The Robinson-Spangler Carolina Room is getting into the spirit of Halloween by uncovering ghost stories found in our collection. Keep reading for something spooky...if you dare.
A Stroll Around the Neighborhood
Have you ever taken a stroll around your neighborhood only to realize that all your neighbors and friends ignored you, despite your best efforts to get their attention?
This very occurrence happened to Mr. Tolson on a crisp morning when he realized his newspaper had not yet been delivered to his home in Fourth Ward. Typically, his paper was left at the end of his rocky driveway at the same time each morning. Anxious to read the latest news on the Voynich Manuscript, he lit a cigarette, put on his cap and took a walk with the hope that the paper boy would deliver his newspaper by the time he returned.
As he strolled leisurely around the neighborhood, he smiled and waved at familiar faces. Without anyone responding, he figured they were preoccupied with shoveling the freshly fallen snow from their driveways or hastily escaping the bitter wind.
Mr. Tolson found a bench in the park where he sat peacefully to watch children, bundled up, playing in the snow.
Soon after he sat down, two children and their parents sat on the bench next to him. He was so excited to finally talk to someone, but to his dismay, these people acted like he wasn’t there, just like those he saw earlier that morning. These were people he knew all his life. How could they just ignore him?
At that moment, Mr. Tolson grew extremely concerned. Did people not recognize him? What was happening? It was like he didn’t exist. Even beggars on the street didn’t accept his change.
For the first time that morning, he started to feel faint. A cold chill crept up his neck. He pulled his coat collar tighter as he made his way out of the park toward home. Feeling faint, he leaned all his body weight on the park gate for support. He was in tears and desperately tried to talk to the next person he saw.
He saw a man of similar size and stature in the distance walking silently along the path. Mr. Tolson cried out, “Help! I feel faint! Can you help me home?” The man hurried over to his rescue. The two men walked through Fourth Ward together like they were old friends.
As they walked, Mr. Tolson spoke of his business achievements, the weather, politics and old memories he had made at various places throughout Fourth Ward. They came across an old couple who warmly greeted him and his new friend.
When they finally got back to his beloved home, he saw the newspaper sitting in its usual spot. He picked it up and brought it back inside. He started calling for his wife, but she didn’t answer. This didn’t concern him, as their house was fairly large, and she was likely upstairs in their room.
He strolled down the hall to surprisingly find his wife crying with her head down on the kitchen table. He put the newspaper in front of her. His wife screamed to the butler wondering where the newspaper came from. The butler was puzzled, also unsure of where it had come from.
Immediately after he put the paper down, Mr. Tolson read the front-page headline: “John Tolson, local businessman, found murdered! Police baffled.”
For more haunted ghosts, goblins and haunted houses, visit the Carolina Room on the third floor of Main Library to read through our spooky collection --> bit.ly/2oN32y7
"A Stroll Around the Neighborhood” was adapted from Roy Heizer’s book, Haunted Charlotte: Supernatural Stories from the Queen City. This blog was written by Julia Zwetolitz and is brought to you by the Carolina Room.