Friday, 8 June 2007
03:56:24 PM (GMT)
The Phelps place was an old, abandoned property with a monstrous, decrepit Victorian
house that was supposed to be haunted. It should have been a good resting place for
the local deer hunters, but they would not go near it. A few that tried came away
before midnight with tales of ghostly thumping noises, gasps, moans, and a terrible
wet bloodstain that appeared on the floor of the front porch and could not be wiped
Phelps was an Englishman who had purchased land some 20 miles off the Mendocino coast
in the 1880s. He had built a huge, fancy Victorian house all covered with gingerbread
trimmings and surrounded by lovely gardens. When everything was arranged to his
liking, he sent out party invitations to everyone within messenger range. It was the
biggest social event of the year, with music and dancing and huge amounts of food.
Sawhorse tables were set up with refreshments, and drinks were set out on the front
porch. People came from miles around. The only one missing was old man McInturf's
son-in-law. They had had a terrible fight that afternoon, and the boy had stalked off
in a rage, threatening to get even with the old man.
Around midnight, the musicians took a recess and old man McInturf went out on the
front porch with some friends. Suddenly there came the thunder of hooves rushing up
the lane. A cloaked figure rode towards the lantern-lit porch. McInturf put down his
drink. "That will be my son-in-law," he told his friends as he went down the steps.
The cloaked figure stopped his horse just outside the pool of lantern-light. There
was a sharp movement and two loud shots from a gun. Old man McInturf staggered
backwards, shot in the throat and the chest. The cloaked man wheeled his horse and
fled down the lane as friends ran to the assistance of the old man.
They laid McInturf down on the porch. He was bleeding heavily and they were afraid to
move him much. There was some talk of fetching the doctor, but everyone knew it was
too late. So much blood was pouring from the old man's wounds that it formed a pool
underneath his head. McInturf coughed, once, twice; a hideous, gurgling, strangling
sound that wrenched at the hearts of all who heard it. Then he died.
McInturf's body was laid out on the sofa, and the once-merry guests left in stricken
silence. The servants came and wiped the red-brown bloodstain off the floorboards.
The next day, a wagon was brought to the front of the house and McInturf's body was
carried out onto the porch. As the men stepped across the place where McInturf had
died, blood began to pool around their boots, forming a wet stain in exactly the
pattern that had been wiped up by the servants the night before. The men gasped in
fear. One of them staggered and almost dropped the body. They hurriedly laid McInturf
in the back of the wagon, and a pale Phelps ordered the servants to clean up the
From that day forward, the Phelps could not keep that part of the porch clean. Every
few weeks, the damp bloodstain would reappear. They tried repainting the porch a few
times, but the bloodstain would always leak through. In the county jail, McInturf's
son-in-law died of a blood clot in the brain. A few months later, one of the Phelps
servants went mad after seeing a "terrible sight" that made his head feel like it was
going to exploded. Folks started saying the house was being haunted by the ghost of
McInturf, seeking revenge. The property was resold several times but each resident
was driven out by the terrible, gasping ghost of McInturf reliving his last moments
and by the bloodstain that could not be removed from the porch. The house was