The particular story I collected takes place in Philadelphia, where ghost stories are plentiful. Philadelphia is an old city with a rich cultural heritage, and our founding fathers made history in the place that was once our nation’s capital (Eidmann). Many believe that their spirits and spirits of those from colonial times still lurk around. It is easy to feel like spirits are around when in a place where many people have lived and died before, and in a place that is filled with old buildings and landmarks. All of these factors make this city a perfect place for a ghost story.
This story was told to me by a close friend, in my dorm room on a cold rainy day in April. My friend is a female of Columbian descent, 20 years old, who lives off campus in Silver Spring, Maryland. She is a sophomore and is currently studying journalism at Maryland. She heard this story about a year ago while she was with her mom, and it was told to them by a co-worker of her mother’s at a national magazine. This story was collected by tape recorder, which was held by the teller.
So this past year I heard a ghost story from my mom’s coworker and friend. Her daughter recently purchased an old row house in Philadelphia. She lives there with her husband and they have a daughter, who was about two years old. They started to notice REALLY [eyes get large] weird things happening around the house, it was really eerie and started to make them nervous. Their daughter has a playroom in the attic, and she used to say, actually, she still says that there is somebody up there. She describes him as an African American male--well she says it’s a “Black man”--and she says he sits there and watches her play. When she told her parents...
... middle of paper ...
...just another person who wants to be friends and not think the ghost will hurt them or that there is anything scary about it. The tale capitalizes on the fact that an adult would be uneasy thinking that a child can play with a ghost without thinking twice, and even more uneasy that a child can see what they cannot, since adults are supposed to be wiser and more able to explain things. The imagination of a child, which can create some astonishing things, is a scary entity.
Bouldin, Paula. “An Investigation of the Fantasy Predisposition and Fantasy Style of Children With Imaginary Companions”. Journal of Genetic Psychology. 2006. 167(1): 17-29.
Eidmann, Frank. “Philadelphia: The Capital City” National Park Services. 7 Apr. 2006. http://www.nps.gov/inde/phila.html.
Juliano, David. “The Shadowlands” 7 Apr. 2006. http://www.theshadowlands.net/.
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