search instagram arrow-down

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of my awesome new posts by email.

Mike’s Next Adventure

Picture of a Ghost at Old Burying Point Cemetery (Salem, MA)


Greetings ghosts and ghouls. Before heading out to the arctic circle this week, I wanted to leave you with an inexplicable picture I took a few years back that will chill your bones.

But first, a macabre (and brief) history on Salem, MAss to frame the picture.

Back in the late 1600’s, Salem had a little boredom problem. I should say, specifically, the area around Salem (Salem Town, at the time) including Salem Village (now, Danvers, MA), Ipswich, and others. For simplicity’s sake, Salem is Salem.

Salemites were stringently oppressed governed by the church —at the time, a Puritanical Calvinism —with a strict no dancing, singing, rapping, skin showing above the ankles, and no twerking, existence. Children weren’t even allowed to have dolls or toys, considered pagan relics above “God”, begetting such riveting games as ‘stare at the wall’, and ‘count the hours’, ‘walking’, and ‘rub grandpa’s feet’.

As we’ve learned throughout our limited “civilized” existence, when you oppress people, silence them, strip them of simple freedoms —said people will inevitably act out. And when the culture lacks logic, and/or scientific methodology, looking to superstitions and fairy tales for answers, weird shit happens. Case in point: the Salem Witch Trials.


She’s doing ‘the worm’ wrong! Burn her!

Without going into the twisted weird history of the Witch trials, just take a look at the event timelines below:

February 25, 1692: Tituba, at the request of neighbor Mary Sibley, bakes a “witch cake” and feeds it to a dog. According to an English folk remedy, feeding a dog this kind of cake, which contained the urine of the afflicted, would counteract the spell put on Elizabeth and Abigail. The reason the cake is fed to a dog is because the dog is believed a “familiar” of the Devil.

Fido preferred deviled eggs over the urine cakes.

March 23, 1696: Salem Marshal Deputy Samuel Brabrook arrests four-year-old Dorothy Good

… for being Dorothy Bad.

September 19, 1692: Sheriffs administer Peine Forte Et Dure (pressing) to Giles Cory after he refuses to enter a plea to the charges of witchcraft against him. After two days under the weight, Cory dies.

His mother was crushed.


September 1993 – Kirsty Alley plays Sarah Good. Co-stars have a problem with W’s, get the line ‘She’s a witch! Burn her!’ wrong on many occasions. 

Whether you believe in energies, or haunting(s) of a place, there’s no doubt some bad voodoo resides in the Salem area.

Picture of a Ghost

Late one night, back in autumn of 2006, my ex-fiance and I were heading back to our B&B in Salem after a day of kitschy Halloween fun. Along our walk, we noticed a small, very old cemetery, with super creepy, moonlit gravestones. Naturally, we went against every horror movie rule and walked through the old iron wrought gates inside.

What happened next is something I still can’t explain to this day. I’m not a religious person, at all, and I’m fairly logical, but as we were walking towards the middle of the cemetery, the temperature dropped twenty degrees.

My skin broke out in goose-flesh, and my hair felt statically charged. My Ex, gripping my hand, whispered she couldn’t breath, and she felt like something was pushing her. She fled out the gate, without me.

I snapped off a quick pic with my Nikon before running after, and watched my battery go from full, to dead, instantaneously. I sloughed it off as some sort of glitch, and caught up with Ex.

We joked about the experience sipping Brandy in our room at the B&B, pretending to have English accents.

“Oooo it ’twas the ghost of Sarah Good.”

“To the stockackes with you, wench!”

We joked until I looked at the picture upon returning from the trip. (I did not doctor/or add anything to this photo).

Picture 4


We both saw “it”, peeking out of the ground in the lower right corner of the picture, just in front of a tombstone: a very strange torso wearing a suit/tie, mutton chops, shoulder height out of the ground. There are orbs everywhere in the frame, possibly bugs, or reflecting dust, but nothing in the composition to create/reflect back the distinct shape of a human.

There’s a discussion about patternicity here —seeing what one wants to see —but that night, something weird happened at Old Burial Point Cemetery in Salem. Somethings are best left unexplained – so I’ll just leave you to decide.  What do you see?

Picture 6


Happy Halloween



47 comments on “Picture of a Ghost at Old Burying Point Cemetery (Salem, MA)

  1. Merilee says:

    I see it. And, just so you know, I photograph cemeteries a LOT. They are very difficult places for me to be in. They don’t like being photographed…. spirits HATE cameras. In Quincy, Illinois where there are a lot of the graves are from the Civil War, I was poked on the shoulder and saw the swirling “smoke” of a spirit dart behind a tombstone. And it wasn’t because I wanted to see it… Anyway, I believe you. And Happy Halloween!

    1. mabukach says:

      Spooky! I’ve also had a similar experience in Santa Fe – old church cemetery.
      Do you have any good photos?
      Thanks, Merilee!

      1. Merilee says:

        Yes, if you look on my blog under “Miscellaneous” there is a category for “Cemeteries”. There is one in particular called “Spirit” that will interest you 😉

        1. mabukach says:

          Ooooo I will definitely check it out!

    1. mabukach says:

      I know! Spooooky. Thanks, Amena

  2. Brigitte says:

    Seriously, you went into a graveyard, in Salem, at night. No way, no how. I went to Salem years ago during the day when they were doing all that harmless, campy Halloween stuff.

    I can’t even watch the Exorcism of Emily Rose or any of those kinds of things anymore. I see something in your pic and now I’m not going to look at it anymore. This is scary. If my battery had gone instantly dead and those little hairs were standing up, I know it would be time for me to GET OUT.

    1. mabukach says:

      I did indeed, Brigitte. Because I’m a crazy person. Yeah, the campy halloween stuff really wasn’t my cup of tea, but the cemeteries…yes.

      Haha! I’m sorry to scare you. It’s probably just pure coincidence. No spirit…or maybe it’s the friendly ghost of a 1600’s fire chief. 🙂

  3. Laura Hilger says:

    Amazing! So much history with cemeteries; they are creepy places even without your picture, but I love it!

    1. mabukach says:

      It was by far the oldest cemetery i’ve been in. Totally creepy, especially at night.
      Thanks, Laura!

  4. Laura says:

    This is great! Just the image of twerking Puritans has kept me entertained all morning. As for the ghoulie image… I can’t quite see it (but my monitor is really dirty), but I believe it! I’ve had some “experiences” myself, and watched every season of A Haunting (check it out on Netflix when you’re in the mood for terror) so I have no doubt that stuff is out there. And sometimes we capture it on film! How did I not know you’re going all Arctic?! Wow. Really?

    1. mabukach says:

      Haha – twerking pilgrims. We should start a website.

      Oh I’ve seen A Haunting. I’m a horror maniac, and watch everything paranormal/horror-ish. Especially around autumn.

      Heading to Iceland tomorrow. Will try to post from Reykjavik – keep you updated.

      1. Laura says:

        So, you’ve seen A Conjuring? That scared the bejeesus out of me AND Isabella…
        Have fun in Reiki!

        1. mabukach says:

          I did, but I made the mistake of reading up on the “exorcising” couple before hand. Seems they had something to do with the Amityville horror thing as well, which, it was almost a carbon copy of.
          Overall, a good flick, but it was no James Brolin…James Brolin, right? I get him and Matthew confused.

          Thank you mucho!

          1. Laura says:

            Ok, one last note on this conversation… now that I know you’re a horror maniac: I can’t vouch for this personally, but a friend just recommended it as the most terrifying movie she’s ever seen. Trailer seems to back it up. Maybe you’ve already seen it, but if not…. wooooooooo!

            1. mabukach says:

              Oh yes, I’ve seen it. One of the more disturbing (and awesome) horror films out there.
              The director and writer is Japanese, (Takashi Miike) and has no filter. He’s one of my favs.

  5. hermitageno8 says:

    I must be very dense or spiritually challenged but I don’t see anything except raindrops on your lens and dark and shade of the ground in poor light. But then i don’t believe in ghosts so maybe they are like Santa and you only see them if you believe!

    1. mabukach says:

      Have you ever read Michael Shermer’s ‘The Believing Brain’?
      Pretty good book on why people believe (or don’t believe) the things they do.

      Thanks, hermitageno

  6. Coyote Peterson says:

    Great post…Ive had my share of experiences with the supernatural…In the photo I definitely see something…as a believer in the other side I’d say you captured some curious fellow. Kind of looks almost like a goblin…which is even creepier! I think you should do another adventure into a “haunted” location to see if you attract spirits! Either way great post…bring me back a viking skull from Iceland!

    1. mabukach says:

      Huh – i’m interested. What sort of experiences.
      He is a curious guy – mustachioed, wearing some sort of cap, and does look like a goblin.

      One viking skull and puffin coming up!

  7. I believe in supernatural things, and I also believe in people having special abilities. I would NEVER go into a graveyard at night. I live near one, and when I drive by it at night I hold my breath. Not sure what I’m trying to accomplish by doing that, but I just know that I feel more safe when I’m holding my breath.

    1. mabukach says:

      It was a creepy situation – I love cemeteries at night, but in this particular instance, things were not okay.

      Huh…wonder if holding your breath is like hiding. Like the ghost can’t find you if you’re breathing.

    1. mabukach says:

      He’s in there, watching…

  8. I’m a believer in all things that most people don’t believe in – and it’s NOT just the picture that makes me believe – it’s the whole experience with the draining batteries, goosebumps, etc. People can make pictures like that with apps now, but combined with the whole thing I believe you saw a conjuring spirit. Call me crazy.

    Some day I’ll tell you about the UFO I saw as a kid. HONEST! And I’m a pilot so know what ‘things’ in the sky are supposed to look like.

    1. mabukach says:

      I won’t call you crazy!
      Whoa – I want to hear about this UFO story.

      1. I was about 12 years old on a cold winter’s night in Indiana. Laying in bed. My dad was taking the dog out for a final crap, and i heard him call my mom to come out and look at something. For some reason, I got out of bed and went all the way downstairs and went out in my PJs also (something I normally would NEVER do. Anyway, there was a cigar-shaped object with absolutely no sound – BIG – coming directly over the house. It went over our heads and as soon as it got over the city lights it completely blinked out and was gone. We had airplanes go over all the time and i know what an airplane/blimp/balloon looks and sounds like. This was other-worldly.

        We still talk about it 40 years later.

        1. mabukach says:

          Whoa. That is crazy, Battle! Secret russian spy plane? Extra Terrestrial?

  9. PinotNinja says:

    If Kristie Alley believes it then it must be true.

    That is one of humanities greatest maxims.

    1. mabukach says:

      Everything she says is true. Her and Tom Cruise are truth machines. 🙂
      Thanks, Pinot

  10. Nina Kaytel says:

    Love the picture. Rules are meant to be broken unless you say ‘I’ll be right back’ no, no you won’t.

    1. mabukach says:

      Ha! Even I’m superstitious about that phrase.

  11. nikhilroy999 says:

    I still don’t see it. Laugh out loud. Please don’t blame me. I gotta poor eyesight!

  12. Nik says:

    I found the ghost! (I am Actually NikhilRoy999)

    1. mabukach says:

      Sweet! Spooky, huh?

  13. nevrmor8 says:

    Interesting. It’s definitely a creepy feeling when you take a photograph and get it developed to then find something in it that wasn’t there. Or so we think. Creepy

    1. mabukach says:

      Very creepy, nevrmor – or is it…?

      1. nevrmor8 says:

        Definitely creepy simply because our minds make it that way 🙂 I enjoy the mysteries and secrets the world has. It’s part of what makes life interesting 🙂

  14. Luna Cooler says:

    These kinds of creepy photos inspire me to write short stories that involve bad spirits and demons, which make me think that there is a demon in the room, and so I run outside.

    1. mabukach says:

      Ha! it’s a vicious demon writing cycle – thanks, Luna

  15. eljohnny14 says:

    Not to discredit your physical observations, but the “spirit” is just an airborne particle. You can see many particles floating around, this is just one that is lower in the photo and obscured slightly by the similarity in colours with the grass.

    1. mabukach says:

      Maybe you’re right. Maybe it’s patternicity. Or maybe it’s a haunted particle. Scary!

  16. Cathie says:

    I have taken a couple different pictures in Salem that have weird images. I think they are ghosts, like yours. Would love to send them to you.

    1. mabukach says:

      Spooky spooky! Sure send them over to: Thanks, Cathie!

  17. Wende King says:

    When I saw this article I had to write to you. I was at this Cemetery 3 weeks ago visiting my daughter who lives in Boston. I took a 3 day side Trip to Salem, staying at the Hawthorne Hotel. I had read about this Cemetery and walked over to it very late at night to snap a few pictures with my Iphone. I took about 15-20 pictures inside. On the last picture as soon as I snapped the screen on my phone went black and my phone completely died! I couldn’t understand because I had left the hotel with a full charge.
    I didn’t think much of it and walked back to my hotel to recharge my phone. When I plugged it in it read that it had an 84% charge. I thought that was odd because a few minutes ago I could not even get it to turn ON.
    Again, I didn’t think much about it. And watched some TV, then later got in to bed. It was then I looked back through my pictures! The first ones were normal… but the final one, the one that made my screen go black and my camera died was something else.
    There is an unexplainable ghostly light streak half way across the picture. There were no cars around and no people around. It was pretty creepy when I put all the pieces together. Not sure if I can post the picture here or not but would love to get your opinion. Thanks!
    PS You appear to be an adventurer like I am! I was up in the Arctic Circle at this same time 1 year ago.

    1. mabukach says:

      Whoa – that’s super creepy! Some weird stuff going on around that cemetery.

      How was the Arctic Circle?

  18. Melissa says:

    I love it!! I’m a big Salem fan, history is my passion and absolutely believe in this stuff. That picture is fantastic. I certainly believe that when when you get instant chills and hair standing up something or someone is causing this to happen. I had a encounter after losing my father 6 years ago when I was 29. I was always curious after my uncle who believed in nothing and I mean nothing swore up and down that the night my grandfather died he came to him and sat beside his bed and told him everything was going to be OK. I was 10 then. My grandmother was sitting in her living room after she just got back from seeing my grandfather at the hospital staring at the large gold clock on top of the TV that was his, she said the pendulum stopped and the phone rang it was the hospital telling her she needed to come back immediately and when she got there he passed away. Since then I’ve been curious. And the encounter after my dad made me a true believer

Talk To Me
Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: