Sunday, March 31, 2013

Nighttime in the Realm of the Dead

I had an interesting experience tonight.  I hiked the roughly half mile out an old wagon road that was part of the Oregon Trail to a pioneer cemetery I have knowledge of.  The cemetery had a very peaceful feel to it, even with the entities that were hanging out enjoying themselves.  Not ghosts, not trapped, the spirits are gone, but something of the energy and joy and peace remains; the social feel.

The road in and out is another story.  It was twilight – not quite dark – when I set out.  I don’t like to be there too late incase people hid out there to do drugs, etc.  It’s the living that scare me, not the dead!  It was dark when I left the cemetery and started on my way back. 

Just before the halfway point on the road – it’s really more of a trail – someone tugged at my pant leg, and then just further I got heavy duty chills and my skin started to crawl.  I stopped a bit to see what was going on.  Then I continued to walk as I talked to the entities there.  It was a crowd of Native Americans. 

Local historians claim tens of thousands of Native Americans may have died from diseases that preceded the pioneers to the area.  There was also some very intense tribal warfare in the area long before the settlers arrived, decimating the tribes.  And, before and after the settlers came, there were murders and double dealing. All this activity happened in the location I was passing through.

I did ask them what they wanted.  They want their stories told.  They want the truth about their lives and suffering made known.  Some want a “cleansed” version of the truth that covers up much of the native on native violence and dishonesty, while others want the whole story told.

I think that part of what we can do to honor the beings in these places is to work towards getting the truth out about them and what happened.  That involves historians.  I know what I was shown by the entities, and I know what the local historians say, but I haven’t seen the documentation – if any exists.  So, what I can do is encourage the research and the inclusion of that research in the museums of the area.

I am deliberately vague in this piece about the location, because the cemetery itself has been fenced off, has razor wire and looks like it’s got the fortification of a military encampment because of thrill seekers and vandalism.  So, I can tell the general story here, and remember that when giving my tours, to make sure I tell the hidden history that the City might not want reveled.  This is something we can all do wherever we live – tell the stories of those that went before us, and still protect the sites that need protecting.


  1. Wonderful, William! That is why I love yours & Rocky's tours! I get to hear the real, hidden story about Oregon City that the museums don't or can't tell. I'm sure the entities truly appreciate you for telling their story!

  2. Thank you for your wonderful comments and support Holly! I very much appreciate it!

    1. You're so welcome, William! Thank you for your awesome blog! I've enjoyed reading all of your entries! :)

  3. For those of you who might be thinking of visiting cemeteries at night. A couple things to think about. Make sure you aren't trespassing. Get permission, Treat it with the utmost respect, no seances, no summonings, no ritual. Realize the possible danger from humans and animals if the place is isolated. Check it out in the daylight so that you know if the path and location are safe in the dark. And again, we are the visitors. Be completely respectful! Don't do it as a way of thrill seeking, but a way for allowing anyone who wants to to communicate or share their experiences with you.

  4. Hey William,

    Great post, and great reminder of the importance of continuing to tell peoples' (both living and otherwise) stories. The work you do is so valuable, thank you...!