We are a generation raised to be afraid of the dark. From the first time we play “Bloody Mary” to the times we convinced ourselves that the door opened by itself, we are terrified of the things that go bump in the night. For the students here at Virginia Wesleyan, those fears might not be completely unwarranted considering both East and Rose Hall are rumored to be haunted.
“When you go to East Hall, it feels like you’re being watched, it’s unusually cold and it doesn’t feel comfortable,” said freshman Sorenda Bickerstaff.
She is not alone. Many students have reported strange sightings or feelings while roaming around the campus. And according to an article called ‘Haunted Norfolk’, a ghost awaits anyone who arrives late to their dorm and subsequently find themselves all alone late at night. From the lack of population to the ominous fog that lingers in the fields at night, Virginia Wesleyan seems the perfect home for paranormal beings.
Victoria Macoul, junior and former resident of East Hall, recalled her interactions with these strange entities.
“I lived in East 321 when I was a freshman and when we first settled in it was fine and everything was cool but about halfway through the first semester it started to get kind of freaky” said Macoul. “One night I woke up and it was about four in the morning, and I had this really weird feeling. My roommates closet always used to creep open on its own. Late at night I didn’t feel safe, and it got to the point where I would wake my roommate up and tell her we had to get out of the room because it was that overpowering.”
The Virginia Wesleyan hauntings go beyond poltergeist. For Victoria Macoul and her roommate, their stay in East Hall was more like a brief exposure to something darker and more malicious.
“One night we did a Ouijia board in Rose Hall and it basically told the whole group that it was our room that was haunted and that the ghost was a small child and he was friendly,” said Macoul. “But when we asked it if he wanted to take us somewhere, it said ‘Hell’.”
At this point, it only made sense that Macoul and her friends were wary of their room and East in general. However, the more they delved into this paranormal mystery, the more fascinated they became with it, so much in fact, that it became more of an obsession.
The current residents of East Hall 321 have not experienced any strange happenings, though their suite mates do report some interaction with the paranormal. Lauren Aktug, freshman resident of East Hall 322, was confronted with the unbelievable.
“My roommate and I were doing homework and decided to take a break, so we took a small walk around Village 2,” said Aktug. “We were in the parking lot talking and all the sudden my roommate said ‘do you see that figure?’ and pointed to the practice field. I saw a tall, glowing figure with no recognizable face. I realized it looked like it was getting closer then we got freaked out and ran back inside.”
Residents of East Hall are not the only ones who need to worry as Rose Hall may be haunted as well. According to Macoul, Rose Hall was where the Ouija Board craze began two years ago, since the Rose Hall residents wanted to discover more about the ghost haunting their halls.
“Apparently two years ago they did a Ouija Board in my room,” said freshman and Rose Hall resident Rachel Lambert. “And after they were banned, all of the lights went out on campus at the exact time they planned on using the board again. I don’t know, some weird stuff happens. It gets freaky.”
Whether or not there is truth behind all of the stories circulating these paranormal hot spots on campus, the fact remains that there have been unexplained and very creepy instances over the years.
Some people report the paranormal in East while others adamantly claim there is more to be said of Rose. There are even some people who claim to have seen shadows in the library while studying into the wee hours of the morning in the 24-hour room.
Unexplained bumps in the night abound at nearly every college in the nation. Due to its rich history and involvment during the Civil War, Virginia seems ripe with ghost stories. Who is to say Wesleyan is an exception to a random, war-related historical tragedy?
Halloween is known as the day that dead souls get to roam the earth in human form again. When the clock strikes midnight on Oct. 31, be on the lookout for any new faces, as they might belong to the anonymous and ghoulish entities that make themselves at home among the students here at Virginia Wesleyan.