A simple house on Welles street in Wilkes-Barre, once again, made the news today as a 33-year-old man was caught breaking into it, claiming to be searching for ghosts. He was apparently expecting a battle, as he was carrying a Bible, a shutgun, a set of brass knuckles, and a pocket knife and had a sword strapped on his back.
The house was built around 1860 by Augustus Laning, who is the most likely haunter of the house, as a former resident encountered an apparitiion in his likeness. Another potential spirit may be Katherine Watkins who had lived in the house from 1982 until her death in 2012 and never wanted to leave it, according to her daughter.
Ed and Lorraine Warren, the well-known ghost-hunting duo, visited the house in 1980, thogh they did not go inside. Lorraine's comments were dramatic:
"I sense a terrible despair. The effects on people who lived in this house were very, very negative," Lorraine said.
"There were separations, personality changes."
"People who lived here were driven to self destruction of the body through drugs, alcohol, even suicide," she gasped...
.."I sense the smell of gin and heavy drinking."
..Lorraine said the house is occupied by an "earth-bound" spirit - s ghost who has not been able to "pass through to the other side."
She thoughit might be the spirit of a "burly German-type man, perhaps a blacksmith by the name of Heister."
She said she also sensed the presence of a young woman, perhaps his wife.
Lorraine's mention of the blacksmith entity caught my attention as Heister, and the more common spelling of Hiester, is one of my ancestral names. Most of them stayd in the Berks county area, but who knows?