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The Specter Sculpture

 

As I mentioned in the notes attached to my last story here on Your Ghost Stories, mom has been deeply involved in the reconstruction of the carriage house which once stood on the property just behind the house. The building was burned to the ground in the 1970's and mom has been wanting to rebuild almost from the very day of move in. Mostly this was for the practical need of a garage, but also to return the property to its original appearance which has been her crusade for years.

As I noted, during excavation of the old carriage house's foundations, several artifacts were found. The most unusual of these was a blue china sculpture. The sculpture appears to be a "cloak" or flowing gown, stretched over the frame of a nearly shapeless human form. The sculpture disturbed me immediately upon seeing it, although not from it's odd dimensions, but because painted over it's entire surface in white glaze were hundreds upon hundreds of what appear to be skulls or round pale faces, with mouths open in shock or horror.

My intention was to have the sculpture "lost" at some point during the chaos of construction. Mom's idea, however, was to bring the thing into her home so it could be more properly researched. I objected... But as I was away at the time, I had little opportunity to prevent it. By the time I returned to visit for Halloween, it was sitting on the China cabinet in the dining room. I was shocked and disturbed by this horrible thing's presence in the house, and the house itself seemed to agree. The overall "mood" of the house had changed from my last visit. No longer was it a sad, lonely stillness but more of an overt hostility.

The house had always had issues with the doors opening on their own. This was attributed to the slant of the floors and walls and the aged, ineffective locking mechanisms. However, this had changed. The doors now slammed open, many times causing damage to their doorframes or crashing the iron doorknobs into the wall, breaking the plaster. Electrical failures were now widespread as well, and no longer isolated to visits by strangers or unwelcome guests.

For the first time I heard what sounded like my name being spoken: It was in the late afternoon, the day before Halloween and I was walking past the doorway to the dining room. Icy cold air was just pouring out and into the hallway. When I stepped into the dining room to investigate, I very clearly heard "Zack" from just over my shoulder. Spinning around, I found only an empty hallway.

At this point I became convinced that the house was reacting to the presence of this sculpture. I know that my own reaction to seeing it was negative and to my reasoning, it wasn't a stretch to assume that the entities in the house were feeling the same. I took the sculpture to a local art gallery, trying to learn about the sculptor but they said it didn't appear to be any work of art by an artist they were aware of. They took photos of it and offered to attempt some research. After several days, they called and suggested it may have been "home-made" or created as a custom piece for a former occupant of the home. By now we were in November, and I had returned to my own home, along with boxes filled with research materials we had found during our investigation of the house's history. While reading through the journals of the Lapask family I finally located the origins of the sculpture...

In early 1943, while distraught over the loss of two children and the birth defects of her third, Mrs. Lapask had become addicted to Laudanum. Her husband and household staff had become increasingly concerned with her mental state and at some point talk of having her committed to the State Asylum began. She began to visit a local pottery shop to have her "musings" put into physical form. She claimed that this was the only outlet for her creativity which, in her own mind, was being restricted by her husband.

The sculpture, now sitting in my mother's dining room, was created at Mrs. Lapask's direction as she attempted to describe to the artist a dream she had been having on and off since the birth of her third child. In the dream she had witnessed her own death and she had a strong compulsion to have a physical manifestation of the "death" she had seen put into sculpture form. By this point in her journal, her thinking was heavily disjointed and the handwriting was nearly illegible, so her complete thoughts behind the sculpture are difficult to understand. If the sculpture was supposed to "represent" death, or if this form was a physical manifestation of death itself is unclear.

About two months after the sculpture was created and brought home in 1943, Mrs. Lapask committed suicide. How the sculpture came to be buried in the carriage house is unknown and as Mr. Lapask and his son moved from the area very shortly after, it's unlikely an answer will ever be found. If the spirit of Lucy Lapask really is occupying the house, I can certainly understand why there would be such a violent reaction to an object personifying her fear of death. I was shocked, shaken and called mom immediately with my discovery. She, too, was now horrified by the thing which was sitting in her dining room and while on the phone with me, took a hammer to the sculpture and threw the finely crushed remains into the trash.

Mom reports the house's mood has slowly, over the course of the month, returned to more of a solemn quiet as it was before Halloween. I'm currently in the process of packing for my Thanksgiving visit. Mom and I hope that through the warmth of the holiday we can close this latest dark chapter in the house's rather dark history.

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Comments about this paranormal experience

The following comments are submitted by users of this site and are not official positions by yourghoststories.com. Please read our guidelines and the previous posts before posting. The author, Zack84, has the following expectation about your feedback: I will read the comments and participate in the discussion.

Argette (guest)
 
4 years ago (2014-03-04)
RubyRose, I am in complete agreement with you. I think the stories are semi-true. Zach is a good writer, and I think we all liked his persona. I so wanted his stories to be real.
Ruby_Rose90 (1 stories) (12 posts)
+1
4 years ago (2014-02-18)
Hello! No one is probably going to come back and read this but oh well!
Ive read through all the stories in this saga and did enjoy them. If it were a novel it would be the type I would go for.
Alot of others seem to have done some research of their own and can't match many names and children to each, so I had a go too for my own curiosity. (Im from Aus, had not heard of any of the happenings or people in the stories before today)

Http://cdnc.ucr.edu/cgi-bin/cdnc?a=d&d=SFC18980428.2.43

Its a scanned newspaper article from the time of the explosion Henry Butler was killed in. The story states he and his son were taken home injured to die. The paper states that all the bodies found were charred, most beyond recognition. No Henry Butler junior was mention either.

I love stories based around real people and events, but I think that's what this is, a few tid bits of real life with creative writing.
Argette (guest)
+1
4 years ago (2013-12-29)
You are quite right, Zack, online sources are imperfect. So are documents. Census and city director information takers often made mistakes, or dealt with people whose language they did not speak. And true, names can be spelled several ways.

I think we have all wanted to believe you, and we will be pleased to read the rest of the story and see the photo you submitted.

I find it odd that you apparently subtracted "karma points" from my comments, however, and a bit childish. You disappeared from the forum after your post, leaving us not know what to think.

It's not hard to access the Internet these days, and it's probably a smart idea for everyone who posts something here to check it soon after posting in order to deal with the comments made.
Zack84 (8 stories) (32 posts)
 
4 years ago (2013-12-29)
One last thing I'll note here, regarding the mention of Lucy's journals. I did mention in the story The House that Butler Built that Journal Entries from prior occupants were used.

Also keep in mind, the spelling of names changed based on the person writing the name down. There were no national or even regular state databases to draw on and there wasn't even a Social Security program until the Great Depression. The Lapask family, written about prominently in this story had their names written three different ways on documents I located at County Archives. Lapask, Lapaask, and Lapesk.
Zack84 (8 stories) (32 posts)
+1
4 years ago (2013-12-29)
It seems my story has generated quite a lively debate. This is the first time I've logged in since Thanksgiving and was surprised to find so many comments as I usually get no more than 8 or 9 total.

The Internet is a wonderful thing, truely and it opens up the options for research to a level the world has never known before, but as any serious researcher will tell you, it's absolutely NOT a replacement for physical document search. I'd say about 65% of the records dating back before the 1960s in this county alone are not available online, to say nothing about the State. If Ancestry.com is to be believed, my own family came to existence with my great grandfather with no trace of my bloodline before 1902.

I've tried to answer as many questions as possible, I posted an entire story to answer them in fact. I've submitted photos of the sculpture noted in this story to be included (not sure when admins will post them). Readers are welcome to form whatever opinions about my stories they like.
Argette (guest)
+1
4 years ago (2013-12-15)
Triskaideka, I like the way you think! I did the same think on Ancestry.com and a while back, also looked up some of the other references. Perhaps - if the poster IS a fraud - he thought that by using a real event and wrapping his stories around that, he might fool us. And he did. Frankly, I looked forward to his stories. I do think they were doled out in a somewhat deliberate manner. And that made me suspicious, too.
Triskaideka (2 stories) (369 posts)
+1
4 years ago (2013-12-15)
PS - As consistent as the details of these stories have been, I do wonder if maybe they are true. The lack of evidence worries me. I want to believe! If the OP has any evidence, such as photos of old documents and such, that would be wonderful! I love seeing old records and newspaper clippings.
Triskaideka (2 stories) (369 posts)
+2
4 years ago (2013-12-15)
I read "The House That Butler Built" after reading this one. I, too, desperately wanted these amazing stories to be true. So I did some genealogical & historical digging to try to lend some veracity to the story.

The powder mill explosion:
Http://www.santacruzpl.org/history/articles/460/

I have used Google and Ancestry.com to search for records on ALL of the people mentioned in the aforementioned story. Not a single hit. No death records. No birth records. Nothing. Keep in mind, California is a state with 100% public personal records. The only Lapasks who died in California were named Dorothy, Jack, Florence, Gerald, and George. And no, they did not have Eric or Dorothy as middle names either. I found men named Henry Butler in California around the given time, but none of them were married to a woman named Elizabeth, and they had the wrong number of children (who lived). I found a single Elizabeth Butler who lived as a widow in 1900, but the census states she had 10 children, 8 of which were still living that year. There is NO Shawn Sullivan anywhere in California at all. Finding something on Kenneth Reed would be tricky, anyhow, as if they moved before the 1930 Census their residence there would not have been recorded.

Absolutely marvelous stories, though, and I think they could be turned into a very successful novel. I especially like that he used a legitimate event and wrote a story surrounding that.
Argette (guest)
 
4 years ago (2013-12-15)
Right now I want the OP to comment, and prove he is not a fraud.
Argette (guest)
 
4 years ago (2013-12-15)
I am in total agreement, Val and Miracles. A true story can be well told. I also WANT these stories to be on the level. Some earlier facts DO check out, if my memory is correct. I started checking some things last spring.

But I began to suspect something a story or too ago, and this one just put me over.
valkricry (39 stories) (2771 posts) mod
+1
4 years ago (2013-12-14)
I hear you very well on that, Miracles. Our 'gut' instincts are usually right, even when we want them to be wrong.
Miracles51031 (36 stories) (4802 posts) mod
+1
4 years ago (2013-12-14)
val - I completely agree with you. Just because a story is told very well doesn't mean it isn't real. There are many shared experiences on here that are equally well told, but some of those I've been able to Google and find information that substantiates the facts outlined in the story.

If something doesn't feel right, I listen. Learned that the hard way. Sometimes I'll say something; although it might be a little too sarcastic and get mistaken for a compliment 😉. Other times I just keep my mouth shut because I get tired of looking paranoid or coming across as a b*tch 😆
valkricry (39 stories) (2771 posts) mod
+1
4 years ago (2013-12-14)
Miracles, and Argette, I feel much of what you are saying bares merit. These accounts are extremely well written, however, that doesn't mean they aren't true. A fact, I know you both know very well, just thought I'd toss that in there. 😆 Still, I must admit there have been times when I felt that certain details (and lack of them in some cases) were rather...convenient. For instance the family journals, mentioned in this entry is not mentioned in others. If you are going to mention research, old newspapers, deeds, et cetera, wouldn't you have been over the moon on a find like that? And why wasn't the curiosity to read it not aroused until now? 😕 But, that is ME, and not everyone thinks or reacts like I do. (In this particular account the lack of an artist's mark bothers me, as well.)
I don't know... I guess I just want these charming tales to be true, you know?
Miracles51031 (36 stories) (4802 posts) mod
+1
4 years ago (2013-12-14)
Argette - he did have pictures of his house on his profile for awhile, but I noticed yesterday they have been removed. I guess this is another case of wait and see if he responds.
Argette (guest)
 
4 years ago (2013-12-13)
Miracles, I have to agree. The writing IS much better. But the poster of these tales joining shortly after Ms. Wrestler was exposed - within a few weeks or months, I think - and some of the stories are just too perfect to be true.

I notice the poster has not commented, nor has he provided photographic evidence.
Miracles51031 (36 stories) (4802 posts) mod
 
4 years ago (2013-12-13)
Wow, I really didn't proof that very well. Repeated myself LOL. Sorry about that. Too early this morning when I was typing, not enough coffee... Either of those excuses will work 😆
Miracles51031 (36 stories) (4802 posts) mod
 
4 years ago (2013-12-13)
Argette - I have to correct something I said. It wasn't the second story. It was "The House that Butler Built", which was the sixth submission. (I didn't realize there were that many LOL) However 😉, something about "The Fall of Madame M" aroused my suspicions, even though I did enjoy the tale.
Miracles51031 (36 stories) (4802 posts) mod
 
4 years ago (2013-12-13)
Argette - the writing is much better than MWG. Hardly any editing has to be done, which is why I didn't suspect anything with the first story. It wasn't until I couldn't find anything, when I Googled, backing up any of the information provided in the second story that I became suspicious. There should have been something, somewhere, that supported even a tidbit of the information. I couldn't find anything. Not to say I'm a pro at Googling, but I've become a little bit better at it over the past couple of years 😉

I thought my suspicions could have been wrong, but each story thereafter lacked any evidence when I tried to find something. I just thought I'd sit back and wait until others picked up on it. I also thought there was a chance I could be wrong 😕
Argette (guest)
+1
4 years ago (2013-12-13)
Ms.WrestlersGhost was her name. Although these stories have been very well-written, I have suspected for some time that all is not on the level with this poster. I think we're looking at someone smart enough to ALMOST pull off a perfect hoax.
Argette (guest)
+1
4 years ago (2013-12-12)
Miracles, I thought you might be getting at something! I really wonder if we are dealing with another lady wrestler here? Remember that?
DARKNESS (3 stories) (2022 posts)
 
4 years ago (2013-12-11)
Well it wouldn't be the first now would it haha, I still get a good laugh from some of the submissions we are exposed to on good ol YGS! Love it! 😆
Miracles51031 (36 stories) (4802 posts) mod
 
4 years ago (2013-12-11)
Argette - maybe mine was a little too veiled? 😉 I've had serious reservations for quite a while, but haven't said anything until now.
Argette (guest)
 
4 years ago (2013-12-10)
Each time I read this, I grow more suspicious. I am really surprised only two of us have voiced doubts.
Lesleighra (2 stories) (18 posts)
 
4 years ago (2013-12-09)
This is a great account. Despite what some may believe, I personally think tragedy can cling on to certain objects, and with what this woman went through I am not surprised that the statue may as well be harboring all of her pain. As far as an ancestry search goes, he wrote in his story that he retrieved this information from reading the previous owner's journals.
pratekya (29 posts)
+1
4 years ago (2013-12-08)
This seems like it was written as a creative writing story. I'm sorry if it is true; but for some reason I'm not buying it.
H2olily (5 stories) (157 posts)
 
4 years ago (2013-12-06)
Would it be possible to get a pic of this object? We'd all love to see it!
DARKNESS (3 stories) (2022 posts)
 
4 years ago (2013-12-05)
Interesting account, just wondering if there were photos taken of this sculpture at all? As my friend Miracles has mentioned I am blown away by the detail you have provided us with regarding the history of the home and Mrs Lapask. Thanks for sharing with us. 😊

Dan
Argette (guest)
+1
4 years ago (2013-12-05)
Hmm. This one is not ringing true for me. As an amateur genealogist, I know how hard it can be to find out information about your own ancestors. A cursory search on Ancestry.com did not yield a Lucy Lepask. I'm not buying this.
Miracles51031 (36 stories) (4802 posts) mod
+1
4 years ago (2013-12-04)
Zack - I'm really impressed that you are able to find out so much about the history of your mom's house and its former inhabitants.
valkricry (39 stories) (2771 posts) mod
+1
4 years ago (2013-12-04)
That poor tragic tortured woman... It is no wonder to me that that statue upset the house. Have you any idea what became of the third child, or what the defects were? The 1940s were still fairly a dark age for anyone with abnormalities - especially if they were noticeable. Generally they were shipped off to institutions if deformed. Or if the prognosis was one for a short life, it might have been too much for the woman to bare - especially since she had already lost two.

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