Based in Brooklyn, NY, I write about all things creepy and strange. My book based on the real haunting of Doris Bither (The Entity 1982 movie) will be released soon. Got a question? Drop me a line.



14 year old Rachel Lambert thinks she has photographed the ghost of writer Washington Irving (“The legend of Sleepy Hollow”, “Rip Van Winkle”) while taking a walking tour of Irving’s cottage.

Rachel is an aspiring writer and has since taken the “apparition” as a sign sent to her from Washington Irving himself to inspire the young girl.

Listen, I’m all for encouraging kids to excel in education. Arts, sciences, literature, sports…..what have you; But you don’t have to lie to a child to encourage them. Especially about telling them that some ethereal manifestation is telling her to become an author. Children will figure things out as they experience life, just let them live their own.

Maybe I’m being to hard on the parents and adults here, but when you read statements like the following, what do you expect?

Rachel’s father Ed believes that his daughter’s sighting of the spirit may not have been a sheer streak of luck. Just before the family stopped outside the cottage, they were having a conversation with the guide about Rachel’s achievements as an English honors student and her dream of becoming a writer. They additionally spoke about her interest in Sleepy Hollow and how she had planned out sights to see and goals for the trip, which included stopping at Washington Irving’s grave in the Sleepy Hollow cemetery beforehand. The family thinks that Irving’s spirit may have overheard this conversation and acted. Perhaps Irving’s thoughts were, “I’m gonna let her see this and do this for an aspiring author,” as Rachel’s father put it.

Is it me, or isn’t it apparent that what little Rachel has photographed is sunlight reflecting off the window screen?

Here’s some advice to Rachel:

Listen, strive to become a writer. Write until your heart is content. For all you know your last years in high school you might want to pursue a different path. Just do what you feel like doing, and do it well.

Full source: Tarry Town Patch.com

On June 26, 14-year-old Rachel Lambert saw something a bit unusual in a photograph she took earlier during her trip to Washington Irving’s Sunnyside.

After seeing Tim Burton’s film, “Sleepy Hollow,” Rachel pursued her interest in the paranormal and convinced her family to take a trip from Rotterdam, N.Y. to see what the town of the horseman is really like.

They ended up wandering the estate of Tarrytown’s Sunnyside and as they did, Rachel saw something strange in a window of Irving’s cottage. She snapped a picture and moved on, as not to miss any of their tour guide’s fascinating historical speech. When Rachel got home the next night and viewed the picture on the 27-inch screen of her computer, she found that the creator of the Legend of Sleepy Hollow had not let her down.

She and her family were able to make out a figure that looks like the head and upper body of a ghost holding a quill pen. Rachel determined that before her eyes was a picture of the ghost of Washington Irving.

Rachel’s father Ed believes that his daughter’s sighting of the spirit may not have been a sheer streak of luck. Just before the family stopped outside the cottage, they were having a conversation with the guide about Rachel’s achievements as an English honors student and her dream of becoming a writer. They additionally spoke about her interest in Sleepy Hollow and how she had planned out sights to see and goals for the trip, which included stopping at Washington Irving’s grave in the Sleepy Hollow cemetery beforehand. The family thinks that Irving’s spirit may have overheard this conversation and acted. Perhaps Irving’s thoughts were, “I’m gonna let her see this and do this for an aspiring author,” as Rachel’s father put it.

When Historic Hudson Valley, the organization entrusted to maintain the estate, was contacted, spokesperson Rob Schweitzer said he was “unaware” of any ghosts at the estate.

But some ghost enthusiasts maintain the Sunnyside is known for holding the spirit of Washington Irving.

“The legend says he still haunts the house,” said Donna Davies, of Haunted Hudson Valley. “He passed away in the house. If he was going to haunt any place he would haunt Sunnyside.”

Read more: Tarry Town Patch.com

  • jbondo

    Why that’s the famous writers ghost if I’ve ever seen one. In fact I hear he only shows himself to aspiring writers.

  • GL

    Irving sure had a giant head.

  • Rachel Lambert

    Hi Javier,

    I appreciate your interest in my experience, but I have to point something out.
    Seeing Irving’s ghost, this didn’t make me want to become an author. I’ve been writing for years, and have always had a passion for it. My parents are not telling me that I have to become an author because of this experience. They have always been my greatest support in working to achieve all of the goals I want to accomplish. Plus, as of right now, writing is just a passion of mine. I’m not, and they’re not, saying that’s what I am or will become. I am pursuing my interests in various areas: directing, music, art, acting, and writing. I don’t know what the future holds, but I’m going to follow my dreams, and my parents, family, friends, and supporters have always been behind me. They have never told me that I have to be someone I don’t want to be, but have encouraged me to set and achieve the goals I set for myself. My parents have been my greatest inspiration in life! They taught me the Law of Attraction (that I can achieve whatever I wish for in life if I believe in myself), helped with my YouTube videos, bought me software programs so that I could pursue my video-making, bought a brand new 27 inch Apple computer so that I could increase my computer skills, gave me instruments and lessons so that I could increase my knowledge of music, and have always believed in me and supported whatever I strived for.
    I know that you probably weren’t trying to sound offensive, but I just had to make it clear that others are not telling me who to become, but supporting all that I want to be.

  • Rachel Lambert,

    Thanks for clearing it up. The report reads differently.

    Sounds like you have a good head on your shoulders and good support. Keep on this path and you’ll do great things.

    As far as the “ghost” goes:

    There isn’t a ghost there. It’s just the effects of pareidolia.

    -Javier

  • Rachel Lambert

    Javier,

    We are all entitled to our own opinions, so it is your decision whether you believe something is there or not.
    Thanks for the time and interest, and yes, I am very grateful to have such amazing support!!!

  • Thanks for keeping it real, Javier.

  • Rachel Lambert,

    Yes of course we are both entitled to our own opinions.

    The reason why I posted this up is because sometimes people’s perception, or opinions can be greatly influenced by the brain’s attempt at making patters of random things (pareidolia) influenced and by those around them. Power of suggestion.

    It’s not really about if I believe in ghosts or not, it’s more about making sense of what we know to exist.

    For example, do you believe that what you photographed is really the ghost of Washington Irving and a quill pen? The mouth, shoulder, ear and eyes that were pointed out on the video are monstrously grotesque.

    What you captured is just the sun’s reflection off a dented window screen. That’s all.

    To say that this is the ghost of Washington is really quite silly. Unless Irving’s ghost is suffering from Elephantiasis.

    -Javier

  • Danny

    Yes, I pointed this out on a similar post over at Phantoms and Monsters a few days ago…

  • Marcin

    GL summed it up pretty well… he sure did have a huge head if thats the case.

    Really tho, you see what you want to see on photo like this one, to me it’s a sign to clean the windows – to her it’s a ghost 😉

  • jbondo

    Rachel,

    Aside from this subject I am glad to see that you have plenty of aspirations. You are coming of age in a unique time where it’s much easier to gain attention and notoriety. That said, it’s important to take great care in what you expose to the world.

    Many young people don’t realize the advantages they have. That apple computer is like have having the world at your fingertips. Keep your dreams alive and by all means take advantage of every opportunity.

  • hall442

    Agreed, Javier. Just a reflection. Nothing more. I had the same sort of experience with a ghost group several years ago, that insisted the picture of a water stain on the back of a graveyard tombstone, was the face of an old man, watching us during an investigation. *sigh*

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