How do ghost hunters search for ghosts, and what do they look for? Members of the Washington State Ghost Society visited a bed and breakfast near Tacoma called Thornewood Castle after they heard reports of spontaneously breaking glass and a rug that moves to one side of the hallway on its own. Completed in 1911, Thornewood was the setting for the Stephen King miniseries “Rose Red.”

Ghostly things have been going on at Thornewood Castle since Wayne and Deanna Robinson bought the 54-room mansion 2-? years ago. Guests have reported seeing the ghost of Anna Thorne, the wife of the man who built the mansion. The Washington State Ghost Society was started a year ago and now has 30 members who do about three investigations a month in the Seattle area. In their professional lives, they are office workers and Boeing engineers, business owners and military employees. They pay for all their own equipment and travel.

At Thornewood, one of the Ghost Society psychics felt herself drawn to a downstairs sitting room. Ghost hunter Neil McNeill switched on his electromagnetic field meter and checked for responder impulses. “I’m getting a low-level reading here,” he said, watching the meter’s flashing lights. “There doesn’t seem to be any wiring in this area that would give a false reading.”

Patricia Cowan checked a video camera that had been recording the room. While reviewing the tape, she saw a yellow ball of light that appeared in the lower right corner of the screen, then dropped out of sight.

They all gathered around to look at the ?orb? video, noticing even more orbs this time. But Michael Kundu finally figured it out. “It’s dust,? he said. ?The light is doing what’s called back-scatter.” The camera’s light source had caught floating dusk particles, giving them a luminous glow. They hadn?t picked up any ghost evidence after all.

Ghost hunting groups are starting up across the country. The Parapsychology Foundation in New York has seen a “huge” increase in interest. Executive director Lisette Coly thinks it?s due to ?Aging baby boomers. All of a sudden, mortality is approaching.”

Kundu agrees and says, “If we can prove the existence of ghosts, we can prove the existence of God.” To check out the Washington State Ghost Society,click here.

To hear an excerpt from Whitley Strieber?s new vampire novel ?Lilith?s Dream,?click here. To learn ?The Science of Vampires? from Katherine Ramsland,click here.

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