Ghost Stories

The Bloodstain

A California Ghost Story 

retold by

S. E. Schlosser

The Phelps place was an old, abandoned property with a monstrous, decrepit Victorian house that was supposed to be haunted. It should have been a good resting place for the local deer hunters, but they would not go near it. A few that tried came away before midnight with tales of ghostly thumping noises, gasps, moans, and a terrible wet bloodstain that appeared on the floor of the front porch and could not be wiped away.

Phelps was an Englishman who had purchased land some 20 miles off the Mendocino coast in the 1880s. He had built a huge, fancy Victorian house all covered with gingerbread trimmings and surrounded by lovely gardens. When everything was arranged to his liking, he sent out party invitations to everyone within messenger range. It was the biggest social event of the year, with music and dancing and huge amounts of food. Sawhorse tables were set up with refreshments, and drinks were set out on the front porch. People came from miles around. The only one missing was old man McInturf's son-in-law. They had had a terrible fight that afternoon, and the boy had stalked off in a rage, threatening to get even with the old man.

Around midnight, the musicians took a recess and old man McInturf went out on the front porch with some friends. Suddenly there came the thunder of hooves rushing up the lane. A cloaked figure rode towards the lantern-lit porch. McInturf put down his drink. "That will be my son-in-law," he told his friends as he went down the steps. The cloaked figure stopped his horse just outside the pool of lantern-light. There was a sharp movement and two loud shots from a gun. Old man McInturf staggered backwards, shot in the throat and the chest. The cloaked man wheeled his horse and fled down the lane as friends ran to the assistance of the old man.

They laid McInturf down on the porch. He was bleeding heavily and they were afraid to move him much. There was some talk of fetching the doctor, but everyone knew it was too late. So much blood was pouring from the old man's wounds that it formed a pool underneath his head. McInturf coughed, once, twice; a hideous, gurgling, strangling sound that wrenched at the hearts of all who heard it. Then he died.

McInturf's body was laid out on the sofa, and the once-merry guests left in stricken silence. The servants came and wiped the red-brown bloodstain off the floorboards. The next day, a wagon was brought to the front of the house and McInturf's body was carried out onto the porch. As the men stepped across the place where McInturf had died, blood began to pool around their boots, forming a wet stain in exactly the pattern that had been wiped up by the servants the night before. The men gasped in fear. One of them staggered and almost dropped the body. They hurriedly laid McInturf in the back of the wagon, and a pale Phelps ordered the servants to clean up the fresh bloodstain.

From that day forward, the Phelps could not keep that part of the porch clean. Every few weeks, the damp bloodstain would reappear. They tried repainting the porch a few times, but the bloodstain would always leak through. In the county jail, McInturf's son-in-law died of a blood clot in the brain. A few months later, one of the Phelps servants went mad after seeing a "terrible sight" that made his head feel like it was going to exploded. Folks started saying the house was being haunted by the ghost of McInturf, seeking revenge. The property was resold several times but each resident was driven out by the terrible, gasping ghost of McInturf reliving his last moments and by the bloodstain that could not be removed from the porch. The house was eventually abandoned.

A cowboy has a much-too-close encounter with the ghost of Old Man McInturf in Spooky California by S.E. Schlosser.



that was a really really scary story and an exellent one




ugh not even scary

not very scary,but good.

thats to long i dont like tooo read heheheheheh bye :) but its a scary storie

not scary but a good tory !! :)

stupid story. just as scary as the three little bears.

Good story

that wasn't scary.

this creeped me out i was scared to go in my basment for a month scary. i have a story to tell my basement is haunted because you hear walking in my computer room and there is blood in the storage room under the shelves and there is groaning and the scariest thing is i sleep in the basement so i slept upstairs !!!!!!! :q

that was actually a really scary story ... im gonna be scared going on my porch now .. and i will for sure watch my step and make sure no blood is beneath me ... D:

that was really scary

So not scary

I wasn't scared but while i was reading the story my brother walked in and the sound of the door opening scared me lolz ha ha ha ha

Poor guy


It is sad. The man seemed kinda nice. Woah, think of how the servents felt cleaning the blood up so often.


This story wasn't. All that scary but it wa still a good story an im gonna tell it tonight at my campfire.

That gave me chills! GOOD story!

It wasn't scary but it was a good story.

Thats not so scary but it is a awsum story!!!!!!

pppuuhhh lleeeezzz!!!!not scary AT ALL!!!


very good and scary vvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvvveeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeerrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrryyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy

wow scary

not scary at all.

Soo lame

Scary but I got a story to tell here it goes: my house has 5 floors once I was walking to the basement then I saw the dead body of my maid in a pool of blood then I fainted

kind of scary but not sooooo scary.

AWESOMLY FREAKY I'D LOVE TO GO TO THAT HOUSE...[I love doing kewlish weird freaky stuff] and this defo goes under kewlish weird freaky stuff :D

good and a nice story

freaky freaky freaky!!!!

what a fun and scary story. i'd like it

omg scary that gave me nightmares of the abondaned house next


this was a good story I espashaly liked the end.

was ok my phone rang while i was reading the story and it freaked me OUT! but it was ok

........well.....nothing really happened. why would the old man stay at the house? Why not the jail?




This sound like a job for... House .M.D

i feel bad for the guy.

that was a good storie keep wirteing

That was cool! Freaky too though.

i was reading it in the dark suddenly i see a shadow of something on the wall i turn around my brother is standing there with a toy sword and a video camera and guess what i screamed i hope he doesn't putit on youtube or something

that was not to scary but it was a good stoey

so scary

Holy Cow that was SCARY never ever going there!!!!!!!! LOL :0


that was so freaky omg what kind of son in law does that 2 his father in law :o

that was so scary!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!.


That's sad that man didn't deserve to die

gave me nightmares

hmmmm I liked

i have seen a movie like that they did all they could to get it off but t was in a house and they eventually heard werid noises and getting hit and pushed so they left the the house was abouynded



My mom was reading this to me and she farted and I must have jumped a foot!

Aww sad poor guy

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Schlosser, author of the Spooky Series

About the Author: S.E. Schlosser

S.E. Schlosser is the author of the Spooky Series by Globe Pequot Press, as well as the Ghost Stories deck by Random House.  She has been telling stories since she was a child, when games of "let's pretend" quickly built themselves into full-length tales acted out with friends. A graduate of both Houghton College and the Institute of Children's Literature, Sandy received her MLS from Rutgers University while working as a full-time music teacher and a freelance author. Read more

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