A row of mansions along Hardeman Avenue is relieved by an impressive late-Victorian-style house built in the 1865 for Col. Hardeman. After his death, the house was owned by Municipal Court Judge M. Felton Hatcher and his wife Margaret Plant Hatcher. The house became the hub of the extended Plant family for decades and it sometimes was referred to as the “Hatcher Hash House,” Long before Hubert H. Humphrey usurped that title.
The Hardeman-Hatcher-Wilkes home sat vacant for many years until local businessman Patrick Cramer purchased the property in the early 80’s along with the two other homes that sat on both sides of the lot and developed the Victorian Village. The Victorian Village had restaurants, boutiques and a 5,000-seat amphitheater and operated as a Bed and Breakfast until it closed in 1995. The Victorian Village was then split into three separate land parcels and 1841 Hardeman was purchased by local photographer Steve Schroeder who then sold the home to advertising visionary Bart Campione who still currently owns the residence and runs his business, Third Wave Advertising in the home.
Over the years, staff and guests have reported noises, voices, disturbances and strange encounters inside the well preserved Victorian home. One staff member was so troubled by the paranormal activity that would go on in the building afterhours; they refused to work in the home after dark. A majority of the staff experiences have been initiated on the steps that lead to the second floor and the room that is perched atop the third floor that leads to a widow’s walk porch.
Employees and staff have had some unexplained experiences in this historic home and we invited Middle Georgia Paranormal Investigators and granted them full access to the house one night back in April. For a variety of reasons, sometimes people are so attached to their homes that they can't bring themselves to leave them when they pass on, and choose to stay, instead of going on to the other side. MGPI led an investigation at the Hardeman House and came up with some evidence pointing to the spirit entities who reside there, backing up personal experiences of the staff.
The investigators utilized many familiar tools of the paranormal trade, such stationary recorders, stationary cameras and EVP (Electronic Voice Phenomena) recorders, which measure voices from an unknown source which occur in the presence of paranormal entities.
Here are their findings: The recorded voices may be very quiet and could be difficult to hear in a noisy environment. We recommend listening to these recordings with headphones or in areas that are quiet with little to no background noise.
The following EVP's were captured on an EVP recorder and netted two female "sighs."
A stationary recorder placed on the 2nd floor landing captured a child and a female voice. A child EVP (Electronic voice phenomenon) that was captured has been identified as saying "Mommy." This child EVP is immediately followed by a female EVP that has been identified as saying "What?" The investigators find this astonishing in the sense that it scientifically illuminates an intelligent conversations between two seperate spirits.
This stationary recorder located on the 2nd floor landing captured a male EVP that has been identified as saying "Hey there."
Investigators also set up cameras throughout the house.
The camera placed in the parlor of the first floor captured a male disembodied voice that two investigators heard at the time of recording. The disembodied voices has been identified as male and says "Get out."
An additional camera placed on the third floor recorded an EVP of a child. This EVP was captured while there were no investigators on that floor or in that area. The child EVP was captured and identified as saying "Save us please."
A camera was placed on the top of the 2nd floor landing captured a light from the second floor area which was turned on and off without a scientific or logical explanation. No investigative team members were on the second floor at the time of this occurrence. Investigators can be audibly heard in the distance on the 1st floor of the home. After a complete review, investigators cannot offer any explanation for the light occurrence.
Whether their tricks are the work of spirits or simply the result of wear and tear on old structures is a matter of debate, but the fact remains that the people that live or work in a haunted location will have a story of something to tell.