- Series: Haunted America
- Paperback: 128 pages
- Publisher: The History Press (October 16, 2007)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1596293411
- ISBN-13: 978-1596293410
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.3 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 5 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,867,732 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Haunted Daytona Beach (Haunted America) Paperback – October 16, 2007
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About the Author
Dusty Smith is known throughout the southeastern paranormal community as “The Ghost Lady,” a nickname acquired by being certified as both a ghost hunter and a paranormal investigator. She is the president and founder of The Daytona Beach Paranormal Research Group, Inc. and its sister organization, The International Association of Cemetery Preservationists, Inc. Additionally she is the owner and chief operator of Haunts of the World’s Most Famous Beach Ghost Tours and co-host of Paranormal Talk Radio. Her literary works include Dread & the Dead Filled the Dunnam House and numerous articles penned as a staff writer for Epitaphs Magazine.
Top customer reviews
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Daytona Beach is probably best known for Spring Break (though MTV has switched it's loyalties to Panama City), NASCAR and Bike Week, and if author Dusty Smith has anything to do with it, the town will soon be known for the ghosts and spirits that evidently dwell in the area. Must add that I'm not into spiritualists, mediums, paranormal research or anything of the sort. I'm not putting any of these down or denying that spirits, ghosts, apparitions, specters, phantoms, visions, phantasms, shades, spooks, manifestations, or good old-fashioned 'haints' exist. I just haven't personally encountered any, though there was a woman that I dated in Gainesville years ago... never mind.
Ms. Smith visits some of the old 'haunts' (pun intended) that were familiar when I used to frequent the area, and the photos alone are worth the price of admission to this book. The Beach Street area on the Mainland side of the city has been in the process of a slow death for many decades, actually since the '60s when the shopping strips and malls started growing in the area, and she has documented some of the 'spirits' that are said to live in this and other locations.
But there was one chapter that I read with interest, and that was the one entitled 'Spirits of the Ponce de Leon Inlet Lighthouse', for I had visited that particular place and the surrounding beaches many times over a number of decades. As a matter of fact, many who still live in the general area can remember when it was a favorite area for amorous local teenage males to take their dates to watch the 'submarine races.' I was jolted by that memory when I took my young son for a climb up the 203 steps to the top of the lighthouse during a 2002 visit.
Dusty Smith noted that Assistant Lightkeeper John B. Davis suffered a fatal heart attack near the top of those same steps "on a Sunday in October of 1919," and that his ghost is said to still haunt the lighthouse tower. Could it have been his spirit that was adding to my feelings of vertigo as we descended those same stairs?
In any case it's a fun journey through these pages, whether you believe in apparitions and the paranormal or not. Ms. Smith has also authored another more recent volume, Haunted DeLand and the Ghosts of West Volusia County and since I have some familiarity with that area as well, just might have to take a look at that work. Let's see, there are memories of having a Senior Picnic at De Leon Springs, enjoying its "rejuvenating powers" and the fountain of youth, before the State of Florida acquired the area in 1982. Then there was a Sunday when a number of us visited Casadega, the small town that even years ago billed itself as having "more mediums and psychics in its population than any other town in America."
And Dusty, when I return to the Daytona area I'll have to look you up, if only to possibly offer a few tidbits that you might wish to use in a future book or updated edition. This was a short but spirited read, to say the least - thanks!