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Tuesday, May 28
The Indiana Daily Student

Alone in the dark?

WEEKEND investigates the existence of ghosts

WEEKEND ghost hunters Brian J. McFillen, Allie Townsend, Sara Amato and Joe Wetzel survey a tombstone at Stepp Cemetary. Photo by David Corso

Accounts vary, but the basic story goes something like this:\nOn a back road off Old Highway 37 north of Bloomington, in the depths of the Morgan-Monroe State Forest, lies Stepp Cemetery. Ancient and abandoned, its origins obscure, Stepp is rumored to have been a place of dark deeds and strange rituals -- a place where the veil separating the living from the dead sometimes lifts. \nIn the midst of Stepp's sprawling weeds and crumbling graves stands a worn tree stump. If you visit this stump under the light of a full moon, you will find the woman in black. Her hair turned white, her misty form rising from the earth, she sits upon the stump waiting, eternally patient. Is she protecting the grave of a loved one? Is she looking for her lost child? Is she seeking revenge? No one presumably sticks around to find out.\nSo, WEEKEND decided to ask her. \nWith an expedition of four reporters and two photographers, we traveled out to Stepp, winding our way through the murky woods until we came to the gate marking the mouth of the cemetery's path. And what did we find there by the side of the road?\nA pair of abandoned flip-flops.\nOK, so we didn't see a damn thing -- and not because we didn't try. We wandered through the cemetery, we visited the stump (and sat on it!), we laid down and played dead to see if the supposed inhabitants would accept us as their own. We did everything short of insulting the ghosts' mothers. All we found were some late 19th-early 20th century gravestones with amusingly old-fashioned names (Orestes? Seriously?) and an "abandoned" cemetery that was still reasonably well-tended and maintained. Oh, and on the way out, we ran into some other young people who were on their way in (much to the shock of at least one member of our party, who emitted a wonderfully loud "Waugggh!" and leapt three feet into the air upon encountering them).\nThus, thwarted in our effort to commune with the other side, we fell back on a time-honored journalistic practice: We consulted the experts. \n"Do ghosts exist?" we asked. \nRead what they had to say and decide for yourself.

What does a religous expert have to say? Read here

What do paranormal experts have to say?\nRead here

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