gesture the carriage, the horse, and the old man all disappeared from sight.
You have never seen three guys climb so fast into a car. Errr, Errr, Errr, the car wouldn't start.
The engine failed over and over as we tried to start it up. No use, the battery seemed dead.
We were silent as we walked, ok, ran to the nearest house for a jump.
No one spoke as the fog began to lift.
The closer we came to the nearest house the less fog there was. The man at the house had jumper cables and was more than helpful in
starting our car. We told him about the haunted house tour in the cemetery. Too bad they didn't advertise it better. We seemed to be the
only ones who showed up and we didn't even pay. He got this weird look on his face and asked us a few more questions. Then he told us
we had better get back home in a hurry.
Why," we asked. "What the heck was going on anyway?
He looked us dead straight in the eyes, each of us in turn. With quiet amusement finally he spoke, "There was no cemetery, no carriage, no
people, no computer animation. Nothing, but a broken down car on a dirt road, by a worn out corn field, in the middle of nowhere. No
one lives out here.
Slowly we looked around, he was right! All there was as far as our eyes could see was....nothing in the middle of nowhere. As we looked
back to thank the man for helping us with our dead battery, he had disappeared too!
Great goblins of Halloween! The car was waiting with open doors; we waisted no time..
When I returned home, Mom was sitting on the couch, watching TV, and sipping
a cup of hot tea. She asked if I had enjoyed the haunted house tour in Columbus.
She never even mentioned the flowers. When I asked if she had ever visited
Grandview Cemetery on Halloween evening before?
Her only reply was, "Why go out of Chillicothe for a good haunting when you
have the best in Ohio's haunted history right here at home." With that she reached
for a plate of chocolate chip cookies. "Want a cookie, dear?"
|The collaborating effort of Starla and Logan. The original story won first place in sixth-eighth grade division of Southeastern
Middle School, 2005 by Logan Lyon. Logan wrote the original story and I did the rewrite..
The story was then given to PenVampyre for a final once over. She corrected the story adding her professional writing skills to
the mix. If you would like your family stories written for you, please contact her through her email address -
PenVampyre@aol.com. Very affordable. Her translactions of English/Spanish are perfect too!
Well, just at dusk, after some frantic hunting and a billion wrong
turns, we finally made it...
As we arrived at the entrance of Belleview Hill, I noticed the sign.
It read, Belleview Hill Cemetery, Entrance-Opened 1915. Was this
the right place? Mom did say the Belleview, right? I'm sure she
said the cemetery on the east side of town, didn't she? Was it the
west side? Why wasn't I paying more attention? I've been here
before, but who pays attention to where a cemetery is, after all I
was riding in the car, not driving the car. I'm positive she said
Belleview on the east side, yea, that's right. Isn't it? Sure it is.
Standing just outside of the gate to the entrance, I tried to reach
mom on my cell phone, but apparently this was a non-service
area....Rats! The cell just kept roaming. No help there. I put my
cell away and looked around. I shuddered, as a chill ran down my
spine. I suggested Turk and Half-Pint try their phones. Turk's
phone was roaming, same as mine. Half-Pint's phone was dead as
usual. You gotta ask, who does that? Who forgets to put their
phone on a charger at night? No use trying to figure that one out
right now. This situation was getting creepy. We were front and
center of a graveyard on Halloween night!
My spider senses were getting goose bumps! This strange white
fog was rolling in, a warm thick blanket of the whitest white fog
ever seen. It was obscuring everything. We looked around. Just
seconds ago, you could see clear down to Main Street, about a mile
away. Now we could barely see our feet! This is getting Hollywood
movie weird, I thought. Slasher movie supernatural weird! Stop
being a wussy, I told myself. If the guys find out I'm scared, there
would be no end to it. But then again, Half Pint and Turk weren't
saying much either.
We turned toward the entrance gate, as we heard a strange noise
approaching where we stood
........ as I had been forced to cut the grass and clean up the yard. It was forced labor with pay,
though. Turk and Half Pint came over and offered to help, for a price. I accepted their
Now, on this occasion. Turk and I had worked up quite a sweat. I swear, we were sweating
buckets. But Half Pint had slacked off during most of the day's work. He used his hands when
talking and he talked non-stop.
Needless to say, his part of the job went by the wayside, and we were forced to pick up the
slack. We were teasing him about our buckets of sweat compared to his half of a pint. The name
stuck. That, and we turned the garden hose on him, to even things up a bit..
Easy, I told myself. But I couldn't settle the queasiness in my stomach.
As the carriage passed rows of the tombstones and mausoleums, we saw moving through
tree-blackened silhouettes, men dressed in topcoats and tails dancing, arm in arm, with
women dressed in Victorian garb. Swirling around and around they danced, moving with an
eerie ease and grace. The dense fog, which seemed to envelop their feet, obstructed the
platform they were dancing on from our view.
The carriage pulled to a stop right in front of the platform. The violinist and fiddlers stood in
the center of the stage. Their faces completely expressionless, as they played their dance
Cool, I thought. Now I understood. This was like a haunted house tour and we had all
gotten in free of charge! Great actors, great costumes. So real!
So this Halloween, was a very first Halloween. Our first Halloween as free, men. Now, on this
one particular Halloween things worked out a little differently for us. As I was saying, we wanted
something a little different to do, some new experience more worthy of our new found manhood,
and as it came to pass, we found the very thing we were searching for. It began like something
I ran into the kitchen from the back yard. The screen door slammed shut behind me. Mom
didn't even flinch. She stood at the kitchen counter stirring a big batch of chocolate chip
cookies. "Hey mom, I'm going to the haunted house in Columbus with the gang tonight," I said
and snatch a spoonful of cookie dough.
Those were the fateful words I foolhardily uttered on October 31st, 2005 and so it began.....
Now my mother, who usually asked a thousand questions, just smiled and started dropping balls
of sticky dough on the cookie sheet. She paused from her task, stared straight ahead, into
nowhere, and asks, "Did you do your history homework?" Since she didn't even look at me, and
since I sorta had it finished....well, mostly. Ok, I hadn't even started on it, but I had all weekend
and the guys would be waiting. I couldn't not go! I couldn't let them down! Since all of those
things were true, I figured there was no harm in a small half truth. By Monday, it would be a real
"Yes," I said.
She started dropping the cookies on the sheet again, really fast, like she was one of those Stepford
Wives or something, O, no, she could somehow feel the lie. She was going to look straight into
my eyes and change her "feeling" into a known truth. I could never put anything past her. My
heart sank, my first Halloween as a free man was disappearing before my eyes. O, why did I lie?
I should have known she would know, she always knows! The guys would never get over this.
Ok, here it comes, here it comes, she's about to turn, to ruin my whole life. Instead, she stared
straight ahead and with an odd tone to her voice, she said, "Sure, you can go, but you have to do
me a favor first". I was struck dumbfounded. I just stood there, unable to speak.
She reached behind me, grabbed a big bunch of packaged garden flowers and said, "Take these
flowers up to the Grandview Cemetery and put them on your grandfather's grave. The cemetery
is on the east side of town, right on the town's outskirts. You remember which grave it is, right?
Now, don't wait too late, hurry and get done before it's too dark. You never know when the
caretaker will close that gate on a holiday."
Funny, I hadn't seen those flowers on the table. Forget the flowers; the important part was she
never even looked at my face or eyes. Yes, I was safe, on the home stretch. Columbus, Ohio
haunted house, here we come. I could taste sweet victory in the air, the dance about to begin. I
glanced her way just one more time, as I snagged more cookie dough. She was back to stirring
another bowl of batter, with these slow methodical strokes. I thought to myself, she really needs
to take a break, have a little fun, and relax.
Want to see some real haunted site for Halloween? Well, grab your candy (you'll need the sugar strength), and come to Chillicothe, Ohio
located about 45 minutes south of Columbus, Ohio to meet some real ghosts.
Our most famous ghost is Elizabeth, of Elizabeth's Grave, residing at Mount Union-Pleasant Valley Cemetery. Oddly enough, it's located
a few miles north of my house, off Egypt Pike in Ross County. A little northwest of town.
To get there, turn left on Union Road a little past Pleasant Valley Wildlife Area, where the dirt track road will lead to a graveyard. Poor
Elizabeth committed suicide here. Climbing a tree, she wrapped a rope around her neck and jumped, snapping her neck instantly. Mom
said when she was a teenager they were told Elizabeth did it due to unrequited love. Frankly, I think she's a bit of an idiot. Chilli is full of
good looking guys.
You have the Crosskeys Tavern, address 19 East Main Street. A drunken ghost named Harold lives there. Mom said he drank so much,
he died right in the bar.
Then there is the most famous haven of ghosts, the Majestic Theater, built in 1853. Many famous people have preformed here, most
recently, Mickey Rooney, who was one of my grandmother's early crushes. Geesh! It was the morgue during the 1918 Spanish Flu
Camp Sherman was located just a couple of miles away, and when the soldiers died from the flu, they transported them to the Majestic
Theater. Doesn't seem very practical to me, but then, I'm just a kid. Then they piled the soldiers' corpses in the alley beside the Theater.
It's said embalmers worked under the stage lights, where many a soul left their bodies. Old Bloody Alley. They sure liked to do things the
hard way. There isn't even a cemetery nearby. The closest one is located a few more miles away.
Schrader Road has a railroad tunnel. A lady and her baby died on the tracks there. The mother tried to save the baby, by tossing it over
the tracks when the train came. Needless to say, both were killed. You can hear the baby cry when you drive through. Frankly, I don't
get it. Why was she on the tracks with her baby in the middle of the night in the first place?
Then another woman was supposed to have been murdered here and her body wrapped and hung over a tree so the blood could drain
out. Oh, that is just plain sick!
This one is pretty cool. Out on Sulphur Lick Road is an ancient rundown hotel. This man's wife found he cheated on her, so she
snapped, and murdered everyone in the motel, including the guest and her husband, the dogs, the cats, the cook....
Dang, I am beginning to think girls are a little crazy. She could have divorced, come away with a decent alimony, and found another
There are tons more hauntings in and around Chillicothe, Ohio. You can find them - just click the bloody red link. May be
some from Columbus too.
But my favorite haunted place is the cemetery on my mom and dad's farm. There are tombstones there dating back as far as you can
think of, some all the way back to the early eighteen hundreds. It looks haunted to me. Really creepy.
Well that's all for my haunted trick or treat candy night. Catch you next year, when I have to write another story for school. Now, that's
School, homework, oh, no..........SCREAM ! ! !SCREAM ! ! !
The air had that brisk fall chill to it, and I knew the horse's breath should be steamy, but in a way, it almost looked like feathers of smoke as
he breathed out. The horse snorted and stomped one big black hoof into the dirt as we approached. His red eyes had a sort of wild look to
them and his long black mane and tail rippled with each snort. Did I say red eyes? Now how do you suppose they gave a horse red eyes?
Maybe some kind of computer animation or other Hollywood special effects trick, ok, that was a logical answer.......
As we climbed up into the carriage, it moaned and groaned like it was a hundred years old. Wonder where they got this relic? eBay I
We settled in, and the horse started forward with a jerk. Its black coat was shinning through the darkness, struck by moonlight. The big
horse's hooves made a clacking noise as it clip-clopped along.