Wednesday, February 3, 2010

A Haunted Lunch Date

Today we had a fun Girlz Date with some friends!
Starting with lunch at the Belvedere Mansion on Route 66, in Claremore. After lunch in the dining room, we toured the old historic mansion. There are rumors that the house might be haunted with ghosts of the Belvedere family... so we were excited to check it out! But, after an afternoon of great food, sunshiny atmosphere, and lots of laughs, we're pretty sure that "ghosts are NOT real anyway" ~ to quote Selah.

The gothic style brick home, complete with tile roof and four towers, provided for a portico on the north side for the guest carriages, as well as a large covered porch at the front entrance with a matching balcony directly above it. Inside, the floors were covered in tile, with wainscoted marble walls and pressed tin ceilings. Sliding pocket doors were used in several rooms and many had fireplaces. Much of the trim and woodwork used were brought from the 1904 World's Fair in St. Louis. The third floor of the mansion was dedicated to a 2,400 square foot ballroom.
Due to its immaculate details, the mansion took several years to build. At the same time, Bayless was also building a three-story Opera House, the Sequoyah Hotel, and an athletic building with an indoor swimming pool. However, Mr. Bayless would never see the completion of his grand mansion. In 1907, just six months before it was completed, Bayless died following an operation for appendicitis. He was president of the Bank of Claremore at the time of his death.

Mary Bayless and her six surviving children finished the mansion after his death and continued to reside there until 1919. All of her children resided in Claymore, with her older sons becoming involved in the Bank of Claremore. Another became the local postmaster, and yet another went on to become a State Supreme Judge.
Of the buildings that Belvidere built, only the mansion remains today.

Over the years, numerous people have reported that John Bayless and other members of his family; however, still continue to "reside” in the beautiful old home. These allegations tell of unexplained noises, actual sightings of hazy figures, toilets that flush by themselves, hot and cold spots, and feelings of being touched by someone when no one is there.

On several occasions paranormal groups have investigated the old mansion, seeming to find the most paranormal activity on the second floor. There, psychics have "seen” children playing, as well as "meeting” a distressed John Bayless, and a distraught young woman who allegedly committed suicide when she lived in the building as a tenant in the 1940’s.

After lunch we mosied on over to the Claremore Antique stores. This is the first time Selah and Charis have been antiquing. They thought it was pretty fun and saw some neat things. And to end the GirlZ Date, we had dessert at the soda fountain shop.

On the way home Selah said "Momma... this is EXACTLY why I LOVE being home schooled!"


Leslie said...

How fun! Homeschooling rocks!! I need to go over there...all those places look sooo cool.

kenziekylanmom said...

It looks like you had a spooky time! LOL!!