Posted 15 January 2009 - 09:46 PM
the best place in ottawa, ontario has got to be the old jailhouse. now it's used as a hostel but it's still got all the original metal barred cells and windows that are just holes in the walls. it still even has the drop floor at the top with all the mechanics used to hold up the noose and the doors that open out the front so that the people outside can watch the public hangings. we obviously don't hang people anymore, but if we ever decided to go back, it's all set up and ready to go...
so yeah, the scary stuff. a couple of the floors are closed off to the hostel-ers because too many things happen and it has even gotten violent a couple times. about halfway down the hallways are two heavy metal doors that block off the first half of the cells from the other half. between the two doors is just an empty space. i don't remember the purpose it served but it's like a little box, about three feet across with out any windows or anything. one time, during one of the haunted walks, the doors both slammed closed while a group was walking through, trapping a lady in the space between the doors. it took about an hour of the hostel workers trying to get the doors open and when they stepped back to think of another strategy, the doors both flung open. the woman ran for one of the doors and that one door slammed in front of her, taking one of her fingers off with it.
while my group was walking through, my boyfriend thought it would be hilarious to close the door to the cell we were in and pretend that it was stuck. the guide said it was getting cold and we should go. when my bf pushed the door open (proving that he was just kidding), i (also kidding) said he shouldn't joke like that because he'd make the spirits mad. he said that ghosts weren't real and there was a very loud creak and a boom that sounded like the metal door slamming shut. when the group turned around though, both doors were still open. out guide hurried us out into the stairwell where he told us the story about the woman (above).
there have been a ton of reports of people seeing shadows in the cells and even faces sometimes. but another good story is about the people that work at the front desk. two men came in and asked for a room for the night. it was a really cold night with freezing rain and they were both soaked. they didn't have any money or credit cards on them but the two other men at the front desk decided to let them stay for the night anyway. the next morning when they went up to wake the men up (since they hadn't yet come down to leave) both men were gone. later that morning while one of the workers was at the front desk, alone, the cash drawer opened by itself, the change cups rattled, then the drawer closed.
and, finally. when you go out the back door on the main floor, you're in the backyard, just underneath the platform that used to drop when people were hanged. the last man to be hanged there was patrick james whalen. a few months before i was there, there was a school trip. they were told some of the less gory stories we were but still heard about p.j. whalen's hanging. two young boys were outside, under the platform, jumping up and down on the cement singing 'patrick james whalen! patrick james whalen!' trying to scare one of their (female) classmates who was already a little spooked. anyway, the teacher and guide came out the back door to see both boys stop jumping at the exact same time then slowly turn around, both with blood pouring out of their noses.
the hostel is right in the middle of downtown ottawa, next to the most popular shopping mall in the city. lots of people claim to have heard the sound of the wooden doors rolling open and the platform dropping as they walk by.