The MVD Ghostchasers and the Verde Valley Spirit Seekers presented a paranormal workshop in Clarkdale and Cottonwood, Arizona in July 2012. The group of paranormal investigators, and members from teams across the state, visited several potential haunted locations. They learned the history of these buildings, and in many cases were able to conduct mini investigations or EVP sessions at some of the sites. One of these locations was the Cottonwood Civic Center.
When going into this particular location, the organizers did not consider it to be one of the major ‘hotspots’ as a haunting or known for its ghosts. They did know the Women’s Club of Cottonwood, organized to feed the hungry, raised money to build the Cottonwood Civic Center in 1939. The Civic Center, constructed of river rock, was built with labor provided by the Works Progress Administration (WPA) and served as the town’s clubhouse. During World War ll the building was converted into temporary barracks for US Naval Cadets.
The paranormal investigators, escorted by a member of Cottonwood’s Parks & Recreation office, explored the basement and other areas of this unique building. Several of them found themselves backstage where they decided to do a dowsing exercise backed up with a recorded EVP session.
What happened next baffled the investigators. As the ladies began to ask the standard questions to the spirits, the voices of small children could later be heard chattering in the background on the audio recorder of LIPS member, Shelly. There were no children on the stage, nor anywhere else in the building. There were no children in the investigating group. Finally, one of the women asked, “Does other people know you are here in this building besides us?” You can hear a young child reply with a long drawn out, “No.”
Why are there ghost children in the Cottonwood Civic Center? Doing a bit of research we learned, according to a former Cottonwood-Oak Creek school superintendent, that in 1878 the first school was established in Cottonwood and was located on the site where the Cottonwood Civic Center now proudly stands in Old Town. The former school was an un-plastered adobe structure with only the bare minimums in the classroom. One blackboard, homemade seats and desks, and a tin water bucket with one dipper for all to use. The adobe school had been used previously by soldiers sent from Fort Whipple to protect the town and the pioneers settling in the area.
School was a happy place for children of the West. It was where they socialized and had time to forget the chores and hard work awaiting them back home on the farms and ranches. Why wouldn’t they want to return and frolic once more!
To see the location where the voices are heard of ghost children at play, visit the next event held at the Cottonwood Civic Center located at 805 N Main Street in Cottonwood, Arizona.
For more information: Debe Branning firstname.lastname@example.org