Examiner of the Unexplained
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Examiner of the Unexplained

Hanz Holzer is known as the first ghost hunter. He is probably best known as the paranormal investigator and ghost hunter associated with the Amityville horror investigation.

Hanz Holzer is known as the first ghost hunter. A prolific writer of over 145 books he is said to have played a prominent role in the spreading of Witchcraft and Wicca. He wrote such works as The Truth About Witchcraft (1969), The New Pagans: An Inside Report on the Mystery Cults of Today (1972) and Inside Witchcraft (1980). This is when few other books on the subject were available and he paved the way for other authors that came after him.

Born in Vienna, Austria in January 1920 he recounts that his Uncle Henry would tell him stories of ghosts and fairies and that these stories were what seeded his interest in the paranormal.

He went to study Numismatics, Archaeology and Ancient History at the University of Vienna but with the Germans infiltrating the country he left Vienna in 1938 and settled in New York. He entered Columbia University there and studied Journalism and Japanese. His main interest at that time was the musical theater and he wrote reviews for the London Sporting Review and a short lived revue called the “Safari”.

He then received a Doctorate degree in philosophy and a Masters degree in Comparative Religion at the London College of Applied Science. As well as being a guest lecturer at many Colleges and Universities he was offered the professorship at the New York Institute of Technology and specialized in Parapsychology and Biblical Archaeology. It was during his time at the Institute that he his interest in investigating haunted houses. He received a grant from the Institute investigate and research haunted houses all across the eastern United States. This resulted in his first book “Ghost Hunter” which was published in 1963.

He is probably best known as the paranormal investigator and ghost hunter associated with the Amityville horror investigation. In January of 1977 Holzer entered 112 Ocean Avenue with the well known medium Ethel Johnson-Meyers. This Amityville, New York home had been the place of a horrific murder in 1974 when Ronald DeFoe Jr. murdered his own parents and four siblings. Upon entering the home Meyers is said to have come into contact with an American Indian Chief who told her that the site had once been home to a sacred Indian burial ground.

Discovering some bullet holes during his investigation he took several pictures and found that mysterious halos hovered above the holes. He believed that Defoe had been possessed by an old American Indian Chief. Although the Historical Society discredited Holzers claim that property developers had built the house over an old American Indian burial ground he did get a representative of the society to admit that the house had in fact been built over the burial grounds.

In 1962 Hanz Holzer married Countess Catherine Genevieve Buxhoeveden (a descendant of Catherine the Great) and had two daughters, Nadine and Alexandra. After the birth of their second daughter their marriage ended in divorce. Hans Holzer passed away April, 28, 2009 at the age of 89. His daughter Alexandra has continued in his foot steps and is a ghost hunter and author.

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Comments (2)

Good interesting facts here, thanks.

Interesting examiner, stumbled.