When I was younger I was one of those kids that was able to watch a scary movie and not have nightmares (heck, I watched the Exorcist in grade 3 and walked home alone in the dark... okay so I was at my next door neighbors and my mom was watching me but still! I was a hero). I think I was just able to remind myself that it was just a movie and it wasn't real. However I got really creeped out whenever I was told a ghost story that claimed to be real. Remember the show "unsolved mysteries?" It wasn't even supposed to be a scary show but it really creeped me out.
In an attempt to get into the spooky Halloween spirit I decided to do a little bit of reading on places in Vancouver that claim to be haunted.
The Orpheum Theatre (601 Smithe St.): The theatre was built in 1927 and many people claim to have seen the spirit of an acrobat who died there by accident in a vaudeville act.
The Vogue Theatre (918 Granville St.): Built in 1941, this theatre is the home of two ghosts, one of which is believed to be a projectionist named Fritz, who once worked there. Footsteps are heard in the downstairs dressing room area and in the seating area many people have seen a man in a white tuxedo and black bow tie.
Hycroft Mansion (1489 McRae Ave.): Several people say they have seen the ghosts of elderly men dressed in First World War uniforms, one of whom is thought to be Gen. Alexander Duncan McRae, who owned the house. Others have seen a figure of a woman, who may be his wife, Blanche. I recently attended a wedding there and obviously didn't see any ghostly activity, but I read that the paranormal activity seems to halt for weddings and other parties but is in full force when film crews are shooting on location (many scenes from the x-files were filmed there)
The Fairmont Vancouver Hotel (900 West Georgia St.): People have seen a stylish woman in a red dress walking along an invisible ledge. She is thought to be a lady by the name of Jennie Pearl Cox who was a regular at the Hotel's ballroom in he 1940's. She was tragically killed in a car crash outside of the hotel in 1944 while wearing her favourite red dress. The hotel’s elevator often makes an unscheduled stop on the 14th floor. When the doors open, this same woman appears to be floating along the hallway. Her presence has also caused hotel guests to call the front desk out of confusion wondering why there is a lady in a red dress occupying their room.
Old Spaghetti Factory, Gastown (53 Water St.): A train conductor, who died in a horrific collision on the underground railway track upon which the restaurant is built, is believed to haunt this restaurant. Customers have seen silverware moving around on it's own on the tables. The most haunted area of the restaurant is said to be near the old trolley car. A couple employees claim to have seen a ghostly figure sitting in the trolley car and many say they have heard the ghost calling their names.
Century House Restaurant (432 Richards St.): In the early 1900's a young woman working as a bank teller was killed during a robbery here and rumour has it that her ghost still haunts the restaurant. Many people have reported feeling her presence, but some have also heard her crying in the downstairs bathroom.
I think this year I'll have to go on a "Haunted Vancouver" tour... anyone want to join me?
(for another haunted Vancouver story, visit Vancity Buzz.. Gave me chills!)
Sources: 1 2 3 4
Pictures found here