Is Rose Island Haunted? What About The Newport Tower?

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Paranormal investigators keep flocking to Newport.

We’re not sure if it’s because there are a hell of a lot of ghosts in Newport…or because ghost hunters like to eat, drink and stay in Newport on their TV network’s dime, but there have been no shortage of ghost reality shows featuring Newport. Just in time for Halloween, Rhode Island’s public television station, WSBE, will premiere an episode of New England Legends, featuring two of Newport’s most famous landmarks, the Rose Island Lighthouse and the mysterious Newport Tower.

The Herald News reports that paranormal expert Jeff Balanger, who has been working the the field for 20 years, will investigate Newport’s spookiest spots, just in time for Halloween. He wrote and researched for the Travel Channel show “Ghost Adventures” and says that there’s no place like New England for the paranormal.

“There’s so many rich tapestries in this part of the country. New England is amazing for so many reasons: It’s older here, we preserve out history, we probably all have a relative or a friend who lives in an old house with a legend attached to it, and we talk about our legends,” he said.

The eeriness of the Rose Island Lighthouse extends to the island’s history as the site of a Revolutionary War-era military fort, and the abandoned barracks’ later use quarantining the patients with cholera in 1823, he said.

If you’re thinking, ‘This sounds familiar”, it’s probably because it’s not the first time a show about paranormal investigations has poked their heads around Newport’s historic landmarks. Back in 2010, Syfy’s Ghost Hunters took their own look at Rose Island:

Lighthouses rule!  Especially on Ghost Hunters because they’re always creepy and they’re usually haunted.  This week TAPS is checking out the Rose Island Lighthouse off of Newport, R.I. where there’s some unusual activity going on…The night starts in Rose Island. There are barracks on the island that housed cholera victims exiled from Newport- many of whom never returned to the mainland.   From inside the quarantine room of the barracks people have heard voices or felt uneasy.  In the keeper’s quarters of the lighthouse folks have heard footsteps and one visitor even has a photo that appears to have caught the reflection of an apparition.  The locals think it’s the age-old lighthouse keeper, Charles Curtis.

So if you’re looking for a supernatural eye on Newport, check out Channel 36 at 8pm Wednesday and see what Jeff Balanger discovers in Newport.

Tristan Pinnock, Blast Paranormal Correspondent


Tristan's just this guy, ya know?