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September 2001

I belong to a paranormal Internet community. For months I had been reading of everyone else's experiences, yet, I had none of my own. I decided I wanted to find out what they were talking about. So, on June 30th of this year I traveled to Jefferson, Texas (about 3 hours east of Dallas right at the Louisiana border). The most haunted little town in Texas.

Just after the civil war this was one of the biggest and busiest towns in Texas. Galveston and Jefferson were boom towns when Dallas was only a small settlement. Galveston had the Gulf of Mexico and Jefferson had Big Cypress Bayou a branch off the Red River which in turn branches off the Mississippi. Because of this, it was the furthest most western point for river boats to enter Texas. It allowed them enough room to turn around and go back out.

When the railroad was diverted around Jefferson and the water level was lowered in the bayou, Jefferson slowly began to die. But, because of this, many of its old buildings, some of them built around the 1850's, were preserved. It is like going back in time. Jefferson now has a population of about 2200 people.

During my visit, I had the pleasure of staying at one of the oldest hotels in Texas. The Jefferson Hotel, circa 1851. This hotel is known for having at least 7 spirits trapped inside its old walls. Room 19 is the most haunted room in the hotel with the most reported activity. I requested Room 19 for that reason. I really didn't expect anything to happen as I am not sensitive to spirits in the least. They could be doing somersaults off the top of my head and I'd never know it.

I checked into my room. Its a very plain room. Nothing fancy. Just a few antiques and a beautiful antique bed. It was rather stuffy in the room and smelt of slight body odor and old perfume.

After a full day of exploring the little town, I returned to the hotel, I noticed that just outside it was a large bust of Thomas Jefferson and a fountain.

Once in my room, I opened the blinds to see if I could see them from my room. I spent a few minutes there at the window. Trying to peer through the trees to see if I could see them. Realizing that I couldn't, I turned on the TV and sat down on the bed to relax a bit before dinner. Possibly 5 to 10 minutes passed when I looked back up at the window. I noticed a red mark on the glass. Curious, I got up and stuck my finger through the blinds to see if it was on the inside or outside of the glass. It was on the inside and it was a greasy, red substance of some sort. I slowly began to realize that that mark was part of the letter "M". Then I see another letter beside it. The letter "E". I looked at the panes above these and there, written in the same substance, is the word "HELP". I slowly began to take it all in and realize that someone had written the words "HELP ME" on my window.

My heart was beating hard. I stood there in shock for a few minutes and slowly backed away. I couldn't believe it. I had JUST looked out that very window and noticed nothing. How could this be? Maybe I just didn't notice it. Maybe its been there for weeks and no one has opened these blinds in a while. Someone must have done it as a joke. After all, this IS a famous haunted hotel room here in Texas.

The thought that it had been a prank was the ONLY thing that kept me in that room that night. I went down to the lobby but everyone had gone home. It was empty. I looked back up that old stairwell and, once again, assured myself it was someone's idea of a stupid joke.

When I returned to the room, I had calmed down a bit and I spoke into the air, just in case "If there really is someone here. And you really DO need help. Just look for the light. Look for the brightest light you see and move towards it. You have loved ones waiting for you. They have been waiting for you a very long time. Just go toward the light." I kept repeating this over and over. More to calm my nerves than anything else, I think.

Oddly enough, I had a peaceful night's sleep....with the light on. After I had prepared to leave, I wrote the front desk clerk a note, told them about the writing on the window and that I would be calling them on Monday to inquire about it.

On Monday, at lunchtime, in my car, I picked up my cell phone and dialed the hotel. The desk clerk was just about to put me on hold when I heard her say to someone "Oh, you want to speak to her?" A few seconds passed and a woman came on the line. She said "Hi, I'm the housekeeping supervisor. We got your note." I said "And?" She said "I was in that room 5 minutes before you arrived. I turned on the AC, the lamp and lowered the blinds. It wasn't there, I promise you." I sat there in stunned silence for just a moment and said "You have just given me the creeps." She said that she had the creeps too. She said they tried to clean it off but there is now a greasy residue that they can't remove. We talked for a few more minutes and I hung up in a daze. My mind could not process what had just happened. It wasn't until I got home, that I read in a book of Texas hauntings that a common phenomenon occurring in room #19 is the words "Help Me" written on the foggy mirror after guests take their shower. I knew nothing about this.

A couple of days had passed and I couldn't get this plea for help out of my mind. It felt SO desperate and I felt so very badly for her. I made a post on the message board of my community asking for a "spirit rescue" and my friend Hannah quickly responded that she would do anything necessary to help this poor soul. Hannah has the gift of seeing spirits.

A couple of days later, I couldn't shake the feeling that maybe, just maybe this person, whoever she was, may have followed me home. I had the sense that it was a woman because the substance on the glass looked like old fashioned lipstick. And, it was written with a finger, not a stick. I went onto the board and asked Hannah to please join me in chat, which she quickly did. I asked her if there was anyone with me and she described a woman in 1800's clothing. Petite, brown hair, brown dress. Very timid. She would only whisper. Hannah said she was whispering to me but I heard, felt, saw absolutely nothing. Hannah was able to get her story.

Her name was Virginia. She went by the nickname "Ginny" for short. Her father was a mean, controlling and abusive man. Ginny fell in love with a merchant man, much older than she was. The two of them decided that Ginny would run away from home and meet him in Jefferson. She made it. He did not. He died or was killed before he ever made it to Jefferson.

Ginny was devastated, lost and desperate. No where to go. No one to turn to. No money. No hope. She decided to take her life by jumping off the foot bridge into the bayou. The interesting thing is, this is so close to the story tourists are given of one of the spirits in the hotel. The legend goes that a woman hung herself after hearing the news that her fiance had changed his mind about marrying her. And, the description my friends gave of her matches exactly the description of the female apparition reported by hotel guests.

My psychic friends knew nothing of this story or the reports. About this time a couple of guys from our Internet community joined us in our attempt to help Ginny. They are also both very sensitive to spirits. It was determined that Ginny was terrified of her father even in death. He still had control over her. This was what kept her here. After several on-line sessions, Hannah was able to keep Ginny's father at bay while the rest of us tried to convince her that she was safe now. He could no longer hurt her. She was free to go. Finally, after much reassurance, she finally began to move toward the light. Hannah witnessed a door opening to a place so beautiful that words could not describe it. She watched in wonder as Ginny moved toward the door. She asked Ginny if she saw it and she heard the word "Beautiful." Ginny then entered the doorway and the door closed behind her.

I have never, nor will I ever, experience anything of this magnitude again in my life. Of this I am sure. It was an experience I will never forget as long as I live. I am forever grateful to Hannah and friends for everything they did for Ginny. She is home, now, because of these wonderful people. She is at peace.

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