Ghost stories from Cleveland Museum of Art include haunted oil painting, creepy horse's eye in armor

CLEVELAND - Is the Cleveland Museum of Art haunted? Some stories surfacing this Halloween point to some possible paranormal activity at the 1916 University Circle building.

A blog post on the museum's website said Carolyn Ivanye, the protection services manager, has been collecting these stories of odd occurrences.

One of the spookiest stories involves an oil painting that was hanging in one of the decorative arts gallery for decades. The painting, called Portrait of Jean-Gabriel du Theil at the Signing of the Treaty of Vienna by Jacques Andre Joseph Aved, has had some eerie circumstances behind it.

The posting said it has been reported that some people have seen the likeness of the man in the painting standing in the gallery staring at the painting of him.

Night watchmen have reported that their flashlights turn off as they walk into the gallery, and even construction workers with no knowledge of the phenomenon said the same issue happened to them. The lights would come back on as soon as they left the room.

NewsChannel5 anchor Lee Jordan said she could feel a temperature difference as soon as she walked into that gallery – even though there is no difference in the ventilation system.

The painting was eventually moved to storage. It's not clear if these issues prompted the move, but other problems that seemed to always happen in that corner of the gallery, like water leaks and electrical shorts, stopped when the painting was taken away.

In the armor court, some staff at the museum have reported that the horse's eyes in one of the pieces follow them as they walk through that part of the 20th century building. Sometimes at night, the tapestries can be seen rippling and stirring in a non-existent breeze.

So, can an individual object be haunted? The Manchester Paranormal Society in Connecticut says yes.

""Most items that are considered haunted are imprinted with residual energy. Some items can store the energy of human emotions. Most items can relinquish this energy after a few seconds to minutes, while others can hold onto and release residual energy more slowly. Usually imprints are stronger when there was tragedy or strong emotions involved," the organization posted on its website .

And the blog references one other possible paranormal story, in which museum employees have apparently seen one of the museum's former directors, William Mathewson Milliken , walking through the galleries. Staff looked at old photographs in the archives and realized it was him.

All of these strange incidents have been reported in the museum's original 1916 building -- not in any of the additions.

Do you believe in ghosts? Chime in with your thoughts or personal experiences in the comment box below.

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