Monthly Archives: October, 2016

ghost tour

Williamsburg Ghost Stories Weren’t The Beginnings Of Hauntings…

October 7th, 2016 Posted by ghost history, ghosts, origins, williamsburg No Comment yet

When bringing up the subject of Ghosts in Williamsburg a few questions come to mind:

  • Are ghosts in Williamsburg real?
  • Are they actually documented in the colonial town?
  • If so how do we know they’re actually true?

Maybe a better question is…where did hauntings start?

A quick thought to trace the origins of the paranormal

Anywhere there civilization, there is death, struggle, and tragedy. And in any of these civilizations of the past you will often find there are  hauntings or para normal events. The fact is though, hauntings did not start in Williamsburg.

The First Mention of Ghosts….

To determine if there were ghosts in the colonial centuries we’ve got to go back thousands of years to see when the first hauntings were and why?

In The Epic of Gilgamesh, which is believed to be the oldest piece of epic Western literature (written: ~2150 – 1400 B.C.), Gilgamesh, the semi-mythic king of Uruk, summons the ghost of a wild man named Enkidu from the underworld to know about what lies after death.

That is, possibly, the first instance of a ghost appearing in a story.

ghost_experience_in_williamsburgThe Restless Dead

But when it comes to a ghost story in the truest sense, involving the restless dead, The Library written by the Roman author Pliny the Younger (~61 – 113 A.D.) is possibly the first ever.  The following was published by The Ancient Standard (Oct. 31 2007) and you can read it by going to this link:

Link To The First Ghost Story

Enjoy!  — Trish at Williamsburg Walking Tours.

colonial-ghostsReady To Explore The Restless Past Of Colonial Williamsburg?

A great way to get your feet wet in this endeavor is to try out our Ghostly Tales tour which looks at the deep-seated reasons of actual hauntings in Williamsburg, Virginia. It’s not a sensational look into how we can make Duke Of Gloucester Street look like a haunted house, but it is a look into the lives and the troubled events that caused these disturbances in the spiritual plane.

If a Williamsburg ghost tour is a little too ambitious for you, we have historical tours, the Christmas tour, and even an African-American history tour which is an exclusive.

If Ghost Stories Of Williamsburg Are A Little Too Racy…

We also offer history tours addressing different factual accounts and information about the past including

An African American History Tour

 General History

 Historical Christmas Tour


An Ancient Ghost Story..Documented

October 7th, 2016 Posted by ancient rome, Athenodorus, ghost history, ghost tour, tours, williamsburg No Comment yet

athenodorus_-_the_greek_The Ancient Standard has decided to offer up something a little different this Halloween – we’ve decided that in honor of this infamous “holiday”, we’ll let one of the ancient writers give you a bit of history in his own words… namely, an ancient Roman ghost story which he recounted sometime around 100 AD. Ghost stories are anything but a modern phenomenon – as proven by the tale below, written by Roman writer Pliny the Younger, they’ve been around for at least two thousand years. Sit back, relax, and enjoy the harmonies of an ancient ghost storybrought back to life once more…

An Ancient Roman Ghost Story (in translation from the original Latin)

  – as originally recorded by Pliny the Younger
There was in Athens a house, large and spacious, which had a bad reputation as though it was filled with pestilence. In the dead of night, a noise was frequently heard resembling the clashing of iron which, if you listened carefully, sounded like the rattling of chains. The noise would seem to be a distance away, but it would start coming closer… and closer… and closer. Immediately after this, a specter would appear in the form of an old man, emaciated and squalid, with bristling hair and a long beard, and rattling the chains on his hands and feet as he moved.
The unfortunate inhabitants of the house went sleepless at night due to unimaginable and dismal terrors. Without sleep, as it had happened to others, their health was ruined and they were struck with some kind of madness – as the horrors in their minds increased, they were led on a path toward death. Eventually even during the daytime, when the ghost did not appear, the memory of their nightmares was so strong that it still passed before their eyes, every waking moment. Their terror was constant, even when the source of fear was gone.
Because of this, the house was eventually deserted and damned as uninhabitable, abandoned entirely to the ghost. In hope that some tenant might eventually be found who was ignorant of the house’s malevolence, a bill was still posted for its sale. As it happened, a philosopher by the name of Athenodorus came to Athens at that time. Reading the bill for the house, he easily discovered the price – and being an intelligent man, he was suspicious at its extremely low cost. Someone did tell him the whole story, and yet he wasn’t dissuaded, but was instead eager to make the purchase. Thus, he did.
When evening drew near, Athenodorus asked for couch to be readied for him at the front of the house. He asked for his writing materials and a lamp, and then asked his retainers to retire for the night. In order to ensure that his mind stayed focused and away from distractions of stories about imaginary noises and apparitions, he poured all his energy into his writing.

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