Paranormal Investigators Of Milwaukee

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Ripon College
April 29th, 2016
Paranormal Investigators of Milwaukee (PIM)

INVESTIGATORS: Noah, Mike, Andy and Gravy

Additionally, Professor Mark Eaton and 12 students of his students participated in the investigation.

ENVIRONMENTAL DATA:

Time taken: 7:05 pm

Weather Outside: Clear

Outside Temperature: 60.0 degrees F

Wind Speed: 1.5 mph

Barometric Pressure: 29.04 mmHg steady

Humidity: 45.4%

Moon Phase: 57% Full Waning Gibbous

Geomagnetic Field: Quiet

Solar X-rays: Normal

Solar Wind Speed: 350.9 km/sec

Solar Wind Density: 10.3 protons/cm3

Radio Sun: 10.7 cm flux; 95 sfu

Planetary K-index Now: Kp=1; quiet

Planetary K-index 24hr Max: Kp=1; quiet

Interplanetary Magnetic Field Btotal: 5.2 nT

Interplanetary Magnetic Field Bz: 4.2 nT north

Sunspot: Yes; 84

Flare Threat: Yes; AR2535

Coronal Holes: Yes; 1

HISTORY:

Ripon College, founded in 1851, was converted from a college preparatory school to a four-year college in 1863. Its first class - four women: Luthera H. Adams, Harriet H. Brown, Susan A.W. Saulsbury and Mary F. Spencer - graduated in 1867.

Today, Ripon's campus encompasses 250 tree-covered acres and includes 25 buildings. The original three limestone buildings which witnessed the commencement of 1867 remain in use: East, Smith and West Halls. These, along with seven other campus buildings, were added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1995.

A traditional college of the liberal arts, Ripon looks ahead without forgetting its distinguished past. College Days, which first appeared as a monthly literary magazine in 1868, is the oldest continually published college newspaper in Wisconsin.

REPORTED ACTIVITY:

  • Apparition seen in the Archive Vault that was believed to be the perturbed spirit of Sam Pedrick, a deceased faculty member
  • Sighting of a shadow apparition following out someone who was closing the Library. This was seen at the front doors of the Library near the front desk
  • The sound of someone falling down the stairs from the 3rd Floor to the 2nd Floor in West Hall was heard by three different people on three separate occasions. When the person who heard the noise went to see if anyone needed help, on each occasion no one was at the bottom of the stairs and on two occasions no one else was found in the building
  • A student leaving West Hall reported seeing a ball of light bouncing around in a staff member's office when no one was in the building
  • The sound of a women screaming
  • Hearing heavy footsteps in the old dining hall while in the Museum when no one is in the old dining hall
  • On a previous investigation, a PIM member reported hearing a whistle while up in the 2nd Floor Study Room of Lane Library when no one else was in the area
  • People have reported having a "creepy" feeling in the Men's Room located just off the front entrance of Lane Library on the lower level
ARRIVAL:

The group arrived early in the afternoon for a presentation to Professor Mark Eaton's Sociology of the Paranormal class. The presentation was given by Noah and started at 2:30 pm. The presentation lasted until 3:45 pm, which included a question and answer session with the students. After the presentation, the group left for a walk through of Lane Library and West Hall. The group left for dinner then returned around 6:30 pm, set up base camp on the 1st Floor of West Hall, adjacent to the Museum. The group started preparing equipment for the investigation. Prior to closing time, the group began to place equipment and darken areas of interest by pulling light bulbs, covering Exit signs, etc.

Every member of PIM is equipped with a Zoom H1 digital audio recorder, which is used as their control recorder, Extech RHT50 datalogger, and UV flashlight. Control recorders are not only used as another recording device but also to document the sound contamination that an investigator might create during an investigation. Control recorders are started and time stamped first before any other equipment is started and they are turned off last to ensure any anomalous noises can be cross checked. Control recorders are also placed in a Faraday cage, if possible. A Faraday cage operates because an external static electrical field causes the electric charges within the cage's conducting material to be distributed such that they cancel the field's effect in the cage's interior. PIM's main goal in using these is to block radio signals from interfering with their audio recorders thus causing false EVPs. The Extech RHT50 datalogger takes a temperature, humidity, and barometric pressure reading once a minute and is used to try and correlate environmental data with any personal experiences an investigator might encounter during an investigation.

Everyone then began to set up equipment on tri-pods to make set up easier and faster.

At 7:05 pm Andy and Mike went outside with a group of students to demonstrate how outside weather conditions are collected with a Kestrel 3500 Weather Station. The Kestrel Weather Station is a tool that measures temperature, wind speed, barometric pressure and humidity. Andy explained to the students how outdoor weather conditions can effect windows, doors, pressure changes, etc. A short time later Andy and Mike walked the areas inside West Hall that were going to be investigated, with the students demonstrating how PIM collects baseline temperature and EMF (electromagnetic field) readings using a single-axis EMF Mel-8704R Meter (see table below). The readings in Lane Library were taken upon entry into the location prior to the EVP sessions.

LOCATION
EMF Before Investigation (with power on; denoted in mG)
Temperature Before Investigation (Fahrenheit)
West Hall
Museum
0.15
74.0
ROTC Range
0.0
76.8
2nd Floor Hallway & Office
0.1
73.4
3rd Floor Hallway
0.15
75.2
Lane Library
2nd Floor Study Room
0.6
76.0
Level 2A
1.3
80.3
Level 1A
0-3.7
73.5
Men's Bathroom
0.1
78.1

NOTE: EMF detection of 1.0 or higher can make a person have symptoms of nausea, dizziness, paranoia and the feeling of being watched. Some people are more sensitive to higher levels of EMF than others.

Several high definition camcorders and sound recorders were placed in select areas of West Hall.

Gravy began setting up equipment in the ROTC Range. A Sony HDR-CX160 full spectrum camcorder was placed in the ROTC Range along with, a Zoom H1 audio recorder. A trigger object bank was set up which included a geophone, Extech RHT50, bullets, whiskey, Bible, rosary, holy relic, EMF pump, cigar, cigarette, deck of cards and a touch flashlight. The geophone was custom built by PIM and has adjustable sensitivity. The geophone senses seismic vibrations. If any of the trigger objects would be moved the geophone would sense the vibrations. PIM uses trigger objects to try and provoke interest and activity from entities. An EMF pump emits electromagnetic fields into the atmosphere which is believed to be a great energy source for spirits to manifest. A touch flash light was placed on the desk as well (which can only be turned on if the side is touched completing the circuit).

A Sony HDR-CX610 full spectrum camcorder was set up in the 1st Floor museum along with a Zoom H1 audio recorder. A Mel-8704REM/ATDD/SDD EMF detector was set up in the Museum also. It detects EMF and temperature simultaneously, a hot and cold spot detector that will set off a blue light or red light for an increase or decrease of one degree or more along with an audible alarm, and a shadow detection system that has a long range and short range red LED light that if broken will cause an LED light and audible alarm to go off.

On the 2nd Floor, Professor Marc Eaton's Sony DCR-SR45 high definition camcorder was set up monitoring the hallway, along with a Zoom H1 audio recorder.

On the 3rd Floor, a Ghost Hunting POV full spectrum action high definition camera was set up to monitor the staircase.

On the investigation of the Lane Library, Noah carried his Sony HDR-SR10 camcorder and Gravy carried his Sony HDR-SR7 camcorder. There were no stationary cameras or sound recorders used in the Lane Library. Noah also carried his Magnii DSP-521N single-axis EMF detector into Lane Library.

Once all the equipment was set, the team started and time stamped all the equipment in the entire building. Time stamps, from a designated atomic watch, are used as a point of reference and make cross referencing easier during evidence review. All lights were turn off at this point to set illumination with special infrared lights so the camcorders are able to record while it is dark. Once this was done the group, at 8:05 pm, left West Hall to go to Lane Library for the first part of the investigation.

INVESTIGATION:

START TIME: 8:27 pm

LOCATION: 2nd Floor Study Room and Hallway

PIM members, Professor Eaton and students spread themselves throughout the room and hallway before beginning control silence. Control silence is a method practiced at each new location in a building. It allows for members to get a baseline of noises the building could make throughout the night. It also allows for the group to tag outside noises heard in that area so as not to be mistaken as something paranormal later in the night. This also allows for the building to reset itself after members or PIM have been walking around. The group then began 8an electronic voice phenomenon or EVP session.

At 8:36.57 pm, a female student in the study room reported hearing a "whistle" sound coming from behind a locked a door near an exterior window of the building.

At 8:37.54 pm, a different female student in the study room reported hearing a "whistle" sound coming from behind a locked a door near an exterior window of the building. The student compared it to the sound of a mouse "squeak-squeak," fluctuating in pitch and tone. Soon after the claimed "whistle" sounds, dogs were heard barking. The "whistle" sound heard could have been dog owners calling their pets.

After evidence review of the control recorders, no PIM investigator reported any "whistle" sounds picked up.

END TIME: 8:45 pm

START TIME: 8:51 pm

LOCATION: Level 2A

The group situated themselves around the room amongst the bookshelves, spreading throughout the room as well as staying within ear shot of each other. Noah and Gravy removed lightbulbs from the fixtures to darken the room, as Andy conducted an EMF and temperature reading of the location. Controlled silence was observed before starting an EVP session.

At 8:59.58 pm, a female student, located near the main staircase, claimed to have a feeling that someone was behind her. During the EMF measurement of the room, the area where the claim was made had a spike in detectable EMF. Noah, went to the area where the claim was made, gave the female student an EMF detector and told her to report any reading over 0.5 mG.

At 9:05.51 pm, a female student, claimed to see a book moving on a shelf. Noah, proceeded to the area and checked the books on the shelf. Noah reported the book observed moving was "pretty stuck," and did not move easily when touched. Professor Eaton stated he had a clear line of sight to the shelf and would watch for any further movement.

At 9:12.02 pm, a female student reported hearing a whisper in the corner of room located near where Andy was sitting. She claimed the whisper was the voice of a male and possibly a short sentence. During review of his control recorder, Andy did not hear any whispers. After evidence review of the control recorders, no PIM investigator reported hearing any whispers.

At 9:14.26 pm, the same female student reported hearing another whisper in the corner of the room located near where Andy was sitting. She claimed the whisper was the voice of a male and possibly a short sentence. During review of his control recorder, Andy did not hear any whispers. After evidence review of the control recorders, no PIM investigator reported hearing any whispers.

As the EVP session concluded, Noah asked the group why they thought the "creepy" feeling might exist. Due to the warmth of the room, isolation and the claustrophobic confines, people may incur an uneasy or "creepy" feeling. Noah also described a phenomenon to the group, about moving through evenly spaced dividers, giving the illusion of movement that is really not there.

END TIME: 9:20 pm

START TIME: 9:30 pm

LOCATION: Level 1A

The group situated themselves around the room amongst the bookshelves, spreading throughout the room as well as staying within ear shot of each other. Noah, Gravy and Professor Eaton removed lightbulbs from the fixtures to darken the room, as Andy conducted an EMF and temperature reading of the location. Controlled silence was observed before starting an EVP session.

At 9:35.36 pm, a snapping sound was heard by Noah, Gravy, Mike and a student coming from the far north corner of the room. No other human was located in the area. No source of the sound was found and this was not captured on audio recorders.

At 9:37:30 pm, a male student reported a feeling of cold rush over him on the right side of his body. I walked over to the area where the feeling was reported and I did not observe any significant change in temperature. I handed the EMF and temperature monitoring device to the student and instructed him to report any changes in temperature and/or EMF. The EMF reading during the initial check of the room spiked in this area to 3.7 mG.

At 9:38.48 pm, Multiple people reported hearing a popping sound.

At 9:39.04 pm, Professor Eaton debunked the popping noise as a piece of machinery behind a locked door. This sound was not captured by audio recorders.

END TIME: 9:49 pm

START TIME: 10:11 pm

LOCATION: Men's Restroom Lower Level

The group situated themselves around the small restroom, as I conducted an EMF and temperature reading of the location. Controlled silence was observed before a "debunking" session on the "creepy" feeling that occurs in the lower level restrooms.

Noah explained to the group, the "creepy" feeling, may come from the psychology of being alone, isolated, far away from other humans, while in an old unfamiliar place. Noah explained to the group that a lot of paranormal claims come from the bathroom areas of locations as people feel vulnerable when they are using a bathroom.

END TIME: 10:15 pm

From 10:15 pm to 10:45 pm, the group took a break. At approximately 10:45 pm, the group reconvened at base camp, which was located on the 1st Floor of West Hall, adjacent to the Museum.

START TIME: 11:02 pm

LOCATION: ROTC Range

The group spread themselves throughout the ROTC Range and observed control silence before beginning an EVP session. Nothing happened during this time and the group moved on.

END TIME: 11:28 pm

START TIME: 11:36 pm

LOCATION: Museum

The group spread themselves throughout the Museum and observed control silence before beginning an EVP session. Nothing happened during this time and the group moved on.

END TIME: 11:55 pm

START TIME: 12:00 am

LOCATION: 2nd Floor Hallway, Staircase and 3rd Floor Hallway

The group spread themselves throughout the 2nd Floor Hallway, on the staircase and 3rd Floor Hallway and observed control silence before beginning an EVP session. Nothing happened during this time and the group moved on.

END TIME: 12:20 am

START TIME: 12:26 am

LOCATION: ROTC Range

The group spread themselves throughout the ROTC Range and observed control silence before beginning an EVP session. Nothing happened during this time and the group moved on.

END TIME: 12:45 am

PIM broke down all their gear, stopped their control recorders and packed their equipment up before heading back to Milwaukee.

EVIDENCE:

AUDIO: None
VIDEO: None
PHOTO: Due to the nature of photographic evidence, PIM does not believe photos are accurate evidence of the paranormal. However, photos are taken for baselines and documentation of trigger object starting positions.

CONCLUSION:

This was PIM's third time investigating Lane Library. PIM was interested in returning since Lane Library had recently undergone some renovations and there is a theory that any changes to a building may increase paranormal activity. Unfortunately, we were not able to document any paranormal activity during our investigation. PIM would always welcome another opportunity to investigate Lane Library again in the future to continue their study of the location.

This was PIM's second time investigating West Hall and we were excited to investigate the claims of activity there. Being that Noah is an alumnus of Ripon College, he remembers hearing the reports of activity that were supposed to occur there and he was very interested in seeing if he could prove or disprove those reports. PIM was unable to capture any evidence of the reports of activity during the investigation. Of the reports, the most striking is that of the sound of someone falling down the stairs from the 3rd Floor to the 2nd Floor. Based on the reports, it would seem that this activity is most likely residual in nature. This means that the activity is not caused by a conscious entity. However, PIM would relish another opportunity to investigate West Hall to do some debunking of this and the other claims, as well as try and document any happenings that may occur there. PIM looks forward to the opportunity to investigate West Hall again in the future.

On a side note, an email was received from Mary Bender, the security officer, who stated she entered West Hall after the investigation had concluded and everyone had left the building. While closing up the Museum, Mary stated she shut the front doors and as she walked to the back of the Museum the back door closed by itself. Mary also stated while patrolling later in the night a door that had been closed all night, was open on the upper floor. Mary stated no one had been in the building since we departed.

PIM would like to thank Ripon College for allowing the investigations of West Hall and Lane Library. Specifically PIM would like to thank the faculty and staff in West Hall and Lane Library for allowing us to investigate the buildings. A special thanks goes to Marc Eaton for inviting PIM to speak to his class and helping to facilitate the investigations.