“My sister stopped, terrified, then the man looked up at her and vanished.”
“It still makes the hairs on the back of my neck stand up when I think about it. But that’s just the tip of the iceberg in our house.”
The house Lawrence speaks about is the Monte Cristo Homestead in Junee, NSW – Australia’s most haunted house. Here, strange apparitions, phantom footsteps and unearthly noises are ordinary occurrences.
Three days after the Ryan family bought the property in 1963, paranormal activity began.
“Coming up the driveway, they saw lights blaring from every window, like someone was having a party. Driving further up, suddenly, every light in the house turned off at the same second,” Lawrence says.
It’s not just humans who are targeted by the supernatural force.
“We can’t keep animals in the house,” he says. “We’ve found an entire coop of chickens with their necks broken.”
Mediums say the house is built on quartz crystal, which is a huge amplifier for supernatural activity.
“It’s like an antenna to the spirit world,” he explains.
“A week doesn’t go by without someone having an encounter or capturing something on film,” Lawrence says proudly.
“People hear talking, pans banging and smell everything from fires to cigar smoke. Guests say that they’ve had bedsheets pulled off them in the middle of the night.”
And then there’s the latest spirit to join the undead in the house: Lawrence’s father.
“Within a few months of him passing, a guest on one of our tours captured a picture of him,” he says. “He always said he would come back and haunt the place!”
Lawrence still lives within the property boundaries in a home he built on the acreage. But true he has never spent another night in the main house.
“Ultimately, growing up in a haunted house, the one thing that I’ve learned is that we shouldn’t be scared of the dead,” Lawrence says. “It’s the living that we need to worry about.”
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