Ghosts of Georgia Investigation report

On May 22, 2010 GOGPI investigated claims of paranormal activity at Port Columbus Museum in Columbus, GA. Claims of activity including: Books flying off shelves in store, footsteps on the Jackson, Disembodied voices, unknown tapping sounds, sound of a bell clanking, sound of a horn, a person’s shoulder jerked, and a girl felt tugging on her pants.

Investigators & people present at investigation: Investigators – Ed Laughlin, Corey McHargue, Christine Riley, and Gretchen Mann. Investigators from our Columbus Chapter Joyce, Becky, Lisa, and Heidi from the Wyrick family, along with Becky’s husband Grant, and Heidi’s husband Aaron, and our guide Susan Ingram.

Weather conditions:
Moon Phase: Waxing Gibbous, 69% of full
Solar X-rays: Normal
Geomagnetic Field: Quiet
Clear Sky

Past Weather Conditions for KCSG
Observations prior to selected time: May 22, 2010 – 09:00 EDT
Weather Conditions at May 22, 2010 – 8:51 EDT
8:51 24 Hour Max 24 Hour Min
Temperature 72.0° F 84.9 at 14:51 66.9 at 3:51
Dew Point 66.0° F 66.9 at 11:51 63.0 at 20:51
Relative Humidity 82% 90 at 3:51 50 at 14:51
Wind Speed 3 mph from S 12 at 16:37 0 at 11:51
Wind Gust – 21 at 16:37 21 at 16:37
Pressure 29.65 in 29.65 at 8:51 29.58 at 17:51
Sea level pressure 30.06 in 30.06 at 8:51 30.00 at 17:51
Altimeter 30.08 in 30.08 at 8:51 30.01 at 17:51
Weather conditions clear – –
Visibility 10.00 miles 10.00 at 9:51 9.00 at 6:51
Ceiling – 9000 at 7:51 4600 at 14:51

Condition of the building:
The museum is in good working order and open for business. The building was built in 2000 and opened in 2001, and overall was very sound. When we first arrived we heard banging sounds. Our guide Susan stated that the building had a metal roof and stated that the panels would make that sound while they cooled down. The noise stopped shortly after the sun set.

Equipment used by Investigators:

Cameras: One Rebel T1i digital camera and Four IR Video Cameras connected to a J2000 DVR.
EMF Meters: Electro Sensor EMF Meter, Cell Sensor, Digital EMF Detectors, and K-II Meter.
Audio Recorders: Sony P210 digital voice recorder and an Olympus D-10 digital voice recorder and Olympus VN-4100PC.
Thermometers: Cen-Tech mini non-contact infrared digital thermometer and an Omega HH68K ambient thermometer.


9:00 pm – Teams were given a tour of the museum. Base reading were not taken during the walk through and will be taken during the investigation. Set up was immediately after the tour and investigation began.

Team 1 – Corey, Gretchen and Susan – 9:55 pm

1. Hartford – Normal Readings – EMF .1 and Temp 73 degrees
a. 10:01 Start EVP session
10:12 Shadows were seen/ EVP stopped
b. 10:16 Start EVP session again
c. 10:23 End EVP session
d. 10:47 Start EVP session
e. 10:59 End EVP session
2. 11:03-11:06 – Harford (changed sides) far corner by ship – Normal Readings – EMF .25 and 74 degrees
3. Jackson – Normal Readings
a. 11:10 Start EVP session
b. 11:21 End EVP session
4. Platform top of stairs – Normal Readings
a. 11:30 Start EVP session
b. 11:40 End EVP session
5. Chattahoochee Room – Normal Readings
a. 11:48 Start EVP session
b. 11:59 End EVP session
12:02 – End of sweep

Team 2 – Christine Beckey and Lisa – 9:55 pm

1. Offices – Normal Readings
a. 9:56 –Investigator saw lights on in the office but thought they were off at the beginning of the Investigation. Unable to find out if the lights were left on by a staff member.
2. Bottom Steps – Normal Readings
a. 10:04 Start EVP session
b. 10:11 End EVP session
3. Large Ship – Normal Readings
a. 10:23 Start EVP session
b. 10:37 End EVP session
4. Chattahoochee Room –
a. We were able to get the temperature to drop from 9 degrees from 80 degrees on
5. 11:03 Changing Sides
6. Captain – Normal Readings
a. 11:20 Start EVP session
b. 11:40 End EVP session
12:05 – End of sweep

Team 3 – Ed, Joyce, Heidi, Aaron, and Grant – 12:23 am

1. Hartford – Normal Readings
a. 12:29 Start EVP session
into 2nd room
b. 12:37 End EVP session
2. 1:06 – Jackson – Normal Readings
a. 1:17 Start EVP session
b. 1:25 End EVP session
1:57 End Sweep

Team 4 – Joyce, Grant, Christine, Gretchen, Beckey, Lisa and Susan – 2:36 am final sweep:

2:36am thru 3:15am Team 4 did one final sweep where the Jackson and Chattahoochee were. Nothing to report.


Port Columbus is a wonderful Civil War Naval Museum to visit and tour. The exhibits are well placed and the information provided is excellent, a wonderful place to learn and explore and a wonderful place to investigate!

There are numerous stories of unexplained occurrences throughout the building. The stories not only originate from the staff but from visitors as well. Every investigator had at least one personal experience of an unexplained occurrence while investigating; most of the occurrences verified the stories told by staff. The temperature reading remained constant except for several occurrences with Team 2 when the temperature dropped upon request. There were no high levels of EMF detected and were within normal limits throughout the building. There were numerous times when each team had responses to requests to knock to let us know they were there. We also recorded numerous EVP’s during the investigation. Some of the EVP’s were responses to investigators question. Our video did not have any findings in it. One picture taken seems to show a dark form in the distance, on one end of the room with the Jackson in it, while the investigators were near the center of the room. This picture is still under review.

With all the stories from the staff and visitors, the teams personal experiences, and the EVP’s we feel that Port Columbus is very active and is definitely haunted! We also feel that they have intelligent hauntings along with residual hauntings. We look forward to a follow up investigation at Port Columbus with hopes of gathering more evidence of who may be there.

Personal Experience summaries from investigators attached and separate from investigation report.

Ed Laughlin
Ghosts of Georgia Paranormal Investigations
Personal Experience summaries from investigators on the investigation:

Christine’s Personal Experiences:

1) Office light in the Jackson Room was one. Becky, Lisa, and I were not sure, but we all swear that the light was not noticeably on when we first went down there to investigate. We had our flashlights on and walked directly towards that room because I had to adjust the illuminator which was sitting on a rolling bookshelf directly outside the door of the office. When we turned our flashlights off, we were in complete blackness.

2) As we sat at the base of the stairs in the Jackson room, other than the noises the roof was making, it sounded as if there was a lot of running back and forth across the ship. We did get some responses when we asked if it were someone making all that noise to give a clear one knock for no and two knocks for yes. We got two knocks. When asked repeatedly to do it again in order to make it clear to us, it repeated.

3) At the opposite end of the Jackson room, I put my flashlight on the table directly across from us. It was a good 2- 3 feet from us when it came on and then turned off. I also saw something or someone standing on the ship. At first I thought my eyes were playing tricks on me or that I was getting a migraine, just to make sure, I asked Lisa to please take a picture of that area for me. She got surprised that I asked that because she said that she saw something to and she was just about to take a picture before I said something. We pointed out to each other where we saw what we think we saw, and we pointed to the same place.

4) In the Chattahoochee Room, we were able to get the temperature to drop from 9 degrees from 80 degrees upon command.

5) In the Hartford, while sitting in the surgery room, we heard a chair shuffle from the direction of the captain’s room. We went and investigated and could not figure out what it was.

6) While in the Captain’s Room, I heard the sound of a fog horn/ship’s horn. I felt something touch me on the side of my face (left side). I felt something rub my right arm between Becky and me.

7) In the theater, I could smell ocean water extremely well. I thought that maybe the theater was 4-d and that is why I smelled it. I asked Susan if the theater was 4-d and she said that it wasn’t.

8) On second investigation in the Jackson Room, I was sitting on the floor at the base of the stairs looking toward the opposite end of the room. I could clearly see all the way across the room looking under the ship. I saw someone walk across the room from left to right heading towards the Chattahoochee Room.

Joyce and Lisa’s Personal Experiences:
CSS Jackson 9:50 p.m.
Temperature reading was 86.5 dropped to 71.7.
Names Lisa came up with: Andrew, Moses, David, and Dallas
Flashlight came on by itself several times.
2nd room:
Marcus Tidwell
Temperature dropped from 81 to 71.6.
3rd room (surgery room)
Sounded like a chair sliding out from table (on recording).
Strange noises (no EVP session taken)
Captain’s room:
Names Lisa got: Thomas Barrymore or Barryman?
Sam or Samson.
Joyce felt dizzy and lightheaded when passing through the ropes at the Chattahoochee.
Gretchen’s Personal Experiences:
As we pulled up to the museum I was more drawn to the cemetery across the street. It was huge!!! This is nothing out of the ordinary as I am often drawn to cemeteries. I found it a point of interest again as during the investigation, Susan, the employee, stated she believed other spirits were here besides Civil war sailors. The Naval Museum sits in a rather characteristic part of town. Upon arriving I felt welcomed both by Susan and the building itself. It is a well taken care of huge building. As I was setting up the camera in the Hartford. I was positioning the camera when I heard 4 distinct footsteps walking away from me. I was ready to go out the front door. I felt uneasy in the Hartford, especially by myself setting up the camera…tried to be brave. Another experience was tapping noises in response to us asking for them. My last experience was at the Jackson. There were banging noises I heard at the opposite end (near the staircase). When I was near the camera…I heard sounds from both ends…..Very cool place.

Ed’s Personal Experiences:

While investigating the Chattahoochee I felt somewhat dizzy as if I was actually on a boat rocking back and forth. While investigating the Surgeon’s room in the Hartford I heard what sounded like a ship’s horn.

What we hear:

  1. “Up here” then “Come here” then “I’m here” or just “Here” then “Strange”
  2. “Who ask”
  3. “Yeah”
  4. “It” and “I got it”
  5. Here” and “Hey son”
  6. Horn sound
  7. “Sounds good” then “Yeah” then “A thousand kids”
  8. “You can” and “Now”
  9. “He’s got common cold” then Horn sound
  10. “Panicky”
  11. Horn sound then “Cover up”
  12. “Dang it”
  13. Sliding chair sound then “Chuck” then “He’s with me”
  14. “Hey Mary” then can’t make out the other one
  15. “It’s Pete”