No bump, no thump at ghost hunt

Published 7:49 pm Monday, February 2, 2009

A Montgomery-based paranormal research group returned to Selma Saturday night to investigate an old mill and the surrounding grounds.

Southern Paranormal Researchers arrived at Kenan’s Mill around 8 p.m. with hopes of recording paranormal activity. The mill, which was built in the mid-1800s and remains in working condition, is rumored to be the site of numerous suicides throughout the years.

The group performed a walk through of the grounds, which includes a brick, charcoal kiln. After getting their bearings, the group set up voice recorders, motion sensors, video recorders and other equipment in the interior of the mill and kiln.

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Next, SPR associate director and technology manager Jake Bell set up the “ghost box” inside the mill. While the box scans the AM frequencies, an operator asks questions, hoping to have someone from “the other side” communicate through it.

Bell held the antenna in one hand and delicately twisted and turned different knobs with the other hand. A steady murmur of static came through the speaker along with the occasional snippet of an old country song or talk radio broadcast. Bell began asking questions, but was not able to “connect” with anyone. That seemed to be the case for the entire night.

“There’s not too much there unfortunately,” Bell said of Kenan’s Mill.

After a preliminary review of collected evidence, SPR director and founder Shawn Sellers agreed. Sellers said light and noise from traffic driving past the mill to a nearby hunting camp could have corrupted some of the evidence.

“Some of your noise could be polluted,” Sellers said.

Although the final report has not been written, associate director David Humphrey said noise and light might not have been the only problem though. There just was no paranormal activity to document at Kenan’s Mill.

“It was a cool place, but I didn’t get any personal evidence whatsoever,” Humphrey said.

Bell expects the group will only find evidence of a little residual energy, which has no real intelligence, he said. This means there were no spirits waiting along the creek or inside the dome-shaped kiln on a bitter cold January night.

“It was just kind of a bum night unfortunately,” Bell said. “That doesn’t mean it’s not haunted; it just wasn’t that night.