Team PSI investigates Fort Edmonton Park Aug 2012

Posted on Nov 4 2012

August 12, 2012 the PSI team took a field trip to Fort Edmonton Park.
As always we were hoping to find proof of the paranormal; believing that, the age and history of the park offered such opportunity. To begin our investigation, we walked to the end of the park to see the actual fort, Fort Edmonton, where it is rumoured the ghost of the Chief Factor, John Rowand, lives. Apparently, John Rowand's apparition can be seen, day or night, in the main building of the fort. To help our investigation, we asked a staff member about it. This staff member, has been with the park for five years and works both night and day in these surroundings, much to our dismay, he explained that he has never seen this ghost or any other ghosts in the park.

So unfortunately we could not quantify the rumours of the Chief Factor's ghost, and worse, we as individuals did not experience anything extraordinary. We were also disappointed to learn, from this staff member, how much of the structure was actually rebuilt. The rebuilt structure and strategically placed new/old furnishings and props did not heighten our six senses. Many of the items were made with new material, and then made to look old for authentication of the time period. And much of the fort's structure was replaced when it was moved from its original location. Fort Edmonton was originally located by what we know today as the legislative grounds. Unfortunately, new materials and new locations do not make for quality paranormal testing.

We continued our trek to 1942 street where we toured inside homes of the day, unfortunately they too had been moved from another location and repaired; some of the buildings were even equipped with modern plumbing. In walking down 1942 street, we were particularly interested in the house of the Firkin family. Apparently the son died in an accident and now an apparition of a young boy is seen within the house. However; again the opportunity for phenomena was dissolved by long-time staff of the park. In this case, the two ladies we spoke to dissolved this perfectly enticing ghost story by explaining that the Firkins actually had two daughters and no sons, and both of the girls did not pass away in any unusual fashion to warrant a haunting.

To explain, as part of their employment, staff of Fort Edmonton Park are the experts of the park, knowing in impressive detail about its history and its habitants. And so, in moving on, we checked out more of the old buildings, ate, tried on some hats that were from the era, played with the games at the penny arcade (well actually we tried to get a palm reading from the old-time machine), and we visited Hotel Selkirk. To our surprise, one of our cameras actually caught what we think could be an orb from within the hotel. However, orbs are very hard to distinguish from your everyday dust particle, so this doesn't really quantify any findings.

Having enjoyed our day outside, with great weather, and enjoying getting to know each other better, we purchased some ice cream and raspberry drops and walked the rest of the way out of the park. In our conversation in the parking lot, we thought that maybe a night visit would be more beneficial to our cause, but realize that perhaps the park although old and historical may have been too altered to hold in the elements that are believed to create or foster paranormal events.

Investigator PSI Canada

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Joseph Banks Rhine...

Joseph Banks Rhine (September 29, 1895 - February 20, 1980) (usually known as J. B. Rhine) was a botanist who later developed an interest in parapsychology and psychology.

Rhine founded the parapsychology lab at Duke University, the Journal of Parapsychology, and the Foundation for Research on the Nature of Man. He also initiated the Parapsychological Association.


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