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Ashley House –
Ashley House can be found on Riverdale Road (Route 5), which is in West Springfield, Massachusetts. If you wish to visit Ashley House, and perhaps spend the night at the Hotel located on the same property as this high class restaurant, take the Massachusetts Turn Pike, and get off at exit 4, and proceed south for about a mile.
Ashley House can be described as having a mix and match of old and new architectural design, depending on the whim of the owners of the building, from 1829 through the 1990s. Originally constructed in 1829, by Charles Ashley, to be the main manor house of a rather large homestead, the central part of Ashley House is done in the Greek Revival style of architecture, complete with a side hall, and arched gable windows. Members of the Ashley family lived in the house until the 1920s, when the house and property were sold. New additions, built in the architectural styles of the day started, in the 1930s, when the house was being transformed into a tavern and inn. Around the end of WW2, more remodeling was done when the tavern & property were sold again becoming a restaurant, called Matteoli's Spaghetti House. Then in 1951, the house became Vincent's Steak House, and more remodeling took place. Even more remodeling took place from '78. The final result of all these changes produced a rather sprawling, meandering building, with architecture representative of the 20th century.
Ashley House has 2 stories and a basement /cellar. The first floor traditionally houses the dining and drinking area. The second floor, originally the place Ashley family's bedrooms, now has restaurant offices. But during it's "raunchy" tavern days, the second floor had bedrooms for overnight guests, and for the paid activities with "fallen women." The basement now is partially used for banquets, and has a cellar. During the tavern days, cock fights, and boisterous parties were held there.
There are 2 minor, rather gentle ghosts,
that hang out in the basement, and a rather active ghost that
peruses both floors, keeping a sharp eye on the living, boldly
interacting with those who displease him, and also making his
presence known in many ways to others.
A) An employee of the restaurant went down to the basement on her break to have a smoke in the smoking area. Before she lit up her smoke, she happened to glance through the door that leads to the cellar. She saw a mysterious mist rising from the floor in the cellar, collecting in the doorway. There was no physical explanation for it.
2) The Ghost of Mr. Vincent
Mr. Vincent was the very successful restaurant owner of Vincent's Steak House, that was hugely popular and made a lot of money. While alive, Mr. Vincent was a very hard worker, and practically lived at the restaurant. Concerning his employees and his business, he ran a tight ship, expecting things to be done his way and at his high standards. He treated his employees fairly and appreciated those who did good work. He watched his employees carefully, to be sure things were done right.
Near the end of his life, Mr. Vincent tried to start another restaurant in the downtown area, but it flopped and closed within a year of it's opening, becoming a large financial loss for Mr. Vincent. This failure brought much embarrassment, rage and guilt to Mr. Vincent, as he should've listened to his long-time fiend and partner, who tried to talk Vincent out of this deal.
A) In the foyer of the restaurant, where Mr. Vincent used to welcome his guests, many have been exposed to an awful smell in this 4 by 4 foot square area. The smell reminds people of rotten eggs, sweet tobacco, or sewage. This foul odor didn't leave this area. Step out of the 4 by 4 foot area, and there was no smell, while stepping in this area, one smelled it again. (Enid Hoffman, a noted parapsychologist states that entities that die in a state of rage or guilt, have the ability to emit a foul odor.) It is theorized that Mr. Vincent produced this odor when he was displeased because his high standards weren't being upheld in some way by either the employees or management.
Despite the fact that Vincent's stuff in the second floor storage room was disposed of, on advice of a psychic, Vincent is still present, keeping an eye on the living, periodically appearing in the dining room. When not pleased with how the current management is running things, he still causes a foul odor to materialize.
Also, the ghosts in the basement are happily hanging around, not bothered by the living at all, just enjoying the home they loved.