The Rectory at Epworth, Lincolnshire, does not look like a typical haunted house, but nevertheless it was the scene of maybe the most famous Poltergeist ever.
One of the most famous hauntings ever was that of the Epworth Rectory in Lincolnshire, in December 1716 and January 1717. Epworth Rectory was the home of the not so popular Reverend Samuel Wesley. In 1709, villagers who disapproved his stern principles and teachings, set fire to the building and injured the livestock. The rectory was rebuilt, but few years later the rest was again disturbed, now by a genuine Poltergeist. One of the children of the reverend who witnessed the phenomena was John Wesley, who later became the founder of the Methodist Church. The whole story of The Epworth Rectory Poltergeist is fully described and documentated by John Wesley, in his own words and in the letters he collected from his family. If you can appreciate a spooky true story, you’ll find here the Letters concerning some Supernatural Disturbances at my father’s house at Epworth in Lincolnshire. Reading the letters is… well, close to being there!
On 1 December 1716, the servant Robert Brown and a housemaid first heard the eerie groans and mysterious knockings in the dining room. They assumed it were the final groans of their dying neighbour. Soon after that, the children too insisted that they could hear footsteps ascending and descending the stairs at all hours of the night. But when they opened the door, there was no living soul to see in the hallway.
At the top of the stairs, Robert saw a hand mill moving at great speed… and of its own volition. Later, as he lay in bed trying to get some sleep, he heard the heavy tread of a man in leather boots… but again, there was nothing to be seen.
This went on for about a week and only reverend Wesley did not heard any noises at all. According to vulgar opinion, such sounds were not audible by the individual to whom they foreboded evil, so his family at first refrained from telling him.
Every person who witnessed the disturbances believed them to be supernatural. They seemed to centre on a spirit the family nicknamed ‘Old Jeffrey’. Sounds like that of a saw on wood or the turning of a windmill echoed through the house each night now. They would gradually become stronger as if Old Jeffrey was slowy collecting dark energies, and they ended with crashing glass, moving furniture… and one night with the levitation of a bed which at the time was occupied by Nancy, one of the four grown daughters of the reverend. This time the Poltergeist was also accompanied by the sounds of clanking chains and loud bangs.