During her stay at the saloon the ghost commenced to move the furniture about in the broad daylight. On one occasion a large box, weighing fifty pounds, moved was a distance of fifteen feet without the slightest visible cause. The very loud knocking commenced again and was heard by crowds of people, the saloon being continually filled with visitors. Among other well known inhabitants of Amherst who saw the wonders at this period, I may mention William Hillson, Daniel Morrison, Robt. Hutchinson, who is John White’s son-in-law, and J. Albert Black, Esq., editor of the Amherst Gazette.
Towards the latter part of March, Esther went to Saint John, New Brunswick, and while there was the guest of Captain James Beck, and remained at his house for three weeks under the protection of his wife. Her case was investigated by a party of gentlemen, well known in Saint John as men whose minds have a scientific turn. Doctor Alward, Mr. Amos Fales, Mr. Alex. Christie, Mr. Ritchie, and many others witnessed the manifestations, and talked with the ghost by the aid of the knocks on the wall and furniture, and, strange to relate, other ghosts came and conversed also; among them one who said his name was Peter Cox, and another who gave the name of Maggie Fisher. All claimed to have lived on the earth before they entered the land of ghosts, but none were apparently as strong and healthy as the old original fire fiend of the cottage, who now gave the name of Bob Nickle, and said that when he lived on the earth he had been a shoemaker. The ghost who called himself Peter Cox, claimed to be a relation of Esther’s, and said he had been in ghost land about forty years; he was a quiet old fellow, and did all he could to prevent Bob Nickle and Maggie Fisher from breaking the articles which they threw, and from using profane language, a habit in which they were fond of indulging.
Dr. Alward and his scientific friends also conversed with the ghosts by calling over the alphabet, the ghosts knocking at the correct letters, and in that way long communications were spelled out to the satisfaction of those present.
After remaining in Saint John about three weeks, Esther returned to Amherst, and accepted an invitation to visit Mr. and Mrs. Van Amburgh, who reside about three miles from the village. She remained eight weeks with them, during which period the ghosts allowed her to enjoy the calm repose of a life in the woods, the Van Amburgh farm being literally situated in the woods.
At the expiration of the eighth week she returned to Amherst, and went back to Dan’s cottage to reside, being employed during the day in White’s Dining Saloon. The manifestations soon commenced again, and were as powerful as when the author commenced his investigation of the case.
THE AUTHOR AND THE GHOSTS.
I closed my engagement with the Dramatic Company of which I was a member, in Newfoundland, and went to Amherst, to expose, if possible, Esther Cox, the great Amherst Mystery.