lincoln county regional hospital
LINCOLN COUNTY REGIONAL HOSPITAL 700 W. MAPLE ST. FAYETTEVILLE, TN
On 5 March 2016, Military Veterans Paranormal investigated the Lincoln County Regional Hospital in Fayetteville, TN. The building is roughly 100,000 SF, sitting on 6.09 acres. It is registered on the Tennessee Entertainment Commission as location #052-10000431. Deed records are registered with the Lincoln County Register of Deeds Parcel ID 079K A 013.00
The weather conditions recorded for March 5, 2016 as follows: Temp.: 46° high, 30.6° low; barometric pressure: 30.12 in.; precipitation 0.03 in (very sporadic and light in the morning); wind: 7-12 mph (west) with some wind gusts mid-afternoon through evening, down to 2 mph close to midnight; Sunset: 1745.
We arrived early at 1412 and walked the perimeter of the location to assess and document possible entrance breaches, exterior hazards, current building condition, terrain conditions, and civil considerations. There were numerous broken windows on all levels of the buildings and there was a breached door on the southside of the building which would enable one to be able to enter into the hospital. We did not enter the building at this point, as the owner of the location had not yet arrived and we felt a legal, ethical obligation to wait for the owner prior to entry into the location.
In regards to civil considerations, there are very active housing neighborhoods on all sides of the building. The property shares a parking lot with a child advocacy center on the west side of the building. On the east side of the building, there is a small playground on Amana Ave. which children were playing on when we arrived. Maple Street, which is north of the building, is a very active street with many cars driving on it in both directions. A party was observed and heard on across from the Arch Church on Morgan Ave/Maple Street. Likewise, children could be heard and visually observed playing on Amana Ave and in the neighborhood directly behind the building.
There is no working water or electricity in the building.
After the owner, Jamie, arrived on site, we showed him the breach to the location and three 2-man teams were dispatched to clear the building, one team per floor with Jamie accompanying Alpha team on the third floor. The interior of the building is very dilapidated, with water damage, fungi, hanging debris and wires/cables, loose glass on floor, broken glass and frames, falling ceiling tiles, broken doors, etc. (see photos). Black mold was observed in small patches of exposed wall, however, per the owner all asbestos has been removed and there is no risk of asbestos exposure. Additionally, no asbestos was visibly seen by any investigator. There was a lot of dust, which was noticed on static cameras, to be in constant movement throughout the night
Prior to being a hospital, the location was used for educational purposes:
1853 – Melton College (see documentation)
1890 – Dick White College (see documentation)
1900 - Morgan School (see documentation)
1919 – Bryson College (see documentation)
1930 – 2001 – Lincoln County Regional Hospital (see documentation)
Although Lincoln County purchased the property from Bryson College, only the Recitation Hall and the Boys Dormitory (Spratt Home) were purchased for the intent of the hospital. In 1970, these building were completely razed and one wall in Spratt Home “still had the score of the 1927 Sewanee game painted on the wall when it was razed” (America’s Lost College, n.d.). The hospital closed its doors on September 10, 2001, as it was relocated to a larger, newer facility just blocks away
Nothing in the history of the property was significant to note other than on February 29, 1952, an F4 tornado struck the town of Fayetteville and caused significant damage. (See attached documentation). The tornado had wind gusts between 207-260 mph and it killed two and injured 166 people. It was estimated to have been “on the ground continuously for around seven miles, initially touching down just northwest of the Old Lincoln County Hospital, before lifting near the Lincoln County Lifestock Market along Highway 64. According to the Lincoln County News, now the Elk Valley Times, ‘Eugene E. McGehee, died only a few minutes after arriving at the hospital. The other casualty, Willard McCown, was killed instantly when his home on Polk Street was blown away.’”(NOAA, n.d.).
More thorough research is currently being conducted on the location by outside individuals to vet any further historical claims. Any changes or additions to the history will be updated and the report amended to reflect as such. Lincoln County Regional Hospital was the only county hospital for many, many years. We were able to speak to four individuals whom have lived in the area their entire lives, two of whom were born in the hospital. None of the individuals interviewed claimed to have ever experienced paranormal activity while they were in the hospital. Two of the individuals also stated that they never heard of the hospital being haunted until in recent years
The claims of paranormal phenomena at the Old Lincoln County Regional Hospital are much the same claims as have been made at many other abandoned hospitals now used for ghost hunting: Apparitions, orbs, shadow figures, children’s voices, unusual sensations, and other disembodied voices. One individual also claimed publicly that on one occasion he saw the apparition of his very first patient, which was over thirty years ago.
Furthermore, a recent claim was made in which it was widely circulated that a moratorium was put on all investigations at the hospital as of Sept/Oct 2015 because of violent attacks on female investigators. The owner of the location actually laughed at this claim, stating that was ridiculous and that only one person had ever claimed to have been scratched, and though it appeared to be significant to the individual involved, there is no recorded film documentation to support said claim. Additionally, the owner acknowledged that he was not present at the time of the occurrence and heard about it afterwards.
The owner of the location, Jamie, appeared to be very sincere and honest. A Navy Veteran and avid rock climber, he originally bought the location so as to practice his climbing on the smokestack. He purchased the property several years ago and was not interested in the paranormal at the time of the purchase. He was very forthcoming and open with information as well as how the hospital is being currently used. He shared that it is often used for Air Soft games and hopes one day to be able to utilize the structure for police and/or fire training purposes. He was unaware of the inside condition of the location at the time of purchase. He stated that it wasn’t until after he purchased the building that people began approaching him about paranormal claims and he did not see a problem with people investigating.
It is important to note, that we have much respect for the owner of the location. He was very helpful, humble, sincere and honest in speaking with us. Additionally, Jamie noted that though he had his own personal experiences in the location, he could not “prove” the existence of ghosts nor validate the claims of other individuals in the location. He stated that though he has his own personal beliefs, he also recognizes that there are other claims that have logical explanations. He further stated he did not believe that there was anything demonic or of negative/dangerous nature in the location
Several of our investigators heard the voices of children and screams during our investigation. However, we were able to attribute the cries and screams of children to those in the playground and outside area that traveled throughout the building and carried. Static cameras and the personnel located in the TOC documented children laughing and playing outside at the same time certain investigators heard the children in the location.
Although there have been claims of people hearing music and singing, the wind gusts outside and water dripping between the floors, coupled with the noise from outside, would most likely create a common phenomenon also known as “Musical Ear Syndrome” or “audio pareidolia’, which could produce the illusion of phantom singing or laughing. With this phenomena, if there is just the suggestion of speech or a perceived vocal pattern in a background noise, it is enough for the human brain to start searching for the closest match to a recognized pattern. Furthermore, “certain constant external background sounds become the basis for perceiving speech and music.” (Bauman, 2016.) At this location, there was consistent dripping of water, rattling of loose glass in the windows, constant cars driving by, and individuals talking and laughing outside until around 0230 – 0300 in the morning. Therefore, we could not credit any of the voices, laughing, or audio perceptions of children inside the location as being paranormal.
At approximately 0230, we conducted an EVP sessions called a “Round Robin”. Investigators are spread out in the same area with a noise maker, i.e. whistle, bell, clapping hands. All investigators are in the same area. For approximately 5-8 seconds one individual will make noise and then stop. The investigator next to him will wait 10 seconds and then make his noise for 5-8 seconds then stop. There will be a 10 second pause and then the next investigor makes his noise for 5-8 seconds, and so on and so forth. The team will do this two times and on the third time, the investigators go out of order for one complete round. At no time is there talking and there are eyes on the individuals to ensure no one is making any residual noise or talking. At approximately 0230, we conducted an EVP sessions called a “Round Robin”. Investigators are spread out in the same area with a noise maker, i.e. whistle, bell, clapping hands. All investigators are in the same area. For approximately 5-8 seconds one individual will make noise and then stop. The investigator next to him will wait 10 seconds and then make his noise for 5-8 seconds then stop. There will be a 10 second pause and then the next investigor makes his noise for 5-8 seconds, and so on and so forth. The team will do this two times and on the third time, the investigators go out of order for one complete round. At no time is there talking and there are eyes on the individuals to ensure no one is making any residual noise or talking.
During the third round one investigator whistled very loudly. Once the investigator stopped there was silence. Right before the next investigator began, a whistle-like sound was heard in the distance. After the Round Robin session, the investigators began to look for plausible explanations and things that could have possibly generated the same sound. The door to the emergency room was the only door in and out of the building and when it closes, it generates a sound very similar to the one the investigators thought they heard. However, at the time of the Round Robin, the static camera did not show anyone entering or leaving the building. We cannot discount the possibility of someone outside “whistling” back as the investigator’s whistle was very loud and there were residents in the area still outside. There is a possibility of one of them hearing the whistle and as a joke, reciprocated the noise. As this was the only audio anomaly captured during the entire time the team was there, even if there were no people outdoors and no explanation of the noise, it would not be enough data or evidence to support the claim that significant paranormal phenomena or “demonic activity” exists in the location. As of the writing of this report, we do not have a solid explanation for this anomaly.
There is a lot of visual pareidolia that can occur inside the location. Light plays a significant factor in many of the paranormal claims. Certain areas appear darker than others simply because of the layout and how some areas are dark in proximity to other areas that are well lit due to moonlight and light refractions from the street lamps. Broken glass in the windows as well as the floors, can easily reflect light from cameras, flashlights, and even street lamps on the north side of the building. Although we had investigators who stated they thought they saw something, whether it was a shadow or person, after closer inspection we were able to deduce that light play was causing matrixing.
Our static cameras and handheld cameras also showed the kick up of dust and debris throughout the night. These can often times be misconstrued as “orbs”. Additionally, we noticed a water drop on a piece of broken glass that when the flashlight was aimed on it, a colored orb refracted off another piece of glass on the floor, which subsequently caused an “orb” like image to appear in another area.
Any claims of specific individuals (i.e. a little girl patient, specific “spirits” with names) made by psychics or mediums could not be validated by us. Without last names and specifics of any incident, it is impossible to authenticate such claims, as the hospital housed many patients in its 71 years of being open. In regards to the respiratory therapist who claimed to have seen his very first patient at the hospital during an investigation in recent years, there is no way to corroborate his statement. It must also be kept in mind, that even in the case of police line ups, memories do not always serve correctly when one is trying to identify someone he/she saw a week or two prior.
There is no doubt that many people died at the location, as Lincoln County Regional Hospital was the only county hospital for many years. However, this alone cannot be used as substantive proof of paranormal activity in the location. Because of the external and internal noises and conditions, any anomalies captured on audio data cannot be used as “proof” or “evidence” as it was contaminated despite our best efforts and noise discipline. Though our use of visual cameras are primarily for documentation and accountability purposes, thorough review of all visual data did not reveal anything paranormal in nature. Moreover, the internal conditions and structure can cause significant visual pareidolia and matrixing. Therefore, due to aforementioned reasons, Military Veterans Paranormal cannot conclude that paranormal activity exists at LCRH based on this investigation.
We can say, however, that the location would be a great place for teams to train at, as it requires significant noise and light discipline. It will also enable team leaders to train their investigators on visual and audio perceptions, noise and light discipline, as well as how set up cameras at odd angles and how to secure a location.
Overall, this was a good location to go to and we greatly appreciate the owner for having us at the location.
Acts of the state of Tennessee: Passed at the second adjourned session of the Thirty-fourth General Assembly, for the years 1866-67.: Published by authority. (1866). Nashville, TN: S.C. Mercer. 33. Acts of the state of Tennessee: Passed at the second adjourned session of the Thirty-fourth General Assembly, for the years 1866-67.: Published by authority. (1866). Nashville, TN: S.C. Mercer. 33.
Acts of the state of Tennessee: Passed at the second adjourned session of the
Forty-seventh General Assembly, for the years 1891.: Published by authority. (1891). Nashville, TN: S.C. Mercer. 72.
America's Lost Colleges. (n.d.). Retrieved March 1, 2016, from https://www.lostcolleges.com/bryson-college
Bauman, N., Ph.D. (2004, Winter). Musical Ear Syndrome. Hearing Health, 16-19.
The Bridge (Vol. VIII). (1929). Fayetteville, TN: Bryson College.
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