Salem's spookiest tourist traps

By GREG COOK  |  October 21, 2011


"I'm the world's biggest skeptic," explains proprietor and "licensed ghost hunter" Mollie Stewart. "That's why I got into ghost hunting. I don't believe in ghosts unless I can photograph or record them." With the earnestness of New Ager informing you about the health benefits of crystals, Stewart adds, "Yes, I have seen ghosts. Yes, I have recorded their voices. Yes, I have photographed them. . . . When they talk they sound like you and me. . . . Just because you did not see a ghost does not mean there was nothing there. . . . I hardly ever see anything without a camera. Ghosts are there for a second and then are gone." Stewart's museum purports to offer a Bigfoot skull and cast footprint, the mummified head of the Marquis de Sade (looking remarkably like a rubber mask), photos of ghosts, a vampire's heart run through with a wooden stake, and a vampire killing kit ("God knows how many people have been killed with that thing"). Her tour visits a supposedly haunted restaurant, a haunted book publisher, haunted condos, and witchcraft hysteria sites, including an office building at 10 Federal Street where the colonial jail stood. Stewart: "They have a very high turnover of tenants. I wonder why."

192 Essex Street | $10 museum, tour $13 ($21 for both) | 978.745.0138 |

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