Winchester Hauntings: Historic Jordan Springs

Nov 07, 2011 1 Comment by

historic jordan springs

The history of Historic Jordan Springs has been documented as far back as 1549, when the Catawba Native Americans discovered the sulphur springs there. Believed to have healing powers, the Native Americans visited annually for ceremonial rituals for nearly two centuries.

Over the years, three hotels have stood on the property, one of which burned down in the 1920s. The estate has been used as a resort for the Washington elite, a hospital during the Civil War for both the North and South (depending on who occupied the territory at the time,) a brothel, school, rehab center for children, and a monastery.

In 2001, Greig and Tonie Wallace Aitken purchased the property. The hotel is now being used as an event and cultural center. Many weddings are held each year at the estate along with other events such as holiday dinners, candlelight tours, live music nights in the pub, and their popular dinner along with an all-night paranormal investigation.

Over thirty investigations have been conducted, led by the team of Shenandoah Shadows. Word spread quickly regarding the amount of activity throughout the hotel, and it peaked the interest of another paranormal team from Maryland, AdventureMyths. They came out and conducted their own investigation over several months, documenting and authenticating all of their findings. Shortly thereafter, AdventureMyths filmed a documentary titled “Haunts of Historic Jordan Springs”. The documentary will soon appear in Season 3 of My Ghost Story on A&E and just recently the owners were contacted and flown out to California by the Sci-Fi Channel, also wanting to film a piece on the hotel. Today, Jordan Springs has been documented to be the number one place in the country with the most paranormal activity.

Paranormal Teams

Shenandoah Shadows
John Rossi: Founder and Lead Investigator
Joel Collett: Investigator
Mike Brooker: Internationally Renowned Psychic/Medium from the United Kingdom

Frank J. Polievka, Jr: Founder/CEO
Jonathan Ness: Vice President of Operations
Dusty Cassidy: Lead Investigator / Demonologist
Victoria Rickett: Investigator / Audio Specialist

Timeline of the Evening:

6:00-6:30 pm – Cocktails and Hor’dourves are served in the pub along with a meet-and-greet with AdventureMyths and Shenandoah Shadows teams
6:30-7:30 pm – Candlelit tour of the hotel
7:30-8:30 pm – Dinner

The wonderful culinary team of Jordan Springs served us a delicious dinner in the Ballroom:
• Mixed Green Salad with pecans and dried cranberries
• Prime Rib served with baby carrots and mashed potatoes
• Apple Turnover with cream

9:00 pm – Premier Showing: “The Haunts of Historic Jordan Springs”
9:30 pm – We are divided up into three groups and begin the investigation of haunted areas in the hotel which are the second floor, the third floor (which also includes the attic,) and in the pub located in the basement

The power throughout the hotel is turned off. Each person received a small clip-on flashlight that was to be used to move from room to room. However, once you reached your destination they had to be turned off. All three groups had several team investigators with them, which was a big relief! One group started off in the basement, the other went up to the third floor, and my group started off on the second floor. Each team also had their own recording equipment: equipment to record temperature changes, voices, and other things we are not able to see with the naked eye. One of the devices we used was called an EVP (Electronic Voice Phenomena). When turned on, the EVP meter would show one small green light; however, when a presence was detected, the lights would flash and increase up to red.

The first room we were directed to was a very large conference room with a table just as big. Everyone sat at one end of the table, and once we settled in the flashlights were turned off. I remember sitting there in the dark, staring at the EVP meter lying on the table in front of us. We did experience a lot of activity in this room as well as other rooms throughout the hotel, including the attic and the billiards room on the third floor, a bathroom where a suicide occurred, and even in the basement.

Now I can tell you exactly what I saw, what I heard, and what I felt, but how many of you would really believe me? This is one of those times where I have to say, experience it yourself and find out. You are allowed to take your own pictures and videos, but I would suggest bringing a lot of batteries, since they will not last long. Also, don’t be surprised if you feel a tug on your coat sleeve, breathing in your ear or your hair being swept back…and no one is there. If you have an open mind, this is a riveting experience. I look at things differently now and have become a firm believer.

1:12 – First orb type light appears faintly and very briefly
2:30 – The EVP meter increases from a presence
4:43 – Second orb type light appears, a little brighter and longer…then camera dies
(The orbs appear on the right hand side of the screen just below the recording lights)

The paranormal investigations usually fill up well in advance. So if you are interested, you can call to see when the next available one is. Jordan Springs has many events coming up for November and December. Another popular event are their Christmas Tours. They go all out with the decorations and have as many as 10,000 people go through each year to see it. Some of the decorations include over 70 different Christmas trees. Right now, they are accepting reservations for their annual Thanksgiving Buffet Dinner on November 24th. You can visit for their full calendar of events or call (540) 667-7744.

Story By: Joanne Gaudet
Photos contributed by: Historic Jordan Springs

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About the author

Joanne Gaudet was born in Los Angeles and raised in the Washington, D.C. area. After a number of Sunday drives to the country, she fell in love with Winchester and finally settled in Frederick County over 20 years ago. Joanne has a love for great foods, traveling and the Old Town Mall. In her downtime, you can find her curled up in a corner somewhere sipping a glass of wine and reading a good book.

One Response to “Winchester Hauntings: Historic Jordan Springs”

  1. notabeever says:

    I work there and have yet to see make me think its haunted. Beautiful building tho

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