Footsteps, tablecloths that move and a music box that turns on at random are just a few of the paranormal activities at Government House in Regina.
The traditional residence of the Lieutenant Governor was built in 1891. In 1945, it was leased to the Department of Veterans Affairs to be used as a convalescent home for returning veterans until 1957.
The famous ghost of Government House is believed to be the spirit of a former employee who served during the residence of Lieutenant Governor Archibald Peter McNab between 1936 and 1945.
“The cook that was here Cheun Lee. He’s the only individual that’s noted that has passed away in Government House,” explained executive director Carrie Ross. “Often our staff have heard his flip flops walking up the stairs or across the stairs just at random times throughout the year. So that’s the ghost that we call Howie.”
Ross says she was a skeptic before she came to work at Government House, but after six years of witnessing events she can’t explain, she is a believer now. Certain electronics stop working in the month of October then start up again in November.
“There was a tablecloth under the sword that we have in the main hall in the museum and the sword case would probably be 300 pounds at least,” she said. “Every day one of our commissionaires, John Cain, would come in, and the tablecloth would be taken off the table from under the sword and thrown to the other side of the room.”
Since moving the tablecloth permanently to another spot, it has never moved. In the upstairs nursery room, there is an old music box that doesn’t always work but occasionally starts chiming at random.
Ross says she believes the spirits that haunt the building are friendly caretakers, there to ensure that the place is kept up the way they want it for the future.
On Friday, Oct. 30, Government House is hosting a family friendly event called Bump in the Night. The annual Victorian style Halloween party runs from 6 to 7:30 p.m. and features a magic show and a mystery tour along with crafts. Ross says last year there were more than 1,000 people who attended the event to take in the slightly spooky and historical atmosphere of the building.