There’s Something in the Basement

I’ve shared my experiences working in Old Main at the University of Arizona. I also had odd experiences working in the Nugent Building next door, which was built in 1937. When my department was moving our offices, I had to visit the storage room in the basement. The fluorescent lights were dim, making the room seem darker than it should have been. I got a strong feeling, like I wasn’t alone and I wasn’t welcome. Unnerved, I grabbed what I needed in a hurry and got out of there.

Later, after carrying a box of supplies to my office on the second floor, I headed downstairs and found myself alone on the first floor. Everyone else had left for the day. I walked down a darkened hallway, lit only by the glow of an exit sign. I could hear my heels clicking on the tile floor. Then I heard a second set of footsteps, like someone was following me. I stopped and looked behind me, but didn’t see anyone.

Grey ShadowSometimes I would work late, and I’d be the only person on the second floor. More than once, I caught a dark shadow out of the corner of my eye, like someone was standing there, watching me. When I would turn my head, there wouldn’t be anyone there, though I could see the faintest afterimage—a fleeting glimpse of a dark figure. I didn’t tell anyone what I was experiencing, but after that, I always kept the lights on when I was there alone.

Then I heard a story from some co-workers whose offices were located in the basement. They told me they had heard strange noises and the electrical equipment—copiers and fax machines—would often malfunction. One woman swore she’d taken a photo and could see the faint image of a person—one that could not be seen with the naked eye.

After a tragedy on campus involving the death of a student, our supervisors decided to have the building blessed. The student had been Native American, and even though she hadn’t died in the building, her loss had a huge impact on the close-knit community. The cleansing ceremony was meant to help everyone heal.

What is weird is that after the smudging ceremony, my co-workers said the strange incidents in the basement stopped, like whatever had been down there was finally gone.

© Melissa Eskue Ousley 2015


4 responses

  1. Johnnie-marie Howard

    Hello I was wondering if I could get your mailing address I would love to send you a xmas card please and thank you Johnnie-Marie Howard,

    December 4, 2015 at 12:41 pm

  2. Hi Johnnie-Marie, how are you? That is so sweet of you to think of me. I’ll email you. 😀

    December 4, 2015 at 12:51 pm

  3. I too had seen a shadow person in the house I lived in darting from left to right about 12 in the morning I was crocheting at the kitchen table and I kept seeing this shadow out of the corner of my eye, kept saying to myself must be tired, and rubbed my eyes..and as I saw that shadow again I turned to look and to my fright there I saw a pair of brown shoes that looked from around 1940 and a pair of green scared I was I could not look any further up, but ran to my bedroom that was off the kitchen and it was gone, with in 5 seconds to this day I think that first floor apt was haunted because alot strange happenings there. This home had been in my husbands family for about 60 years and once the family sold it and every down and then we would drive by but the first floor would always look empty.

    December 10, 2015 at 10:57 am

  4. Wow! Thanks for sharing that. That would have freaked me out too. Your story reminds me very much of something my son saw once. Maybe I’ll post on that soon.

    December 12, 2015 at 1:44 am

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