It was the night I would not forget. I wasn’t scared. It just shocked me. I did not believe it. I never told the story to anyone. Who would believe me?
Elizabeth City has their annual ghost walk. I like to go there because I like to see people dressed up in costumes and hear their side of the story – the history of Elizabeth City as if they were told by ghost, not the real ghost but the actors portraying the ghost.
The tour bus took me on west main street and I visited the Warren Jennette House. It was built in 1914 during the Civil War period; it’s a 2 ½ story residence, like a plantation house of the south, like it came out of the Gone With the Wind movie. Another words it was a big house and it looked creepy from a distance. But when I got in, the stair case was the center piece and it was quite beautiful and wide. It had rooms upstairs, the rooms down stairs were quite elegant beside the stairs, like you can hear Rhett Butler and Scarlet O’Hara running in the house. The ghost host mentions the ghost of Warren Jennette haunts one of rooms upstairs. The doors would open and creaking noise of foot steps would appeared at night. Since we had a lot of people in the group. The ghost did not appear. Maybe it was shy to see a lot of people inside his house.
Then the bus tour guide took me to Virgina Dare Arcade, that’s the only tall building in the area of Elizabeth City, NC. It makes the Empire State Building looked taller. Built in 1927, the Virginia Dare Hotel and Arcade encompasses a 9-story brick hotel in the center of the block, a 2-story skylighted arcade, and a 2-story office wing. This Neo-Classical Revival style building features yellow brick veneer, stone, and terra cotta decorative details. Ray S. Jones, Sr. haunts the Virginia Dare Hotel, where he served as manager. So when you stay and you don’t pay your rent. He will scared you out of the building. His son Ray S Jones, JR is in his 80’s and he recently was seen in “Harvey” The Maguire Theater Present, as the cab driver. He was the nicest and patient man to work with it.
The bus tour went to the Pond House on Rivershore road; it passed by Nell Cropsey house because it wasn’t on the tour guide. It should have, that’s the most famous haunted house in Elizabeth City. At the pound house, the house was built in 1941 for William Gassoway Gaiter and his wife Helen (Robinson) Gaither. Surrounding the entire house is a superb dentiled cornice and decorated frieze. This frieze is most apparent at the impressive southwest entrance. The moat near the house was part of Pasquotank River. The owner was a bottle manufacture for Lt. Samuel Waters. Did you know he had monkeys as bodyguards for his house? He used monkeys as pets, but they were better guarding the house instead of being pets. I swear I was eating a banana while the presentation was going on my banana flew out of my hand and landed on the ground –that was weird.
I had to go to the bathroom, since it was cold and dark outside. I snuck out of the group and found a tree where I can fertilized it. I was relived. Relived to see my group on the bus and it left me at the Pond House, which was not good. I ran after my group, but it was too late. It left me. I could stayed and wait for the next bus to come or I could wait. I decided to walk towards the city.
While I was walking I saw a young girl wearing a white shirtless tank top and white sweat pants. I came up to her and being good Samaritan I offered my jacket to her.
“Thanks” she said. “But what about you?”
“I will be okay. I have thick skin to keep me warm,” I said to her. She smile at me and she thought I was funny and it made her laugh. “Can I walk you home?” I asked.
“Sure.” She had the most beautiful hazel eyes and short light brown hair that reached toward her shoulder.
“What’s your name?” I asked.
“It’s Ellen” she said with a smile and she had the most beautiful smile too. It can melt any men with her smile. It got me and I fell for it.
“What you doing in the night like this?” I asked.
“Watching people visiting these supposedly haunted houses” Ellen said.
“For me I don’t believe in ghost. It’s the actor who are portraying as ghost and telling their story, that’s the interest part” I said.
“Me too. And why do they get older actors to portray younger person. It doesn’t make any sense. I am young. I should play N – . Never mind.” Ellen said.
She was interesting and we started to have long conversation. We talked and walk in the cold night air We talked about everything her family and my family. My family history was okay, but her family had a lot of history. I just listen to her. When she talked, her face would glow when she mentioned the name Jim Wilcox. I don’t know him. Sounded like he was her boyfriend, she remembered him and the time spend they spent together. It was vivid for her. She was quite interesting too. She was lonely and she wanted to talk to someone. Probably I was the first. We got along with each other. Then she gazed into my eyes and came closer to me. Her lips came closer to my lips. Then a headlight of a vehicle blinded both us. She stopped and back away from me.
“I am so sorry. I liked you. You are the first guy who would listen to me.” Ellen looked at me when she said this to me I was blushing a little.
“I am,” I was shocked. I met a girl at ghost walk. “Okay” I said. She was fallen in love with me. My first girlfriend and we were about to kiss.
She then came closer to me again, her tip of lips touched my lips, and it was cold. Probably it was the cold air outside. It was quite chilly that night. Then another vehicle flashed the headlights at us and she disappeared.
What? She bailed on me and took my jacket too. I almost had a girlfriend. Then I noticed where I was. I was standing in front of the Cropsey’s house before Ellen disappeared on me. I went up to the house knocked on the door. The door opened a woman in her 40’s appeared.
“I remember you. You came here a year ago for the Ghost Walk last year.” The lady remember.
“Yes I did” What blew my mind away was the painting of Nell Cropsey on the wall in the back, I recognized her. It was the same girl. Same face, different outfit, and she changed her name on me.
“That’s the painting of Nell Cropsey on the wall” The lady said. I was staring at the picture.
“I just had a one night stand with Nell Cropsey” I said and I was still shocked.
“What? She has been dead over a century ago. Wait a minute. You saw the ghost of Nell Cropsey?” The lady was surprised too. The lady sat me down and gave me a drink of water. I was shocked and awe. I told her what happened.
“We were about to kiss and the flash of headlight blinded us and she disappeared with my jacket. There was nothing on the ground or around me.” I said.
“You lost your jacket?” The lady asked.
“Yes I did. It was red coat jacket. Like the one you have on the coat rack over there.” I was surprised to see my jacket. How did it get there? “ Oh my god. How did it get inside the house” Still I was still surprised.
I was inside Nell Cropsey house. I walked her home. We had a great time together and I almost kissed her. This was too scary.
“Did she mentioned who killed her?” Then the lady asked me
“She did mentioned something that she hurt her head in the woods. Because it was too dark to see. She hit her head on a tree on one side and collapse to the ground. The water rose and drifted her to the river. With her emotions she was emotional confused of why Jim did not want to married her, that’s why she ran. She was emotional and ran” I said.
The lady was shocked and cried too. The lady did not identify herself to me, either she was the next generation of the Cropsey family or curious to know what happened. The name was withheld. Why did she talked to me?