Keene’s Main Street is famous for many things. It is perhaps the widest Main street in the United States and people come from around the world to attend Pumpkin Fest where carved pumpkins line the street and town square.
Still, lesser known is an odd sight seen only very early in the morning. It seems that people out early on Main Street, before shops open and when the sun is just coming up, share Main street with an unknown spirit.
“I go for my walk early during the summer, before it gets too warm.” said one eyewitness. “It was about 6am, and the street was quiet except for one other person. I was nervous as it seemed to be a homeless person, or someone mentally unsound. The person was dressed in rags, and shuffled along making moaning sounds.”
Of course, Keene has many handicapped people living near downtown. It’s a good place to live, so close to restaurants and stores that a wheelchair or walker or cane isn’t a problem. The sidewalks and crossing lights make it a very attractive area to live for those with limited mobility.
However, the morning mystery man has one very big difference than your usual handicapped resident. Whenever anyone gets too close to this person, he seems to disappear.
Another eyewitness said that he avoided the moaning shuffler, because he was nervous about him. One day he decided during his jog to stop judging, and go by and say “Hello”. He said when he crossed the street, he noticed to his surprise that the “morning moaner” had mysteriously disappeared. When he looked over across the street, to the side he had just come from, there was the morning moaner. He assumed that somehow the man had crossed the street ,but could not understand how the shuffling moaner could have crossed so quickly.
It finally became a game to this 6 am jogger. He was determined to meet the morning moaner face to face. Still he could never seem to get close to him. He did notice that the mystery man was dressed in a dreadful condition. The clothing seemed worn even beyond what any homeless person would wear. He also noticed that the mystery moaner was wearing no shoes. It was summertime, but on some cold mornings the jogger wondered how the man could stand the cold without shoes.
Finally the jogger became so frustrated, as well as frightened, he changed his morning run route to avoid Main Street.
Most eyewitnesses don’t think the morning moaner is a ghost. They think he is a homeless person, down on his luck yet also wanting to avoid anyone else also abroad so early in the morning. There is much about the man that makes people want to avoid him, his eerie moaning, his shuffling steps, his hunched over shoulders and head might be enough to keep most people away, but there is also something more. The eyewitnesses all said they felt slightly afraid of the unknown man, and it went beyond simple appearance. Some eyewitnesses felt guilty about not going over and offering even just a kind word to the obviously disturbed person, but something holds them back. That something is fear. Viewers describe getting goose bumps whenever they see this sad unhappy spirit, and that fear overcomes their natural inclination to help.
The Main street moaner has only been seen on Keene’s wide Main street. Sometimes he has been spotted far ahead or far behind an eyewitness. A few report him as a shadowy bent figure in a doorway, but no one has ever been able to get close enough to see what his features look like.
The mystery moaner is also only seen in Spring, Summer and Fall. It could be in winter there are fewer residents out so early, or that in the cold pedestrians hurry along too quickly to take the time to look and see a shadowy figure dressed in rags.
If the figure seen is not human, but a ghost, who could it be/ One eyewitness remembers asking another long time resident about the mystery figure. The senior citizen, and life time resident of Keene, gave a laugh and claimed the moaner was the disturbed brother of a local carpenter from long ago. The carpenter would bring his brother along with him on jobs, so that he could keep an eye on him. The brother wouldn’t wash, and was sadly dressed poorly and could only communicate by moaning. The senior remembers stories of this sad brother from his own father, but when he saw the moaner himself he remembered the stories his father had told of the strange brother of the local carpenter.
He wouldn’t explain further, other than he has heard of this moaning sad spirit shuffling up and down Main street his entire life. The mystery moaner is either very old indeed, or a ghost.