With the movie The Haunting in Connecticut coming to theaters I thought it was appropriate for me to go out and spend the pass month researching everything I could on the Snedecker house, the house the movie is based off of. I read through numerous reports and stories about the house and I’m now going to discuss with you on what I’ve found out about the haunting.
First let me give you the story about the house. In 1986 Allen and Carmen Snedecker moved into the house at 208 Meriden Ave., Southington, CT. Once in the house their 14 year-old-son, Phillip, started to see monk-like apparitions.
Soon after, the family started to hear strange scratching sounds and whispering coming from the walls. They then encountered several ghosts in their basement; this included an old man in a blue suit with his eyes rolled back into his head, a young man with long black hair and a little boy wearing Superman pajamas.
Then for several nights in a row, their 18-year-old daughter, Tammy, awoke screaming, saying that something had sexual assaulted her. This caused the family to bring in a Vatican-trained demonologist priest who performed a several hour exorcism after which he reported the house to be cleaned of spirits.
Now, when the Ed and Lorraine Warren, paranormal investigators and Lorraine possess a sixth sense, investigated the house they found out that the 75 year old home was once a funeral home and the basement was where they once embalmed the dead bodies. They also suspected necrophilia had taken place there.
That might sound all scary, but how much of it is true? I do believe in hauntings and ghosts and that’s what drew me to research this house and what I found was things that made me question whether or not if this was a true haunting or was there something else behind all of this.
The first thing after finding out the story about the house I went and tracked down all the information about the novel "A Dark Place" By Ray Garton. The book weaves together all the stories of the family members into one scary read, but some of the stuff in the book seemed to be too out there to be real.
"I wrote a book called In A Dark Place: The Story of a True Haunting. It was published as "non-fiction", but that was just marketing," said Garton. "I went to Connecticut to meet with the family involved in the alleged haunting of their former house, which used to be a funeral home. I was never able to see the inside of the home, because the people who were living there by then wanted nothing to do with the "haunting", which they said was utter nonsense." Added Garton.
That is still that attitude today with the current residents and the neighbors. They find the story about the haunting is ridiculous.
A neighbor also said that there was never a priest that performed an exorcism and said to call the archdiocese and they can confirm that.
Before you go thinking that this article is going to be one sided, your wrong. It’s time to bring in Lorraine Warren, a women who is a clairvoyant and a light trance medium who had worked with her husband Ed Warren, who is deceased, in investigating paranormal activity.
The Warrens founded the New England Society for Psychic Research in 1952 and also opened up an Occult Museum. They are well known for their work as the investigators on the Amityville horror case and also about 10,000 other investigations, including the house in Southington.
"I know the experiences at the Southington home were real," said Lorraine. She also stated that the upcoming film "The Haunting in Connecticut" is too glamorized for her taste.
Lorraine and Ed Warren were brought in to investigate when the haunting hit a height.
"They were holding rosary beads in their hands, and the beads were falling apart in their hands and falling on the floor," Warren said.
The warrens investigated the house and called in a priest and the archbishop of Hartford had authorized a late-night exorcism.
Now this brings me back to the neighbor, maybe they didn’t see the priest go into the house because it was happening at an odd hour of the night. Either way you look at this is just turns out to be controversial.
"The only source of controversy was the Snedeckers, because they just couldn’t keep their stories straight," Garton said. "I went to Ed Warren and told him the problem. He laughed. "They’re crazy!" he said. "Everybody who comes to us is crazy, otherwise why would they come to us? Just do the best you can. You write scary books, right? That’s why we hired you. Use whatever you can of their story, make the rest up, and make it scary." And that’s what I did. The book ‘In A Dark Place’ is a combination of elements of the family’s story and stuff I made up – because it was for-hire writing job, and that’s what I was told to do. If this family is saying they had "little involvement" in the book, then they are bald-faced liars," Garton added.
Now let’s talk about the son, Phillip, the haunting seemed to be starting with him. At the time Phillip was receiving treatment for his cancer at the University of Connecticut. Later he was diagnosed with schizophrenia and many believe that, that was the cause of him seeing stuff. They say this; because he said once he was medicated for his schizophrenia the bad things stopped.
"I never got to meet their allegedly ill son - I was only allowed to speak with him briefly on the phone. Although there was much talk of his illness, it was never verified for me, although he did have a drug problem," Garton said.
Lets look at the house now, the house was a funeral home and they did embalm bodies there. There is also a good chance that some of those spirits were still lingering inside the house when the Snedecker family moved in.
There was actually videotape that the Warrens had with paranormal activity taking place in the house.
"The warrens and Zaffis claimed they had videotape that clearly showed supernatural activity inside the house, and they told me numerous times that they would show me that videotape. Somehow, during our time together, they just couldn’t manage to find it," Garton said.
This kind of bothers me, because if you’re a paranormal investigator and you get something interesting on film and then you misplace it – that’s just seems a little fishy to me. If it was I and I caught something on tape, I would take that tape, make copies and then label them and put them in a safe place.
If they have found that tape they should make it available, because it would clear up some of the controversy surrounding this particular haunting.
With seeing the house from the outside I can’t really say if its haunted or not. I don’t want to call anyone liars, because without being able to investigate the house once again we’ll most likely never now for sure.
I’ve seen a lot of the work from the warrens and many of their cases seem legit. Yet, a lot of the stories concerning the Southington haunting don’t add up – there is also a lot of evidence pointing to this not actually being a real haunting or that something that might have been fabricated by the family.
Since this is a blog I’m going to give you exactly what I think happened. I think the boy (Phillip) really believes what had happened in the house due to his schizophrenia. I believe that he was seeing something and from that he manifested the haunting – so I don’t think it was spirits lingering from the days of the funeral home I believe everything that has to do with the haunting was human controlled. Everything that was reported from that families stories stems from their son and he is the real source of the haunting, not ghosts or demons but a boy that was suffering from an illness.
I’m not going to give out the address of this house on this story. If you want the address from me, you’ll have to get in contact with me through email. I suggest that if you really desire to see this house that you stay out of the people’s yard and respect their privacy. Please do not go to the door and ask about the haunting – the people living there now have not reported any paranormal activity and believe the haunting to be nothing more than a hoax.
I suggest that everyone just let this story die and bring his or her attention to other real haunted places here in Connecticut. Connecticut is considered to be the most haunted place in the United States and there are numerous places here that will make everyone scared and no I’m not talking about Green Lady Cemetery.
If you and your friends are interested in checking out some of these haunted places here in Connecticut and don’t know where to start, send me an email and I can give you some suggestions and directions to specific paranormal hotspots.
Photos Taken By: Brenda Drzewiecki