The history of the Salesian School begins with a man named David Haight. He first built the mansion on the property around 1834-1864. When he passed away in 1876, he was buried in the nearby Haight Mausoleum, which was built for his family in 1872. The property eventually foreclosed in 1922. In 1925 the Salesian Fathers purchased the property for approximately $61,000 and opened it as a Catholic resident school for boys. The mansion served as an administration building, and the main schoolhouse was constructed in 1931. On the night of August 9th, 1964, a nine year old boy named Paul, fell to his death after falling 36 feet off the roof. For some reason, the case has only been re-investigated last year. The new coroner's observation is that the distance from the boy's body to the wall seems too far to suggest he had simply fallen off the roof. Disputes over the time of death, uncooperative staff, and student records missing in a 1970 fire, have all been dilema's in solving the cause of the boy's death. After the boy's death, the school's enrollment declined, although nothing points to the boy's death being the cause, and it was closed in the fall of 1985. It operated as a youth center afterward, until the campus closed in 1991 when the order sold the property. The mansion has since been condemned after a collapse on one side.
The legend of the Salesian is indeed based on fact. A 9-year-old boy attending a summer camp in 1964 at the Salesian School in Goshen, climbed to the roof at night and mysteriously fell off. Village police suspected foul play, but had run out of leads, especially since a fire six years after the death destroyed records of all those at the camp that summer. Thus, it is believed that the spirit of the 9-year-old boy still haunts the school. Stories have circulated for years about the abandoned school building, causing mostly teens (like me) to trespass on the site late at night.
The Salesian School has appeared in many Times Herald Record articles. Some of these include:
October 02, 2002 - 'Priests accused of abusing kids years ago at Salesian center'June 12, 2003 - 'Two teens charged in Salesian school fire'
November 13, 2005 - 'Searching for spirits at school'
^^ That last such newspaper article, talks about 4 detectives that visited the Salesian School after dark with a camera. The video footage included flying orbs, thermal measurements of cold pockets in the basement air, pictures of a pentagram drawn on the floor of a room, and audio recordings of subnormal sounds.
I thought it only natural to start this blog with my first and most loved haunted places. It is in fact, the place that sparked my interest in chasing ghosts and finding the unexplainable. Tacked up on my wall, is a newspaper article from May 7, 2005 titled 'Spirited Demolition'. It is talking about the demolition of the old Salesian School in order to build something new in its place. This is still taking place, and it just broke my heart. Do I believe that something ghostly lives here? Yes, I do. I spend many summer nights here with my friends, trying to find something to show us that the stories are true. What we found was the distinct laugher of a little boy even though we were out very late, and the Salesian School is located in a wooded desolate area. We also seen orbs in a video tape we made, and could sware we heard footsteps every now and again. The death of the boy is still unknown and the case was just recently re-opened, but with no success. Thus, the case of the 9 year old boy from Salesian is still unsolved.