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PostPosted: 30 Jun 2008, 12:55 
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Experts see activity that spooks many

FRANK JULIANO

MILFORD — Don Carter is a skeptic, so he is careful not to say that Milford is haunted.

But the paranormal investigator devotes two chapters to the city in his new book "Connecticut's Seaside Ghosts" (Schiffer Publishing Co., $14.99) and said in a recent interview that he could have written much more on Milford. "The cemetery alone and the stories there are worth their own book," he said.

Carter and a team from the New England Paranormal Video Research Group first came here in October 2006, to visit the Milford Historical Society's three houses on Wharf Lane. On that site are the Stockade House, which served as Milford's first hospital, and the Eels-Stow House, once owned by Capt. Stephen Stow, who died of smallpox while caring for Continental Army soldiers abandoned by their British captors when they became ill. Stow did his selfless deed in a building that no longer exists, near the site of the present City Hall.

Since the land that makes up Milford has been occupied for so long — at least 1,000 years by Indians and since 1639 by European colonizers — it is logical that if spirits of the dead can linger in a place they'd be hanging around here. Carter relates several possible contacts with spirits in his book, without giving an opinion either way about their veracity.

"I can tell you that the Electronic Voice Phenomena (EVP) in the Stockade House is a good one. A voice can be heard saying 'Get Out!' While that is a pretty common EVP, what makes this one unusual is its strength and clarity — everyone agrees on what was said.

"But is it evidence that the house is haunted? It is possible,'' said Carter a historian and a security consultant. "There are no experts in this field; anyone's opinion is as good as anyone else's.'' One local person who apparently attracted the attention of an uneasy spirit is Ellen Aftamonov, a member of the Milford Historical Society.

"I didn't see anything; it wasn't an apparition,'' said Aftamonov, who was working in one of the society's houses. "I heard a voice call my name when there was no one else in the house. Another time I was alone in the office and when I went to close the door,

I felt something brush my hand.'' Carter said that the "sensitive'' person on the team, Gail Syring, felt that there were three separate entities in the house, including the patriarch, a man named Paul. A search of historical records has not turned up any owner of the Eels-Stow or Bryan-Downs houses named Paul, the author said. It is likely that Aftamonov's encounter was with a serving girl named Marjorie, whose bedroom was where the historical society volunteer heard her name. "Marjorie was apparently a petulant hypochondriac who may not have done her share of the work.

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PostPosted: 30 Jun 2008, 13:04 
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In a video prepared for the summer museum season, society publicist Susan Carroll-Dwyer has some fun with the notion of ghosts.

As she is describing the contents of one of the houses, something that is either a spirit or a person wearing a sheet appears in the background.


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