Eerie photos of “ghosts,” family portraits, children’s toys and notebooks with their schoolwork, among other personal items, were found in the walls of a 1800s Victorian home when the Maguire family moved to Maine in 2017.
Then came the unexplained noises, “cold” taps on the shoulders, footsteps in the attic and things inexplicably moving around, homeowner Jeffrey Maguire told Fox News Digital.
The locals in Houlton, Maine, told Maguire and his wife that their new home “was always known as the haunted house,” he said. One woman told them she used to see children in a window.
“My wife saw a woman standing in the window, and then there were other times she saw a man’s face or a boy’s face,” Maguire said. “We heard footsteps and loud things above us. Voices called my wife’s name … We woke up in the morning and lights would be on. Cabinets were open and things were knocked over. My wife has heard tapping coming from the basement.”
Even before the Maguire family settled into their new home, one of their contractors, who found all the personal belongings and pictures in the walls during renovations, was freaked out, he said.
“We hired a group of contractors to work on a house, and one of them started saying things like they felt something cold touch him on his shoulder,” Maguire said. “Our old contractors were afraid to work in the house alone.”
However, the renovations continued. The attic and second floor were gutted and stripped down to the studs, Maguire said.
The allure of the 12-room 1887 home’s “beauty” and its proximity to the Canadian border seduced his family, and they stayed despite the ominous signs and shadowy roommates.
They even called Rev. Terrence McGillicuddy to perform a Christian “cleansing” of their home in the summer of 2019.
“In all my years in service to others, I had only received a request like this once before,” Rev. McGillicuddy told WGME 13 in 2019.
“It was also from a Houlton family, and they wanted help with the same thing. They wanted their house spiritually cleansed because they were troubled or frightened by something that was going on there.”
Maguire said they felt a particularly strong presence – “an overwhelming sadness” that he didn’t know how else to describe – in two particular rooms.
One was upstairs and one was downstairs, said Maguire, who added that the upstairs room was used like a funeral parlor where they laid the dead to rest, and the room downstairs was a birthing room, which was also used when people were ill.
Charles and Mary Nickerson lived at the house at the time with their 15-year-old daughter, Clara Ruth Nickerson, according to 1940 Census records that were cited by the local 2019 news report.
Charles died in 1985, Mary died in 1991, and Clara died in 1993.
Maguire said his wife still tells him she hears what sounds like the pitter-patter of children’s footsteps upstairs, but the unexplained spookiness has significantly slowed down since McGillicuddy’s cleansing in 2019.
The scariest ghastly run-in came before the cleansing involving his wife’s pet birds, Maguire said.
They put the birds in a sunroom before they moved in, and “a few days later, some of the canaries had sores all over their bodies, which was bizarre,” Maguire said.
“We never figured out what that was, and some of the birds died. And that’s what really prompted us to call Fr. McGillicuddy because we didn’t understand what was going on in our house.”
They spoke to the previous owner and her kids, and “she kind of clammed up,” Maguire said.
“You know, it wasn’t something she really wanted to talk about,” he said. “The kids told us that they thought that if it was haunted, it was definitely on the second floor.”
Fast-forward to 2022 and 2023, when the Maguires set up cameras around their home, even though the uneasy, unexplained phenomena has slowed.
However, they still hear noises or see things that they cannot explain.
“I was never a believer in the supernatural. I’ve always been aseptic of those things,” Maguire said. “But after moving into our house, I definitely believe in ghosts. I do not have any doubts that they exist.”