OCR Interpretation


The New York herald. [volume] (New York, N.Y.) 1920-1924, May 14, 1922, SECTION SEVEN, Image 85

Image and text provided by Library of Congress, Washington, DC

Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83045774/1922-05-14/ed-1/seq-85/

What is OCR?


Thumbnail for

7
SECTION
SEVEN
c
A Fam<
By Rear Admiral
Caspar F. Goodrich, U. S. N.
Former President Naval War College;
former Commander in Chief Pacific
Fleet; President Naval Historical
Society.
SOME will say it was an
"astral body"; others will
say it was a ghost." Some
are thinking, though they have
read only thus far, that, of course,
it cannot be either, since there
can be neither "astral body" nor
ghost. I do not argue with the
nsM/i/t T /I /\ r\4- wmroal 4*V?ic?
laitex, since x uu nui xev^cn uno
story either as "evidence" or as
an argument. Neither do I
recommend ' either term for the
former. Those who read may
call it what they will?"astral
body" or "ghost." I wish to say
only that the story is true, that
those who are mentioned are
ladies and gentlemen who rank
with the highest and that, because
I vouch for my friends, I
vouch for their experience. I
tell these experiences because
they might throw some light upon
many recent matters of public
controversy.
During a visit of my ship to British
waters I was a guest at a typical London
social gathering?a dinner?at one of the
large, stately London homes. The guests
were representative of England's best,
soldiers, statesmen, peers.
When the ladies had observed the still
prevalent English custom, and had left
the dining room that the men might chat
together, we drew together at the end of
the great dining table to exchange comment
upon affairs of especial interest to
men.
Ui ouuauj n?c WUTV1 onviuu lUIliCU J,u
"psychical research"?a subject nowadays
much to the fore.
The general sentiment was disapproval
of such "hanky-panky," as the majority
chose to call "spiritual manifestations,"
and Hume, Doyle and others who were
apostles of spiritualism were denounced
and ridiculed. As a stranger, and a foreigner,
I thought it more becoming to
listen to the discussion than to share in
it, although in my own views I sided with
the majority.
Among the guests was Sir Francis?I
shall not quote his family name without
his permission?whom I knew slightly in
a professional way as well as socially.
He, I could not help observing, merely
injected now and then a question designed
to bring out more clearly some
point under discussion. His own opinion
of psychic matters he refrained from
expressing.
At last the host, who was a distinguished
peer of the realm, turned to him
and asked:
"Sir Francis, do you think there's anything
in this communing with departed
spirits? You have been so silent I have
wondered if you believe?or don't."
"Really, I can't say," Sir Francis replied.
"Some time ago I would have
scouted such possibility- Even now I
cannot bring myself to credit it. On the
other hand, strange things happen. When
people we don't know preach at us and
give us instances of their experiences we
may scout at them, of course. But when
something uncanny happens to people we
know?our friends, whom we know to be
sensible and reliable?then we have to
sober down and think."
"You sound mysterious, my dear Sir
Francis. Have you a good story to tell
us?"
"It's a queer story, but absolutely true.
I know intimately the people concerned
In It."
Then Sir Francis proceeded with an
extraordinary story, which I repeat substantially
in his own words as well as I
can remember them:
a ? ** rrr\ I n lfon/1 Orl f ho Tl'Orl Hlnrr
OUlliC llllic agu * atbouucu mw " vuuiuB
of two young friends, Arthur Browning
and Edith Mainwarlng, both of whom I
had known since childhood. 8hortly afterward
I had tea with them at their
home In London- They were very happy
and quite enthusiastic over the plans
they had made for the future. Edith had
a rather substantial Income of her own.
on which they proposed living, while
every penny from Arthur's practice as a
barrister was to be safely Invested, accumulating
both Interest and principal
until a sum had been saved sufficiently
* large to enable them to acquire a comfortable
and roogiy home In the country,
near the city?County Surrey preferred.
It was a heautlful plan, described by a
charming and clever young bride, and It
both amused and Interested me, so that
from time to time I dropped In to ask
THE I
MA
mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm
TTC
JUS U.Oj
/ v
M. <*?* mI
i|||9B| B|? H| IB
SJH Hfl
Kressiug. Always sue was
a bit nearer her achievement.
fjs ?|
As time passed and their J
"home" fund had begun to v , jv^-, 1
approach the amount they ??
had decided to expend,
Edith took up in earnest
the search of a home by
studying advertisements of
country places which
seemed attractive and elab- J
orate enough for them,
and yet within their
means.
It is now we begin to
get at the point of the
story.
Edith and her husband
had spent many an evening
planning the home
they hoped to find. It was
one of their happy pastimes.
When they were guests at the
country homes of their friends they
wuuiu wring away memories or every
feature of the park, hedge or garden of
the conservatories and even the Interior
arrangements.
At home again they would compare impressions.
Perhaps Arthur liked the outlook
from the library. Edith would remember.
"Yes, Arthur, but I think the
hedge was a bit too high; we will have
our library laid out just that way?It
was adorable, but we will have a lower
hedge and a little further away from the
French windows." Arthur would agree,
and then to their other plans was added
a library with a low hedge a little way
from French windows.
Again Edith would return from a week
end bubbling over with enthusiasm over
a breakfast room she had noticed, a
breakfast room looking out, perhaps, upon
a garden of morning glories?flowers that
unfold only at breakfast time.
"We must have a breakfast room, Arthur
dear, and morning glories just outside.
It is such a beautiful idea. Now let
me see-just where will we fit It In?"
Ac. And so they would "fit in" the breakfast
room so it would not interfere with
the library.
At last, out of all this planning, plan
nlng together and taking days?weeks?
over every little detail of the home to be
had "some day"?they had built a dream
plan. Edith, particularly, had every detail
mapped out In her mind.
It was to ber a very comfortable, rather
old fashioned house, with Ivy and roses
climbing over It; a spacious, rolling lnwn
with a sun dial and handsome trees and
BhrubB; a kitchen garden, with flower
gardens flanking each wing of the house;
a tennis eourt; a small vine eover#4
f
VEW YC
GAZINE
7 Wrf///////#. / ' ''///A '' , , ' 7' W/ti
NEW YORK, SUN!
"You May E
Distinguish
%
& ' >.
Acc
bjK BMBM8^Uy^?????*3fck '\.1
garage; the whole estate to be Inclosed
by a hawthorn hedge that would give
May breezes a delightful scent.
As to the house itself, she knew every
nook and corner of the one she wanted?
every room and every closet; she knew
just how she wanted the bedrooms, the
offices, the living rooms, dining rooms,
drawing rooms, corridors, galleries, Ac.,
laid out.
She spent many idle hours dreaming
of herself as the happy mistress of this
ideal house. She was alone a great deal
?with only her servants about?and she
was accustomed to close her eyes and
"wander through" the house she hoped
to find; she even became familiar with
the furniture inside and the very pictures
on the walla. These visions, aa the
time went on, grew more and more vividly
real?aa well as more frequent.
When she and her husband agreed that
their funds were enough to warrant actually
looking over, with a view to purchase,
properties that might suit, they
made many excursions Into the country,
but Invariably returned to the city disappointed.
Something essential was
lacking In each house offered them. Finally
Arthur declared he could go with
her no longer. He really could not spare
the time. If she found what she liked,
then, as a mere matter of form, he would
accompany her for a final Inspection,
One memorable day she saw an advertisement
of what seemed to be exactly the
place Bhe coveted. It was in Blankshire,
in a lovely neighborhood. The owners
were living In town and did not want to
carry the expense of a country place. She
went to see It, expecting only another of
the disappointments to which she had
now grown accustomed.
The agent, at Beeahampton. near by.
>RK HE]
; SECTI
)AY, MAY 14, 1922.
ww////////////////////////////^
t * * m. *
Relieve It or Nt
)prl Ciffirpr
/ vy f f W V ' ^ ^ ^ ^
of Just What h
^
count of the house and grounds hl
and named a price which seemed A
to her extremely low. Afterward
she recalled that he was somewhat
restrained and confined his remarks to
barest business outlines. He appeared
to consider it his duty to sell the prop- n
erty, but not to be too enthusiastic
about it
te
Armed with a card of admission from
the agent, she drove to "The Grange," as rs
the estate was named. When she had p?
passed through the lodge gate she was ,L
dazed. There were the breakfast kitchen? ?'
the hedge, the library French windows?
the morning glories! It was the place of 8C
her dreams!
For what seemed to be almost an hour
Edith sat in her car gazing at the house, K(
Its gardens?and there was the sun dial, ta
just as she had planned it. t0
She was interrupted by an elderly w
v oman, the wife of the lodge keeper, who w
eventually had noticed the strange car ae
and had come out to greet the visitor.
When I&lith turned to meet her and r?
stepped down from the car the old st
woman shrank back as if she had been ?
struck. Her face went white, and with to
a quick spasmodic motion she threw rii
her hand over her eyes?quickly dropping
it, however. When Edith spoke th
brightly the woman seemed to regain her 8?
composure- th
Silently, with a queer, frightened look or
in her eyes, which Edith afterward re- yc
membered, she took the admission card, th
read It, and then, dropping a curtsey as a
tribute to Edith's station, led ths way le
into the house.
Edith faltered at the threshhold, as the or
old woman throw open the great, wide tli
oak doors. Bhe was almost afraid to go Is
In. Every step, as she had walked up m
through the flower bordered walk across hi
the esplanade that flanked the front wing k<
of the house, was familiar to her. Count- ss
less times she had imagined herself com
RALD
ON
mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmD
<mm an**? CL 4%
^ny unu
it" Says the
re Is a True
lappened"
Of ' & jwpL';-' ' ' ^L
Drawing by G. T. Colby.
si just walks about the house, at
>urs, ma'am. It comes through
loors and out of closets. I have
seen it often."
e at the left is Rear Admiral
tspar F. Goodrich, U. S. N.
if? along that very walk, returning, peraps,
from a drive to the station with
rthur.
"Would she find the inside as familiar?"
When she finally passed through the
>or, her heart quickened. There, over
ie great fireplace she had planned, hung
dark old painting?the very painting
ie had sketched in her imagination as
ie proper ornament for the high manlplece!
She forgot the caretaker. She fairly
in from room to room. She knew every
issageway, every door. She knew every
linn niiu annual every liiiporumi piece
furniture was just as she had planned
, and It stood just where, after days,
imetimes of visionlng, she had decided
was to stand.
With a brief word of appreciation
dith hurried to her car and drove as
st as she dared, back to Beeshampton,
the office of the agent. She need not
alt to have Arthur come. She knew,
ell. Indeed, that he would he astounded
i she had been?and so happy.
She told the agent quickly she was
ady to purchase at once, on the terms
ated, and from her purse she drew
number of five pound notes with which
bind the bargain. She would run no
sks of losing the place.
"Before accepting the earnest money,"
e agent said, "I must In justice to myIf
nnH In fnlrnnau In vnu ??ah
at, attractive as It la, The Orange haB
io aerioua objection. If, knowing It,
iu atlll desire to buy It, I shall hnve
e deed drawn up at once."
"And that Is?" Edith aaked breathasly.
"Madame, the house Is haunted. Seval
persons have leased It with the op3n
of buying It, If It should prove satfactory.
They never have remained
ore than a few weeks and they did not
jy. They all declared they could not
sop servants, for none would live In the
ime dwelling house with a ghost."
"Haunted?" cried Edith. "How?why
l-l
TWELVE
PAGES
11 11 ?
W w W w r ?Nj
Isn't that foolish? What makes them believe
It haunted?"
"I only know what they have reported
?and what the caretaker reports. A
ghost?the ghost of a woman, they say,
wanders about the house at night, often
In the daytime, too. Whether It is a murdered
ancestress, or relative, I cannot
say. The caretaker is an old servant of
the owners; his wife, the old woman,
was the housekeeper. They always have
been retained by the tenants. They have
both seen the ghost. They might?the
old woman, anyway, give you more of
the details. I would rather you went to
them before you decided to buy, if you
still think of buying. You may say I
nermif them to toll von all thev know of
the ghost and Its habits."
Edith was heartsick. The mystery
and the disappointment combined was
overwhelming. But she is a determined
little woman and she drove back to "The
Grange." She did not believe in ghosts.
She did not believe the house hauntedShe
determined to cross-examine the*
lodge keeper's wife very thoroughly?no
doubt, she thought, it was all an Idle
fancy.
Again, when the old woman came out
of the lodge, she stopped and seemed to
tremble. Edith was abrupt.
"I have decided to purchase this estate,"
she said, "but the agent tells me the
I house is haunted. He advised me to talk
with you about it and said I might convey
to you his permission to speak
irankly."
The old woman?a typical English family
servant, trained, respectful and unemotional?could
not, nevertheless, conceal
an uneasiness.
She replied only, "Yes. madam."
"Well," Edith said impatientlv, "is the
house haunted, then?"
"Yes, madam."
"Is it true people have come here to
live, sensible people and have moved
away Derore ineir leases espireui
"Yes, madam."
"What Is It that happens?"
"The ghost just walks about the house
at night?early In the evenings mostly,
but quite often during the day?really at
all hours, madam. It does not harm any
one?that is, it never has?but it comes
through closed doors and out of closets
and sits down in the room where people
are. The servants all have been badly
frightened at times, madam."
"What Is the ghost, a legend, an ancestor?or
what?
"It is a strange ghost, madam, that
v was never connected with the family."
"Is it a man or a woman? Have you
yourself actually seen it?"
The old woman showed new signs of
nervousness. There was something of
awe in her voice as she replied:
?"T? a loav nmrtam I hnvn noon tt
often."
"Well, then, tell me at once?what does
It?she?look like' There must be some
reason for a ghost?something somebody
knows?can't you tell more about It? I
want to know everything before I decide
about buying the house, or giving it up."
"Surely Madame knows?more than I,
since madam " here the old woman
faltered. Edith was strangely sensitive
to a coming shock.
"I know?" she exclaimed?"why, what
do you mean?"
"Madam surely knows what I mean,"
the old woman replied?"madam is herself
the ghost!"
Edith was thunderstruck. "I?I am the
ghost?" "Yes, madam, you are the
ghost. You have come sometimes in
white, several times Just as you are,
sometimes in other gowns. You have
been coming two years. This is the first
time you have ever spoken. I am not
afraid?Just a little?because I am used
to you. But don't know why : ou should
bring the agent's card; you never did
before."
Edith understood?and sank back Into
the running hoard of her cnr. The old
woman stood silent until Edith laughed,
hysterically. She pressed a banknote in
the old servant's hands and went away,
saying only:
"You need have no fear, my dear; I
Will never come?as a ghost--again."
She stopped at the agent's and paid
over her earnest money. That night she
and Arthur, after she had repeated her
story over and over to him, called in their
friends -me among them?to tell us. I
They live at the Grange now. I see them .?
often, and have heard from the lodge
keeper's wife her side of the story?she
likes to tell it at every opportunity. She
1b hurt when we laugh, now. at the whole
thing, for we mnat laugh when we think
of It or else the welrdness of It would
hrenk ub down. But the old servant sees
nothing to laugh nt. She still firmly believes
that Edith 1m a ghost come to life,
and she Ib never sure but that her new
mistress will come walking through a
door or out of a closed closet.
And that, In his own words as well as I
can remember It, Is Sir Francis's story.
I will not comment other than to say that
all who know Sir Francis or Arthur and
Edith know that what they say Lappened
?happened.

xml | txt