Thursday, December 6, 2018

Ep. 285 - Pennhurst State School and Hospital

Moment in Oddity - The Narragansett Runestone

The Narragansett Runestone is a Rhode Island formation meta-sandstone that is 7 feet long, 5 feet high and 2 feet wide and is inscribed with two rows of symbols, which some have indicated resemble ancient Runic characters. The Runestone is also known as the Quidnessett Rock and was first reported to the Historical Preservation & Heritage Commission (HPHC) in the 1980s. According to the HPHC, there are several inscribed rocks that can be found along the shores of the Narragansett Bay Region. The most famous is known as the Dighton Rock, which was discovered during Colonial times and has been an object of study from that time. Brothers Everett and Warren claimed that they had carved the runes back in the summer of 1964, but locals claimed that the rock had been there before 1964. The fact that other similar carved rocks have been found seems to dispute that claim as well. The rock was stolen from the tidal waters off of Pojac Point in North Kingstown between July and August 2012 and eventually returned in 2013. It can now be seen in Wickford, a village of North Kingstown Rhode Island. Was this runestone carved by an early people in the Americas? Was it brought over from another land? Whatever the case, the Narragansett Runestone, certainly is odd!

This Month in History - Bhopal Disaster

In the month of December, on the 3rd, in 1984 a deadly gas leak of methyl isocyanate at a Union Carbide plant in Bhopal, India, killed at least 3,000 persons and injured more than 200,000. This became known as the Bhopal Disaster. Union Carbide was a pesticide plant and the highly toxic gas leaked out of pipes and into the surrounding small towns, exposing over 500,000 people. Hospital staff had never heard of methyl isocyanate and thus they had no anecdote. Exposure caused coughing, severe eye irritation, stomach pains, vomiting and breathlessness. Children and adults smaller in stature were more affected. The morning after the leak, thousands of people had died. The cause of the leak has been debated, with the company claiming it was sabotage and others blaming loose management and maintenance that caused a backflow of water into a chemical tank. There were several civil and criminal suits filed. Today, the site is still in need of clean-up and groundwater remains contaminated.

Pennhurst State School and Hospital

Pennhurst State School and Hospital is sometimes referred to as Pennhurst Asylum. This is a location deemed to be one of the most haunted and with its history, there is no wonder. Decades of abuse and experimentation were perpetuated on children who for all intents and purposes were left abandoned to a system with no moral compass. An expose in the 1960s shined some light on the situation, but it would still take twenty years before the location was shut down. Today, it is open again as a haunted attraction and hosts tours. I'm joined on this episode by Tony Merkel of The Confessionals Podcast who lived near Pennhurst. We discuss his fascination with Bigfoot and the paranormal and the history and hauntings of Pennhurst Asylum!

The TV reporter who exposed all of this in the mid 1960s was Bill Baldini. He ran a five-episode exposé of Pennhurst State School and Hospital on Philadelphia’s TV10. The segments were entitled "Suffer the Little Children" and it revealed a degree of neglect that was horrifying.  People were bound with straps and placed in adult-sized crib beds. Many of the residents were severly disabled and seemed to just be rocking, pacing, and twitching. They all seemed withdrawn into themselves probably from fear and overstimulation. When one patient was asked by the interviewer what he would like most in the world, if he could have anything he wanted, the sad and withdrawn reply was simply, “To get out of Pennhurst.”

From the Weird NJ website:
Quaker Building:  Numerous shadows manifest and dissipate at will. These shadows include what appeared to be a small female child with long black hair, a hunched over presence with long dangling arms and the upper portion of bodies looking over or around obstacles. Doors and a rocking chair have moved without anyone being near them. Investigator was shoved from behind hard enough on a stairway to leave a deep red mark on the small of back. Investigator was scratched on the arm by unknown object when they were not by anything or close to any walls. Objects being propelled in the basement such as a pry bar, some sort of brass fixture, and various other unknown objects. Multiple EVP’s (electronic voice phenomena) as well EMF spikes throughout the building when there is no electric supplied to any building there. Our Psychic Medium, Sharon Pugh, has felt multiple energies there including either a demonic force or a past life that wasn’t a very nice person.

Limerick Building:  The apparition of a woman in a old style nurse’s uniform was observed by a fire fighter, police officer and a marine.  Multiple EVP’s.

Devon Building: Unknown sounds and multiple EVP’s.

Mayflower Building: Shadow people seen multiple times. EVP’s captured. Investigators have been touched in this building.

Tinicum Building: Multiple EVP’s. Investigator had their legs touched.

Philadelphia Building: Loud sounds and voices heard coming from the building. Investigators surrounded the building and entered it via the tunnel system. No one was in the building nor could they have fled without being observed.

Administration Building: Multiple voices heard at various times and EVP’s caught of what appears to be a toilet flushing. This building has no running water or bathroom fixtures.

Hershey Building: Investigator heard a female child’s voice on the third floor.
 There does seem to be quite a bit of activity here and nearly every building has something unexplained going on. Is Pennhurst State School and Hospital haunted? That is for you to decide!

1 comment:

  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.