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Thursday, March 17, 2016

The "Paranormal Happenings At Bootleg Antiques" Story

Our guide, Tom, at Bootleg Antiques.  Tours
aren't something they advertise, but when I
asked a few questions about the building,
Tom asked if we was interested in a tour.
It was an ordinary day.  Standing on the top floor of the Bootleg Antiques store in downtown Columbia, Pennsylvania talking with Tom who had volunteered to take Carol and I, as well as friends Jerry and Just Sue, on a tour of what was one time a washing machine manufacturing plant which was built along the Susquehanna River in 1891.  Neat building that has quite a history to it and a rather creepy aura to boot.    Seems a fellow by the name of Thomas, as well as an un-named young boy, both died years ago in the building.  From time to time they are said to "make themselves known" to those who work at the antique store at 135 Bridge Street.  My wife talked with two female employees who said that their security cameras picked up a few incidents that led to the owner hiring not one, but two, mediums to visit and tell their thoughts of the energy that seems to appear in the building.  
Date of the construction can be seen center right.
The cameras showed a picture frame turn and fall off a shelf as if pushed.  Also showed a pair of picture frames on a table that featured a young boy and young girl and eventually the frame of the young boy fell face down on the table.  The women also told of employees hearing items rolling on the floor above them which may have been children playing.  
These are the wooden wheels for the old washing machine
equipment pulley systems on the second floor.  The factory
made washing machines fro 1891 to the 1960's.
Two mediums were asked to visit, but a month apart.  They both agreed that there were ghosts living in the building and seemed to feel comfortable living amongst the antiques.  When stand holders would bring additional items to the store, some more than likely had energy that attracted Thomas.  
Ceiling of the area in the third floor that was covered
in cork to eliminate noise as they made "moonshine."
One medium said he conversed with the older ghost and asked him if he wanted to "crossover" into the afterlife, but got no answer.  They also said that part of the building displayed a "dark energy", or a mysterious energy that permeates all of space, which they would not enter!  Now for those reading my story that do not believe in ghosts and mediums, you must visit Bootleg Antiques.  
The Hotel where Al Capone stayed while visiting Columbia.
It was daylight when we visited and I was scared at times to wander into the different rooms on the third floor.  They offer a evening tour with flashlights, but that's just not gonna happen with me.  We were led to another location on the top floor that featured an area about thirty feet by sixty feet in size that during prohibition was used to make "moonshine."  
Photograph of the Bootleg Antiques store in Columbia, PA.
The walls and ceiling were covered with layer on top of layer of inch thick cork which would absorb the noise that might have occurred from the machinery used to make the illegal liquor.  The "moonshine" would run through underground tunnels from the basement of the building to the edge of the river where waiting ferrymen should load the liquor on board for distribution at other points along the river.  One of the costumers of the bootleg liquor was none other than Al Capone who would visit Columbia and stay at the nearby hotel along Water Street.  Must have been rather interesting when he would pay a call to the Superior Washing Machine Company in Columbia, PA.  The building is remarkable and our tour with our host, Tom, proved to be the highlight of our trip to Columbia, PA even though we left the building without a single antique, except ourselves naturally.  It was another extraordinary day in the life of an ordinary guy.

A view across the Susquehanna River from the Columbia Hotel.

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