July 9, 2007
Haunted New Hampshire
By Thomas D'Agostino
Publisher: Schiffer Publishing (May 2007)
Pages: 174 - Price: $14.95
By Thomas D'Agostino
Publisher: Schiffer Publishing (June 2007)
Pages: 160 - Price: $12.95
Interview by Jeff Belanger - firstname.lastname@example.org
Ghostvillage.com author interview
Author Thomas D'Agostino recently released two new books, Haunted New Hampshire and Haunted Massachusetts. Each book is a ghostly tour through two of America's oldest states. Thomas and his wife, Arlene had the opportunity to traverse New England looking for ghosts and haunts. Ghostvillage.com caught up with D'Agostino to ask him about his new projects.
Your first book was Haunted Rhode Island and you recently released two new tomes, Haunted Massachusetts and Haunted New Hampshire. Are the ghosts leading you north, or what?
Thomas D'Agostino: Rhode Island is my home state so it seemed fitting to start there. Massachusetts and New Hampshire are illustrious in the realm of the paranormal. They had to be next. It could be some sort of inner feeling leading us to the colder air, or maybe the ghosts are easier to find because they are used to the winter months and do not hide then.
Do you think New England has more than its share of ghosts compared to other parts of the United States?
New England definitely has more ghosts than anywhere else I have ever seen. It is the oldest continual settlement in the US. The French and Indian Wars and King Philip's War have left many residual remnants that pop up to this day. You must also take into consideration the hard beginnings the settlers faced and the many tragedies of the wild new world. There is also a fair share of stubborn Yankees that are still hanging around long after their demise. My first three books focus on places the public can actually visit and there are plenty of them. Imagine all the haunted places in the private sector that are known or not yet published and it becomes staggering.
Can you tell us about one of your favorite haunts from Haunted Massachusetts?
There were so many different places that were awesome. Dogtown, Houghton Mansion, The Victorian, The Charlemont Inn, Stone's Public House. Arlene and I have to lean toward Dogtown because of its history and all the sites. The cellar holes and other relics of Dogtown have a lot of eerie stories to tell and one can spend a whole day there. The Houghton Mansion comes in close second. We had a great overnight investigation there with some strange phenomena.
How about from Haunted New Hampshire
New Hampshire is a hotbed of bizarre haunts. Arlene and I liked Tortilla Flat in Merrimack because I had contact with a ghost there. Portsmouth was remarkable as well because there are so many haunted places in a small area. We were also enthralled by Kimball Castle, the cemetery with no bodies, and the Three Chimneys Inn.
In your travels, have you encountered any cases of haunted objects, such as ghost ships, trains, or other vehicles? Considering these things don't have a "soul," how do you account for reports of these kinds of phenomena?
The Crown and Eagle Mill in Uxbridge, Massachusetts was reported as being a fully built ghost mill again after it burned down. Arlene and I visited many places where phantom ships materialize in front of various witnesses, there was some haunted items in Main Street Antiques in Plymouth, Massachusetts, and a barber's chair in Tavern on Main in Chepachet, Rhode Island to name a few.
Barring the idea of a soul, I tend to conclude that these are residual haunts that the earth either taped at a certain moment in time and is now replaying that moment at random, or they were part of a place were the earth "taped" and were later removed but still hold that moment that is replayed again. Residual haunts are the same as when we record something to replay it again at our convenience. The earth being magnetic can do the same thing. Studies and experiments are still going on over this phenomenon.
Considering you traveled all over Massachusetts and New Hampshire, have you found more haunts on or near the water compared to other locales?
No, the ghosts seem to spread themselves evenly across the region.
Were you ever scared during your research for these books?
Not a once. It was thrilling and sometimes a bit chilling, but I am the guy who runs toward the danger with hands and pockets full of equipment.
What future projects are you currently working on?
Arlene and I are eagerly awaiting the release of the next book called Pirate Ghosts and Phantom Ships. We are just finishing Abandoned Villages of New England, and will be writing about haunted Vermont and Boston with author Chris Balzano of Masscrossroads.com in 2008. We are going to be speaking at Contact III in North Adams on September 7, and doing a paranormal dinner sponsored by SCARS magazine at the airport hotel in Warwick on September 21. Then we are going to be in Worcester for Rock and Shock on October 13 & 14. In August we are going blueberry picking in Dogtown. Let us know if you want to make a return trip. We want to make Dogtown pies. Sounds soooo tempting, huh?
How many guitars do you have and do you feel that owning more than say, four is unhealthy?
Right now I have 40+ guitars and 35 other instruments from around the world and the past. That is why I have to run four miles a day. They can become really unhealthy if you decide to change all the strings at once. There goes a mortgage payment! Most people ask me why I don't just sell a few and buy a new car. I tell them, 1. no one ever hit one of my guitars in a parking lot and took off, 2. It takes more time to polish a Buick than it does a '52 Telecaster, 3. cars are for now, but musical instruments are timeless, and 4. I don't care for any car models that came out in the eighties.