True stories of old Houston and Houstonians: historical and personal sketches / by S. O. Young.

32 TRUE STORIES OF OLD
do nothing but look. It scared me at first, but I got him in
the buggy and drove back to town, took him to the hotel and
had him put to bed.
"The strange part of the whole thing is that the professor
never knew a thing about going hunting. The next day when
I met him he said: 'You rascal, you promised to take me hunting
yesterday and never showed up.' I tried to convince him
that he had been out with me, but had to give it up. Finally I
saw it worried him, so I dropped the subject. I left half the
chickens at the hotel for him but I don't know whatever became
of them."
EVERYBODY IS AFRAID OF GHOSTS.
I DON'T care who he is, where he comes from or what he does,
when I hear a man say he is not afraid of ghosts, I simply
do not believe him. I will not go so far as to say that
I think he is lying, but I will say that I think he is self-deceived
and talks that way because he has never been tested and does
not know whether he is afraid of them or not. There is a certain
amount of latent superstition in every man, which is as
much a part of his general make-up as is the color of his hair.
This superstition may lie dormant throughout his entire life, just
the same, and will spring into activity on the -first favorable
opportunity.
About the most material, hard-headed man I ever knew was
Tobe Mitchell, who was managing editor of the Houston Post in
1883. He hooted at the very idea of haunted houses, ghosts and
all those sort of things, and expressed a great desire to spend
a night in a so-called haunted house I had told him about. I
sat down and gave him a detailed and truthful account of what
had happened to me, and when he found that he was to neither
see nor hear anything, and was simply going to feel that the
room was full of ghosts, all anxious to catch him off his guard
so they could nab him, he backed out ignominously. He still
swore the whole thing was a lot of rot, but he absolutely refused
to enter the room after I had made all the arrangements
for him to occupy it. My story got on his nerves and brought
out all the latent superstition he had in him. It was all there,
though he knew nothing of its existence. If he was not afraid
of ghosts, why did he back out?
Now, what made me think of ghosts at all was the fact that
Sunday I took a walk out through Sam Houston Park, and
while there I thought of an old single-story, two-room brick
building that stood for years in front of the old Nobles residence
on San Felipe Street-or rather road. Just when that old build-

Young, Samuel Oliver. True stories of old Houston and Houstonians: historical and personal sketches / by S. O. Young.. Galveston, Texas. The Portal to Texas History. http://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth24646/. Accessed November 27, 2014.