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What Kids Say About Carole Marsh Mysteries . . . “I love the real locations! Reading the books always makes me want to go and visit them all on our next family vacation. My Mom says maybe, but I can’t wait!” “One day, I want to be a real kid in one of Ms. Marsh’s mystery books. I think it would be fun, and I think I am a real character anyway. I filled out the application and sent it in and am keeping my fingers crossed!” “History was not my favorite subject till I starting reading Carole Marsh Mysteries. Ms. Marsh really brings history to life. Also, she leaves room for the scary and fun.” “I think Christina is so smart and brave. She is lucky to be in the mystery books because she gets to go to a lot of places. I always wonder just how much of the book is true and what is made up. Trying to figure that out is fun!” “Grant is cool and funny! He makes me laugh a lot!!” “I like that there are boys and girls in the story of different ages. Some mysteries I outgrow, but I can always find a favorite character to identify with in these books.” “They are scary, but not too scary. They are funny. I learn a lot. There is always food which makes me hungry. I feel like I am there.”

What Parents and Teachers Say About Carole Marsh Mysteries . . . “I think kids love these books because they have such a wealth of detail. I know I learn a lot reading them! It’s an engaging way to look at the history of any place or event. I always say I’m only going to read one chapter to the kids, but that never happens—it’s always two or three, at least!” —Librarian “Reading the mystery and going on the field trip—Scavenger Hunt in hand—was the most fun our class ever had! It really brought the place and its history to life. They loved the real kids characters and all the humor. I loved seeing them learn that reading is an experience to enjoy!” —4th grade teacher “Carole Marsh is really onto something with these unique mysteries. They are so clever; kids want to read them all. The Teacher’s Guides are chock full of activities, recipes, and additional fascinating information. My kids thought I was an expert on the subject—and with this tool, I felt like it!” —3rd grade teacher “My students loved writing their own Real Kids/Real Places mystery book! Ms. Marsh’s reproducible guidelines are a real jewel. They learned about copyright and more & ended up with their own book they were so proud of!” —Reading/Writing Teacher “The kids seem very realistic—my children seemed to relate to the characters. Also, it is educational by expanding their knowledge about the famous places in the books.” “They are what children like: mysteries and adventures with children they can relate to.” “Encourages reading for pleasure.” “This series is great. It can be used for reluctant readers, and as a history supplement.”

The Ghost of Glencastle prison by Carole Marsh



Copyright ©2016 Carole Marsh/Gallopade International Current Edition August 2016 All rights reserved. Manufactured in Peachtree City, GA Ebook edition Copyright ©2016 Carole Marsh Mysteries™ and its skull colophon are the property of Carole Marsh and Gallopade International. Published by Gallopade International/Carole Marsh Books. Printed in the United States of America. Senior Editor: Janice Baker Cover Design: John Hanson Content Design: Randolyn Friedlander Gallopade International is introducing SAT words that kids need to know in each new book we publish. The SAT words are bold in the story. Look for this special logo beside each word in the glossary. Happy Learning! Gallopade is proud to be a member and supporter of these educational organizations and associations: American Booksellers Association American Library Association International Reading Association National Association for Gifted Children The National School Supply and Equipment Association The National Council for the Social Studies Museum Store Association Association of Partners for Public Lands Association of Booksellers for Children Association for the Study of African American Life and History National Alliance of Black School Educators This book is a complete work of fiction. All events are fictionalized, and although the names of real people are used, their characterization in this book is fiction. All attractions, product names, or other works mentioned in this book are trademarks of their respective owners and the names and images used in this book are strictly for editorial purposes; no commercial claims to their use is claimed by the author or publisher. Without limiting the rights under copyright reserved above, no part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in or introduced into a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means (electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise), without the prior written permission of both the copyright owner and the above publisher of this book. The scanning, uploading, and distribution of this book via the Internet or via any other means without the permission of the publisher is illegal and punishable by law. Please purchase only authorized electronic editions and do not participate in or encourage electronic piracy of copyrightable materials. Your support of the author’s rights is appreciated. All characters in this story are fictional and do not intentionally share any resemblance to past or current GlenCastle residents or City of Atlanta or Fulton County officials or workers.

A Word from the Author Dear Reader, GlenCastle was formerly known as the Atlanta Stockade. A stockade is a prison. Prisons in the 1800s were cold, filthy, and disease-ridden. I guess people thought that was good enough for criminals. But not only prisoners had to live in such a place. People who were homeless (like today, usually beyond their control), were forced to live in places like the Atlanta Stockade, and even to share their cell/home with murderers. Authorities claimed that only one person ever died at the Atlanta Stockade. But when excavation was done to put in the interstate highway known as I-20, the skeletal remains of at least 50 bodies were found. GlenCastle went on to serve an exact opposite purpose. In the 1980s, it became an apartment home for those who would otherwise be homeless. Job training and other opportunities were offered to the residents. Today, Atlanta builders plan to make GlenCastle part of a new development of shops, restaurants, and homes. The “GlenCastle characters” in this story are completely fictional. I cannot speak for the ghosts. Prison reform in America was begun by a Quaker woman in New York. I am not sure that we can say we have “homeless reform” yet -- what do you think? I hope you enjoy The Ghost of GlenCastle Prison, Carole Marsh

Table of Contents Preface Elizabeth’s Story........................................................... 1 Harold’s Story............................................................. 33 Postlogue The Rest of Elizabeth’s Story..................................... 89 Author’s Comments.................................................... 93 SAT Glossary.............................................................. 97 Built-in Book Club Talk About It!............................................................ 100 Built-in Book Club Bring It to Life!......................................................... 102 Write Your Own Mystery!......................................... 105 Six Secret Writing Tips!............................................ 106 About the Author...................................................... 107 Book Excerpt The Secret of Eyesocket Island.................................... 109


Elizabeth’s Story ELIZABETH was worried, very worried. She had haunted GlenCastle for over a hundred years now, and had always been alone. Alone with the crumbling brick. Alone with the canopies of gnarled vines of sweet, mysterious wisteria. Alone at the tops of the turrets and along the spiral staircase and sweeping through the great hall. Alone in winter. Alone in summer. In the sweet spring that always seemed the shortest season of all. Alone with her memories. All alone. And now that might change. In more ways than one.


The Ghost of GlenCastle Prison

To her dismay she had watched the enormous city encroach. Then the road was begun. She never suspected it would come this close to GlenCastle. And now there were men atop the hill. Digging. Digging! Even ghosts can shiver and Elizabeth did so with dread and foreboding. She clung to the edge of the wall, yet she still could not hear what the hot, sweaty men were saying. But it was clear they were desecrating the earth. And only one of them, at the bottom of the hill, was smart enough to be afraid. Elizabeth knew exactly when it happened. Though she was too far away to see specifically what they were toying with on the ground, she had suspicioned. More than just suspected—felt it, felt it where her own bones used to be, felt it in her soul, long lost though it was. They were digging up the graves! “Oh, let us rest in peace,” she pleaded silently into the morning air. “Never disturb the dead!” she warned without words.

3 But the deed had been done. She saw one of the men start down the hill, almost running. A man at the bottom of the hill followed him like a shadow. The maniacal-looking man left alone at the top of the hill had done the unthinkable. He had taken his shovel and dug in with a vengeance. Before the others returned, he, single-handedly, unearthed almost 50 skeletons. Elizabeth shivered. With her mind she tried to shovel the earth back as fast as he slung the dark blanket off the sleeping dead. But she was powerless. For forever, she had only been sad and lonesome. But now the old fears, the horrible fears returned. It had happened the moment the man had nudged the skull toward her and she saw once more the evil face of her childhood nemesis, the Black Friar. All Hell would surely break loose now. Elizabeth fainted on the spot. Elizabeth dreamed. She was back in her childhood. Early. Before . . . before . . .


The Ghost of GlenCastle Prison

She and her parents lived in a nice cottage. Small and cozy, the stucco walls cool to the touch; the hearth warm to sit upon. Their calico cat, Sandy, curled up there almost constantly, winter and summer. Sunshine flowed through every window. Lady Bankshire roses caressed the wall of her upstairs dormer room. Sometimes, they even sneaked a tendril inside, waving tender, palest yellow clumps at her so fragrant that she once even ate one of the flowers. The tiny petals tasted like dew droplets of angel perfume. In her dream, Elizabeth could smell cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice. Her mother was a baker. Fine white flour cloaked her slim arms. Elizabeth’s father was a builder. He built furniture: teacarts; chairs; trestle tables. And with the leftover bits of wood, he made Elizabeth a dollhouse furnished with tiny maple cradles for her dolls and oak sideboards for the dough toy-sized food her mother made for her. At night they read aloud. Charles Dickens. Poetry. Drank cocoa. Ate sugar cookie pieces.

5 And sang crumb-spewing hymns from church. Her mother was in the choir. She made Elizabeth pinafores with lace to wear over her tiny print dresses. And then came the joy of a baby sister. And then came the bad part. Elizabeth’s father had cut his arm with a saw, cut it bad through the blood vessels and nerves. He was disabled and once the things he had already made were sold, there was no other source of income. Her mother baked day and night. Her goods were in great demand by the local shops, but she grew exhausted, then sickly. Soon Elizabeth was caring for both of her parents as well as her infant sister. There was less money. .. then none. They had to move from their precious cottage home to the slums. And then they were moved to the streets. They walked for days, barely surviving. Nights were spent huddled together, piled beneath their few belongings, trying to stay warm and hopeful despite the approaching cool fall weather.


The Ghost of GlenCastle Prison

One day, they came to the Stockade. Elizabeth’s father insisted there was nowhere else to go. Her mother did not disagree. Where once upon a time Elizabeth would have been mortified by such an alternative, she too had sunk into a mire of defeat. Of exhaustion. To be so desperate as to live in a prison?! She did not see how things could possibly get any worse. But she was to discover that they most certainly could. The Atlanta Stockade was an enormous fortress complete with tall gothic turrets stalked by scowling armed guards. The massive stone structure was a maze of cells, cold cells, for the two-feet thick walls seemed to contain the cold of deep winter year round. Everything was damp, which only added to the perpetual chill. As long as she lived there, Elizabeth would shiver.


Harold’s Story “GET YOUR GEEHAWWHIMMYDIDDLE DOWN HERE AND GO TO SCHOOL, HAROLD!” Harold grinned, but continued to squirm luxuriously beneath the blanket. His mother was in training for the urban ministry and was trying to give up cussing. He reckoned the weird words she kept concocting were like chewing gum to someone trying to give up smoking. Harold also thought it had about as much chance to work. He sighed. In spite of all the reasons it should be otherwise, he was having a tough time getting


The Ghost of GlenCastle Prison

used to this place. He rolled over in a snarl of covers and stared out of the tall, thin slit of window at the blue and gold autumn.

Now, Harold, he admonished himself in his head. Why should you have any trouble getting used to sleeping in a bed instead of on the streets? And having three squares a day instead of the Dempster Dumpster special? I mean just because where you’re sleeping used to be a prison, that’s no reason . . . Harold rolled back over and hushed up that part of his brain that liked to talk smart. His mind seemed to slip into that mode a lot lately and it gave him the heebeejeezies. Could I be going crazy, he wondered. NGHAA HAHAHA! the Voice in his head taunted. “Aw, shut up!” Harold said aloud. He didn’t see his mother at the door. “Aw, what, son? Aw, what, now? Aw, what did you say to your mama, boy?” Harold yanked the pillow over his head to smother his blush. At least she was grinning. Then

35 she did what he hated most. She began to yank off the covers until he had tucked his scrawny limbs into himself like a newborn bird, and yet was still breaking out in goosebumps. She knew how to get him out of bed. At least it was better than throwing cold water in his face like his friend Ned said his Mom did to him. “Mama, pleeeeeease don’t give me your opportunity lecture. It’s the first day of school. I can only take so much in one day, you know.” To his surprise she tossed all the covers back on him in a heap and plopped down on top of the rumpled mountain. “But, Harold, it is an opportunity.”

You knew she would do it anyway, the Voice said with a snicker. It liked it when Harold was miserable. “I know, I know,” he said, trying to cut her off. It didn’t work of course. “Don’t you remember how long we was on the streets, child? We were not having fun yet.”


The Ghost of GlenCastle Prison “I’m not having fun now,” Harold confessed.

His mother gave him a thoughtful look. When she did that her pecan-colored eyes seemed to scan right through him. Harold could almost feel a shadow pass over his face as she looked him up and down as though to read his mind. He hoped his Voice wouldn’t say anything stupid, just in case she could pick up on it. “I know, son,” she said gently. “It’s just because it’s all happened so fast, you know? Sometimes what you know—even if it’s bad—is at least what you know, are used to, more homey. Anything new is a threat.” “There was nothing homey about the streets, Ma,” Harold reminded her. They both stared out the slot of window. It had only been a few weeks since they’d been moved into GlenCastle. It was called a low-cost apartment community. For Atlanta’s “working poor.” Harold sure was sick of being labeled like meat at the grocery store. But it was better, he had to admit. Especially for his Mom.

37 Even while they had lived on the streets, his mother had worked. But she couldn’t make enough money to afford an apartment, much less all the deposits and stuff you had to come up with just to get in one. Oh, sure, they could have afforded some place to live. But his mother swore they were better off on the streets than they were living where they might get shot in their sleep or be a fat rat’s breakfast. Harold had agreed. He missed his street friends, though. Old Sam and Petey and Trigger. “We’ll only be here until Christmas,” his mother reminded him. “With this training I’m getting and being able to save from my job, we’ll get our own place soon. I promise.” When his mama promised, it was a fact. So why didn’t it make him feel any better? “Look,” she said, skidding off the side of the bed. Harold’s legs tingled in numbness. “I lied to you.” Harold was startled. What now? the Voice said. “You what?”


The Ghost of GlenCastle Prison

As she made a pass around the little round room, his mother drug her finger along the bumpy walls as though writing out a secret message in invisible ink. “I told you it was 7 but it’s only 6 o’clock. I know you, you bad boy. So you can get 40 winks for 15 minutes and then you better get downstairs and get your breakfast.” She grinned at him as she swept out the door and he heard her add in a hollow-sounding voice as she wound down the spiraling staircase, “BUT THEN YOU’D BETTER GET DOWN HERE ON THE H. E. DOUBLE DOUBLE, BOY, OR YOU’LL MISS THAT BUS!”


The Ghost of GlenCastle Prison

Harold pulled his battered copy of the GlenCastle brochure out from under his schoolbooks and refreshed his memory. The building, a fortress complete with Gothic turrets, two-foot-thick cement walls—and even a dungeon—had once been the Atlanta Stockade. The booklet cheerily recounted how homeless families had shared cells with hardened criminals here back in the 1800s. “A fate worse than death” it called being sentenced here. Exactly how I feel, lamented the Voice. In 1924, the Stockade was closed. The Atlanta Public School system used it for various purposes for about 60 years before selling the property. And now it was Harold’s home.

41 “GET YOUR TEEHINEY WHINEY DOWN HEEEEEERE!” his mother screamed from below. She could wake the dead, the Voice said. Harold’s reverie evaporated; there never seemed to be as much think time here as there had been on the streets. No wonder he felt so constipated with unsorted-out thoughts. With a sigh he skittered the brochure across the floor and raced to get dressed. As he scooped up his books and headed out of the room, Harold grabbed the cool stucco wall in the hall and took one last peer back into his round chamber to make sure he had not forgotten anything. He was quite sure it was just his imagination, but the wall beneath his hand had seemed to race from cool to throbbing warm as if he were a human thermometer. Stephen King would love this place, said the Voice. “Just first-day jitters,” Harold said aloud to himself and dashed down the spiral staircase to breakfast.


Pretty Darn Scary Books in This Series The Ghosts of Pickpocket Plantation The Sec ret of Skullc racker Swamp The Mystery at Fort Thunderbolt The Sec ret of Eyesocket Island The Ghost of GlenCastle Prison

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ISBN-13: 978·0·635-12446·3


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The Ghost of Glencastle Prison  

The Ghost of GlenCastle Prison is set in the 19th century prison that was once the home to criminals and derelicts. Cold, filthy, disease-ri...

The Ghost of Glencastle Prison  

The Ghost of GlenCastle Prison is set in the 19th century prison that was once the home to criminals and derelicts. Cold, filthy, disease-ri...

Profile for gallopade