Joyce Ross, a New Castle resident and volunteer at the Lawrence County Historical Society, has always had a passion for the paranormal. She remembers the days when her father used to tell her about the local haunting legends, a pastime she now shares with her son.
“When I was a little girl my dad introduced me to the legend of Mary Black; I didn’t think much of it at the time but as I got older it came back into my interest and I told my son, who suggested ghosting hunting where she was buried. We never found her exact burial spot, we tried twice without success and we were going to go back a third time but before we could make it out there she came to me in dream and asked to be left alone,” Ross explained as one of her paranormal experiences.
Ross started volunteering at the Historical Society in January as part of the 55 and over employment program. The volunteers and interns at the society are encouraged to write articles on anything pertaining to what they do at the society or anything about Lawrence County history.
Ross, who was also a frequent participator at the New Castle Poetry Society before it disbanded, wanted to use her writing talent and love of the unknown to highlight some of the “most active” paranormal places in Lawrence County for the Historical Society.
Her article, named “Hauntings of the Area,” tells the stories of a few haunted buildings and local legends common to the area. Hill View Manor, Mary Black, and the old Elks Building are just a few of the stories she focuses on in the article.
The Historical Society posted the article, which Ross believes had a very positive response.
“There were a lot of engagements and comments on the Facebook post [before it was accidentally deleted]. I believe a lot of people enjoyed reading it and if the opportunity arises again to write another similar article I would love to do so,” Ross stated.
The article has since been re-posted on the Lawrence County Historical Society’s Facebook page.
Although she’s a believer in spirits, she knows that not everyone is, but she offers her opinion to those who are not, “I believe that after we die it is not the end – we go on and exist in some form, but I’m not sure what form it is. I think people should keep an open mind to anything paranormal and not to dismiss things as being impossible.”
To read Hauntings of the Area, click here.
Photos by Cassandra Douglas/EllwoodCity.org