Some of you might know that my daughter, Sarah, and her two-year old son, Ian, are staying with us for part of the summer. And when Sarah is home, the activity in our house increases. I think it’s because we have a little one in the house again and the “Grandma ghost” is trying to watch over him. Yesterday morning, when I was up on the second floor of the house in my office, Sarah and Ian came upstairs to visit me.
“Mom,” Sarah asked. “Were you just downstairs in the kitchen?”
I shook my head. “No, I’ve been writing,” I replied.
“Where’s dad?” she asked.
“He left about thirty minutes ago to run a couple of errands,” I said.
She didn’t respond for a long moment.
“Why?” I finally asked.
She sighed. “Because a few minutes ago I was in the living room and I heard someone moving around in the kitchen,” she said. “I thought it must have been you, and I even called out and asked you a question. But when I got up to see you, no one was there.”
“What did it sound like?”
“Footsteps on the kitchen floor,” she said. “The floor creaking like it does when someone’s walking on it.”
I shrugged and smiled. “Maybe someone wanted breakfast,” I teased.
She shook her head. “This house is weird.”
Floors. Creaks. Footsteps. Thumps. What is it about ghosts and floors?
One of my wonderful readers, Val Loving Melton, shared this ghost story about floors with me. It’s from her home state in West Virginia and is from the website “West Virginia Ghosts.”
The Bleeding Floor
The house our grandmother was born in was the site of a grisly murder that resulted in the last public hanging in West Virginia history.
The murderer was John F. Morgan who took an axe and violently massacred the widow Green and her three children. The purpose of our story is not those horrible murders, but what happened after…
After John Morgan’s execution on December 16th, 1897 the old Green house stood vacant for several years as the stories and legends about the Green house spread from town to town across Jackson County. My great-grandmother Minnie and great-grandfather Leander were well aware of the history of that old house before they moved in during the autumn of 1900.
They had two children, Dorothy and Leonard, and Minnie was pregnant with my grandma Belle. Despite the stories of the grisly murders, Leander and Minnie were in a tough situation as a fire had all but destroyed their home in nearby Ravenswood. Besides, they felt the children were too young to understand what had happened in that house and they were both people of strong religious beliefs, and were not concerned with a few “haints” or other manifestations. However, they could not have expected what they would go through in their new home.
The house had been left vacant now for nearly three years and needed a good deal of work to be made livable. The wood floor in the kitchen still had the blood stains that covered about a 10-foot area where Mrs. Green had crawled to the back door after John Morgan had attacked her. She died there on the kitchen floor. Morgan chased the three children out the back door and killed them in the back yard. A neighbor had seen Morgan leave the house and when questioned by authorities, he confessed to the murders. After Morgan’s subsequent hanging, the case was deemed closed and the house was left virtually the way it was the morning of the murders.
Leander and Minnie were able to make the house livable in a couple of weeks, but they could not get the blood off the kitchen floor. They scrubbed and scrubbed. The stains would fade, then come back. They tried lye to no avail. They tried sanding down the floor and the stains came back. They tried painting the floor and the stains came back through the brown paint. Even the local Ripley newspaper came out and did a story on the “Bleeding Floor.” Eventually Leander decided to replace the wood in the kitchen floor, but to his astonishment just a few weeks after putting in the new floor, the blood stains again appeared on the floor.
The strange occurrences were beginning to take their toll on Leander and Minnie. As they began to hear the apparent moans of Mrs. Green and the low cries of the murdered children, they decided it would be too difficult on their own children to remain in that house. So they decided that as soon as grandma Belle was born, they would leave the house.
Giving up on ever being able to remove the blood stains from the kitchen floor, and figuring they would only be there another few months at the most, Leander placed a thick tweed rug over the biggest part of the blood stains. In April of 1901 grandma Belle was born. The following May the family found another house and were packing up for the move when Leander made a horrifying discovery.
As he began to roll up the huge tweed rug he discovered the bottom of the rug was saturated with BLOOD. Needless to say, Leander and Minnie left the rug and left the house that night. The county owned the old house and decided to destroy it rather than to continually answer questions about the Green House and the “Bleeding Floor.”
Still to this day you can hear noises and even drive by and see the old forgotten grave yard.