Author Topic: Paranormal Polka: these boots were made for haunting.  (Read 56589 times)

Barek Halfhand

  • Great Master
  • ******
  • Posts: 430
  • Karma: +1/-0
  • Psychic Slacker
    • The Land Of Hand
The Notorious Mr Halfhand


Raziel
  • Realized Monster
  • *******
  • Posts: 2211
  • Karma: +3/-0
Re: Paranormal Polka: these boots were made for haunting.
« Reply #302 on: April 16, 2010, 05:27:46 PM »
Can someone tell me whats going on here?
The closer you get to light, the greater your shadow becomes.
But don’t be afraid. And don’t forget...
You hold the mightiest weapon of all.
-Kingdom Hearts

Barek Halfhand

  • Great Master
  • ******
  • Posts: 430
  • Karma: +1/-0
  • Psychic Slacker
    • The Land Of Hand
Re: Paranormal Polka: these boots were made for haunting.
« Reply #303 on: April 22, 2010, 11:27:30 AM »
Mount Carmel Update: Al Capone-The Italian Bride




Mt. Carmel’s primary point of interest has generally been the grave of Chicago’s seminal Mobster: Al Capone, but that is just a 3rd of a triumvirate of accompanying legends... a distinction shared by “The Italian Bride” and “The Revolving Tombstone” aside from an assortment of other less notable esoteric oddities and various reports that have surfaced over the years of discarnate entities rumored to linger within the denizens of Queen Of Heaven’s venerable neighbor to the north...

  Historically there are notable figures ranging from members of The (da) Bears, The Blackhawks and The White Sox...War heroes, gangsters, politicians are all here as well (is “politician and “gangster” redundant? )There is even a famous, turn of the century Japanese acrobat that was a star attraction of Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus when he was contracted to perform under the Big Top ...a stark reminder that regardless of your station in life, inevitably we will all return to our “roots” (not to come across as overtly existential, but I cannot resist an opening for the inclusion of a bad pun )...
 
 The most perplexing of the three (in my opinion) would be  the grave of Julia Buccola-Petta or “The Italian Bride” that is situated facing the northen most fence of the property and is briefly visible from the street by passing motorists before the view is obscured by an office building next to the entrance ...her marker includes a life sized statue of the 29 year old that died giving birth in 1921 donning her wedding gown and solemnly holding a bouquet...the base of the monument has a photo affixed to the front that depicts one of the strangest cases of documented, inexplicable phenomena I have studied to date in all of my excursions to famous locations at home, nationally or even abroad....

 Following Julia’s untimely death as a complication of delivering a stillborn, Julia’s mother: Philomena Buccola was understandably fraught with anguish upon losing both her daughter and granddaughter so suddenly ...as she struggled with the ensuing stages of grief she began having recurring dreams and visions of Julia beckoning her from the grave, almost insisting that she was still alive and pleading with her mother to have her exhumed and released ...Philomena petitioned local authorities and finally after permission was granted by a local priest the governmental body of the day that presided over these matters conceded, Julia’s coffin was disinterred six years later  in 1927  ( apparently the requirement for a mandatary judicial order was not enacted until 1978 ) ....

 When the wooden coffin was unearthed, it was rotted and sodden from the 6 long years it was in the ground ...but when the lid of the coffin was carefully removed the witnesses were astonished to discover that Julia’s body bore no sign of decomposition, her skin retained it’s color and not the pallor of death...she basically looked exactly like she did the day she was laid to rest aside from the decay that had partially disintegrated the coffin... embalming was not practiced in the 20's..

Some refer to her unchanged state as “uncorrupted” ...a post mortem condition that the tenants of  Catholicism attribute to the candidacy of saintly canonization...of course selfless acts of martyrdom in life are the biggest prerequisite for sainthood consideration, but I personally would deem any woman that dies attempting to deliver life an ultimate act of sacrifice ...Julia’s mother; Philomena suffered the ultimate sacrifice as well and perhaps Julia’s uncorrupted condition was (and still is) a sign from a higher power intended to grant solace to Philomena and martyrdom to Julia..there has been an explanation proffered by (objective) skeptics citing certain soil compositions that has been proven to impede the decomposition process known as “adipocere” or “grave wax” but most agree that this explanation is incongruent with the state of deterioration of the coffin and the unblemished condition of her body...several onlookers described her appearance as pristine and some even touched her face lamenting that: “it was still soft, and her cheeks were still rosy red.” ...there were allegedly visible signs of interior coffin liner decay and dry rot of her dress...

It is unclear if the  infant child was buried with her as was the tradition back then, but no evidence of the child was revealed...it is unclear if the child is buried nearby, if it was cremated or if the child survived but was reported stillborn as an effort to sever all ties with the father that was estranged from his in-laws ...there was said to be animosity between Philomena and her Son In Law and it was later confided that mention of him on the tombstone was intentionally omitted ...          

 There are conflicting reports as to how many were present at the exhumation, and it is unclear how many were on hand to witness the removal of the coffin lid, but the photo of Julia taken by her Mother in her uncorrupted state after almost 7 years in the ground is still attached to the front of the monument today after it was added to her memorial along with the stoic, “bride in waiting” statue...

Reports of a spectral woman in a white dress is a recurring theme in ghost stories, and not unlike Resurrection Mary; there are incidents of the local police department officers catching glimpses of her...at Mt Carmel the police have admitted personal sightings either passing by on Harrison Avenue or when patrolling the cemetery ...

Reports of Julia sightings seemed to have spiked in the mid 70's when students of the Proviso East High school across the street emptied a school dance close to Halloween after a car load of dance attendees claimed to have witnessed a woman in flowing white gown slinking between the stone markers near Julia’s tomb ... thinking this was a seasonally inspired prank they turned around and approached the fence for a closer look where they where stunned by the discovery that the woman who seemed to not notice them, appeared to be completely dry in the downpour rain...

One reported incident involved a family accidentally leaving a small boy at the cemetery in the vicinity of Julia’s grave and when they returned they spotted the child from a distance, emerging from a cluster of tombstones holding the hand of a woman in a white gown...as they drew closer the woman released the hand of the child and receded back among the monuments leaving the boy to the embrace of his relieved parents that found no trace of the white clad woman that was visible a moment prior to their arrival... Other reports made by patrolling police officers and passing motorists describe luminous, amorphous shapes and phantasmic floating forms near her grave ...one woman of impeccable credulity in the community swore that she witnessed her statue glowing in the early twilight hours of a mid 80's summer evening ...

 Last summer I was able to locate the graves of Big Al’s north Side Nemesis: Dion O'Banion and a few of his confidantes and lieutenants such as Hymie Weiss, Vincent  Schemer” Drucci ( who serve under both O’Banion and his successor Bugs Moran) and the final resting places of a few less known underlings, henchmen and subordinates...ironically these North Side Gang members are all interred on the north side of The Bishop’s Tomb that is a centralized line of demarcation between north and south of the grounds, while Big Al and his loyal second in command of the south side’s The Chicago Outfit and eventual successor: Frank Nitti rest on the southern most section of the cemetery  ...

 Al Capone often complained of being “haunted” by past adversaries that met their demise by his hand or directive ...he claimed to see a spectral embodiment of a the brother-in-law of Bugs Moran: James Clark... a victim of the infamous St. Valentine's Day Massacre orchestrated by Capone that left seven dead in a conflagration of Tommy Gunfire ...this apparition was repeatedly reported by
Big Al as he languished along side of the man made lake at his lavish Miami estate and semi retirement headquarters to the Chicago mob outfit that he only lead symbolically at the latter stage of
his life that the debilitating, advanced degenerative stages of syphilis had by then dominated...this was said to be the basis for these hallucinations as premature senility would often be the result of syphilis complications ...other rumors of Al’s ghost haunting Alcatraz and the sounds of phantom banjo music emanating from his privileged size cell continue to make the rounds in the contemporary Ghost Hunter pop culture community where locations like this and Waverley Hills are pay-to-investigate style tourist destination for aspiring ghost busting “teams” modeled after the para-TV fad of 2006 through 201X thus lessening the credence of this allegation because of media sensationalism....

  Many mafia, gangsters or members of organized crime remained devout Christians thinking generous offering plate contributions would offset the murderous misdeeds that their chosen livelihoods entailed , leaving their conscious unfettered by the guilt of the preceding week’s sins...
the spiritual presence at Mt Carmel is not really in question to me, yet I find myself at a philosophical quandary as to what confines or binds many of those that dwell there ...some may simply remain bound to the consecrated ground where their earthly bodies have been commended pending the prophetic biblical protocols outlined in Revelations coming to fruition and in adherence to their religious convictions, some may remain in a state of spiritual status or hyper dimensional hibernation in acquiescence to “the rapture” ....or perhaps in accordance with the tenants of Christianity that requires one to “rest” until “both the quick and the dead” may be judged, they dwell in a perpetual dream state ...although there seems to be more than a little “sleepwalking” going on if this is the case ...I also have also conjectured that we may discard the negative, worldly aspects of our “selves”  upon death to dissipate or descend, while our higher harmonic, vibrational essence achieves ascension...perhaps we have antimatter versions of selves like Mr Spock with a goatee...ironically Kirk’s antimatter alter ego seemed more like William Shatner than the good Kirk from our universe ...
  
 Perhaps some are inured to the restriction of cemetery property by a sort of self imposed proverbial purgatory, hoping that by serving a pious penance surrounded the dead their sentence will be commuted and absolution achieved by way of post life contrition...many embrace religion in their
the autumnal years hoping that the vicissitudes of life’s transgressions may be mollified by simple repentance or resignation ...perhaps it IS that easy? ...I would be arrogant in scoffing such a notion as no ideology is more prudent than the other until one offers a quantifiable explanation as to precisely what occurred in the instant before “The Big Bang”...until then only a fool is sure about anything as an absolute (imho) ....  
The Notorious Mr Halfhand

Barek Halfhand

  • Great Master
  • ******
  • Posts: 430
  • Karma: +1/-0
  • Psychic Slacker
    • The Land Of Hand
Re: Paranormal Polka: these boots were made for haunting.
« Reply #304 on: April 22, 2010, 11:28:07 AM »

 Temperatures peaked in the low 80's for this mid April 2010 return to Mt Carmel...
this was the first time I have entered through the Harrison Avenue gate and made a concerted effort to remember a snapshot of the fence from the road this time...arrival from the south gate is usually tempered by the gargantuan death shrine that is the Queen Of Heaven Mausoleum to the left and no
amount of visual aversion or spiritual shielding will dissipate that contamination ...

 A single file procession of preschoolers on the sidewalk opposite the cemetery smiled and seemed to be enjoying the warmth of the pre summer sun that left their morning jackets hooked at the
back of a stuffy classroom...the inspiration for the cherubic imagery that is so recurrent in Mt Carmel’s artistry becomes obvious when the effervescence, innocence and trusting faces of these little ones came into focus lead by a protective looking teacher/surrogate mother and followed by an aid, assistant or some other designation that comprised the matriarchal monarchy charged with the daytime care these children ...the obvious and symbolic “cycle of life” contrast between the preschoolers on the right and the cemetery on the left was quickly replaced by the recollection of the volume of children interred beyond the fence and the sprawling expanse of marble and granite monuments within, and with it the realization that there are probably countless stories of sorrow that each and every one of those tiny tombstones promulgate...my thoughts reverted to previous visits and I again found myself distraught over the ordinate seeming amount of child graves from the early 1900's that research has revealed is attributed to the introduction of toxins and carcinogens as a result of the industrial age in Chicago...one portion of the cemetery dedicated exclusively to children is indelibly stained by sadness and it is quite targetable even to the less adept ...

The monolithic granite statues that serve as silent sentinels at the immediate right of the  north gates are daunting by their sheer enormity and superhuman size alone ...one wonders if the Arch Angels or fallen angles of Enochian texts were really Giants of extra terrestrial origin that bread a race spawned by the intermingling of Angles and humans
and if descendants of this hybridization walk among us today shrouded by ethnic diversity or if they have long since fallen extinct?..

 The single story admin building to the immediate left has yet to show any indication of activity aside from the accessible and relatively clean restrooms at the far end that faces the grave of Julia Buccola-Petta a.k.a.“The Italian Bride” ...the mood at her monument seemed sedate until
the view of the exhumation photo prominently affixed to the front of the base came into focus ...there is a timeless beauty about Julia that may be described as “buxom” or perhaps “voluptuous” and by today’s standards may be labeled as “full figured”, but it is the humble demure that is exuded from her expression captured in the wedding photo also lacquered onto the upper tier of the base that is most enamoring...the photo which

served as the model for the statue her mother selected to exalt the adulation she had for the departed daughter she loved so dearly ...

 The decision to cover the entire site in one fell swoop this time around struck me as even more of a daunting task once the sheer enormity of the property was again realized ...previous visits here were abbreviated, bifurcated or subdivided depending on my objectives or focal points of study at the time, but this was the first time I have attempted to adequately represent this location photographically in one aggregate session without hastening or overlooking some of the aesthetic highlights offered in each section... 
 
  The trek south was a zigzag through the area north of the bishops tomb and preoccupied with photographic optimization and conceptualization ... that is until I reached the crypt of Earl “Hymie” Weiss and was informed that “compared him, I was a choir boy”...I nonchalantly reminded him that it was this sort of incorrigible attitude that landed him where he is at age 30 ( after I curtly inform him that: deprived of his Tommy Gun he would not have lasted long in my arena) ...sadly the ineluctable
belligerence he displayed is what restricts him as the etheric echo of the past he represents...

 In retrospection; I feel that there is a little Hymie Weiss in all of us...while most of us a capable of sublimating that part of ourselves while others demonstrably seem to lack such composure at times ... I dismissed Mr Weiss as he comported himself as being less than receptive to spiritual
intervention or even the incorporation of an arbitrator from different astral address than ours that were overlapping at that particular temporal pinpoint...

 Deanie Obanion’s tall obelisk seems to be almost in defiance as opposed to being in deference of The Bishops Tomb that is majestically perched on a hill across the narrow road that separates the sections (and probably the riff-raff) where the North Side Boss’ marker is placed at the closest border to the adjacent small hill topped by an ornate mausoleum that serves as the final resting place of Cardinal Joseph Bernardin...the view of  Obanion’s grave from the hilltop always makes me think of Dean giving them “the finger” when I see it...       
 
The Rotating Tombstone was imported from Italy and the figures depicted in the statuettes atop the monument represent the members of the family interred below in memoriam and this upper portion is pinion mounted atop a flat base ...having never attempted to move the famous marker myself and the added temptation fueled by the unusual absence of other (live) visitors in the immediate vicinity, I set the camera down and gripped the ladies on the outside of the group pose by the hips and really had to exert a
significant effort get it budge ...it moaned in protestation as I swung it clockwise about a quart of a turn when much to my dismay an officious looking gentleman drove by in an Impala that appeared to be wearing a uniform of some sort ...he slowed down to extend the glare and exaggerate a glower of disapprove and I responded by picking up my camera and snapping a photo of my handiwork (below) but he had already passed beyond view when I moved the top of the monument back into place ...

There have been stories of lone visitors walking past this grave marker and it’s upper and lower segments being in perfect alignment one minute and then being flabbergasted to find it rotated 45 degrees after averting
their attention from it only for an instant with no sign of anyone in the immediate vicinity before or after...more recently an inside (culpable) source intimated to me (another Halfhand Exclusive) that a certain member of the grounds crew was extremely frightened by the fact that the monument was turned to a different angle every time he made a pass with
the lawn mowing apparatus he was riding and pleaded be reassigned to a work detail that excluded approximation to The Revolving Tombstone ...my source does not question the credibility of this employee, but he does in fact suspect other employees of perpetrating what they thought would be an innocuous prank but vowed silence and feigned innocence after their coworker reacted so extremely fearing harsh reprimand ...plus the employee  that reported the incidents was considered a “pasar la brocha” and not held in the highest esteem by his fellow Groundskeepers....

  Al Capone’s grave is almost incognito in it’s modesty especially when the baroque extravagance of other memorials nearby offer such comparison...perhaps the most enigmatic icons of organized crime, Big Al’s name is almost synonymous with the mobster, gangster, mafia or syndicate image that many not indigenous to the area still associate with Chicago even today ...the current tumult of political corruption at all levels here does little to help exonerate this misconception and seems to imply a cycle of recidivism that only serves to reinforce this misnomer...   
 
 Nestled between the other ground flush stones of his father; Gabriel Capone, his sister; Mafalda and his mother; Teresina (December 28, 1867 – November 29, 1952) here lies the grave of Alphonse Capone...
 this was another unusual occasion where there were no other visitors to this famous site ...the Queen Of Heaven Mausoleum across the street features a 3 story Madonna effigy on the it’s west wall that almost seems to be looking down in disdain from it’s lofty vantage and insinuated righteous, aristocracy protected within...Big Al doesn’t care though because “they don’t allow cigars in that joint anyway” ....


Here are the unedited (compressed) photos from my mid April 2010 visit to  Mount Carmel....b   
http://s843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/Mount%20Carmel%20Update/?start=0

The Notorious Mr Halfhand

Barek Halfhand

  • Great Master
  • ******
  • Posts: 430
  • Karma: +1/-0
  • Psychic Slacker
    • The Land Of Hand
Re: Paranormal Polka: these boots were made for haunting.
« Reply #305 on: April 22, 2010, 11:29:27 AM »
Mount Carmel update (cont.)



http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/Mount%20Carmel%20Update/100_6514.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/Mount%20Carmel%20Update/100_6518.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/Mount%20Carmel%20Update/100_6521.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/Mount%20Carmel%20Update/100_6803.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/Mount%20Carmel%20Update/100_6804.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/Mount%20Carmel%20Update/100_6619.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/Mount%20Carmel%20Update/100_6620.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/Mount%20Carmel%20Update/100_6705.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/Mount%20Carmel%20Update/100_6707.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/Mount%20Carmel%20Update/100_6603.jpg



http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/Mount%20Carmel%20Update/100_6563.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/Mount%20Carmel%20Update/100_6799.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/Mount%20Carmel%20Update/100_6723.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/Mount%20Carmel%20Update/100_6772.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/Mount%20Carmel%20Update/100_6640.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/Mount%20Carmel%20Update/100_6652.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/Mount%20Carmel%20Update/100_6663.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/Mount%20Carmel%20Update/100_6574.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/Mount%20Carmel%20Update/100_6589.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/Mount%20Carmel%20Update/100_6710.jpg



http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/100_6512.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6512-1.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6512-2.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6512-3.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6512-4.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/100_6527.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6257-1.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6257-2.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6257-3.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6257-4.jpg



http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/100_6539.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6539-1.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6539-2.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6539-3.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6539-4.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/100_6545.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6545-1.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6545-2.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6545-3.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6545-4.jpg



http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/100_6548.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6548-1.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6548-2.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6548-3.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6548-4.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/100_6569.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6569-1.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6569-2.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6569-3.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6569-4.jpg
« Last Edit: April 22, 2010, 11:38:53 AM by Barek Halfhand »
The Notorious Mr Halfhand

Barek Halfhand

  • Great Master
  • ******
  • Posts: 430
  • Karma: +1/-0
  • Psychic Slacker
    • The Land Of Hand
Re: Paranormal Polka: these boots were made for haunting.
« Reply #306 on: April 22, 2010, 11:54:59 AM »
Can someone tell me whats going on here?


Many believe that we are part of some grand design by a higher intelligence of religious dogma and some think we are of extraterrestrial origin while others feel that our individual realities are shaped by our own solipsistic worldviews....


hope that helped  :-)
The Notorious Mr Halfhand

Cassiel

  • Young Beast
  • **
  • Posts: 81
  • Karma: +0/-0
  • ArcAngel Cassiel a.k.a ~Aanica~
    • Spiritual Photography by Barek Halfhand
Re: Paranormal Polka: these boots were made for haunting.
« Reply #307 on: April 22, 2010, 03:29:31 PM »
This is my favorite place you post barek, the showcase of all your work is very nice to look through. I am fascinated by the story of Julia Buccola -Peta (The Italian bride) this photo below showing the  body after seven years with no decomposition is quite intriguing, thanks for bringing such great work for all to enjoy... 0:)


 
קפציאל

Barek Halfhand

  • Great Master
  • ******
  • Posts: 430
  • Karma: +1/-0
  • Psychic Slacker
    • The Land Of Hand
Re: Paranormal Polka: these boots were made for haunting.
« Reply #308 on: April 25, 2010, 11:48:35 AM »
This is my favorite place you post barek, the showcase of all your work is very nice to look through. I am fascinated by the story of Julia Buccola -Peta (The Italian bride) this photo below showing the  body after seven years with no decomposition is quite intriguing, thanks for bringing such great work for all to enjoy... 0:)



So no explanation is required?  :roll: ....b
The Notorious Mr Halfhand




Barek Halfhand

  • Great Master
  • ******
  • Posts: 430
  • Karma: +1/-0
  • Psychic Slacker
    • The Land Of Hand
Re: Paranormal Polka: these boots were made for haunting.
« Reply #312 on: May 12, 2010, 05:53:37 PM »



Here are the latest compilation videos for Mt Carmel....b

Part 1:Most recent trip featuring Al Capone's grave and more.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PzO-w7awmLA
 
Part 2:Most recent trip featuring The Italian Bride and more.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mv1ikmkDF8Y
 
Part 3:A compilation video of seasonal visits spanning 2007-2010
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V5GZHUjD2fU
The Notorious Mr Halfhand

Barek Halfhand

  • Great Master
  • ******
  • Posts: 430
  • Karma: +1/-0
  • Psychic Slacker
    • The Land Of Hand
Re: Paranormal Polka: these boots were made for haunting.
« Reply #313 on: May 17, 2010, 08:58:29 AM »
The Manteno State Asylum

The Manteno State Asylum
by Barek Halfhand


 It has been close to a decade since I have been to Manteno Illinois, and while growth and development has since peppered the predominately rural landscape with prefab-ish subdivisions along the straights of Rt 57 just north of the Manteno exit, the small town, Main Street charm beside the railway looks unchanged. The community of approximately 7,000 is still largely a farming/agricultural community but also hosts a balance of industrial, corporate and small business transplants as well, such as being home to one of K-Mart’s main distribution centers...yet the still operational grain elevator that sits along the train tracks and dominates the northern downtown view seems to be revered and cherished as opposed to being shunned as archaic...The Farmers Elevator Company that was founded in 1913 proudly displays “Village Of Manteno” on it’s main freshly painted, track-side grain silo ....          

 The State Hospital has a profound and complex history and since it’s inception back in 1929 and dedication in 1930...today over a third of the campus like, single or 2 story buildings have been renovated and is owned by the Illinois Department of Veteran’s affairs and this was my first exposure to the area a decade ago when a contractual project assigned me there for the majority of a summer, and yes some the structures occupied or otherwise that lie within the fenced perimeter of the Vets Home are considerably active...

 The State Mental Hospital/ Asylum had been a source of employment for many in the area at the time , fear for some when the facility began housing “mittimus residents” (deemed non violent but not fit for release felons) and perhaps even shame as the rumors of abuse and neglect surfaced during the post WWII overcrowding...the under staffing dilemma and the now archaic and questionably ethical practices of electro shock therapy, cold water treatment and orbital/full frontal lobotomy was commonly administered then. but some feel it was abusive barbaric,  or at least irresponsibly overseen by today’s standards...

  What has not been renovated, rehabed or demolished outside of the DVA property is boarded up tight or so structurally comprised by outward appearance that slipping inside one of the few buildings that still contain the artifacts of it’s past will soon be merely a notation of historic record and fading memory... but I was fortunate enough to experience just one of those remaining sites...I do not recommend that anyone ventures inside alone as I often do ...and yes I went in the basement...

 There is a palpable stress dissipation that I experience the farther from the elevated urgency of urban proximity I journey...it may be the uncluttered mundania of emerging farm-scape, the liberation from the congestion and chaos of the convergent interstate toll way systems near the Indiana-Illinois border to the east or perhaps it is the facade of ephemeral expatriation from the pulsating negativity endemic to Chicagoland commuting...a negativity that most would agree is physically perceptible regardless of their personal beliefs related to PSI sensitivities inherent to all of us....
  
The Veteran’s Home was easy enough to find just from memory, but it proved to be a daunting task locating the last of the remaining State Hospital structures outside of the DVA fences that were not converted to offices, training centers, day care and machine shops as I seldom roamed south of the Vets home in the past...The old hospital administration building managed to retain it’s classic architectural aesthetics despite the current occupancy by HomeStar Bank...
the preservation efforts appear to have exterior upgrades limited to the retrofitting of energy efficient windows and the modernization of secure and  accessible door schemes ...
 my understanding is that this commendable commitment to authenticity was extended to the
interior restoration efforts as well...


..I did get a shot of the gazebo steepled front of the building but the distraction of
locating an asylum structure that was not gutted or leveled hastened my departure ..
 
  The Google Earth topographical perspective is usually deceptive when utilized as a navigational tool from ground level ( especially when you are too lazy to include your laptop with your journalistic field accouterments and have to work from memory )...there is an odd
checker board of single story townhouse apartments and converted office/industrial park sites beyond the old admin building and with each block I circled the consternation of possible defeat intensified ...then I found what may be the very last of the original facility that has not been completely stripped of it’s interior fixtures and residual impressions ...

 This remote corner of the property seems like it is intentionally avoided and the adjacent roads,  sidewalks and empty lots are purposefully neglected ..there is farmland to the west and an overgrown vacant stretch of field bordering a golf course to the south...the virtually identical building directly across the street to the north has a tall fence that severely limits or completely restricts visibility of this enigmatic structure from within and to the east all facing windows are bricked up and painted...it seems like an exorbitant amount of effort was made by both neighboring offices/shops for it to simply an attempt to block an “eyesore” from view that is slated for inevitable demolition or rehab ....

 My initial circumspection of the facility was not encouraging as the first entrance I noticed was a chained metallic double door that looked to be bulging from a force exerted from within, leaving a notable gap in the middle that was wide enough to permit a glance into the stale, dank darkness that awaited me...the front entrance foyer sits at the end of a broken yet traversable sidewalk flanked by a lawn that looked like it has had not met with the mighty blades of a state or locally subcontracted maintenance crew yet this year and if left unchecked would likely require a machete to wack the burgeoning grass blades and dandelions that are mutating into sunflowers to a manageable length..
  
The box fronted foyer looked to have a framed door the was deprived of its plated windows long ago but from the distance appeared to be small and festooned with jagged glass shards thus prompting a westbound reconnaissance hike around the building to seek out alternative access...the rain soaked grass from the overnight deluge was already starting to penetrate my boots so I retreated to the relative dryness of the sidewalk along the road that provided me with a panoramic perspective of this enigmatic structure that seemed to be in a much worse state of disrepair than I at first surmised...visible missing portions of the roof implied a comprised  overhead structural integrity and when I approached the Pantheonic styled pillar lined western entrance I found myself further disconcerted to find large and rather heavy looking portions of
sheet-rock from the underside of the veranda’s roof had fallen to the cloister’s concrete slab below...

  The west side door was completely removed revealing the stillness of the one the recurrent large halls that may have served as a dinning room, common area or perhaps even one of those wards that the old photos depict as filled with rows of beds along the walls and down the middle with only small isles and spaces in between...there was once over 22 of these identically designed “H” shaped buildings in this new and innovative for the time; campus style state facility ...
 


The feeling of hubris I was enjoying for locating this holdout building at a site that is on the brink of extinction and further finding it readily accessible was quickly abated when I crossed the
threshold of that side door ...depressing and sad and in some instances there is an anguish of despair like I have yet to experience to this extreme...why anyone would be cursed to such a tormented existence in life continues to elude me, but my tenable conjecture and intuitive affirmations that those that are already suffering with mental illness may also be subject to the selective harassment of low level predatory entities is repeatedly reinforced by places like this be it occupied or otherwise...

 The holes in the wooded roof created a spotted suffused lighting to add to the bleak eeriness inside and the debris strew floor had standing water up to a few inches deep in some places rendering my already soggy boots to a soaked state of squishiness that you all better appreciate...  
I’m still waiting for someone tho express gratitude for me almost freezing to death at
Peabody Estate on New Years Day just to get those sunrise shots lol...

  The water on the floor was negligible in most of the places that was not completely covered with broken glass, beer cans, miscellaneous debris and portions of the ceiling that fell to the floor thus exposing the decaying wooden roof above...there is a cacophony of sounds ranging from birds fluttering about the rafters, water dripping, wind moaning through the holes in the roof that the elements and time continue to multiply and others that I have yet to discern...the graffiti and gratuitous vandalism is utterly senseless to me and even in my youth I can remember being at a quandary as to why some kids insisted on participating in such wanton destructive behavior ...some of the markings on the walls were of such an obscene nature that many of the non  conventional camera angles you will see in a the PB album are intended to limit or obscure visibility of the content...

The bathroom and tub-room fixtures are still recognizable even though almost all of the toilets have been smashed into porcelain shards ... probably the cathartic expression of a self actualization achieved by the liberating epiphany of acknowledging and confronting a deeply buried and sublimated potty training trauma ...the concrete bases of the bathtubs have even been subjected to the nihilistic seeming need of someone to obliterate all traces of the asylum’s dark and sordid past (that or they just like to break stuff )...


 The oppressive mood there is probably palpable to everyone whether they are sensitive, psychic or “normal” alike...but if any of you that decide to make the pilgrimage there before this last symbolic relic of what many construe as a failed state medical institution and (imho) a place of highly localized, elevated and concentrated paranormal activity is gone, I suggest that those that are endowed with psychical proclivities or may simply be sensitive to these energies, observe self shielding practices, religious protective invocations or employ simple mental preparation exercises prior to entering this site as it drained me really bad...

While much of the graffiti is of a pruriently depraved nature, there are instances in certain areas that overtly suggest satanic overtones as much as they are likely gang tags...and while dabbling with either can obviously have adverse consequences, this far enough away from the city that
I tend to attribute the gang symbolism to suburban middle class mischief more than real gang affiliation...although I hear those “Manteno Warlords” are serious players with a lot of  “street cred” these days ...

  The small, square courtyards that are on both sides of the dual hallways and interconnect the  east and west sings, have long since reverted to an overgrown thicket from that of a carefully manicured patch of lawn, meticulously pruned trees and sculpted shrubbery...the are basement windows on opposite sides of the walls below ground level and boxed off by railings...a copse of full grown trees are growing from a couple of the basements wells in a constricted bundle contained by those metal piped railing bars ...the seedlings that found their way into the sediment rich bottom of the window wells and the roots continue to crumble the concrete that confines them from beneath ...

One of the basement wells that was not claimed by migrant saplings and long since relieved of it’s glass presented a forbidding yet irresistible allure of ominous intrigue...as I approached the moss marred bars of the railing a stream of cold air flowing from the darkness below stopped me in my tracks for a moment but I proceeded to climb the railing and drop to the mystery flooring below ...the only thing visible were a few insulated pipes but the cold intensified as I crouched down to stick a single camera clutching arm into the blackness to secure a few shots with the flash on ...Only after I was satisfied with number of varying photos I could achieve from the restrictive vantage point of the narrow window did I realize that my free arm was white knuckle clutching the railing ...not necessary to prohibit falling but more likely subconscious defensive posturing...the concerted effort to severely limit contact with the filthy and lichen slicked railing was like an arthritic game of “Twister” as I attempted extricate myself from the well without getting even dirtier than I already was ...much to my chagrin I later found an unobstructed staircase to the basement as I circled the building from the east wing doors and rounded my way back to the north end where I started and parked ...

 The stairs were caked with mud but easily traversable as I cursed myself for the now
 black streaked jeans I was wearing by climbing the courtyard railing just to acquire a couple of shaky shots through the window...as I stepped on the staircase landing the gust of almost industrial grade frigid air flowing from the open door below actually forced me to tack a few steps back in retreat as this preternatural cold was enough to trigger a reflexive response from the shock ...

As I turned the corner to a small room that served to accommodate the fire, electrical, phone and other specialized, antiquated control panels, I noticed on the wall opposite the entrance was a small flight of 3-4 steps leading to another door-less opening in the wall, from which even colder air and blacker darkness threatened ...the sardonic, cackling laughter similar to what I heard at the Mayslake Friary faintly echoed through the opening at the top the short stairway leading to the main basement of one of the wards that I struggled to photograph from the courtyard window well ...the growing sense urgency was escalated by the low ceiling and limited visibility beyond the split level entrance that revealed the main expanse of one of the ward’s sub spaces...the inexplicable cold was intense enough now to cause me to shudder slightly as I leaned against one of the square, intermittently spaced, main structural support columns closest to the door to adjust the camera settings (Heaven forbid I should ever bring a flashlight along) ...

The state of marginally manageable discomfort I felt when I transcended the perceived safety line of demarcation at the door frame moments early, was now culminating into almost full blown panic
as the claustrophobic confinement of the low ceiling and restrictive low light vision pressed down on me...the maddening, inescapable drops of tainted water that filtered their way down
from above continued to find me as I shifted nervously in my crouched defiance...even as I write this; my skeptical rationale is attempting to deny, mitigate or completely extirpate the familiar, seething black mist that coalesced out of the darkness towards me thus abruptly terminating my first visit....

Here are the unedited (compressed) photos my 5/2010 visit (146 total)....b
http://s843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/The%20Manteno%20State%20Asylum/

The Notorious Mr Halfhand

Barek Halfhand

  • Great Master
  • ******
  • Posts: 430
  • Karma: +1/-0
  • Psychic Slacker
    • The Land Of Hand
Re: Paranormal Polka: these boots were made for haunting.
« Reply #314 on: May 17, 2010, 08:59:55 AM »
Manteno State Hospital (cont.)


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/The%20Manteno%20State%20Asylum/100_6837.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/The%20Manteno%20State%20Asylum/100_6836.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/The%20Manteno%20State%20Asylum/100_6867.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/The%20Manteno%20State%20Asylum/100_6885.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/The%20Manteno%20State%20Asylum/100_6940.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/The%20Manteno%20State%20Asylum/100_6951.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/The%20Manteno%20State%20Asylum/100_6953.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/The%20Manteno%20State%20Asylum/100_6863.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/The%20Manteno%20State%20Asylum/100_6872.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/The%20Manteno%20State%20Asylum/100_6870.jpg



http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/The%20Manteno%20State%20Asylum/100_6874.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/The%20Manteno%20State%20Asylum/100_6904.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/The%20Manteno%20State%20Asylum/100_6897.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/The%20Manteno%20State%20Asylum/100_6903.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/The%20Manteno%20State%20Asylum/100_6909.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/The%20Manteno%20State%20Asylum/100_6915.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/The%20Manteno%20State%20Asylum/100_6923.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/The%20Manteno%20State%20Asylum/100_6925.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/The%20Manteno%20State%20Asylum/100_6945.jpg


http://i843.photobucket.com/albums/zz355/BestOnEarth/The%20Manteno%20State%20Asylum/100_6968.jpg




http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/100_6849.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6849-1.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6849-2.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6849-3.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6849-4.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/100_6851.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6851-1.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6851-2.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6851-3.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6851-4.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/100_6853.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6853-1.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6853-2.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6853-3.jpg


http://i745.photobucket.com/albums/xx91/MrHalfhandRulz/6853-4.jpg
The Notorious Mr Halfhand