It was a dark and stormy night, literally, as I headed toward downtown Murfreesboro to participate in a Haunted Murfreesboro tour. When I closed the car door, there was a flash of lightning and a loud crash of thunder. Dark clouds appeared suddenly and the rain started, swiftly becoming a torrent. A disturbing mist arose from the ground. I could barely see a foot in front of me. I wasn’t sure if I needed to go looking for a light at the Frankenstein place or worry that “they” were here.
This was the preamble to my tour. Oddly, by the time I reached the square, there was no sign of rain. The night was balmy and clear with a slightly cool breeze.
Beginning of the Tour
Upon my arrival at the west side of the Rutherford County Courthouse, I saw two women wearing Stones River Paranormal Investigations tee shirts, Tammie and Angel. About twenty other people – from pre- teens to a few with a touch of gray – chatted and lounged casually as they awaited the start of the tour.
Stones River Paranormal Investigations offers walking tours to haunted sites in and around Murfreesboro City Square.
Walking Tour Schedule:
- First Friday of every month (October is an exception)
- 2 tours every Friday night in October
- Book online
Tours fill up quickly. September is currently sold out, and they are now filling up the October tours. Tours can be booked online. The tour takes about 90 minutes, and you walk about a mile.Tammie explains that she is a sensitive and has twenty years of experience as a ghost hunter, while Angel has about 10 years. The organization itself is ten years old. They work hard to provide hard evidence for all of their investigations.
“There are two types of hauntings,” Tammie explains, “resident hauntings that are like a video clip that gets caught on repeat. And then there are what is called ‘intelligent hauntings.’ These are by ghosts that can interact with investigators. They will create cold spots; make noises; throw things; turn lights off and on; and generate EVPs (electronic voice phenomena).
Ghosts Walk in Murfreesboro
We begin at Sugaree’s. The building was built somewhere between 1897 and 1900. It was part of what was called Mink Slide, an area of African American businesses. The building housed at various times, a café, a home goods store, and a grocery, among other things. Next door had once upon a time been the location of Scales and Sons Funeral Home, which was started in 1916.
The ghosts here play cards, as there was once a men’s card room where the back office and dressing rooms are now located. These ghosts do not like lady visitors, and there is often the aroma of cigars. Tammie played us an EVP of a man’s voice telling them that there are eight phantom card players.
Other things that have happened in the building include items moving by themselves, a strong perfume smell, and the sound of wind chimes.
“We tried to elicit a response from the ghosts by making them angry,” said Tammie. “I shortly felt them moving in and out of the building through the wall toward the former funeral parlor.”
Each building has its own story and its own activity. Sometimes there are shadowy figures, there was a vagrant who told them that he died on the second floor of another building, and investigators have heard the sound of children laughing and playing several places.
“One of our investigators played hid and seek with the children,” said Tammie, “and felt a small hand placed into her own when she offered her palm to the manifestation.”
The old Rutherford County Health Department, which was built as a tuberculosis clinic in 1931, became the county children’s health clinic in 1950. Outside the building’s front door, Tammie shows us how the children communicate with her and her colleagues through a simple, inexpensive flashlight. The children are asked if they like cookies, and they answer us, “yes,” by turning on the flashlight that she holds out to them.
“Cool,” said one of the members of our tour group.
“Creepy,” said another.
Shuffling paper sounds, an eerie rag doll that points its arm towards a particular spot on the wall over and over again, and a child’s voice that says, “No Mama, no Mama, no Mama, no,” have all been phenomenon that the Stones River Paranormal Investigation team have experienced at the old clinic.
More Ghost Adventures for Investigators
Our night of sharing time with spirits came to an end with no physical interactions, other than the flashlight turning itself on and off. However, Tammie, in her work, has been pushed, scratched, and kicked. As have associates.
“I feel like I need to help the lost move on,” said Tammie. “I have worked with what some would call demonic spirits. An associate and I were investigating a building that had been used during the Civil War as a hospital and to hold prisoners. My associate felt like he had been touched by something very evil. When we asked the ghosts who had touched my colleague, the EVP we caught said, ‘I saw hell…It’s left.’”
Walking away from the old hanging tree standing by the Rutherford County Courthouse, where the tour ended, Tammie shared how she handles dealing with all of these restless spirits, “Take a deep breath.”