Ringwood New Jersey
A spectral cranky owner and restless servants reside in this house museum.
This manor is quite impressive to see and well-worth the trip, as it is out in the middle of nowhere. Ringwood Manor is a 51 room, Victorian- style mansion, and is described by Han Holzer as the most interesting haunted house that he had ever visited.
The Manor and its estate was given to the state of New Jersey in 1936, and is open daily to the public as a museum, for a small fee. Tours of Ringwood Manor are available Wednesday through Sunday from 11 am to 3 pm. Come to the State Park Office Entrance for exact time. The tour begins at the southeastern (Ryerson) entrance.
Ringwood Manor sits on a prime piece of real estate, up on a hill, with a glorious view of the Saddle River and surrounding green fields. Its grounds are lovely with a fountain, and gardens. The cemetery is located down its sloping side area, through an entrance gate, (so visitors won’t get lost), and then follow the path down to the riverside.
Ringwood Manor wasn’t always a 51 room mansion. A variety of owners did various construction projects on the Manor. Although Ogden started the original smaller house in 1740, the main portion of the original house was completed in 1762, thanks to the lucrative profits gained from the local iron business. Then, George Washington’s geographer, Robert Erskine, bought the house. Robert Erskine sold the house to Martin Ryerson, who was able to afford to tear down the original house and then rebuilt it completely in 1807, due again to the soaring profits from the local iron industry. However, when the iron industry profits declined in the 1830s, this Manor house was again sold, to a Peter Cooper, who later passed the ownership of this property to his Son-in-law, Abram S. Hewitt, (who was a New York Mayor).
Annual Victorian Christmas Celebration Dining Room Photo from RingwoodManor.com
Once again Ringwood Manor had a tremendous remodeling job, under the direction of the very capable Mrs. Hewitt. She changed the then drab Ringwood Manor into its present grand, yet off-beat appearance, which is due to the fact that Mrs. Hewitt moved some previous existing buildings next to the main Mansion.
Sounds of Two Spirits
Alexander W., the Superintendent of the Manor, heard 2 different sets of footsteps, which point to two distinct entities.
These spirits could be Jackson White, servant Jeremiah or Mistress Erskine
Don’t Bother Locking Up
Doors to Ringwood Manor that had been locked and shut tight at closing time, were found by Alexander to be wide open in the morning, when none in this world could have done it.
Upstairs & Downstairs
All along the upstairs and downstairs corridors, psychic-sensitive people have felt chills and/or cold, clammy sensations/feelings.
In various areas of the house, presences have been sensed/felt throughout the years and reported since the Manor became a museum.
Local legend, though not substantiated, tells the tale of Robert Erskine’s ghost walking around with a lantern.
Spirit of Mrs. Erskine
Mrs. Erskine is described as being rudely blunt with the living she does not like.
She especially doesn’t appreciate nosy, intrusive people who can hear the complaints that a certain spectral servant is saying about her.
Being in spirit-form hasn’t given her any new virtues in civility with either her complaining servant or the living.
Hans Holzer and medium, Ethel Johnson Meyers, discovered that the main center of the hauntings was in the area of the Manor that originally was Mrs. Erskine’s bedroom in the old, original house that was torn down in the 1807 remodeling.
Through the trance of Mrs. Meyers, Holzer made contact with 3 ghosts. A) One of the restless spirits was a 19th century servant, Jackson White, who was part African American and part Native American, and lived at Ringwood Manor during that time period. B) Another one was an unhappy servant of Mrs. Erskine, Jeremiah, who bitterly accused his Mistress of mistreating him. C) The third personality was Mrs. Erskine herself, who wasn’t pleased at all with the fact that Holzer was in her Manor, and crankily told him, through the mouth of Mrs. Meyers in a trance, several times in an ungracious manner to leave and get off her property.
Original house was built in 1740, by the Ogden family, near the Saddle River, in Northeastern New Jersey. It is only about a 60 minute trip from New York City.
- The historical photo and the Interior photos are from RingwoodManor.com.
Our Haunted Paranormal Stories are Written by Julie Carr