When I was in Junior High my dad's company had him gone 3 weeks out of the month. As a teenager it was great for me not to have my dad watching over my shoulder all the time, but it got pretty tiring for him! His company was out of Nebraska but they had another location in a little town about 45 minutes from West Memphis called Marianna, AR. My dad and 2 other engineers would spend 3/4 of their time there, so after spending tons of money at the local Holiday Inn, the company decided to buy an old house in town for the guys to stay in.
My father was the one there 90% of the time, and at any given time there might be 4 men in the house. My dad helped find a huge house on one of the main streets in town, an old manor looking house built in the late 1800s. The great thing about it was that after the lady had passed away, she had no surviving relatives and the furniture stayed with the house. So they thought it was great to get a furnished 5 bedrooms (mansion type) at a cheap price. There was even an elevator built in the house. The owner's daughter had polio and rather then carry her up and down the three flights of stairs, they added the elevator. We thought it was really cool to begin with!
Everything went really well for the first couple of months - they were close to work, and it was kind of like a 2nd home to the guys, they got pretty comfortable. About 2 months after they purchased the house, they would get woken up by the sounds of the elevator going up and down. My dad would get up to check on it and everything would look fine, so I think he put it out of his head and figured it was the old wiring or something, and he would go back to bed. This might happen 2 or 3 times a night.
They had a caretaker that would come in a few times a week and clean and watch the house when there was no one staying there. She would complain that her supplies would disappear on her, and sometimes she would feel like someone was in the house with her. One time she complained because she kept a garden in the back yard, and her gardening gloves disappeared on her. She went and bought new ones only to have the original ones on the kitchen table when she returned.
So I remember one night my dad called my mom in a panic. He and a couple of other guys had driven into Memphis and had dinner on Beale Street. They had a couple of beers and ribs and came back home. About 2 in the morning, my dad and Larry, the one who's room was next to my dad's, woke to the sounds of someone running up and down the hall. They sounded like they were going to the bathroom down the hall. At this point they thought there was someone in the house. My dad had kept a hand gun in the night stand, so he grabbed his gun and he and Larry were sure that they would open the bathroom the door, and catch an intruder. Well they opened the bathroom door and found muddy footprints that went into the bathtub and stopped. At this point they were baffled and a little freaked out. They checked the windows, checked the doors. None had been bothered.
After that happened, they always laughed it off to the old ghosts of the house, but sometimes they didn't feel real comfortable when they had to stay in the house by themselves. So one August the company decided to fly all the families into Memphis for kind of a company picnic. They had us staying in Forest City which is half way between Marianna and Memphis, and the second night we stayed in Memphis. All the guys had teenage daughters and apparently they didn't think we would be comfortable staying in the house. But we did spend the first afternoon there.
You know how teenage girls are, they like to snoop! When you would go up the first set of stairs when you came to the landing for the 2nd floor, there was a huge portrait of the owner. I remember it creeped us out - not because it was very old, it was probably done in the 60s or early 70s, but because she was looking straight ahead so no matter where you moved it looked like she was watching you. You would go up the next set of stairs and there was a door and another set up stairs that led up to the attic. One of the other girls and I decided to go take a look, as we opened the door that led to the attic steps, a basket with fake flowers came flying at us, like someone was at the top of the stairs and threw it down. Scared the crap out of us, I remember we couldn't get downstairs fast enough.
At this point there was no way that we were going to try the elevator! I remember our dads kind of chuckling and telling us that it must have just fallen off something in the attic. Yea - right at us! We just decided that the old lady didn't want us snooping in her house. The company had the house maybe another 6 months and I think they finally sold it. My dad and I talk about driving by the house if we are ever back that way, maybe ask the owners if they still have "wiring" problems with the elevator.