The old library building in my small town is haunted by the ghost of a woman named Phyllis Parker, daughter of the proprietor of the Vealtown Tavern, the original use of the building during the Revolutionary War. The tavern was a regular stopping place for Continental troops enroute from Pluckemin, New Jersey to General Washington's Winter Headquarters in Morristown, as well as the Jockey Hollow encampment.

The tavern was also used by General Anthony Wayne for overnight stays when he was in the vicinity. On one visit, General Wayne had some important documents stolen. After making a careful investigation, it was discovered that a local man known as Dr. Byram was actually Aaron Wilde, a known British spy. Unfortunately, he and Phyllis were engaged. He was captured; the documents were found on him and he was hanged as a spy.

Phyllis' father had the body brought in a wooden crate to hide in his tavern until he could break the news to his daughter. Phyllis somehow suspected something was wrong and tore open the box, which according to legend, drove her mad with grief. She never left the tavern even after it became a private residence in the 1800s, nor when it became the town library in the 1900s.

Library staff, patrons, local police, curious ghost hunters, and psychics including The Amazing Kreskin have all reported seeing her or feeling her presence. In an attempt to calm her sad spirit, the Library Director issued Phyllis a library card perhaps 30 years ago. To date, she has never used it but has been seen wandering in what was once the dining room of the tavern or stands by a window. Who knows what she thinks of how much the town has changed?

reQuest 2018

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