There are spirits at the historic Brick Hotel – but not all are the kind people enjoy at the inn’s dining room and bar.
If the results of a paranormal investigation by a team from Ghost Hunters Offering Supernatural Tactics are to be believed, there are indeed spirits inhabiting the halls and a few rooms at the Georgetown landmark, built on The Circle in 1836.
“We are haunted by occupation with what appears to be at least one friendly ghost,” said owner Lynn Lester.
Donna Smith, who is a psychic counselor, said there might be more than one spirit, and the one they had contact with appeared to have a feminine side. “We had communication here, and it would be nice to get more for the history of the building,” Donna said. “Although we do this for fun, spirits are real.”
On Halloween night
The Lesters, who renovated the building in 2008, decided to hold off announcing the results of the investigation until Halloween night.
In a scene reminiscent of any murder-mystery movie, at 9 p.m. guests, who paid to spend Halloween night at the hotel and take part in the investigation reveal, started coming downstairs in costume to the hotel’s lobby. Earlier in the evening, Donna gave card readings to guests, and after the reveal presentation, she led guests in a séance.
Lester said she has never been a believer in spirits, but after the investigation and the information shared on Halloween night, she is not as skeptical as she had been.
Lester has since learned some employees of the former owner of the building, Wilmington Trust, felt uncomfortable in the building after hours. It was not unusual for lights that had been turned off to come back on or items to go missing.
During the séance, Lester said, there was no immediate response to the medium, although several people felt cold spots, heard unexplained sounds and even said they saw a shadow in the hallway.
Two photographs, taken with infrared, motion-sensor cameras, revealed an orb in motion after everyone left the séance room, Donna said. In addition, guests asked questions of the spirits. The results of the recordings are being analyzed to see if there were any audible answers.
The hotel investigation
Lester contacted the investigators to come take a look July 16. From 11 p.m. to 3 a.m. a team conducted a thorough paranormal investigation with the latest high-tech ghost-hunting technology, the same as used by the most famous of all spirit investigators, The Atlantic Paranormal Society on the hit television show “Ghost Hunters.”
The team, led by husband and wife Revan and Donna Smith, uses infrared cameras, motion detectors, highly sensitive recording devices and night-vision cameras. Most of the team members live in southern Delaware.
Lester said it was not a normal evening. “During a group photo in the main dining room, both cameras shut off simultaneously, followed by the center chandelier flickering its lights.
“Then all of the lights in the main dining room flickered,” she said. That had never happened before.
Revan said the investigation revealed several orb anomalies, a faint image in a second-floor room and many examples of electronic voice phenomena (EVP). The team said the following phrases were among those picked out of hours of digital audio:
“That’s a classic.”
“You needn’t bother.”
“That’s my broken bone” and “Medical.”
“Redrum,” which is murder spelled backwards and is a classic phrase from the movie “The Shining.”
During the investigation, several female members of the team started laughing. The team said the phrase, “Ladies quiet,” could be heard a few seconds later.
Donna said not all messages are clear and white noise has to be filtered out. Sometimes phrases are in languages the team doesn’t recognize.
Revan said sometimes EVPs are slices out of time. He says they’ve recorded what they believe are EVPs from the time of the bombing of Pearl Harbor.
Lester hopes learning more about the history of the Brick Hotel, called the Union Hotel during the Civil War, might shed light on some of the investigation results.