GLOVERSVILLE — The Fulton County Historical Society neither accepts nor dismisses the existence of ghosts.
But they welcome believers.
On Saturday, they’re bringing in the big guns. Several Oneida County-based ghost investigators are expected to probe the FCHS museum for paranormal activity before a live audience.
“The place is big so we can spread out,” said Rich Nikodem, senior agent at Agent Paranormal. “There’s different pieces of history in there that we can communicate with.”
Volunteers, board members and even FCHS Executive Director Samantha Hall-Saladino have reported eerie phenomena with the 123-year-old building: creepy sounds and lights turning on without explanation.
The museum was given to the then-20-year-old FCHS in 1972 after more than seven decades serving as the site of Kingsboro School. “Is this place haunted?” is a common question during tours, according to Hall-Saladino.
“I think like any old building, people have experiences there that they can’t quite explain,” said Hall-Saladino. “I wouldn’t say that we have any official stance [on ghosts] either way.”
Agent Paranormal, previously known as Rome Investigators of the Paranormal, is primarily volunteer-based. At no charge to FCHS, the group for years has helped raise money and attract community interest through similar presentations.
In the past, investigators have spotted dark “energy” left behind by former occupants, using historical records, photographic findings and ghost-hunting technology to back up their case.
“Tying in the actual history with what may or may not happen during an investigation is a good way to — I don’t want to say scientific — support or not support information that they’ve gathered,” Hall-Saladino said.
Presentations, ranging between 60 to 75 minutes, are open for questions. Investigators will then split attendees up into groups in pursuit of uncovering ghostly activity on different levels of the two-story building.
In the beginning, investigators feel out the room for skeptics. Nikodem, a one-time skeptic, takes pride in changing opinions on the undead.
“We want to up their mind to see that there’s more to it than what you see in your surroundings,” said Nikodem. “There’s other things going on. Many times those skeptics get involved in this when they have an experience.”
Some 41% of Americans believe in ghosts, a YouGov study found in 2021. Another 20% weren’t certain that ghosts exist.
Paranormal investigations began as far back as the late 1800s. So-called ghost hunting has been popularized in recent decades by the television series Ghost Hunters on A&E.
See Agent Paranormal in action
When: Saturday, March 11 from 7 to 10 p.m.
Where: Fulton County Historical Society, 237 Kingsboro Avenue, Gloversville
How much: $30 for FCHS members and $35 for non-members at fultoncountyhistoricalsociety.org
Pizza status: yes, two slices of pizza and beverage are included per ticket
Tyler A. McNeil can be reached at 518-395-3047 or [email protected] Follow him on Facebook at Tyler A. McNeil, Daily Gazette or Twitter @TylerAMcNeil.
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