KALIDA — This is the time of year where we break out all of our spooky ghost stories in an effort to add some flavor to the Halloween season.
In Putnam County, Sunday night, the Putnam County Historical Society presented the program “Legends and Lore of Putnam County.”
Dozens of people packed inside of the museum in Kalida to hear from Ruth Wilhelm and the “ghost” stories she’s compiled over the years.
Wilhelm is head of local history for the Putnam County District Library.
The stories she told ranged from strange sounds in a home that one attributed to ghosts to the actual appearance of apparitions of long-dead relatives.
Many Putnam County residents have heard about the legend of Earl at the Leipsic Library. Earl was William Earl’s last name and he is the resident spirit at the library, but a recent visit by some paranormal researchers out of Toledo showed the ghost’s name might actually be Tom. William Earl had a brother named Tom.
“He opens doors. You will hear things in the basement. You’ll hear people walking upstairs and he just makes his presence found sometimes by not letting electronics work,” Wilhelm recounted.
Wilhelm took relatively generic ghost stories and added a Putnam County village or town to add a sense of realism to her audience, but she said you would be surprised about paranormal activity that takes place in Putnam County.
“It is much more prevalent than one would think in a quiet rural town. There are many many ghosts that lurk upon these hills and there’s even one here,” said Wilhelm.
Even the historical museum itself has had things go bump in the night, or even the daytime.
“They will hear things in the basement. They’ll be in the main room here, they’ll hear the front door open. There’s nobody,” she said.
While talk of ghosts and spirits may breed skepticism, Wilhelm has her own opinions.
“You can believe what you would like, but I’ll believe what I’ve seen,” said Wilhelm.
Reach Sam Shriver at 567-242-0409.