Over the past decade news stories from reputable sources such as the Boston Globe have covered the tales of ghostly encounters at the Middleborough Town Hall. (Many of these stories are published right before Halloween, but that doesn't make them any more or less credible in my mind.) In the beginning employees would hear footsteps coming down the ornate staircase at the end of the building. People reported seeing orbs in the grand ballroom on the top floor of the Town Hall. It took the work of a local ghost hunter to finally give the paranormal energy a name. This is the story of why people now believe that the ghost of a local architect Solomon Eaton roams the Middleborough Town Hall.
Is the Middleborough Town Hall Haunted?
People who work late into the night at the Middleborough Town Hall have reported ghostly footsteps and mysterious shadows.
Visiting Haunted History in Massachusetts
I love history and I love a good ghost story. Middleborough is only a half hour from my home on Cape Cod, so I decided to set out on a paranormal day trip. I wasn't alone. I did convince Nora, my 87 year-old mother to join me. Although, when we arrived at the Town Hall she decided to stay safely tucked away in the car.
The Town Hall still houses many town offices such as the town manager and assessors office. It is open to the public during business hours. I popped in on May 1, 2015, a sunny Friday afternoon. Quite frankly, I have never understood why most ghost hunters wear all black and only investigate at night.
Middleborough Town Hall
Haunted or Just Hauntingly Beautiful?
The Town Hall sits on a hill overlooking the downtown
Photographer: Nelda Hoxie
The Victorian Town Hall is an imposing structure that sits on a hill in the downtown area. The offices are mostly on the fist floor. The top floors hold a large auditorium that is used for public functions and plays. The granite structures that you see in front of the building comprise a memorial park to honor veterans.
In addition to the modern structures, there are older memorials that are comprised of large granite boulders with bronze plaques on them. The one you see to the right was installed by the Daughters of the American Revolution. Unfortunately, the plaque was too worn to read.
Could a Native American Curse Cause the Paranormal Actvity?
Many communities use organic memorials such as granite boulders to honor their veterans. There are many in the town where I live. The granite comes from local quarries. I thought this might be significant in studying the reported Town Hall haunting.
There are some who believe that a nearby granite quarry was cursed centuries ago by Native Americans. Evil spirits are said to remain in the granite even after it leaves the quarry. If you want to learn more about this you can read my article about the Assonet Ledge.
No one could tell me where the granite came from for these local memorials. (They looked at me a little oddly as well.) It is not unreasonable to believe that Native Americans were angry at the European settlers. Middleborough is one of the earliest settlements in the United States. The Pilgrims landed in 1620 and Middleborough was first settled in 1661. It is west of the original Plymouth Plantation. The colonists who lived there played an important role in King Phillp's War. To this day, more people died per capita in that war than any other American war.
The Town Hall is reported to have been the site of an Native American village. Although all of New England had been home to Native Americans until the European settlers arrived.
Where is Middleborough MA?
Just east of the Bridgewater Triangle, an infamous paranormal hot spot.
Is the Bridgewater Triangle to Blame?
The Bridgwater Triangle is located in southeastern Massachusetts. The town of Bridgewater (which is north of Middleborough) is in marks it's northern apex. Lakeville (which is south of Middleborough) is the southeastern corner. Rehoboth is the southwestern corner. Residents have reported mysterious balls of fire in the sky, creatures that resemble Bigfoot, and a redheaded apparition that hitchhikes on Route 44. There are many more curses, legends, and stories. Several books have been written about this area, and I admit it, I have read and enjoyed them all.
Some people believe that the Middleborough Town Hall's proximity to this paranormal region is the reason for the Town Hall's paranormal activity.
My Favorite Books on the Bridgewater Triangle
|Ghosts of the Bridgewater Triangle|
For the past twenty-five years, the people along the Massachusetts-Rhode Island border have known about the Bridgewater Triangle and the odd things that occur there. But for cen...
|The Bridgewater Triangle Bigfoot: A Report of Published Accounts|
New England's "Bridgewater Triangle" is one of the world's most mysterious places whose puzzles range from cryptid beings to ghosts. The most famous creature believed to lurk in...
Middleborough Town Hall Auditorium
Technicians Peparing for a Performance
Photographer Nelda Hoxie
While none of the employees in the Town Hall wanted to talk to me about their personal experiences, some local officials have spoken with newspaper reporters. In a March 2, 2008 article on Boston.com, selectman Marcia Brunelle said that she heard footsteps in the auditorium when she was working in a nearby office. When she went to see who was there, she found no one.
The same article also reports that an orb of light was caught on film when a children's choir was being taped. People who were there confirm that a beautiful white light rose up from the floor and then floated above the audience. The light then floated up to the ceiling and then moved quickly through it.
Balcony Area in the Middleborough Town Hall Auditorium
Standing in back of the seating area where orbs have been seen
Photographer Nelda Hoxie
Enfield Paranormal Society finds Spirit Activity in 2008
Massachusetts selectmen are busy people. I'm sure that the Middleborough Board of Selectmen would rather focus on other matters. However, people keep reporting spirit activity in the Town Hall. In 2008, the board received pictured taken in the auditorium during a wedding. It showed an orb or circle of white light on the balcony railing.
On July 18, 2008 the Enfield Paranormal Society explored the Town Hall. The Enfield group is a bit different from other paranormal teams. In addition to using electrical equipment that tracks the energy of spirits, they also have a team member who is a psychic medium. Dee White Cove is able to communicate with the spirit energy. She found that there are many types of energy in the Town Hall.
Sometimes spirit energy is residual. The ghostly apparition keeps walking up and down the same corridor and cannot interact with the researchers. Other energy is intelligent. If the researchers ask it a question it can communicate through a voice or making a light on a spirit box light up or even by possessing a team member.
Both types of energy were found here. Medium Cove reported sensing many Native American spirits who were unhappy and suffering.
Middleborough Town Hall Staircase
Employees working late have reported footsteps on this staircase
Photographer: Nelda Hoxie
Ed Beaulieu and the Paranormal Investigators of New England
Ed Beaulieu is a Middleborough resident and member of the Paranormal Investigators of New England (PINE). He was asked to examine the wedding photographs designed above. PINE also conducted a site visit of the Town Hall a few months prior to the Enfield Paranormal Society.
In addition to using electronic equipment or a medium, Beaulieu studied the history of the Town Hall. He discovered that Solomon Eaton was the architect that designed the Town Hall. However, he died before it could be completed. A second architect was brought in finish the project.
One of the Town Hall employees who had seen the ghost reported that it looked like a man dressed in Victorian clothing. Beaulieu found pictures of the two architects. After the employee reviewed them, he said it could have been one of the architects.
Beaulieu thinks it's possible that Eaton is still checking on his project, because the new architect changed his design.
April 2013 Paranormal Investigation Reported by Fox News
The most recent paranormal investigation took place in April 2013. Fox News gave a thorough report on it. It was interesting to see the basement. That's the one area that I wasn't able to visit.
I spent about 45 minutes wandering around the staircase and sitting in the auditorium. I didn't have any unusual experiences and nothing unusual showed up on any of my pictures. My mother is glad that nothing "evil" followed me out of the building.