Is it the chill on the backs of our necks, or the acceleration of our hearts pounding in our chests that make us watch scary movies or listen intently to stories of the unexplained? Our fundamental human desire to explore the boundaries of fear and anxiety all the while knowing we are safe and secure in a movie theater, in our living room or with friends around a campfire. With Halloween about a week away, the time is right to explore more unexplained mysteries of the West End.
It has been reported that a sighting of a soldier from another era has be seen over the years in Bogachiel State Park near the ranger station searching for something. I asked Chon Clayton, former Bogachiel Park Ranger, had he or any of campers ever reported seeing any ghosts.
He said no that neither he nor any campers had ever seen or reported any ghost sightings.
When asked had he ever seen anything strange or unexplained? He said yes he had seen something strange. One time he had seen a dog dressed up like a clown.
In a Forks bank located in an old structure built many years ago, an employee witnessed a shadowy figure go into an office and then out again. Was it a former resident of the house or was it a customer looking to open a new account? Since the remodel of the building sightings have stopped.
North of Rialto Beach, is the abandoned gold mining camp built and operated by a man named Starbuck.
Between 1925 and 1940, many campers and travelers through that area reported contact with the Starbuck Ghost. Several men who spent a night in an abandon cabin reported someone trying to enter in the middle of the night. Another man who slept in a sleeping bag on the beach woke up to someone standing over him. Was it really a ghost or someone trying to scare people away from the gold?
It was after dark about fifteen years ago when a local beautician, her son and his friend where making their way home from Port Angeles. As they passed the Beaver Post Office and hit the straight stretch by the Beaver ball field an apparition appeared alongside the road.
As the hairdresser squinted to make out what appeared to be people standing by the road she was surprised to see their clothing was of a different time, she saw what seemed to be a group of ladies dressed in turn of the century attire.
As her vehicle passed by the group she looked to her son sitting alongside her in the front seat, he had seen the same thing. Even to this day she cannot explain what she saw that night. Who were these ladies? Were they looking for the Tyee Beauty Parlor and thought a person of her profession could assist? Where they thirsty and looking for the long gone Konopaski’s Saloon? Who or what were they?
In October of 1937 Lynwood Sproul owned a Tourist Camp at Mora near the mouth of the Dickey River. The fifty-eight year old Sproul had recently hired a WWI veteran named Allen Sears to do some work for him; it would be a fatal mistake.
Supposedly Sears borrowed Sproul’s gun to kill a seal for cooking oil for another neighbor. On Friday, October 4, when Sears returned the gun and was cleaning it Sears claimed the loaded gun accidentally went off killing its owner Sproul.
Even though law enforcement at the time was limited local authorities thought the story just did not add up. Certain the shooting was no accident they offered Sears a deal if he told the truth admitting his guilt.
In doing so it is speculated that he may have been taking the blame for a women who could have also been implicated in Sproul’s death. To possibly protect this person Sears took the fall? Or was there other hanky panky going on?
It was also soon discovered that Allen Sears was actually named Ralph Carson. When he had deserted the Army he took the name and identity of a friend who died in the war.
Carson alias Allen Sears was found guilty by a jury of ten men and two women and sentenced to death. The 54 year old Carson was the first Clallam County resident to be executed by the State on December 4, 1939. Was it really Allen Sears aka Ralph Carson who killed Lin Sproul? I guess we will never know. Next week more West End mysteries