At this time of year when the moon looms large in the early evening sky, the wind sighs and teases the leaves still clinging fiercely to tree branches… ghosts and eerie tales abound. This is the season of Halloween and tall tales told by moonlight. Speaking of tales… we have a few to share.
Many of you are perhaps new to our campus, so you might not yet be acquainted with our UAlberta ghosts and hauntings. The most famous of these eerie tales is also the oldest. In 1918 the world was in the grip of a deadly influenza pandemic. The university opened the newly built Pembina Hall as a temporary hospital. Once the crisis was over, the building once again welcomed students. Legend has it, though, that the spirit of a nurse still lingers and has been seen hurrying through the halls of the building. Some think she’s forever searching for her fiancé, who died in the epidemic (Smith, 2015).
There are other infamous ghosts stubbornly refusing to leave our campuses (can you blame them?) and Our UAlberta alumni – who would definitely be “in the know”- have produced a video dramatizing some of the more famous sightings and creepy campus events: UAlberta Ghost Stories.
Piqued your interest? Our libraries have a plethora of books about the paranormal and stories of ghosts, tricksters and hauntings. Have a look…. If you dare!
If stories about the paranormal intrigue you, have a look at these books. The first title A History of Ghosts, told by Peter Aykroyd, tells the strange and delightful story that inspired the mega-hit film “Ghostbusters”! If short stories are your preference, these anthologies draw on folklore and tales from close to home.
Perhaps you enjoy the frisson of fear that the classic tales of horror, hauntings and witchcraft can instill. These are a few to try – From the classic tales of Edgar Allan Poe to the contemporary stories of Eden Robinson (the Trickster trilogy) and my personal favourite.. Ami McKay’s magical The Witches of New York.
We hope you have enjoyed this visit to the dark and creepier side of our collections. If you find yourself in one of the quiet corners of our library and the lights flicker in the stacks or a cold breath of air chills your neck… do not fear, our intrepid colleagues at our library service desks would be delighted to assist. Ask us!
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Smith, B. (2015, October 22). Eerie tales from the crypt. Folio.