Rosemary worked at Clay Haus from the start. She and Betty had been introduced by their minister and "Life's never been the same since!" Rosemary said. "I'm a little out there," she laughed but I didn't believe in Ghosts at first." Rosemary became a believer after something knocked on the door. She was in the kitchen when there was a firm knocking on the back door which opens to the fire escape. She opened it, but there was nobody there and the fire escape is too high for someone to disappear in the time it took for her to open the door.
"For me, it's just a feeling, a presence, " says Scott "It used to terrify me, I wouldn't come in here by myself after closing or after dark. I don't feel that way now. As time goes on, if there is a presence, I just catch it out of the corner of my eye. I'll turn to say something to someone standing behind me or watching me from the doorway, but there's no one there. I feel like I'm always dodging spirits walking by at the entrance to the bar. And the weird thing is the activity around here frequently coincides with some special or catastrophic event. The week before a tornado knocked down our barn there was a lot of activity, a scurrying down the stairs." And there's been a lot of activity this week," Scott added. "We'll see what happens!" He gestured at his arm. "My hair's standing up just telling you about it!"
"If they - the ghosts - are here, they've accepted us. In fact they trap us here! It's tough to start up a restaurant. At the beginning if we thought 'I don't want to be doing this any more,' it seemed like they would cause something to happen - like a week of unbelievable business when we really needed it. We stirred the whole building up. They seemed to be so excited about us cleaning it up!" Downstairs, the "keeping room" is a charming pioneer-flavored room in the basement with a huge fireplace at one end. It still has its original glass windows as well as the original door with an enormous stone threshold. "This is where the family did all their living and cooking. One evening, Betty and Rosemary were sitting down in the keeping room after hours alone. Suddenly, something began to walk down the stairs from the landing. "I just looked up and saw them coming down those steps," Betty said. Rosemary only saw a triangular shaped blur, while Betty saw "three ditinct people - male, walking down the stairs. Two down, one behind. I looked at them. They stopped with a start and looked at me as if startled to see us." Betty described their clothes as dark colored shirts and pants, "not flashy." They were middle-aged, hatless and had no facial hair. Rosemary laughed as she remembered their reaction. "Betty looked at me 'Did you see that?' I looked at her 'Did you see that?'
Shortly after that sighting, Betty saw a single ghostly man upstairs on the landing near the upstairs dining room called "The Blue Room. "It looked like one of the three men I saw on the keeping room stairs. I've never forgotten that because it was so clear. The stairs always seem to be a focal point of activity. Betty said, "You always think your being brushed by something on the stairs. There are times where running into ghostly people is a daily occurrence!" "But they are friendly spirits," Betty emphasized. "I think they've learned to live with us..."
Information for this page has been pulled from a chapter in a book written titled "Ghost Hunter's Guide to Haunted Ohio", where the writer Chris Woodyard interviewed Betty, her son Scott and a employee by the name of Rosemary who worked at Clay Haus many years. Just a few excerpts were taken for this page. Chapter 5 of "Ghost Hunter's Guide to Haunted Ohio" is written about Clay Haus and their "Unseen Guests". For more information on hauntings or to by the book which contains the full article, visit Chris Woodyard's web site at: www.invink.com.
Chris Woodyard's web site at: www.invink.com
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