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Beaconsfield Historic House hosting haunted tours this week

Tour guide Olivia MacPhail stands beside a cooling casket on the second floor of the Beaconsfield Historic House in Charlottetown. During the second half of the 19th century, the deceased would be placed into a cooling casket before being moved into a real casket.
Tour guide Olivia MacPhail stands beside a cooling casket on the second floor of the Beaconsfield Historic House in Charlottetown. During the second half of the 19th century, the deceased would be placed into a cooling casket before being moved into a real casket. - Garth Hurley
CHARLOTTETOWN, P.E.I. —

There have been some ghostly goings-on at the Beaconsfield Historic House in Charlottetown.

With Halloween just around the corner, it’s fitting it will be hosting haunted tours this week.

Senior tour guide David Jamieson has experienced his own ghostly encounters inside the Victorian-era house, located on the corner of Kent and West streets near the entrance to Victoria Park. 

“I usually open the place up on most days, so I basically would be in the house and I definitely have heard footsteps up in the third floor,” Jamieson said prior to a recent tour of the house.

Senior tour guide David Jamieson is shown in one of the Victoria-furnished rooms at Beaconsfield Historic House in Charlottetown. - Garth Hurley
Senior tour guide David Jamieson is shown in one of the Victoria-furnished rooms at Beaconsfield Historic House in Charlottetown. - Garth Hurley

 

And there was another recent encounter. 

“I was here by myself and I could have sworn I heard someone trying to open the front door, the one inside, not the exterior door, and no one else would have been here,” he said.

Other staff, said Jamieson, have also had spooky experiences.

“Our maintenance guy was alone in the basement doing something and he swore someone tapped him on the shoulder. He turned around and nobody was there.”

Luke Baird, acting site director at Beaconsfield, said each floor of the house offers something unique for visitors.

“The first floor examines Halloween practices during the Victorian period,” said Baird. “On the second floor, we look at death and dying, examining the culture and rituals of Victorian mourning. The third floor is our spooky floor, where guests hear about the paranormal activity experienced here at Beaconsfield.” 

Beaconsfield Historic House tour guide Matt Murphy is shown beside a wax figure of George Coles, P.E.I.’s first premier and a Father of Confederation. - Garth Hurley
Beaconsfield Historic House tour guide Matt Murphy is shown beside a wax figure of George Coles, P.E.I.’s first premier and a Father of Confederation. - Garth Hurley

 

Tour guide Matt Murphy has not experienced his own encounters, but he knows others have. 

“We have had mediums come through the house and when they got on the third floor, they sensed a strong feeling of someone being there. Maybe an older woman or a younger child.” 

The seed for the haunted tours was planted when the house hosted Haunted in the Open as part of the Art in the Open event in August. 

“We had a lot of people come through, more than we expected, so we thought we would do something for Halloween this year,” said Jamieson. 

Another set of tours were held during the Scarecrows in the City Festival in mid-October. 

“It has been very positive.” 

The Beaconsfield Historic House was built in 1877 for shipbuilder and merchant James Peake and is one of seven Museum and Heritage P.E.I. sites. 

Need to know

  • What – Beaconsfield Historic House in Charlottetown is hosting haunted tours.
  • When – Today to Friday at 7 and 8 p.m. each day. 
  • Reservations – Tour spots are by reservation only and can be booked by calling 902-368-6603. 
  • Safety precautions – Masks are required as per COVID-19 protocol.
  • Where – The house is located at the corner of Kent and West streets.

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