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The Historic William Devoe House - Wausau, Wisconsin

SYNOPSIS

The building that's located on 512 Franklin Street is associated with the Rosenberry Bed & Breakfast. The structure is the oldest building in the Warren District, and the oldest building in Marathon County on its original foundation. Wiliam DeVoe was born February 6, 1832 and came here in 1857. He and his wife Adelaide Gouldsbury were married on December 30, 1859. DeVoe was a carpenter by trade and built many of the early homes in Wausau including his own. His father in law was a mill owner as well. He served in the 8th Wisconsin Battery during the Civil War from November 5, 1861 to August 10, 1865. His rank was Sergeant. He had one son named Charles and a Granddaughter named Adelaide. He was found in his house, in the bedroom by his wife and son unconscious. He was taken to Wausau Hospital and died there on February 12, 1919. The family lived in the house from 1868 until 1920.

 

INVESTIGATION

The Wausau Paranormal Research Society (WPRS) investigated the DeVoe house on January 28, 2017. Investigators Blaschka, Sczygelski and Beaudry conducted the case. The building is constructed with separate upper and lower units. Reported activity mainly consisted in the upper suite (William Suite).

Investigators set up a digital video recorder (DVR) system in the lower suite, (Adelaide Suite), along with one infrared camera in both suites. A Rem Pod EMF meter was placed in the upper suite on a chair and two vibration detectors were placed on the floor. One detector was placed in the middle of the room and the other was placed on the staircase. A laser grid was also placed in the room to help try and capture any sort of movement.

Investigators placed two digital recorders in both suites. The recorders were activated and the team left the property for a significant amount of time to allow the recorders to record undisturbed. After about an hour and half of recording time, undisturbed by human contamination, the team decided to analyze the recordings. Numerous sounds of footsteps and objects being moved around the room, including knocks and pounds on walls, counters and other mysterious sounds were captured. It should be noted that during the time of the recording, the DeVoe house was locked and the team was monitoring it from a distance. Thereby allowing us to confirm that no one else was in or on the property during that time.

Upon review of the DVR video recording system footage we found no movement of objects or any reasonable explanation for the digital recordings that were captured. Video footage did pick up the REM POD alerting on several different occasions and some anomalous orb like shapes passing though camera frame quickly. All of the recordings and video footage were captured in the upper suite (William Suite).

Below are several recordings we captured on the evening of January 28, 2017 in the William Suite. It is recommended that you use headphones for the best quality of playback.

Footsteps and floor creaking

More footsteps and movement sounds

Dragging and creaking floor sounds

Clasp and snapping sounds

Floor creaking from footsteps

Rem Pod reacting to a presence

 

The team then placed a digital recorder in the upper suite while we analyzed the other recordings in the lower suite. During that time, no activity was captured on audio or video. The team also decided to spend the night at the location. The only activity that was observed during the course of the night was the REM POD consistently picking up electro magnetic fields and alerting in the upper suite (William Suite).

Investigator Sczygelski was able to spend the previous evening in the upper (William Suite). During the course of that evening she detected the REM POD alerting on numerous occasions and for a sustainable amount of time. During the night she also awoke to a very cold sensation around her which had no explanation, when she woke a few hours later the temperature was again normal. The next morning, Investigator Sczygelski placed a digital recorder on the table and recorded while she was in the shower and again when she left the suite for an amount of time. While she was in the shower, the recorder picked up footsteps and movement around the suite. Sczygelski noted another personal experience that morning. After her shower she opened the bathroom door very quickly and noticed a small ball of light shoot from the top of the door frame up to the ceiling and then disappear.

The second recording while she was gone, picked up footsteps and movement and the sound of something walking down the staircase or being dragged or pulled down the staircase.

 William Suite Dragging Noise - 1/27/17

Investigator Sczgelski also had a personal experience on the prior morning of the investigation. Shortly after investigators Blaschka and Beaudry left the lower suite, investigator Sczgelski remained in the upper suite while having some coffee. Investigator Sczgelski stated she heard heavy phantom footsteps coming up the staircase. This was not the first time investigators heard these heavy phantom footsteps. On a previous investigation at the Rosenberry Inn, investigator Beaudry also heard these same footsteps in the upper suite staircase and investigator Blaschka had also heard multiple loud foot stomps on the staircase.

WPRS investigators were not the only ones that have experienced paranormal activity in the DeVoe house. On two separate occasions the owner of the Inn has experienced her own paranormal phenomenon in the upper suite. One of those evening she witnessed the fireplace poker set, move on its own and later that same evening the hanging swing started to move as if an unseen force was moving it back and forth. While the swing was in motion it actually was making a creaking noise as if weight was applied to the seat. It should be noted that the WPRS tested out the swing and the movement was not caused by airflow from natural air current and a significant amount of pressure around 200lbs had to be applied to the swing for the creaking sound of the ropes.

On the second occasion the following afternoon, the owner was cleaning the suite and briefly decided to take a break and leave for a few minutes. Before she left, she decided to place her cell phone on the table to record in hopes of capturing some sort of EVP from whatever may have been causing the paranormal activity from the previous night. Below is the recording that she captured, note it is very similar to the recordings that the WPRS team captured on 01/28/17.

 

Devoe House Recording - January 2017

 

CONCLUSION

Taking into consideration the plethora of digital audio recordings and personal experiences, the WPRS feels that the DeVoe house is truly a rare find of both the possibility of residual and intelligent haunting. Who and why the paranormal phenomenon is occurring within the walls of the 150 year old building is still a mystery. The DeVoe house may likely be one of the most haunted buildings the WPRS has ever investigated.

 

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CONTINUED INVESTIGATION - FEBRUARY 25, 2017

 

Investigators Blaschka, Duginski, von Gnechten, and Sczygelski conducted an investigation of the Williams Suite in the Devoe House on Saturday, February 25th. A local psychic was invited to accompany the investigators to see if any additional information could be acquired. The psychic picked up on a presence of a spirit belonging to a woman. The woman had suffered unwanted sexual activity during her younger life by an unknown man, possibly a relative. She stated that out of frustration at wanting to be heard, the spirit would make loud noises such as footsteps on the stairs, moving objects, etc. The psychic stated that the first name of the female spirit she felt was Marie. She also stated that the male presence name was either Bob or Brian. During the balance of the evening the WPRS and the psychic worked to help the spirit have an understanding of what had happened and helped her to cross over and move on. Further possible research of the site will prove whether the activity will decrease at the site.

 Below are all EVP recordings that have been captured at various times on the investigator's digital recorders since our last investigation in January. No one was present during any of these recordings.

 

Banging Noises

Creaking and Knocking - Rem Pod Reacts

Floor Creaking

More Footsteps and Creaking

Knock and Slap Noise

Various Knocking Noises

Voices - "Let's Get Them Out" - "Right"


*Any use or reproduction of this documentation is prohibited without the sole permission of Bill Beaudry, Ann Sczygelski, Shawn Blaschka and the WPRS.