As one of the first places European traders and settlers set up shop in B.C., Fort Langley has its share of ghostly stories.
Every year, tales of burials, murders, sudden deaths, and spooks are shared by interpreters with the Fort Langley National Historic Site.
The Grave Tales Historic Walking Tours start on Oct. 12 and run to Oct. 30.
The stories are roughly divided into two types.
First, there are the genuine historic tales and facts that the park interpreters will share with visitors as they guide them around the village.
At cemeteries and historic buildings, they will talk about some of the early settlers and First Nations residents of the area.
The tales include those that are somewhat grisly - like an early murder, or a grisly medical procedure endured by an HBC employee - along with tales of First Nations burial practices, the importance of Hawaiian workers to the fur trade, or how a Catholic cross came to find a home on a Protestant church.
The other type of tales are typically handed down orally, and include sightings of a wide variety of ghosts.
As one of the oldest buildings in the area, the Fort historic site itself has more than its share of strange apparitions.
Nette Plant is one of the three parks workers, with Christa Hanson and Amn Johal, who will be guiding visitors around the village, and she does have a few favourite stories.
The mysterious death of Louis Rabasca was never fully solved. It might have been a murder, or a suicide, Plant said.
He suffered a further indignity after his death.
"His skeleton was dug up by accident," she said.
A crew building a rail bed dug into a ridge near the Fort and three skeletons tumbled out. One of them was identifiable as Rabasca because of the HBC blanket in which he'd been buried.
Her other favourite tale involves the story of a ghostly woman heard screaming upstairs in the big house of the Fort.
The Grave Tales events will for the first time have a youth component this year.
A separate tour, from Oct. 26 to 30, will start at 6 p.m. and will be for those younger than 17. Geared towards teens, they must still be accompanied by a parent.
The change came about by popular demand, said Nancy Hildebrand, the Fort's director of marketing.
"We found quite a few people under 17 were interested in going on the tour," she said.
A lot of adults were asking if they could bring their teenaged children, she said. The tour will be similar, but with a slightly shorter walk.
The tour has proved popular in the past, with up to 1,000 people taking time to go for the tour last year, Hildebrand said.
Both versions of the tour conclude with a bonfire at the Fort, including a hot drink and snacks.
The adult version of the tour costs $15.10, the youth tour costs $11.70.
For tickets to the adult tour, go to www.ticketweb.com, while for the youth version of the tour, call to make an advance reservation at 604-513-4799.
@ Copyright 2013