Old Broomfield street scene - from www.photoswestorg - Date unknown
Broomfield was founded in 1877 as a small farming community known as Zang's Spur. It was named after A.J. Zang,
founder of the Zang Brewing Company, and was located near the present day intersection of 120th Avenue and Wadsworth Boulevard.
As the 20th century began, the name changed to Broomfield because of all the broom corn grown in the area.
Things that go bump in the night
Who's tromping down the stairs for supper in this empty house?
Another Place & Time
Quaint Teahouse and Gift & Antique Shop
Mary Kottyan, co-owner of Another Place and Time, poses in the stairwell of the historic house in which the gift and antique shop is located.
The house, built in 1922 and move to its location at 119th Avenue and Teller Street in the 1950s, is rumored to be haunted based on strange
happenings over the years.
Photo by David R. Jennings
Story by Terri Chance, Enterprise Staff Writer
October 29, 2005
At the edge of town, near the old graveyard, perched alone on top of the hill, leans an old house, vacant for years and infamous for its
creepy sounds and mysterious shadows moving across the windows at night. It's the perfect haunted house — the one we've read about in
scary novels or heard of over campfire conversations.
But in Broomfield, while our haunted house is old, it doesn't lean, it's far from being creepy and it's nowhere near a graveyard or a hill.
The house, built in 1922, is one of the few original landmarks of Broomfield, which at the time was not much more than a burgeoning
community attempting to put itself on the map from its location on the south side of 120th Avenue.
Back then, the house stood on the corner of 120th and Teller Street, overlooking miles and miles of open space. Today, Peerless Tires
occupies that spot, with the old house's garage remaining behind the tire shop. The original house was moved in the 1950s to a plot just
around the corner on 119th Avenue. The current owners, Brenda and Ron Skinner, run Another Place and Time, a gift and antique shop, in
Brenda Skinner knows bits and pieces of the house's history, but is quite familiar with the "spirit" she says occupies the house, sometimes
descending the stairs in heavy boots or opening and closing doors.
"The house is filled with wonderful, as well as sordid memories," Skinner said, referring to the suicide that occurred on the second floor more
than 60 years ago. She's not sure if the ghost she claims to hear is that of the troubled, suicidal man, or the kind country doctor who lived in
the house years later.
The house has been the subject of many an urban legend, such as it's been a boarding house and a brothel.Skinner's business partner,
Mary Kottyan, said she, too, has heard traces of something unexplainable in the house.
"I was upstairs and heard the front door open and close," Kottyan said. And the strand of bells hanging from the door rang. "I went downstairs
and there was no one there."
It's happened several times, she said, but she's not afraid of what it might be.
"At first is was kind of scary, but now it doesn't bother me at all."
Skinner said the entity leaves a warm feeling, which is why she believes it might be the spirit of Dr. Thomas Gabriella, a local general
practitioner that many longtime residents visited for their medical needs.
She explained the doctor lived in Boulder and practiced at the house in Broomfield. But after a painful divorce, he spent many nights sleeping
above his office, in the second-floor room.
"A neighbor who knew the doctor said he usually came downstairs around 7 p.m. to fix his dinner and then retire to his room to eat and spend
the rest of the night," Skinner said.
Many of the mysterious sounds happen around the 7 o'clock hour, including the time the door at the bottom of the stairs was pushed open —
with great force. Skinner usually kept the door shut since the upstairs hadn't been remodeled yet. But someone — or something — insisted
the door remain open. Each time she closed the door, it swung open. Skinner said she decided it was best to keep the door open.
Another incident involved a man hired to install a new kitchen floor. Skinner said she let him stay late to get his work done after she locked up
and went home.
"It was about 7 in the evening," she said, "and he told me he heard footsteps come down the stairs, across the living room and into the
kitchen. When he looked up from the floor to greet the visitor, no one was there."
Skinner said he left the house immediately, leaving behind his work and his tools.
"He said he's never coming back."
Other incidents involve people who knew the building when it was the doctor's office, or residents who knew the doctor. Some have felt chills
or seen objects move by themselves.
Most mysterious sounds and sightings are false, according to TAPS, The Atlantic Paranormal Society. The organization, run by two Roto-
Rooter plumbers in Rhode Island hosts "Ghost Hunters," a weekly television show on the SciFi Network.
They're hired, along with a staff of three or four and a bevy of the latest sound and film equipment, to either prove or debunk ghost sightings.
"What goes bump may not always be paranormal," according to the TAPS Web site.
Older homes were built with lathe board and not drywall, the site reports, and often, those walls are said to breathe.
"If investigators are able to take minute measurements, they could actually measure the walls moving inward and outward. This is caused by
a pressure difference inside the walls as outside air flows through the space between the walls. These movements can be enough (for) an old
door to swing open as if pushed by a phantom presence. This difference in pressure can also cause strange noises to appear from what may
seem like nowhere and cold spots to suddenly appear and seem to move throughout the home," the site states.
Longtime resident Helen Kozisek said she had a good friend who lived in the house when it was still located on the corner of 120th Avenue. It
had been made into apartment-type rooms at the time. Kozisek knows Skinner and has shopped at the gift store.
"I've never seen or heard anything strange," Kozisek said. "I think it all comes out of somebody's head."
Another Place & Time
7285 W. 119th Place
Broomfield, CO 80020
Serving tea by reservation only and have a variety of luncheons to choose from. Located in a small English tudor style house built in 1922.
Shop for items like porcelain dolls, teapots, custom and antique furniture, victorian style lamps and lifes little luxuries.
These photos are from the Prestige Real Estate Group website
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