Friday, February 27, 2009

The Express-Times

BETHLEHEM | Sun Inn Preservation Association founder Hughetta Bender put her heart and soul into saving the Main Street historic site.

And some believe her soul still remains in the former 1758 hotel.

On a January visit to the inn, a Lehigh Valley-based paranormal investigation group snapped a photo of what appears to be a woman in a second floor window. The figure looks to have gray hair, glasses and be wearing a white apron.

“I said, ‘Oh, my God, that’s Hughetta,'” said Bucky Szulborski, a Sun Inn Preservation Association board member who joined the paranormal group on its investigation. “She wore a white apron.”

“For that to appear at the Sun Inn — it’s remarkable,” he said.

Bender’s likeness was far from the only paranormal observation Lehigh Valley Research and Investigation in Paranormal Activity made on two visits to the inn — Jan. 24 and Saturday.

The group caught on tape at least 15 unknown voices and what they say sounds like a half-hour long ghosts’ party in the dining room.

The group ranks the Sun Inn as among the most — if not the most — haunted place they’ve investigated.

“This place is as active as it gets,” said member Jim Fitzgerald, a Whitehall Township resident.

The group went room-by-room on both nights, asking if there were any spirits in the inn. They asked about Elizabeth Moore, a nurse who died in 1897 at the inn.

When they asked if Elizabeth was there, someone responded with the word, “Moore,” said member Steve Werner, of Bethlehem.

The response was only heard through audiotape, as were all the other unknown voices. Group members believe ghosts affect magnetic forces, so they can often only be heard on tape but not in person.

The group played many of the recordings for the media Thursday, including two instances of a strained voice saying “We’re watching you.”..