CNY Ghost Hunters investigates paranormal activity since 1997 – The Daily Orange


Pamela Mossotti, the president of CNY Ghost Hunters, said the first thing she wanted to be as a child was a ghost hunter. While Mossotti said she always wanted to experience the paranormal, nothing happened until she was 38 years old.

Mossotti was cleaning up from an event that was hosted in a “very old building.” She was one of four people left in the building, and they were sitting at a table together.

“And all of a sudden upstairs, I heard this really loud jump and then boom-boom-boom-boom footsteps, very clear,” Mossotti said. She asked the woman in front of her if her daughter was still here, to which she replied, “no, she left an hour ago.”

Mossotti ran up the stairs, and nobody was there. She said she felt like her childhood dream of having a paranormal experience had come true.

It was in late 2007 when Mossotti joined the CNY Ghost Hunters. The organization, founded in 1997, investigates the paranormal while also raising funds for historical sites. Members present their evidence and offer groups to come along to ghost hunt, Mossotti said. She added that historical places get little funding, especially from New York state.

fort ontario

Fort Ontario is a historic fort located in Oswego, New York. Courtesy of CNY Ghost Hunters

“I think the charity events is probably the best thing we do. It’s part of the fundraising at Fort Ontario, which is pretty cool because this year it made (Fort Ontario) an extra $1,700,” Caroline Lamie, a member of CNY Ghost Hunters, said.

Lamie works at Fort Ontario, a historic site where the ghost hunters do a majority of their events. She adds that the members are all history buffs.

The group makes a connection with the person that owns or oversees the site. Mossotti will either call the owner, or other people who run the location, or will drive out to assess the location and decide how many members can come.

Mossotti said it’s great when the whole group can go and everyone can experience the site together. But the size of the site and the availability of members dictates who can go on different investigations. The group has 19 members and are looking to add more people. But the group is invite-only, she said.

“We need to vet the people and make sure that they work within the group because honestly, we’re a family,” Mossotti said.

CNY Ghost Hunters have different specialties within the group. At investigations, Mossotti said some people are better at getting electronic voice phenomena, also known as EVP, while others focus on photography or videography.

haunted locations in cny

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The members come from all over central New York. The group investigates local sites but also goes on trips across the country together. Mossotti said she’s always the one that plans group trips, and one of them was to Mary-Penn Bed and Breakfast in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania.

Mary-Penn B&B, built in the 1700s, was once a plantation. Mossotti said the house is divided on the border of Maryland and Pennsylvania. The former owner would keep slaves on the Maryland side of the house to avoid them from being freed on the Pennsylvania side.

Mossotti said that she had gone to the location before the investigation to talk to the owner. But while she was there, she believes the ghosts did not like her.

During the investigation, Mossotti was sitting in a chair with her back closest to the chains that were still hung on the wall. Soon, she would suddenly have terrible internal pain.

“I felt like someone was literally reaching into my back, grabbing my kidneys and squeezing them,” Mossotti said.

She said she didn’t think anything of it until she got back to her bed and breakfast. Within an hour and a half, she said she started to get very ill. She said she couldn’t stop throwing up all day. Almost 24 hours later, one of the members came into her room and raised her shirt.

“I feel burning on my back and I’m like, ‘ow, what is that, it burns,’” Mossotti said. “They ‘go, um, it’s holy water.’ And I didn’t think anything of it, but holy water shouldn’t burn.”

Fifteen minutes after getting splashed with holy water, Mossotti completely recovered and was starving asking her fellow members for Milky Way bars.

It took her two years to admit to herself that she picked up an attachment from the Mary-Penn B&B and her friends released it by putting the holy water on her back.

But, Mossotti said she has to be a skeptic above all. In college, Mossotti was a biology major and calls herself a scientist at heart.

“We’re not experts, there are no experts in this field at all by any means,” Lamie said. “We don’t know what (the paranormal) are looking for and what they expect from us.”

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