You are here: Real Ghost Stories :: Family / Friends Visits :: The Ghost of my Great Grandfather?

Real Ghost Stories

The Ghost of my Great Grandfather?


My great grandfather was a great man. He was the happiest person I ever met, he loved his family more than anything, valued the worth of $1, was a wonderful artist, and he always put his whole heart into everything he took on. Which I guess is why he felt the need to build his home from the ground up. I wish I could tell you what year it was built, but I honestly have no clue. It was in our family for some time though.

My grandmother and her sisters grew up there, as did my mother, and my brothers and I lived there for the majority of our childhood. It was a beautiful home and a beautiful area. He picked a very historic part of Denver to build the home as well. About two houses down from Molly Browns house actually. (which really has nothing to do with the story. I just thought it was interesting.)

My earliest memories of the home go back to about age 5 or 6. We would visit while my great grandparents were still there. It would always smell like an interesting mixture of cookies and perfume from my great grandmother and my great grandfather would be sitting in his chair sketching a pastel drawing with his fingers stained 10 different shades of blue or red. He would always have the radio tuned to the jazz station and would get up and hum to the song while trying to dance with my great grandmother who would giggle and say "Oh Joe, stop..." and sit back down. I seem to be rambling though, I'll get to the story.

I've spoken with my grandmother who had lived there most of her life and her being a big skeptic says she never experienced anything there. Which makes sense considering the house was built from the ground up by my grandfather. Though, when my mother was young that wasn't the case. When she was about 4 she found an "imaginary" friend named Tabby, who according to my mother was the cause of all the weird things going on. She slept upstairs in a large room with her cousin. They shared a bathroom together and whenever my mother would get up in the morning to go to the bathroom, the carpet (don't ask me why my grandfather carpeted a bathroom. I don't know.) would be completely soaked. She would go ask Theresa (her cousin) what she did, to find that she was still asleep and claimed to have not gotten up at all.

This went on for years, I'm really not sure if it ever stopped. Though, this could be explained as a simple plumbing problem (perhaps from putting carpet in a bathroom?) She also says she would hear foot steps going up and then back down the stairs late at night when everyone was asleep. They would go up and it would be quiet for a few minutes, and then they would go back down. Just once, almost the same time every night.

The one memory that sticks out in her head the most was one day after school she had a friend over and quickly ran up the stairs just to drop off her school books. She looked at her bed and froze seeing, on the bed and pillow a perfect indentation of a small body and a head lying on her bed. She freaked out and leapt down the stairs and slept on Theresa's side of the room after that. Shortly after my grandparents and mother moved out to California due to my grandfathers work.

Sadly, my great grandfather passed away when I was very young and my great grandmother was taken to a nursing home. My mother, father, brothers and I moved into their home. My brothers took the room upstairs where my mom and her cousin used to sleep, and I was alone downstairs where my great grandmother used to sleep. I distinctly remember one night while having a hard time sleeping I heard what sounded like humming coming from the living room. I went out to check, but nothing was there.

This happened a few other times, usually late at night, usually in the living room, sometimes outside. One of my great grandfathers favorite possessions was this terrible knit tapestry of an owl. It was hideous, he loved it. No one else wanted it, so when he passed we just left it in the house in a closet.

One day when we returned home, this ugly thing was hanging on the door knob of the closet, displayed in the exact place my great grandfather always had it. My mom was convinced it was Grandpa Joe, but my dad refused to believe it. The tapestry went to the basement closet.

As I got older odd things happened less and less. That, or I just didn't pay much attention anymore. Only a few other things stick out.

On weekends I had a habit of trying to stay up as late as possible and falling asleep on the couch. Usually my father would wake up and come down and make me go to my room. This happened one weekend, as usual. I went to bed and thought nothing of it.

The next morning I was talking to my mom, casually mentioned this, and she looked at me like I was insane. I then realized that earlier in the evening the night before my brothers and dad had gone camping for the weekend. It was a distinct male voice that I heard telling me to go to bed. At this point my mom was so used to it she just said, "Oh, it was grandpa Joe..."

As I grew older I blossomed into my artistic skills. I was working on a project for art class and getting incredibly irritated that it wasn't turning out the way I wanted it. In a fit of frustration I threw the drawing into the garbage and left the house to go to a friends house.

A few hours later when I returned home there was the drawing, sitting right in the center of my bed. No one else had been home to move it, at least that I'm aware of. My mother of course says this was my great grandfather, the artist telling me not to give up.

Shortly after this, sadly, my great grandmother passed away in the nursing home. It was a week or so later that we began smelling that cookie/perfume mixture in the house. It would move from room to room usually going back to my room, but was always very prominent when you walked in the door.

The last incident I recall was on Christmas. It became a tradition in my home for my parents to turn Christmas music on Christmas Eve and leave it playing all night and into Christmas Day. This particular Christmas we woke up and instead of Christmas music playing, it was the old time type jazz that my great grandfather listened to all the time. The tuner on the radio was set to the same station it was left on, which was always just Christmas music every year. We couldn't figure out why the station would just change their format all of the sudden. After about half an hour or so, it changed back to the standard Christmas format.

After that we all grew up a little, and my parents started going through a separation which inevitably ended up in them selling the house. There was a lot of fighting going on in the house, and I suspect if my great grandparents were there the fighting made them very uncomfortable, so they may have left.

We never had another encounter after that. After the incidents my mom became fascinated with the paranormal and visited a psychic one day. The psychic described her "imaginary" friend Tabby perfectly and even knew her name. Could it be that some of the things we thought were my great grandfather were really Tabby? And the things that happened before his death, like the indentation of a body of a child on my mom's bed, were those Tabby? My mom also says quite often she has incredibly vivid dreams of the house. She can actually feel the cold hard wood of the stairs on her feet. She's even speculated that maybe she is haunting the people currently living there because of how real her dreams feel.

Is it possible that some other little girl in the home is hearing footsteps up and down the stairs late at night? Is it possible that those feet belong to my mother who is just dreaming and crossed some sort of astral plane or something? My mother certainly thinks that's the case. And if that is true, then, in retrospect, could that have been the situation the first time around? When we were living in the home and experiencing bizarre things. I have no idea about these things

Does anyone know if this could actually happen?

Other hauntings by killingkilgore

Hauntings with similar titles

Find ghost hunters and paranormal investigators from Colorado

Comments about this paranormal experience

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

killingkilgore (3 stories) (35 posts)
14 years ago (2008-04-02)
Thanks Chelleck,
It did freak me out at first. The humming really terrified me. At night when the rest of my family would go to bed upstairs I would run in my room, lock the door, and hide under the covers until I fell asleep. It was only until my mom started saying it was my great grandfather, and I realized that it was nothing trying to harm me, that I stopped freaking out. After awhile, like your sisters visits, it did have a calming effect on the family. The incident at Christmas for instance, despite how bizarre it seemed, just made us all really happy.
Thanks again everyone for reading. 😊
chelleck (3 stories) (56 posts)
14 years ago (2008-03-27)

What a fascinating story! I am no expert, but it sounds like Tabby was your mother's playmate. While the incidence with the art, the humming and the jazz music was your grandfather's doings.

Did the incidents with your grandfather's presence freak you out in anyway?

My family experience things after my sister past away. Things that she did while she was with us continued to happen after she past away. The weird thing about it was, sometimes a couple of years would past and she seemed to revisit. This went on for a decade or more.

When my sister visited is seemed to have a calming affect on the family. Strange. ❤
ChrisB (6 stories) (1515 posts)
14 years ago (2008-03-19)
Hello Killingkilgore. I have to agree with Frawin. I think that Tabby was a ghost who was there for a while. I bet he got lost but now found his way to cross over. I bet that your grandparents come to that house once in a while. I bet they got used to it and are there with you sometimes. Or maybe they love you all very much and are glad that they can be with you. I wouldn't worry to much. Just think that your great granfather came hear to help you. I hope to hear from you soon and take care
killingkilgore (3 stories) (35 posts)
14 years ago (2008-03-18)
Thank you all for your comments, I really appreiciate it. WB and Jennifer, those are really interesting stories. Thank you. After reading some of your comments I did a little reading up on residual hauntings, and I'm convinced that is what's happening with my mother. Especially considering in most cases of residual haunting the "spirit" seems to just repeat the same act over and over again. In this case, it's my mother walking up and down the stairs only once or twice, and it happens in every dream she can remember just sort of randomly no matter what the dream may be. I'll definitely have to pass on that information, and those two stories to her. Thanks again! Take care! 😊
JPing (guest)
14 years ago (2008-03-18)
Hauntings by live people, now that is a fantastic theory. I've never before heard a story quite like yours, thanks. And thank you too WB for that great example of another 'live haunting'.

Killingkilgore, your description of your great grandfather reminds me a lot of my own grandfather. Though, he was far from an artist. 😁
mustang (5 stories) (749 posts)
14 years ago (2008-03-18)
WOW! The "unsinkable" Molly Brown. I loved that movie Titanic! However, I think that the story, not the love story part of it, was such a tragedy. I have seen that movie about a billion times! I cried about the first, oh, 30 times after watching it. The little baby hit my heart the most.

I also believe that a person can leave such an impression in a home, under certain circumstances, and then move only to leave remnense of theirselves behind. I really loved reading your story. Thank you for sharing it.

rhodes68 (14 stories) (1596 posts)
14 years ago (2008-03-18)
That was one of the best stories I've read on this site, beautiful narration, impressive descriptive ability and so much emotion Killingkilgore. Just reading about this place makes one more of an observer than a reader!
Jennifer40 (20 stories) (202 posts)
14 years ago (2008-03-18)
Hi Killingkilgore,
I actually read an account that took place in England of this noblewoman in the 1800s who was dreaming of this beautiful home constantly. She had never been there. A few years later she was invited to visit a friend who lived many miles away in a new mansion. Upon entering the home the housing staff recognized her as the ghost they had been seeing, and the noblewoman recognized the house as the one she had seen in her dreams.

I often dream of the house I grew up in too, and I wonder if the current occupants have seen me. 😉

Thanks for sharing such a great story. Your great grandparents sound like wonderful people!

Jennifer ❤
whitebuffalo (guest)
14 years ago (2008-03-18)
Hello killingkilgore.
I find it interesting also that this home is two houses down from the wonderful Unsinkable Molly Brown's residence. Now that is one place I would LOVE to check out.
I also think that Tabby was a wanderer. It happens. Ghost sometimes just show up, with no connection to anything in the area and stay on for a while. I would say that most of the things that occurred prior to your Great Grandfathers death MAY have been attributed to her.
When people love a place so completely (And from the sounds of it, both of your Great Grandparents did) sometimes they do go back to stay. It is where they are comfortable, where the family is, it is the life they built for those they have left behind.
What a shame it had to be sold.
As for your mother visiting the place. Yes, I do think it is possible. I have a dear friend who would visit a home in her dreams that was completely out of her price range. For years, she would walk up to the house from the road and walk up the walkway and enter the home. She would walk around and actually touch some of the things that she was seeing in the dream.
After a few years of this, she just happened to be out driving in the country and there was that house. In front was a for sale sign with the promise of an open house. When she went back to go to the open house (she could not help herself, she had seen the dream repeatedly in her dreams for years) the owner greeted her at the door and asked her if she would like a tour, or if she would like to wander alone. She chose to go by herself as others were arriving to also see the home.
As she was leaving, a man stopped her and asked who she was. LOOONG conversation short, HE had seen my friend wandering through the house on several occasions, only she was see through. He thought her to be a ghost.
So, yes, I think it is extremely possible.
Thank you.
FRAWIN (guest)
14 years ago (2008-03-18)
Hi killingkilgore. I have heard of cases where a "haunting" is caused by live people. I personally believe it's possible to put a residual type haunting in place with extreme emotions. As far as this being the cause the first time around I doubt it. I seems to me that it was your great grandparents that was there temporarily. Tabby just seemed to be passing through. Thanks for sharing your story with us. Take Care.


To publish a comment or vote, you need to be logged in (use the login form at the top of the page). If you don't have an account, sign up, it's free!

Search this site: