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Where And How Do I begin My Research

Paranormal Research vs. Simple Ghost Hunt

The difference between a simple ghost hunt and a full on paranormal investigation is that the ghost hunt is just for fun, but the investigation is conducted with the main intent of obtaining meaningful scientifically documented evidence with which to prove the existence of ghosts.

For many the first and most obvious question come to mind.....
Where to begin looking for Answers ???

In many small towns and rural areas the local library and the courthouse should be good sources of information. The library will have many newspaper articles and often some books on past residents and their activities.

The local courthouse will have death certificates, property records which would include past and present land owners, police and court records. Be sure to have full names and/or address's handy as any "Real" information you have will help speed your search.

Another place that may bear fruit is contacting local historical society's. Many older communities have them and are comprised of folks who have historic, documented fact about a given community and the areas surrounding them.

In large cities, the county recorder's office and the library branch closest to the site you are investigating may also have information that dates back as far as you may need, but it might be a bit more difficult to access than in a small town.

When doing your research be sure to bring along a notebook and several pens. You may also choose to bring along a laptop, Be sure you have plenty of cord and batteries are fully charged.

and one more suggestion...Have plenty of change for the photocopy machine.  : )


Research by personal interview:

Research that is done in the form of interviews can be quite productive if you know whom to ask. In small communities the residents of the local retirement or nursing home can often be the just the people you need to speak to.

These older folks have knowledge of events that can stretch very far back in time, often re-told to them by their parents and sometimes by their grandparents.

Please note:

When speaking to these elderly individuals, they should at all times to be treated with the utmost respect.

While they may have known the individual who is suspected of being responsible for a haunting, be careful how you communicate such things to them. They were brought up in a different time and may have strict religious backgrounds or views that consider ghosts to extremely taboo.

Also, please be sensitive when discussing anything related to the subject of death, as it can be a particularly unpleasant topic for the aged.

The Initial Interview:

During your initial phone or "in person" interview, pay attention to how the clients sounds (i.e., inflections in their voice).

It is also important to be aware of their demeanor and body language. Do they look you in the eye as they speak? Are their arms or legs crossed?

Do they lean away from you, or look away from you occasionally or constantly. You want to be dealing with a serious potential client and not a flake.

Do not be too quick to make an appointment to meet, or to visit the site. In other words, don't seem too excited to get going. Allow a few days to pass before a second contact.

Once you are relatively convinced that the person you are interviewing is genuinely seeking your assistance, you can begin your detailed questioning process.

Most of the questions you will need to ask are on the forms included in this guide, but here are some professional tips to remember:

Always try to be mindful of the wishes and beliefs of the individuals you interview.

Put the interviewee as ease by answering any questions they may have honestly, and to the best of your knowledge.

You may be casual, but always remain professional. Assure your client that the information they are giving you will remain confidential, and then ensure that it does!

If you encounter the situation where one spouse, partner, or family member is supportive of conducting an investigation but the other is not, remain polite. Try to find out why the other person does not want to proceed with an investigation.

Sometimes it can be useful to focus on the scientific aspects of the investigation so they will view you as a professional, and not a flake or a "woo-woo".

If a client ultimately decides not to do an investigation, remain polite and professional. Often, if their activity persists, they may get back to you.

                     The Shadowlands Ghosthunter Store


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