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Catfish Plantation


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#1 Holly

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Posted 05 February 2005 - 09:14 PM

This wonderful little place, located south of Dallas, got a neat write-up in last Sunday's Dallas Morning News, so you know I had to investigate a little further. It was mentioned in the travel section of the newspaper, and they seemed more than a little proud of their spirit guests. I went to their website, and was happy to see that the ghosts have their own link!

So, Mykiedave and I are planning a visit!

http://www.catfishplantation.com/


Catfish, Cajun, and Down Home Cookin'

Slamming doors, knocking walls, pianos playing, clocks chiming, blue glowing lights, flying coffee cups, and cold spots are just a few of the strange happenings at CATFISH PLANTATION RESTAURANT ,814 Water Street, in the historic town of Waxahachie, Texas.

"Don't be afraid," said proprietors Tom and Melissa Baker, "these are just a few of the antics our three resident ghosts use to let us know they are still around. They like to play just like Casper does, said Melissa.

Shortly after opening for business strange and unexplainable events began happening. Upon entering one morning, Melissa found clean coffee cups stacked inside the large tea urn that had been mysteriously placed in the floor. Several weeks later a fresh pot of coffee was awaiting her arrival. She had the only key. Over a short period of time employees began telling Torn and Melissa of their unexplainable experiences. "We had a cook that experienced levitating baskets out of the deep fryer," stated Melissa. "That was one of the most unusual happenings." Another employee left one night after work and came back later to get her car. A blue light was glowing from the windows. She and her friend watched the lights for about an hour. Melissa said that approximately 75 percent of their employees have experienced some kind of strange activity.

One October morning in 1987 Melissa was listening to a Dallas radio station, KLIF, Kevin McCarthy's talk show. The topic that particular day was supernatural occurrences. She was inspired to call into the talk show. Her curiosity was satisfied when a parapsychologist called into the talk show with a reply for her. "Yes," he answered, "a spirit or ghost can do these things. Have a professional come out and test your establishment," he said. That solution sounded too expensive and besides, who do you call, Ghostbusters? Tom thought, "Who believes in Ghosts?" Two weeks later, a Dwanna Paul, a parapsychologist, telephoned the restaurant and inquired as to the activity the Bakers were having. She said what Melissa had described were the signs of a classic haunting.

Parapsychology is the field of study concerned with the investigation of evidence for para-normal (supernatural) psychological phenomena. Dwanna's specialty is Haunt Hunting. She is a Ghostbuster (And you thought Ghostbusters was just a comedy movie.) Dwanna convinced the Bakers to have their restaurant tested at no charge, strictly for the research and experimentation. They did not know what to expect, but agreed to try it. A date was set for after hours when the crew could come in and set up their sensitive sounding equipment, laser light beams, thermometer gauges, and infrared cameras. The crew, consisting of businessmen, engineers, scientists, photographers and two representatives from the University of Texas at Austin using a combination of science and psychic ability established that Catfish Plantation was inhabited by three spirits. After five investigative meetings and long hours of work, the general consensus of Ms. Paul and her crew was that the ghosts were two females and one male. Elizabeth died on her wedding day in 1920; Caroline died in the 7O's and a farmer named Will. The rest was up to the Bakers ...to research the history of 814 Water Street.

Being busy enough with running a business and taking care of a family, the Bakers put this on hold until August 1988 when D Magazine contacted them wanting to do a story on the ghosts and offered to do their own investigation. They did, indeed, find three past residents of 814 Water Street, who were named Elizabeth, Caroline, and Will.

Melissa Baker explained that the ghostly experiences do not occur on a daily basis and are not scary or frightening. In fact, Catfish Plantation is a very pleasant place. There are three dining rooms with wood burning fireplaces and each room is attractively decorated with antiques. The atmosphere of the cottage is charming with or without its resident ghosts, and, the catfish is superb. The town of Waxahachie is perhaps the most beautiful Victorian township in this region with the largest number of historic homes on the national and state register than any other town in Texas. So, don't let a few ghosts keep you away from a delightful dinner at Catfish Plantation Restaurant and a scenic drive through historic Waxahachie.
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#2 beccaluvsghostsntexas

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Posted 05 February 2005 - 11:35 PM

Howdy Holly!

I am not sure, but you may want to call before you go because not long ago one of the places in Waxahachie burned down. I believe it is this place you are talking about. I went to the link you put up there but am still not sure. Please call them b4 you make a trip. I live s.e. of Dallas about an hour & not far from Waxahachie. If ya want I will investigate to be sure.....let me know!

Becs....oh, and ps...if it is the place that I am thinking burned down, yes, it was a very cool place.
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#3 Holly

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Posted 06 February 2005 - 08:42 AM

becca,

This is the place that burned down, but it has been re-opened. From reading the article in the newspaper, it seems the spirits remained in the vicinity and have returned to the restaurant now that it's active again...

When Mykiedave and I actually get a day off together, we're going to pay a visit. How about if I let you know, and then we could meet there?

Holly
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#4 Maelinde

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Posted 05 September 2007 - 05:18 PM

I've been to the Catfish Plantation several times before it burned down, and only once since it has reopened.

I've had many interesting experiences there before the fire. We always go in groups during the Renaissance Faire Season, and around SCREAMS which are both nearby the restaurant.

During Ren Faire season, we're all in costume. The spirit of the older lady did NOT like it when I was dressed as a wench. I kept hearing the word "HARLOT" screamed in my ear. My back was freezing cold near my left shoulder, and when my husband took a look, there was a cold handprint there, which quickly vanished when he touched it.

The diners who were at various tables in the room where our group was were experiencing the fallout from our group and they left due to the unexplained. A little boy's drink straw kept spinning in his glass and that was just too much for that family. In fact, they were rather upset that the activity was being caused by us - they just wanted a good dinner. <grin>

Since the fire, and the reopening, I haven't sensed anything there. I'm wondering if the ghosts were attached to the main structure and were released during the fire.

At any rate, I visited the website recently, and it appears to be up for sale.
http://www.catfishplantation.com/

I wish I had the $500K to buy the place.

I do have to say, that even without ghostly events, the food is TOP NOTCH and not to be missed. Every time we've been there, the experience was grand - ghosts or not. My husband highly recommends the catfish, and I recommend the chicken (I'm not a catfish eater - must be that San Diego, CA upbringing... Whirly Dude

It's a very busy place to eat, as the food is really good, so I recommend avoiding it during Scarborough Faire season, and SCREAMS - unless you'd like to run into us there. <grin>
Debbie / Maelinde"While the rest of the human race are descended from monkeys, redheads derive from cats." - Robert HeinleinVisit My Website

#5 Maelinde

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Posted 15 April 2008 - 02:36 AM

Has anyone been to the Catfish Plantation recently?

We might be going during Scarborough Faire Season if we get the chance...

We haven't been since the place was sold and I wonder if the resident spirits are still around.
Debbie / Maelinde"While the rest of the human race are descended from monkeys, redheads derive from cats." - Robert HeinleinVisit My Website

#6 aftermidnight

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Posted 15 April 2008 - 09:04 AM

I was reading the posts and the web site itself, how many times did this place burn down over the years.
And I wonder if it was just mistakes or maby these ghosts really dont want a resturant here. hmm, kinda interesting

#7 Maelinde

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Posted 15 April 2008 - 03:14 PM

It makes me wonder if the spirits are actually attached to the house itself and released after the fire, or if they're attached to the land and are still there.

Some of my friends who are sensitive say that the spirits are still there, just not as active as before the fire a few years back.

At any rate, some of my friends went the First Sunday of April (opening weekend at Scarborough Faire) and said that although there are new owners, the food is still quite good. We were invited to go with them, but we were otherwise engaged...

Hopefully we'll get out there before the end of May, as it's a lovely place to visit and the staff really enjoys talking about the ghost encounters there.
Debbie / Maelinde"While the rest of the human race are descended from monkeys, redheads derive from cats." - Robert HeinleinVisit My Website




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