Investigation at the Onoway Museum
, Onoway Alberta
June 18th, 2011

First of all we would like thank Terry Slemko and The Onoway and District Historial Guild

for allowing our team into this historical building , a building that our President once attended grades 1 and 2, and what is now a facinating museum dedicated to the pioneering spirit of the people of Onoway.
You can find a link to their site HERE

The original part of the school was bulit in 1921, with the remaining part of the school constructed in 1946, and the gymnasium in 1954.

Upstairs in the Museum, where our President attended grades 1 and 2, which is now full of historical displays.

The team members on the nights investigation were Brian N, Brian A and Beth.F.  We were given a short tour by Terry on the various areas of the Museum, then we set up our equipment, and conducted baseline tests.  The one area where Beth was interested in, was the loft behind in the gym behind the stage, because she had a memory of being up there with her class in grade 2, and something being 'thrown' from behind, and one of her classmates screaming and saying there was a man standing there.

The Stage in the Gym, and the Loft upstairs

We set up the multi-spectrum camera in the loft just in front of the stairs along with a digital recorder.  There was interference from the lighting above, so we conducted baseline tests so we could record the readings on the EMF meter and to see if there would be any fluctuations during any investigations in this room.

The full spectrum video camera off to the right of the picture, just above the stariwell going into the Loft.

We then went into the basement of the building, and set up a second night vision camera and digital recorder in the old coal room which is now the furnace room.  It still has the original brickwork, and was a very interesting place.

The Old Coal Shute

The team then went upstairs to the Loft to conduct an EVP session (Electric Voice Phenomenon).  Along with the digital records, we had the K2 meters, EMF meter, and a laser grid pointed towards the end of the room.

The Laser grid - used during sessions to see if there is any movement in the room, if there is, it will break the beams of light

We asked out questions and were getting really no responses.  At one point I was saying out some surnames familiar with the local area, and that is when the K2 I was holding started responding.  We then asked if there was something in the room with us - to go over to the K2 that Brian A was holding, then his responded.  Although we were getting some reactions, nothing was really clear or definate to our line of questioning.  After about 40 minutes, we all decided to go down to the coal room.

Around this point the alarm went off in the museum, and we had to call Terry out to come shut if off.

On our way to the coal room, I stopped to take a few pictures, and noticed a huge orb in the corner of one of the photos I took.  as you can see from the photo, there are what are classified as dust orbs, but this one caught our eyes.  The camera I was using is a digital kodak camera - which the flash is bright, but shouldn't reach to where the door is.  Although I just said it could be dust - I suggested we should go over to the room where the orb seemed to be outside of.

The room at the side of the gym

The room seemed to be a storage area, but almost as soon as we entered, the EMF started to climb.  We did a sweep of the room and noticed that the field was no where near the ceiling or the floor (where wiring and other natural emf's usually are located).  The field seemed to be about 2 feet off the floor, so we then proceeded to try and follow the field to see if it led to a power outlet or some other electrical cause.

We couldn't find a natural explanation, and when I was walking around, the emf went off in another area, where previously it was flatlined.  It was near the exercise machine that you see to the right of the picture, so we checked to see if it was plugged in, but it is a manual one (powered by humans, not electricity).  But the interesting thing is, the field was coming from the bag hanging from the machine (you can see it hanging to the extreme right on the machine in the picture).  We opened the bag and it only had a wooden hanger type thing in it - nothing that should have been giving off the field.  Interesting note, the K2 at the time, was getting no reaction to that area, so we double checked to make sure it wasn't an equipment malfunction, which it was not.

We conducted a quick session in this room, but soon the field disappeared.

We then proceeded to the coal room.  Brian A sat beside the old coal chute, I was positioned along the same wall, and Brian N sat in a chair close to the door.

Brian A with a K2 sitting beside the coal chute.

Because of the furnace and ductwork, it was important to conduct baseline tests again in this room before we started.  We made a note of all the 'natural' sounds in the room, along with the EMF coming off of the furnace and wiring above us.

We turned off the lights and started to conduct an EVP session.

We were told a story of a little boy nicknamed the 'piddler', who in the early years of the school, when the bathrooms were located outside, in the winter instead of braving the cold to use the washroom, would go down in the coal room, and urinate on the coal pile.  Although this is a story, we started talking to the boy who the story is based on.  Brian, started getting hits on the K2, and it seemed everytime he asked a question, it would light up.  I went near Brian with the EMF, and we started getting a reaction, as there seemed to be a field surrounding Brian.  I went around to make sure it was not the machines, and again the field seemed to be off the floor, away from the ceiling, and in mid air.  At one point when Brian A was asking out questions, Brian N's EMF would go off the same time as the K2.  I went over and sat beside Brian A again to make sure it was not interference from anything electrical in the room, and it wasn't.  The field again seemed to be situated around Brian A, a field that was not there when we first entered the room, or when we conducted a baseline test.

While I was up checking near Brian N when his EMF was getting a reaction (and the temperature changed) , thought I heared a man breath out right beside my ear.

We stayed in the room for about an hour, then deicided to split up and conduct individual evp sessions.  Brian A stayed in the coal room, while Brian N went upstairs to the old classrooms, and I went up to the Loft.  We conducted our sessions for about 20 minutes, and decided to pack it up for the night.


As with all data we review, we expect nothing, but when we do capture something, we scrutinize it before we present it to the client, and we were actually surprised by some of the data we captured on this investigation.


The only bit we captured on video, was on the multi-spectrum video camera that was left on upstairs with the light on.  About 5 minutes after everyone left the room, in the upper right hand corner, there is a white 'mist' or 'orb' that flys by and into the wall.  Now considering it might be dust, we ask ourselves, well if it is dust, why it only appeared this time on camera, and only once, when the camera was left recording in a lighted room for about 3 hours.  Also, if it was dust (because it is a very old building), we should have that effect happening when we entered or left because we would be stirring up the dust particles in the room.  The heating was not on (seeing as it was June), so it wasn't the air flow (which is another thing we always check on investigations).

Also on this video, and in quite a few spots, interesting audio was captured.  While all three of us were accounted for in other areas in the museum, a definate sound of someone hitting a stapler and paper rustling could be heard in that room.  Near the end of the video, the sound is right beside the camera, and cannot be mistaken for anything else.  Everyone who has heard the sound, without knowing what we thought it was, said that was someone using a stapler.  There is no stapler in that room.

Other audio captured at one point, you can hear someone step up behind the video camera like they were checking it out, you can hear clothes rustling and someone breath.  Again all team members were accounted for in other areas by other video, and also, in the museum, you cannot sneak up those stairs.  You can actually hear someone crossing the gym floor, and that is the only way up there, so if someone had gone up there, you would hear them coming that way for about 2 minutes.

(I will be putting up video clips from the video soon)


Along with the audio captured on the camera upstairs, we managed to capture two different sounds on both the night vision camera and audio recorder in the coal room, at the exact same moment.

Here is the Audio captured on the audio recorder, this one really captured our attention when we were reviewing the data

At the exact same moment, on the night vision video camera, we hear another sound at the exact same time

In the first one, you can clearly hear what sounds like a shovel scooping up something and scraping across the floor.  The second one, you can hear what sounds like footsteps.  Now in the video, you can clearly account where all three team members are, and that we did not move.  Even if we do move, in an investigation, we make sure to say out and make a note of it if we personally make a sound, so it can be 'marked' in the data review later.  Also, because in investigations team members 'senses' are on high alert to any noises or movement, if anyone would have heard either sound, one of us if not all of us would have gotten up immediately and investigated where it was might have been coming from.

Regarding the reaction to the K2 and the field around Brian A in the coal room, there is no evidence that this boy existed (as of yet), and even if he did, he didn't die in the room, so why would he be there?  But the reaction and the field were very interesting, and as of yet unexplained.  Again we double even tripled checked to make sure it wasn't any of the machinery or natural emf that was causing such a field, and reactions to his questions.

As far as the photo of the orb goes, its very interesting that it appeared in front of a room that we had a huge spike in our emf meter, and where we found a 'floating field' that wasn't there before, and then disappeared.  And even though it seems to be emitting its own light we still have to conclude it could possibly be something explainable, even with the reaction we had shortly afterwards in that room.


So is the Onoway Museum haunted?  We cannot say at this time that it is, but with some of the evidence that we captured, we can say that there is possibly something paranormal happening, especially with the evp's that we captured.  Now if its residual or current paranormal activity remains to be seen.

And the investigation still has left me with many questions.  I have had this memory for years of something being thrown upstairs in the Loft and one of my classmates screaming something about a man, but I have been questioning this for years if it really did happen.  It was around the same time that the house across the street was having activity (see stories for the write up), so I had been thinking was it my imagination?  That is why I was going into this investigation expecting nothing, and actually trying to prove that there was nothing there.
There are witnesses still to this day that talk about the house, but I haven't been in contact with anyone that I went to school with since the 1980's, and haven't been up in the Loft since grade 2.  But it was interesting that when we went back and I turned the corner on top of the stairs, some of that memory came back, including what book the teacher was reading.  Now if any of my former classmates remember, remains to be seen.  An interesting footnote, when talking with the board after the  presentation of our results, it was said there was a teacher in the 1940's or 1950's that did have a habit of throwing books at students!  This I never knew.

It was a great step back in time for myself, and I was really impressed with the work put into the museum.  I suggest if you find yourself in the Onoway area, to stop by and take a look.

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