Sunday, December 19, 2010

Review: Ghosts of Kingston by Glen Shackleton

Ghosts of Kingston by Glen Shackleton
Publisher: Trafford Publishing
Pages: 123
Received: Won while on The Haunted Walk
After 13 years of collecting and presenting Kingston's haunted history, we have finally released our first book, entitled "Ghosts of Kingston: From the Files of the Haunted Walk"

In this collection of of supernatural tales from our favourite haunted buildings and places, we share the very best of over a decade's worth of research and investigation. Read about the phantom of Kingston Penitentiary, who swore he would come back from the grave to have his vengeance; the ghost of the gentleman soldier, hanged on the hill at Fort Henry, or the heartbreaking tragedy at Deadman's Bay that reunited the spirits of a young couple after their deaths. These and many other chilling tales are to be found inside.
I actually won this book while taking the Haunted Walk of Kingston during Hallowe'en. I love ghost stories and the Haunted Walk is filled with ghost stories and creepy places. You actually stop infront of many of the places mentioned in this book and it's all done at night so that adds to the creepiness. The walk is a condensed version of the book, so I had already heard many of the stories found inside the pages, but I also learned so many more and just couldn't put this book down. Funny thing is I would have bought this book at the end of the ghost walk if I hand't won it, I am always so curious about ghost stories.

My favourite place mentioned in the book is McBurney Park aka Skeleton Park. The park was actually created overtop of an old burial ground. The number of skeletons buried there is unknown, but it is a large number as it is a burial place for victims of typhus and cholera. The city decided to move the bodies and create a park in this area, but did not have the funds to move them all and the families were poor and could not pay to move them either. The city then knocked the headstones over and covered them with soil and grass seed turning it into a park. Bodies are not buried very deep in this area and kids would dig up skulls and they would also use the headstones as base markers for a baseball diamond. Today there is a playground and walkways, but it is kind of sketchy to visit. I have not actually stepped foot in the park... it kind of creeps me out so I avoid it altogether.

This book is so informative of the happenings in Kingston, Ontario during the 1800's until present day. There are so many interesting stories and places that I would love to visit and take tours of. I am thinking that during the year I may just go visit some of there places and take pictures to do up a really cool Hallowe'en post. 

I love living here in Kingston. There is a lot of history here and ghosts just happen to be a part of this history. Between multiple penetentiaries, Queen's University, Fort Henry and many of the old bed and breakfasts' in the downtown core, there are so many great stories to be told. I would really recommend this book to someone looking for "real" ghost tales as it has a high creepiness factor. I got chills reading some of the chapters in this book.

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