Have you ever noticed that the most terrifying stories don’t always end with a nicely-wrapped conclusion? Instead, it’s tales like the one about two hanged men, who could have been innocent, or the cursed woman, who some say still roams of the halls of a hospital, that really get our blood curdling. It’s that mystery, that fear of the unknown that tends to hook us—and it’s the feature haunted walks guides in Picton, Perth and Kingston will use to spook you with this month.
Graveyards & Gallows Tour
By reservation — Macaulay Heritage Park, Picton
Organized by local historian and journalist Peter Lockyer, these tours take you through Macaulay Heritage Park in Picton, the property Reverend William Macaulay once owned. Credited with giving the town its name, Macaulay had a church and cemetery built at this site in the early 1800s. He later donated part of the land for the construction of a courthouse, and it’s here where your walk will take a spine-tingling turn.
The courthouse is still used today, and inside, the tiny cells and gallows are preserved to look as they would when Joseph Thomset and George Lowder were tried and executed here in 1884 for the murder of Peter Lazier. Your guide will give you the details of the trial, but let’s just say the evidence to convict was shaky at best. Lowder’s grave marker, recently found at Glenwood Cemetery, simple reads: “Hanged. 1884. Unjustly.”
Available for groups of 10+ only
Call 613-476-2148, ext. 258, for reservations
Ghost Walk of Perth
Friday, October 24, 7 pm — Perth Museum, Perth
Perth has been dubbed “The Pretties Town in Ontario” and “The Best Place to Retire in Canada,” but for those familiar with its darker past, it’s also known as one of the spookier hamlets in the province. Find out why on this one-night only ghost walk led by local historian and author Susan Code.
Her tour will include stories about a murderer who swung from the courthouse gallows, a ferryman who demanded deadly tolls, and, perhaps the town’s most chilling tale, a cursed woman who forever roams the Great War Memorial Hospital’s halls.
That woman, believed to be Emeline Malloch, was the daughter of Judge John Glass Malloch, who had this building constructed as his family’s mansion in 1858. During construction, a local farmer was late in delivering materials, so the judge refused to pay him. In response, the farmer set a curse on the Malloch family, which seemed to work. Emeline died that same year. Some say they still see her in a second story window of the hospital, looking as she did in her final moments: deathly ill.
Friday, October 24, 2014; 7pm
Book tickets ahead by calling 613-267-1947
The Haunted Walks of Kingston
October 10 to November 1 — Downtown Kingston and Fort Henry
The most popular haunted walk company in the region has two special tours planned for the month of October.
The first, “The Original Haunted Walk,” will give you a great overview of Kingston’s most notorious apparitions and a chance to decide who Kingston’s greatest ghost is. My vote would likely go to the ghost of Teresa Beam, who was murdered in Kingston by her husband while pregnant in 1868. Witnesses say Beam, dressed in black and wearing a cross, has approached them along the pathway between Princess Street and King Street, saying, “Help me find my bones.”
The second haunted walk, “Ghosts of the Fort at Midnight,” happens at 11pm on select evenings at Fort Henry, which was built during the War of 1812 to protect the city from possible American attack. This Halloween season, the fort’s defenses have been breached, leaving you to handle whatever lies around the next corner. Organizers say “this tour is not for the faint of heart, as you never know what will happen when the clock strikes midnight!”
The Original Haunted Walk: 200 Ontario Street, Kingston
Ghosts of the Fort at Midnight: Fort Henry, Kingston
$16.75/adults; $14.75/students; $10.75/kids