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Created: May 15, 2009
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bridging science
and parascience

Molly Malone's Irish Steak House & Pub

177 State St, Portsmouth, NH

This was our first investigation of a published New Hampshire "haunt." Andy was scouting possible locations for a SPRG meeting and stopped in to see if the venue was large enough to hold the number expected to attend. His waiter turned out to be the establishment's owner and the two began discussing anecdotes reported from customers and employees of the site.

Also, it turned out, Gavin Cromwell, formerly of "Most Haunted," would be investigating the pub the following day as a pilot episode for a new series he was working on, and the SPRG was invited to attend. Andy could only muster three members on such short notice, but those of us who made it genuinely appreciated the experience. He was then invited to follow up with a full-scale investigation of his own.

That investigation was problematic because an after hours party was taking place in a third floor apartment - outside of the investigation's control area - and contaminated a good deal of the audio captured. Still, some interesting recordings were gleaned.

Bar area

Some of the anecdotes:

  •   Bathroom doors locking and unlocking.
  •   Children's voices.
  •   A "man in a lab coat" seen in the basement.
  •   Levitating glasses, pots, and pans.

A lot has been written about Molly Malone's, its history, and its ghosts - much of which proved unlikely or untrue. A brick arch found in the basement was said to be the entrance to one of Portsmouth's legendary river tunnels - but it proved to be nothing more than an architectural support for an upstairs fireplace. The area in which "the man in a lab coat" was reported to have been seen had a washer and dryer, and a number of white chef's uniforms hanging and laying about.

But, at the same time, we twice recorded the voices of what appeared to be little girls. The clips are too brief for us to conclusively say they are what they appear to be, but we were left feeling it an interesting validation of both reported phenomena and the report of our Medium. The first of the two voices (about the 12 second mark) was actually heard in situ by one of our investigators. The second is less certain, and occurs just before Brian Caton speaks.

"Hi"

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"Uh-oh!"

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This next pair of clips are perhaps more interesting. After it was filtered and amplified, it appeared very much to be the name "Lorna," and we happened to have an investigator by that name at one point. Oddly, however, she didn't join the group until late August - four months after her name is recorded here. And, as a further interesting coincidence, Lorna's first meeting was at the last SPRG monthly to be held at Molly Malone's. Regrettably, this fine establishment would close its doors in September. The clip was picked up at a table only about a dozen feet from where Lorna would eventually be sitting.

"Lorna"

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filtered and amplified

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Because of noise problems this first time around, we would later re-investigate - the last to do so while the site still existed as Molly Malone's.