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November 13, 2010

Saranac Lake cure cottage featured in 'The Haunted'

SARANAC LAKE — Nothing has creeped out Ohio Researchers of Banded Spirits like a century-old cure cottage in Saranac Lake.

The former tuberculosis cure cottage, now an apartment building owned by Jennifer and Mike Todd, is the subject of Sunday's episode of "The Haunted" on Animal Planet.

The episode, dubbed "The Touch of Death," reveals what the Ohio-based paranormal team of Amy Cobb, Karlo Zuzic, Deb Andres and Chris Page uncovered in the Adirondacks.

The Todds' dogs, Jasmine and Lily, were tormented by forces unseen by their owners.

"Everyone in the apartment building, including their animals, were being impacted," Page said. "They saw a little girl with no eyes. The animals were barking at nothing, whimpering like they had been pinched, kicked or slapped. We decided we needed to go in and see what is going on."

Equipped with a night-vision camera, radiation detectors, electromagnetic-field detectors, thermal imaging, digital thermometer and digital voice recorders, the Banded Spirits set up a full investigation of the immense Tudor-style building.

They also carried a "soul sensor," one of their inventions that detects density differences or mass of things seen and unseen. When activated, it sounds an audible alarm and flashes LED lights.

"It works almost every time we take it out," Page said.

The crew set out trigger items, Crayola crayons and a box of Cracker Jacks, to invoke a response from the noted ghost children.

"Any child in the last 100 years will recognize one of those two items," Page said. "The temperature on the Cracker Jacks started to rise. We got a good hit on the radiation detector. "

He told the entity it could open the box if it wanted to.

"As plain as day, the spirit said no. It was shocking. I wasn't expecting that. I heard this thing said no. I'm just sitting there, and did I just hear that— Karlo said something just said something. He said it said no. I said exactly. He heard the same thing I did. Why would a box of Cracker Jacks start heating up— It's just not normal."

Along a landing wall, they captured a ghostly handprint with thermal imaging.

"This is creepy, too," Page said. "No one had been up there for a couple of hours. It's not a stain or greasy kids' chicken fingers. You can see it start to disappear."

More than 100 people died from TB in the building.

"It was a very crazy place. You could just sense death. You knew that death resided in that house. That's how strong it was. The spirits wanted to let you know they're there."

Most basements are creepy to begin with but the Banded Spirits wanted out of the Todds' basement.

"You felt as if something was watching you," Page said. "When the hair stands up on your arms and the back of your neck, when something like that happens, you go with your gut instincts. If it doesn't feel right, it probably isn't right. We didn't spend much time there."

The basement was lit constantly. When they untwisted a light bulb to create darkness, a deep voice said, "There you go."

"Something was watching us turn off that light," Page said. "Anytime we asked a question about how they died and TB, we got a high-pitch noise like a cat. There was a response every single time we asked a question. It's one of the creepiest places we've ever been."

When the Banded Spirits are contacted, their clients know their houses are haunted. They seek affirmation, and, more importantly, clients seek a cleansing and blessing of their living quarters.

Usually, the Banded Spirits provide this service but not in Saranac Lake.

"I know when to step aside," Page said.

To see what happens, watch "The Haunted" 10 p.m. Sunday on the Animal Planet.

E-mail Robin Caudell at: rcaudell@pressrepublican.com

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