Grant Ranch

Joseph D. Grant County Park
San Jose, California

By Chuck Thurston


The land of Grant Park was first inhabited by Ohlone Indians. In 1839, a 15,000 acre Mexican Land Grant was awarded to Jose de Jesus Bernal and was named Rancho Canada de Pala. Jose de Jesus and his two brothers built adobes around a pond on a ridge overlooking the Santa Clara valley. They pastured cattle and horses on this land. In 1849, the southern third portion of the land was sold to Samuel Q. Broughton. Joseph D. Grant, the son of a dry goods merchant, acquired his first portion of acreage at the age of 22. By 1890, he owned 2,619 acres. Eventually he owned all the acreage which encompasses the present day park which totals approximately 10,000 acres.

He remodeled the original house, which was built in 1882,  adding on many additional rooms, a cookhouse, servants quarters, a rose garden and aviary.

J.D. Grant died in 1942. His wife, Edith, died in 1946. The children owned the property but one daughter, Josephine, purchased shares of the house and became the sole owner. She became a full time resident in 1958 and remained until her death in 1972. The property was purchased by Santa Clara County in 1975 to be preserved as a park. The park was opened to the public in 1978. The house now serves as the park's headquarters and museum.

Today, the spirit of one of the daughters is believed to haunt one of the upstairs bedrooms inside the main house. Visitors have reported getting shoved out of her room if they entered without permission, having their hair pulled and other various experiences.

Also very loud and seemingly violent crashing sounds have been heard coming from Joseph Grant's upstairs bedroom, as if furniture was being smashed, only to find everything in perfect order upon entering the room.

October 2005

I was on a Halloween Night Tour of the house in 2005.  While there, I got several photos with orbs.  Now I usually don't get too excited over orbs, since most of them are nothing but flash illuminated dust too close to the lens, bugs, water vapor and the like.  But a few were more interesting, appearing to be partially behind an object some distance away from me (i.e..  not dust, bugs, pollen or water droplets).

There is a small debate on what a true orb actually is.... The ghost itself, or as many paranormal researchers believe, electrically energized air, known as plasma, and could be the result of spirit activity.

Anyway, here's the more interesting ones.... have a look:


Enhanced Images


This orb appears to be located somewhere on the other side of the banister railing, which was at least four feet away from the camera.
This orb appears to be located on the other side of the ceiling edge, which was at least ten feet away from the camera.
OK, reflected images in mirrors are always a bit of a risk. Like orbs, they can be many things not paranormal.  Our brain works to find recognizable patterns and shapes in things, but this is worth the look.  I do know there was nothing behind me, between the mirror and the window/window shade on the opposite side of the room at the time.
Due to the number of people in the house and their movements at the time, the audio recording (~ 1 hour worth) for this event was totally useless.
On a more personal note, the upstairs hallway had a slightly dizzying effect and a sense of being watched.  This could well be the effect of a higher EMF (electro-magnetic field) in the local area.  The actual cause wasn't apparent, but I did experience having the back of my neck and ear brushed by something unseen at the same time.

2006 - 2007

More Recent EVP's.  These recordings were made using a simple digital voice recorder and an external condenser microphone at around Noon to 2 PM on the days listed.  Areas covered include the front door and back porch, as well as a old Snell Barn some distance away.

Results of this type also prove a point..... Spirit activity may be more common at night, but it doesn't mean the spirits aren't around in the day time as well.

As with any EVP, what I hear may radically differ from what you may hear, if anything.  When hearing EVP's, no two people rarely seem to hear the same thing.  That's part of the mystery concerning them.  When listening to EVPs, it's best to use headphones, and repeat the file several times turning up the volume as required.  Some voices are barely a whisper, while some are loud.

*** Warning ***
Many of these files contain graphic language, of an adult nature.
Parental Guidance is advised.

Unfiltered Version

Filtered (hiss reduction)

What I think it says...
Indicates a known person talking

Date Recorded: 2006-12-26  ( Main House - Front and Back Porch )

B1_2006_12_26_0007 B1_2006_12_26_0007_soap "I know what you're doing over there... I know what your doing"
B1_2006_12_26_0135 B1_2006_12_26_0135_soap bird hoot and then a guy says "and I won't talk"
B1_2006_12_26_0144 B1_2006_12_26_0144_soap "Will you just listen, please" while a bird chirps
B1_2006_12_26_0151 B1_2006_12_26_0151_soap "Tell me, John, Tell me somethin', please" with a bird chirping
B1_2006_12_26_0221 B1_2006_12_26_0221_soap "I just don't trust you...  I don't know...  I don't know!"
B1_2006_12_26_0341 B1_2006_12_26_0341_soap man says "Now what are these strange things?"
B2_2006_12_26_0212 B2_2006_12_26_0212_soap man speaking Spanish "Amous, No sabe' "  meaning his name is Amous and he "doesn't know".   However, in proper Spanish, this is being said incorrectly.  Giving the idea it's a person trying to speak Spanish and not as if it was their normal language.
B2_2006_12_26_0447 B2_2006_12_26_0447_soap funny sounding giggle and hiccup, then he says "It's gettin' cold"
B2_2006_12_26_0503 B2_2006_12_26_0503_soap man say's something like "Moshef" and then the sound of a drum beat.  I think this is an Indian word.

Date Recorded: 2006-12-30  ( Main House - Front and Back Porch )

A1_2006_12_30_0018 A1_2006_12_30_0018_soap (make sure nobody comes out of the tower) "Trust me, we won't"
A1_2006_12_30_0019_to_40 A1_2006_12_30_0019_to_40_soap Larger time period including a few of the EVPs below, and more.  My wife and I are talking about the walls and acorns stuffed in the window frame at the time.
A1_2006_12_30_0028 A1_2006_12_30_0028_soap "leave me alone, paranormal help"
A1_2006_12_30_0033 A1_2006_12_30_0033_soap woman says "Are you still angry with Roger?"   man says "That's not funny"
A1_2006_12_30_0120 A1_2006_12_30_0120_soap man says "But why?"   woman says "They think I'm here"
A1_2006_12_30_0131 A1_2006_12_30_0131_soap "They trust you with me, don't they?"
A1_2006_12_30_1338 A1_2006_12_30_1338_soap This is a long and too busy to even describe, other then to say nobody was talking anywhere within range of the recorder at the time.  Multiple voices and appears to be several conversations going on.
A1_2006_12_30_1710 A1_2006_12_30_1710_soap "That's what I would ask.." while the sound of a small plane flies overhead
A1_2006_12_30_1751 A1_2006_12_30_1751_soap (tell me your name) "Chuck, I don't give a f**k, OK."
B1_2006_12_30_0529 B1_2006_12_30_0529_soap sounds of a drum beat and a man say's something like "Moshet".  I think this is an Indian word.
B2_2006_12_30_0725 B2_2006_12_30_0725_soap man saying "I can't see what you're talking about" as I was looking in the window earlier and describing for the recorder what I could see in the house
B2_2006_12_30_0731 B2_2006_12_30_0731_soap "We don't want Dekita to tell her, Deki... to talk"   Dekita is Hispanic woman's name.

Date Recorded: 2007-01-07  ( Main House - Front and Back Porch )

A3_2007_01_07_0938 A3_2007_01_07_0938_soap Jill and I are talking about the windows.... (If ya wanted in you could get in... I guess you could... pretty easy but) then a man says something like "Mutah" (... sure there creeps that would break in)
A3_2007_01_07_1352 A3_2007_01_07_1352_soap "Will you please help me?"  then I whisper (Anyone here?)

Date Recorded: 2007-01-14  ( Main House - Front and Back Porch )

P210_200701141236_1853 P210_200701141236_1853_soap Indian chanting something
P210_200701141306_0024 P210_200701141306_0024_soap something in Indian like "Kantaweis" I say (ah) and the sounds of an Indian's chant again
P210_200701141306_0418 P210_200701141306_0418_soap Indian saying something
P210_200701141306_0447 P210_200701141306_0447_soap Indian saying something
P210_200701141306_0543 P210_200701141306_0543_soap Several things being said by the same Indian.  I wanted to go bitch at the guy with the leaf blower, but he's got a job to do too.
P320_200701141234_0138 P320_200701141234_0138_soap I'm not sure what this says
P320_200701141234_0147 P320_200701141234_0147_soap I'm not sure what this says
P320_200701141234_0400 P320_200701141234_0400_soap Something I can't make out, followed by "Kick him out OK, just kick him out"
P320_200701141234_0509 P320_200701141234_0509_soap noise of a small plane overhead and an Indian says "Mashefi"
P320_200701141234_0817 P320_200701141234_0817_soap (I heard somebody say something like "Amos, No sabe" which means you don't understand) and a man says "Ama, that was you"

Date Recorded: 2007-01-21  ( Main House - Front and Back Porch - Snell Barn)

P210_200701211259_0011 P210_200701211259_0011_soap more bird noises while first male asks "Are they after you?", second softer male voice says "I don't know...... I don't think so"
P210_200701211259_0511 P210_200701211259_0511_soap "Jacob"
P210_200701211259_1044 P210_200701211259_1044_soap "You got the power to use it"
P210_200701211259_1207 P210_200701211259_1207_soap I'm not sure what this says
P210_200701211259_1351 P210_200701211259_1351_soap first male says "I'm right behind ya" then the second male says "Oh fine"
P210_200701211314_1618 P210_200701211314_1618_soap Kathy says "Look, I wouldn't think this would be too good for the wood being covered up like this", the other recorder makes a beep, and a woman says "Good morning..... Who do we have?"
P320_200701211215_0000 P320_200701211215_0000_soap Snell Barn: woman screams and a male say "What the f..."
P320_200701211215_0121 P320_200701211215_0121_soap Snell Barn: woman says "Jacob hurt me", male says "You, shut up!", and the woman says "I don't want to"
P320_200701211215_0311 P320_200701211215_0311_soap Snell Barn: while photographing an odd shaped lump of rope tied to the rafters, I say "Pretty funny visual whatever it is" and a male says "Shit!"
P320_200701211250_0008 P320_200701211250_0008_soap first male says "That F**cker", second male says "Some language"
P320_200701211250_0022 P320_200701211250_0022_soap I say "If there's anybody here who'd like to say anything, say your name, why you're here..." a soft male voice says "What the f**k" and another male answers "No reason"

Date Recorded: 2007-02-04  ( Main House - Front and Back Porch )

What I was trying to do here will take a bit of explaining.  Several of the voices I have recorded seem to be at least one Indian, possibly an Ohlone Indian, which used to live on the location of the house ages ago.  So my idea was to place a Shaman's Sun Stick and a nice big chunk of Black Obsidian (black volcanic glass Indians commonly used for making arrowheads) near the back porch, were I have recorded him in the past, and video record the things in hope the spirit might be tempted to try and move one of the objects.  As well as monitoring an EMF meter near the objects.

Something I didn't consider in setting up this experiment... According to metaphysical beliefs, Black Obsidian rock can have the power to drain or ground a spirit's energy.  American Indians used it as a protection stone and fashioned it into many jewelry items for just that reason.  Keep that in mind when listening to the EVPs below:

Shaman's Sun Stick and a chunk of Black Obsidian being used as "bait"

P210_20070204_1108_1542 P210_20070204_1108_1542_soap I say "If you're here, you want to be here, that's fine" then a male answer's "...Except for the human"  meaning me I suppose.  lol
P210_20070204_1108_1556 P210_20070204_1108_1556_soap I'm not sure what this says
P210_20070204_1141_0004 P210_20070204_1141_0004_soap female voice says "Weren't we?"
P320_20070204_1205_0028 P320_20070204_1205_0028_soap male says "You f**king bastard" followed by a female saying "I wasn't saying anything, honey"
P210_20070204_1231_1851 P210_20070204_1231_1851_soap female voice says "Don't you hit me"
P210_20070204_1231_1927 P210_20070204_1231_1927_soap male says "Why don't you shut the f**k up!"
P210_20070204_1231_2053 P210_20070204_1231_2053_soap voice says "You're not helping"
P210_20070204_1231_2302 P210_20070204_1231_2302_soap male says "You .. bastard"
P210_20070204_1257_0155 P210_20070204_1257_0155_soap voice says "Shut the f**k up!"
20070204125458_0100 20070204125458_0100_soap a voice says something I can't make out followed by a male voice saying "Shit!"
20070204125458_0118 20070204125458_0118_soap male voice says "Hey motherf**ker.."

At one point, I had both the HD Camcorder and a digital voice recorder going near the same location, and they both captured the same thing.  See below:

20070204125458_0045 20070204125458_0045_soap woman's voice says "You're weakened!", then after a long pause a man's voice says "Don't move it!"
P210_20070204_1231_2504 P210_20070204_1231_2504_soap
20070204125458_0512 20070204125458_0512_soap male says "You .. bastard"
P210_20070204_1257_0346 P210_20070204_1257_0346_soap


  • Monitoring the EMF meter, in the video through this whole period, showed no significant value change, even though many EVPs were recorded.

  • The comment "You're weakened" helps support the metaphysical claims concerning Black Obsidian.  In extreme cases, Black Obsidian might be used to help lessen a spirits energy and activity, if not repel them from an area all together.

Date Recorded: 2007-02-17  ( Snell Barn )

The first time to the old Snell Barn at Grant Ranch resulted in a couple of interesting EVPs (above), so I figured I'd spend this day focusing on it instead of the main ranch house.

20070217100429_soap_0119 20070217100429_0119_soap I ask "Is there anyone here?" followed by the sound of a bird chirping and soft male voice says "There is"
P210_20070217_0948_0200 P210_20070217_0948_0200_soap a voice says "I'm trying to.."
P210_20070217_0948_0235 P210_20070217_0948_0235_soap I had just asked what it was Jacob had done to the woman I heard before at this barn, a male voice says "I couldn't.. due to the fact I'm hurt with herpes"
P210_20070217_0948_0309 P210_20070217_0948_0309_soap in reference to names, I ask "What was Jacob's?", a garbled voice says "It was Singleton"

Date Recorded: 2007-03-10  ( Main House - Back Porch )

P210_20070310_1309_0735 P210_20070310_1309_0735_soap recording on the back porch of the main house while some cute little kids play on the grass near by..... first voice says "Those kids.." followed by another voice that says "We have to watch the little kids" then one of the girls starts saying "la la ......."

Date Recorded: 2007-03-17  ( Snell Barn )  Sorry, there's a lot of popping sounds due to wind.

20070317103636_0347 20070317103636_0347_soap "F**k It!"
20070317103636_0407 20070317103636_0407_soap "I believe that to be so, I.." "Hey" "you know", then while I say "I think you'll know more then I do" he says "You gotta be kidding me"
P210_20070317_0921_0149 P210_20070317_0921_0149_soap "So if it's, If it's you, please speak up" "We're not supposed to talk to anyone..."
P210_20070317_0921_0406 P210_20070317_0921_0406_soap "What is this stupid contraction?"
P210_20070317_0956_0038 P210_20070317_0956_0038_soap "Chuck..... F**k off!"
P210_20070317_0956_0336 P210_20070317_0956_0336_soap While I say "I sorry you guys are in the position you're in, I don't know if.." a male voice says "We know you like us. We like you, too"
P210_20070317_1033_0009 P210_20070317_1033_0009_soap "a**hole"   (So much for liking me I suppose.  hehe)
P210_20070317_1033_0530 P210_20070317_1033_0530_soap "Who are you?" "It wasn't me"
P210_20070317_1033_0553 P210_20070317_1033_0553_soap "What a f**k ass"
P320_20070317_0941_0040 P320_20070317_0941_0040_soap (sounds like two different voices) "It's useless, stupid bitch" "You f**king bastard"
P320_20070317_0941_1020 P320_20070317_0941_1020_soap male saying the name "Dale Rosebridge"
P320_20070317_1108_snake OK, this one isn't paranormal, but it's worth listening to.
Ghosts don't scare me, but a ~2.5 foot rattlesnake sure does.  That's no baby rattle....

Date Recorded: 2007-03-31  ( Main House - Inside )

"Ron", one of the Park's Rangers, was nice enough to give me another quick tour of inside the house.  Besides the two of us, there was two other female Park Rangers working downstairs to set the place up for the spring season, making it look nice for Easter.  During the tour, I of course had a recorder going, and captured the following:

DS300048_2224 DS300048_2224_soap Upstairs, "Ron" and I talk about the location of the house and use of the land by the prior Indians.  I hear a male voice say "Stop... You old fool"
DS300048_2503 DS300048_2503_soap Downstairs in the office, we're talking about the old desk and you can hear the other female Park Ranger's voices in the background.  "You piss off"

Date Recorded: 2007-08-12  ( Main House - Front Porch )  Sorry, there's a lot of popping sounds due to wind.

DS300098_0008 DS300098_0008_soap I'd set up the recorder leaning against the base of a tree near the porch, and recorded this just after the recorder had fallen over   "It worked"


Summary To Date:

Based on the numerous EVP's, and the presence of what appear to be true orbs, I conclude the house and barn are haunted.   The type of haunting (i.e. intelligent or residual) isn't identifiable, yet.  A few of the EVPs appear to be non-interactive, and could be the result of a residual haunt (like a playback of a past event in time).  Yet many EVPs do appear to be interactive and would indicate at least several human spirits.

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