Anderson Cemetery - Windham, Maine

Location: Anderson Cemetery

City:  Windham, Maine

What can be said about the Anderson Cemetery… We made our visit to Anderson during mid-morning on a Sunday.  It was our first trip to the cemetery and I have to admit, we missed the entrance to it, probably 8+ times.  If you’re planning on going to Anderson Cemetery I’ll tell you that it’s down a long dirt entrance that looks like someone’s driveway.  It’s not someone’s driveway, its the Anderson Entrance and it doesn’t have a sign near the road like, in my opinion, it really should.

The reason we did a pre-investigation of the Anderson Cemetery is because we’ve been made aware of paranormal activity that has taken place here for quite a few years.  We’ve heard about weird mists, plasma, strange sounds, apparitions, orb activity, and other supernatural occurrences.  We did a dry run in an impromptu attempt at capturing EVP’s, and took quite a few daytime pictures at the location, some of which yielded a few question-worthy results.

[ Updated ]

Originally we thought this to be a Revolutionary War Solider’s burial mound, that of Peter Thatcher Smith. But after some light independent research, and the help of sites like FindAGrave.com, we later discovered this man to be a prominent member of early Windham.  In our search to find the significance behind grave symbology we had initially come into the belief that a raised bed over a grave, otherwise known as a “burial mound”, meant that the individual interred was a high ranking member of the armed forces, and was also likely to have been active during war time.  This turned out to be an incorrect assessment on our part, and we are grateful to be able to correct our original misinformation so we can present a more accurate biography of the persons interred.

The man buried under this prominent burial mound is named Peter Thatcher Smith.  He was a reverend in the town of Windham for many years, and a very important member of its social structure.  He lived to be 96 years old and even after he retired from his duties as a Reverend he remained in Windham to be close to his 11 children and countless grandchildren.  His home is well known in the town – the Parson Smith House – and is supposedly located in a close vicinity to the Anderson-Smith cemetery.

This burial mound is a family tomb, and Peter Thatcher Smith is surrounded by loved ones in death, as he was in life.  There may be numerous family members buried within, and while FindAGrave.com lists a number of interred as inscribed on the visible grave marker, there are likely names missing.

Another peculiar area of the cemetery is the “den” area that sets against the back boundary near the tree line of the neighboring farmland.  It has been said that a male spirit occupies this den from time to time and although we aren’t certain of his intentions, through our research we have learned that he may not be entirely open to having visitors.  We haven’t been made aware of any aggressive or negative actions by spirits in this area so we settled at this den area first.  TJ was eager to get some EMF readings and to make his attempt at capturing some EVP’s so we hit this den hard, and first.  Interestingly enough, I did capture a clearly red orb in TJ’s immediate vicinity, almost immediately.  The orb appeared as TJ was sitting inside of the den.  The skeptic in me says it’s just an orb, and the deeper skeptic in me says that my camera was catching sun-spots in my lens all afternoon.  The “believer” in me says that this red looking orb looks quite different than the other red sunspots caught throughout the day; shows up lower in the photo than the sunspots reflecting off my lens from other shots; and doesn’t seem to be subject to the same sunlight related issues the other sunspot orbs are indicative of.   Meaning, the red sunspots that occur, clearly as a result of lens flair, also show an obvious abundance of sunlight throughout the shot.  This particular red orb doesn’t appear in a photo with an exuberant amount of light.  As a matter of fact, the sunlight in this shot seems to be pretty uniform throughout.  I’ve seen many of our photographs exhibit many different types and forms of “orb”,  most of which we don’t get too excited about.  However, there is that occasional orb that causes us to take a deeper look.  I would have to classify this particular orb as one that deserves a second glance.  I openly welcome – heck, invite! – you to comment on this particular orb.  I’d love to hear what people have to say about it.

So back to this den area.  While TJ and I were investigating the den, TonyL was wandering about the nearby area snapping pictures with the digital camera.  As he was doing this, TJ and I were asking questions to any potential spirits in the area.  At one point I asked the name of the spirit I was speaking with at the time.   Flash forward to a couple of days later when I was reviewing the evidence.  For this particular batch of evidence I decided to review the audio evidence first, and the visual evidence last.   So I sifted through the different aspects of audio, wrote notes, and bookmarked the actual files, etc… In one particular spot, the point where I asked the spirit what it’s name was, I thought I may have heard a response of “Matthew”.  This was observed before I had looked at any of the video, or any of the photographs TonyL had taken.  After I finished with the audio, almost all of which I found to be less than impressive, and less than persuasive, I sifted through the photos when lo’ and behold I came across a somewhat recent headstone (within the last 40 years) that said “Matthew” on it.  It struck me, immediately.  Every now and again, as an investigator, you come across a piece of evidence, such as the EVP I thought may have been saying “Matthew” but wasn’t sure, that seems insignificant until you find another separate piece of evidence that corroborates what you thought might have been “slightly possible”.  When this happens to me it sometimes sends a shiver up my spine, lol.  I remember looking at this headstone thinking “I wonder why, of all the headstones, why is there a picture of this…. Matthew” and then it hit me.  There are those who believe that not much in this life happens by accident.  “There are no accidents”…  Maybe they’re right?  I don’t know.  It was just… very coincidental.


After this den area TJ and I went to the large and impressive Anderson Crypt, which takes up a good amount of space and at its center height is probably a good 10 to 12 f
eet heigh as measured from the floor to pinnacle.  TonyL took pictures while TJ and I attempted a run at collecting some EVP’s.   This is an area I’m glad we approached in the day time because there is no doubt in my mind that there was knocking coming from inside of this enclosed vault.  The knocking may have come from an animal nesting within the crypt but it’s “knocking” timing was incredibly close to moments we were looking for “knocking” responses from any spirits that may wish to make contact with us.  TJ did point out that there was at least 1 hole where a burrowing animal could enter the crypt, and was probably making its home within the enclosed area, safe from predators and the elements alike.  My skeptic side agrees it’s most likely an animal.  My “believer” side takes a little bit of time to tantalize the “what if’s”, but our scientific approach to all things paranormal leaves us with little choice but to reinforce the obvious: there are “burrowing” holes on both grassy sides of the crypt,  and TJ claimed to be able to look inside the crypt from at least 1 of these holes.  While we were all quite entertained by the possibility that these knocks may have been in response to some of our questions, the more likely and far more reasonable explanation would be “animal related”.

We ended our time at the Anderson Cemetery with a walk around the cemetery and shooting of some video.  The cemetery was starting to get really busy, surprisingly so.  As we were wrapping up our last 15 to 20 minutes we encountered 3 vehicles with 2 passengers each, one of which was parked and the occupants wound up touring the grounds.  I’ll say that the Anderson Cemetery wasn’t incredibly inviting, but it also wasn’t at all foreboding.  As far as addressing why people may think it’s home to eerie and suspicious paranormal activity, we definitely took note of some possible reasonings for that line of thinking.   We walked the grounds with intent to observe any such supernatural occurrences, or occurrences which could be perceived as supernatural.  I feel it may be best to stake out an area during a comfortable and relaxed time frame so we can get a general feel for the area.  If nothing else, at least we’d be able to get a lay of the land and familiarize ourselves with the surroundings, the sounds, the animals, the different wildlife we might encounter, and in cases where the outdoors is concerned, like this one, the wind patterns and how the environment impacts the natural course of gusts and/or bursts of wind.  We did find an area out past the tree line toward a neighboring farm we think may have been the Anderson family farm many years ago.  This patch of land is somewhat akin to a “strip” of land.  It looked to be roughly 40 yards wide, by at least 150 to 200 yards long, maybe longer.  It’s not flat though, it rolls quite heavily in certain places.  We got the impression that  the wind could really grab a hold of the trees and the dips in the hilly parts of this land, and that could make for some pretty eerie howls.  I, for one, would not want to be stuck down here solo at night, I can tell you that much.  There’s no light down here, also, so when it gets dark, I’m imagining it would rival the definition of the term “pitch black”.

Another visual aspect of this location is that, given the age of the cemetery, and the fact that not all of those buried here are of the same congregation, or even “religion” for that matter, there tends to be an interruption of continuity, to some degree.  There seem to be family plots, and while this is the Anderson Cemetery, dedicated to the Anderson family, at least at the start, it seems that the family grew quite large and branched out to include much more than just the “Anderson” clan.  There are clearly portions of this cemetery that are older than others, and there are clearly portions of this cemetery that have been taken care of better than others.  In looking at the overall layout of the land, and the care that’s been taken with the grounds, I’m definitely of the notion that someone needs to get down there to mow the place.  It appears to have been left to deteriorate in its own time, which is a shame because it has the potential to be a wonderfully serene location.  We’re planning our permissible night time investigation in the next 2 months and we’ll definitely be placing our “official investigation evidence” online to share with maineghosthunters.net and maineghosthunters.org members.

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