Galgorm Castle, near Ballymena, County Antrim, Northern Ireland, is reportedly haunted by the ghost of 'The Englishman', Dr. Alexander Colville.
Background[edit | edit source]
The castle was built in 1618 by Sir Faithful Fortescue, a Jacobite who was unpopular with the locals. They attacked his castle and succeeded in burning down the chapel. The Fortescue family extended their castle in order to protect it.
Always known for turning a quick buck, Sir Faithless sold the estate to the infamous Dr. Alexander Colville who, as legend has it was an alchemist, reputed to have sold his soul to the devil for gold and knowledge. The stories of the good doctor are well documented and his portrait is not allowed to ever leave the castle or disaster will fall. His footsteps beat out a steady tattoo through the night as he does his rounds. Other nights, a ghostly light flickers around the park as he searches for his treasure, lost for over 300 years.
The Colville Family owned the castle until the 1800's, since then it has changed hands many times. Today it is listed as a historic building. The estate surrounding the castle is now used as a golf club.
The servant girl[edit | edit source]
- The girl who can see
After purchasing Galgorm castle, Colville moved some of his family members in with him, and had many servants. One of his serving-girls left to live in Scotland, where a burglary took place in her town. The girl happened to be a psychic who was able to identify the burglarer. Upon being apprehended, the thief admitted to the crime. When asked ‘what sorcery is this?’ she pointed to the Englishman Alexander Colville of Galgorm Castle.
Charged for being an alchemist, rumors spread that Colville deals with the Devil, and struck a deal for gold. Colville became shunned, and some even attacked him. He was blamed for any bad luck that happened around Galgorm Castle. But, Colville was not that bothered and carried on with his life.
Deal with the Devil[edit | edit source]
- The Englishman and the Devil
The legend of Dr. Alexander Colville’s deal with the Devil apparantly happened at the River Maine.
Colville informed the Devil that he was short of money, so a deal was struck. The Devil would go to Colville's house and fill up one boot with gold. However, in return, Colville would forfeit his soul, come twenty-one years.
Before the Devil arrived at his two-story house, Colville got his boot, carried it to the top floor, and cut off the heel. Then he cut a hole in the floor of the bedroom and nailed the boot to the floor over the hole. When the Devil came to fill the boot with gold, his trickery would fill the entire bottom floor of the house with gold, before filling up the boot and this is how Colville came by his vast fortune.
After twenty-one years had past, the Devil went to Galgorm Castle by night to collect. When he entered the room, Colville was reading his Bible by the light of a candle. The Devil told Colville that his time had come. Colville asked to be allowed to read his Bible until his candle had completely burnt away. The Devil was compelled to agree. At this, it is said, Colville blew out the candle, placed the candle in the Holy Book and shut it. Since the Devil could not touch the Bible, the Devil had been tricked. The candle was never to burn out and so he was never to take Alexander Colville away to hell. For this reason the Devil left Galgorm Castle and let Colville be never bothering him again.
Hauntings[edit | edit source]
The ghost of Alexander Colville haunts Galgorm's halls. His ghost is said to wander the castle and his footsteps in one boot can be heard. Occasionally, you may even hear or see him. There is a painting of Colville in the castle. It is rumoured that if the painting were to leave the castle, disaster would strike.