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Thread: Zena, Oregon, new ghost town

  1. #21
    Tsarevna's Avatar
    Tsarevna is offline Rawk Crawlin GPS Totin Ghost Towning Expert
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shannonann View Post
    I went by Friday night at midnight and deputies were removing 5 teenagers from the fenced property. So I decided to go back on Sunday about noon with my boyfriend.
    What the ****? Why would you visit a ghost town at midnight?


    Quote Originally Posted by Shannonann View Post
    Good research on your article, but the "reports" that its haunted are false. I read all this stuff on the internet and it had me intrigued, so since I live in Salem, I visted the church.
    No, nothing I said is false. I reported that the TOWN SITE is reportedly haunted by a spectre of a bicyclist.

    In plain-as-day English, that means somebody or some people have seen an ethereal image of a person riding a bike through the town.

    I said nothing about the church or cemetery being haunted.

    If you somehow came away with that impression, well, I don't know what to say. How many people do you know ride bikes inside a church.

    Quote Originally Posted by Shannonann View Post
    So here is your moral for the day; find out for your self what true and whats not, before you pass it on.
    To quote Cartman: "WHATEVER! I'll do what I want."

    All you did was listen to an opposing local rumor and then come here to tell me that I shouldn't post something until it meets with your standards (IE visit site before posting...)That is so rude it's unreal. I hope you were not referring to me when you made that comment...but it sure looks like it.

    Apparently, due to the stupid stories kids have made up about "ghosts", they have had extensive vandelism and property damage. An american flag from the late 1800's and a large organ was stolen.
    Drug addiction, poverty and the fact that antiques are worth a lot of money is a more likely reason for antiques getting stolen from a place. I'm sure 1800's flags and organs are valuable...


    You know, the church faces east too. Even though all the ghost sites say otherwise.
    All of them? My article, (which happens to be on gt.com,) which it appears you are criticising, does not say which direction the church faces...

    I take the time to do hours of research, pour over internet photo archives, take the time to re-size, retouch, and upload pictures, plus write an essay for free, for the benefit of the public...

    And this is what I get? Snotty remarks?

    "Dont post as ghost til ya been there!"

    How mean! Be respectful of the people that actually do the research and work, that's your moral for the day.

  2. #22
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    Default Zena Church

    My aunt is one of a handful of old people that regularly attend the Zena church.

    There are more people on religious holidays, about 70 this last Easter Sunday.

    I can think of any real good reasons to trespass or to vandalize the property. Why not just try a Quija board to commune with ghosts and haunts, and leave private property alone.

  3. #23
    Darin's Avatar
    Darin is offline Rock Crawlin GPS Moving Map Totin Trailblazing Expert Ghost Towner
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zardac View Post
    Why not just try a Quija board to commune with ghosts and haunts, and leave private property alone.

    ZOINKS!!!

  4. #24
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    Default Zena is NOT Bethel & is NOT haunted

    Well, first, Zena is not Bethel. They are 5 miles apart. So the Bethel cemetary is not at the Zena church. There is a graveyard at Zena, but it isn't Bethel. There probably is a graveyard at the Bethel Church also. Some websites put the Bethel graveyard in Zena. Then for those posters who talk about the ghost-town of Zena (and the bicyclist). If they actually saw a town then they saw a "ghost-town" as in - it doesn't exist. There is no town there. No buildings except the church. No remains or evidence of previous structures, so if you saw a town, go to AA and dry-out (or quit snorting or popping whatever drugs you take). And yes, I have been there many times as family is buried there. I will be there for the sesquicentennial on 1 November 2009. It is a nice place to visit in the middle of the day, but it is NOT haunted.

  5. #25
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    Well as I believe we do need Newbie GTer's to grow and believe in what people like Tsvarna, Laura, Brian, Old Judge Joel and the list goes on but I would hope the newbies would respect the oldtimers and take the time to learn what morals are.

  6. #26
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    alright, kids, let's all try to get along here.

    Tsarvena, I for one have always appreciated your research and submissions. keep in mind that there is a mixed bag of individuals that frequent this site, so don't take all of their feedback as having the same value other valid feedback.

  7. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tsarevna View Post
    I see it on the map!



    From what I can tell, Derry is now called Rickreal. (Rick-ree-all.) I've been there, and it probably qualifies as a ghost-town too. It has 1 or 2 banks that operate, some stores and gas station. However, there's a grand downtown with many brick 1800s buildings, and many seem to be empty.

    I've got to go back there and take some photos, if only gas wasn't $3.47 a gal!
    Derry is not Rickreall. Derry is just outside of Rickreall, all that exists of Derry is a wide spot in the road. There is a grain elevator in about the right location as well as an Agricultural Supply store and now a Dairy.
    Rickreall does not have any banks, nor a "grand downtown with many brick 1800s buildings". If it ever had that, they have been gone for decades.
    I wonder what town you were in?

  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tsarevna View Post
    What the ****? Why would you visit a ghost town at midnight?

    I take the time to do hours of research, pour over internet photo archives, take the time to re-size, retouch, and upload pictures, plus write an essay for free, for the benefit of the public...

    And this is what I get? Snotty remarks?

    "Dont post as ghost til ya been there!"

    How mean! Be respectful of the people that actually do the research and work, that's your moral for the day.
    Unfortunately I came to these posts looking for more information on Zena. I see where this person wrote up a general and somewhat lacking post about Zena/Spring Valley. When corrected, it seems they could only respond with rudeness.
    Almost everything in Tsarevna's original posting is on the Wikipedia site. Nothing new, and nothing that involved any research or work. If research had been done, then Tsarevna would have known that Bethel Cemetery is down the road a ways (in Bethel) and that the cemetery next to Zena/Spring Valley Church is the Zena/Spring Valley Cemetery.
    So far, I have seen 2 postings by Tsarevna and neither shows any research or work since one (Rickreall) describes some other place and Zena is just a rehash of Wikipedia.

    Zena Church is a lovely place. Hopefully one of the people who posted in response will read this and be able to answer a question I have about the Church building, and the Bell in particular. I am trying to find out when the bell was replaced. The bell in the tower today is not the bell mentioned in the stories about the church.

    Hopefully I can get time to go out there again and find one of the Zena Church trustees and talk with them. It's interesting because the church is getting a new bell tower built, the old one was in bad shape. We just completed a survey of the gravesites, and are cataloging them. Conservatively I'd say about 500 burials, but will know more after we get done cataloging all the photos.

  9. #29
    Tsarevna's Avatar
    Tsarevna is offline Rawk Crawlin GPS Totin Ghost Towning Expert
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    Quote Originally Posted by darole View Post
    Unfortunately I came to these posts looking for more information on Zena. I see where this person wrote up a general and somewhat lacking post about Zena/Spring Valley. When corrected, it seems they could only respond with rudeness.
    Almost everything in Tsarevna's original posting is on the Wikipedia site. Nothing new, and nothing that involved any research or work. If research had been done, then Tsarevna would have known that Bethel Cemetery is down the road a ways (in Bethel) and that the cemetery next to Zena/Spring Valley Church is the Zena/Spring Valley Cemetery.
    So far, I have seen 2 postings by Tsarevna and neither shows any research or work since one (Rickreall) describes some other place and Zena is just a rehash of Wikipedia.

    Zena Church is a lovely place. Hopefully one of the people who posted in response will read this and be able to answer a question I have about the Church building, and the Bell in particular. I am trying to find out when the bell was replaced. The bell in the tower today is not the bell mentioned in the stories about the church.

    Hopefully I can get time to go out there again and find one of the Zena Church trustees and talk with them. It's interesting because the church is getting a new bell tower built, the old one was in bad shape. We just completed a survey of the gravesites, and are cataloging them. Conservatively I'd say about 500 burials, but will know more after we get done cataloging all the photos.
    Amazing. When people go out of their way to criticize me unfairly, they are flabbergasted as to why I may not appreciate it. You do realize you could have said "the information I'm looking for is not found here" in a nice way, don't you?

    You just insulted my essay by calling it lacking, and a wiki rehash. But I guess I'm the rude person here...

    On ghosttowns.com, the essays are supposed to be short and sweet, as requested on the submission page. (I'll let that one pass, since this is your first post here ever, and you may not know that.)

    I did do my research. I don't think you have viewed the Ghosttowns.com page for Zena. Go to the top of the this website and use the pull-down menu to select Oregon. Find Zena there. It seems that you are basing your assumptions about me off this forum post alone. (The forum is where we chat and banter, it is not the main part of the website.)

    I dug through dozens and dozens of photographs from the Salem Public Library archives to find pictures of Zena, including the hand-drawn map of the town (including stores, blacksmith shops, roads etc) from an old-timer resident. I painstakingly copied them from the library website, re-sized/cropped/edited/photoshopped them accordingly to ghosttowns.com strict standards, and posted them for all to see. I am the person who submitted the town and put it on this website. I have assisted a few members of this site with links or copies of old maps that include Zena.

    I used Oregon Geographic Names as a source to research Zena. Amazingly, wiki tends to look like my article, because reference #1 on the wiki, called Polk County Place names, plagiarized Oregon Geographic Names. No wonder my article looks like a "wiki re-hash!"

    Yes, I used the internet in my research, is why the error about Bethel Cemetery made it into my essay. I am not in control of the ghosttowns.com website, so I have no power to correct it. If I had a million dollars in gas/hotel money and the time to comb through the archives of Polk county libraries and halls or records, I would.
    But when you're doing the best you can with what you have, sometimes the ideals are not possible.

    I eventually made my way to Zena and visited the site in person. I'm sorry if you think I was rude to the young person who went there at midnight trying to get their spook on.
    I was not at all pleased to be addressed in such a snotty tone from a ghost-hunter who wanted to visit the cemetery without permission at MIDNIGHT. Sorry, but I've seen too many cemeteries defaced, graffitied and otherwise destroyed by the immature antics of drunken youth, including goofy paranormal spook chasers.

    The bank I was talking about was nearer to Dallas than Rickreal, which is a town right next door. I apologize profusely for making such a monumental error. I have only been to Polk County twice in my lifetime, and got the towns which are just a few miles apart, confused.

    The reason you can't find out about the bell is that there is a startling lack of information about Zena, in general!

    There are very few photographs of the town available on the internet, and I am proud to be the person who dug them up from Salem's archives and made them all easily accessible here. If doing research was easy, and if writing up an in-depth essay about Zena was easy, it would have been done before.

    While you were doing your "grave project", what did the locals say about the bell?

  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tsarevna View Post
    The bank I was talking about was nearer to Dallas than Rickreal, which is a town right next door. I apologize profusely for making such a monumental error. I have only been to Polk County twice in my lifetime, and got the towns which are just a few miles apart, confused.

    The reason you can't find out about the bell is that there is a startling lack of information about Zena, in general!

    There are very few photographs of the town available on the internet, and I am proud to be the person who dug them up from Salem's archives and made them all easily accessible here. If doing research was easy, and if writing up an in-depth essay about Zena was easy, it would have been done before.

    While you were doing your "grave project", what did the locals say about the bell?
    Still Don't know what town you were talking about for Rickreall. It doesn't have a bank, and it would be the closest to Dallas. Nor does it have an 1800s Brick main street. I am wondering just where you were... I'd have thought Independence, but those buildings have been in use as long as I can remember. Dallas itself has many buildings, but only lately (last year or so) has it seemed empty.

    As for the Bell, I didn't know it wasn't original until I was going through all the photographs we took. Since they are re-doing the bell tower on the church, it happens to be on a skid on the ground right now, so I took the opportunity to photograph it as thoroughly as I could. Another trip to Zena is planned, to see if we can locate the trustees of the Church and ask them. Plus, I would like to take some photos inside the Church, it wasn't opportune since the inside is shrouded with dust covers due to the construction.

    I am sorry you are upset about the writeup and photos you posted about Zena. But putting Zena in a search engine finds those photos and the wiki site. The people who responded to you, while one may have gone at night (I agree, dumb) the rest of their posting indicates a return at daylight. And like it or not, it isn't research if you only copy what is on Wikipedia. They are a handy site, but often wrong or misleading. I spend hours pouring over the plats looking for cemeteries and owners. There are some good histories on Zena, you just have to expand the search to "Spring Valley" and then all the names of the people who founded it. But even with all that, the books and online info still doesn't mention the bell every being replaced. But the bell itself tells a completely different story (the name of the casting company, the location and the date are all cast into it, and they don't match the "official" history at all). So far, I haven't been able to locate any pictures older than the ones on the Salem library site, and those show this bell (judging by the support structure).

    One fascinating thing about the church and bell, originally the bell was fully visible in the tower. Louvers were added later, then plexiglass over the louvers. The builders tell me they are trying to build it authentic and "better" so that they can leave it open and visible again without worry of water or animals getting into the Church. They already have skunk problems, don't need to add birds and squirrels to the problems.

    My concern is graveyards and architecture. I have Bethel Cemetery on my list, and Bethel School to photograph. There are 2 others in the area, on private land, and I have the records of who currently owns the cemeteries and on whose land they are. Just have to work it into my schedule. At least one is considered "lost" since the last known visitor (who didn't take photos or record any headstone information) mentioned the amount of overgrown brush and trees they had to work through to find the stones. (I wonder why they went to all that trouble, even to writing up their adventure, and yet they didn't document a single stone nor did they take any photos). The other private cemetery I have on the list, the property that surrounds it is in probate right now, so now is not the time to go there since there isn't a clear owner to ask permission from.

    I am hoping to find some cemeteries in or around some of the "ghost towns" to document, and possibly some unique architectures to capture before they fall to ruin. Or to add to the documentation of the slow decay (it is sometimes more fascinating to look at a series of pictures which show the changes that occur, and how slowly or rapidly those changes take place).

    In the case of cemeteries, the purpose behind photographing and documenting every stone is due to the vandalism that occurs. In Zena alone there are many monuments which have been broken since the photos on the Salem Library site were taken, and since some of the photos on Webshots and Flickr. Even with the fence and gates, and police, it seems people are still getting in and damaging things (one tall monument has the very top broken off. It is all metal and judging by the bends, it appears to have been ripped from the monument. At least the piece is still there, but obviously removed and just setting in place now. Idiots!).

    Still working on my site to place these photos. I have several websites I have managed (before the massive abuse of graphics and pop-ups) and sadly my personal site is still mostly directories without actual pages. It's difficult to put together a cohesive site when the photos are "random". Some stones are one photo, others may be upwards of 10 or 12. One I have has 4 family members individual stones, plus a 4 sided monument, plus foot stones for each. That's 12 right there! Plus 4 more to show both head and foot, plus distance shots of the entire set. That takes up a huge area even in thumbnails compared to many of the others which are single stones, single pictures. Plus architectural pages, plus automobiles, plus scenic pictures... I keep busy.
    I saw you are thinking of making a website. It's work, but once you get the format down... and you keep it up... it actually goes fairly easy. If you get behind on updates it feels similar to putting the site up for the first time, so don't get behind! Also make sure the server you get has plenty of space available. You will run out of room quicker than you think you will. Especially if you want to use large pictures (something I do a lot of because of the need for details to be visible). The site I use, I also administer so I have pretty much unlimited space (if I need more, I buy/install another drive) but most people don't have that as an option. So consider your requirements carefully.

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