Esther Fest, a celebration of the paranormal and horror, inspired by Esther Cox and her story takes place anually in Amherst during October.
In 1878 Amherst, NS made international headlines when Esther Cox, an eighteen year old resident of the town, reportedly found herself at the centre of a bizarre series of events which became known as The Great Amherst Mystery.
Strange rappings and bangings were heard throughout her home. Objects flew through the air. Esther writhed in pain and swelled to twice her normal size. Countless people watched as fires were started and an unknown hand scratched into the wall above Esther's bed, “Esther Cox You Are Mine To Kill.”
The story has become known in paranormal literature as one of the best documented cases of poltergeist activity on record. The New York Sun said it was “...in all probability the greatest (tale) of its kind in this or any age,” while MacLean’s magazine called it “Canada’s most famous ghost story and a classic Poltergeist case.” The story has been featured in a number of books and television programs about the supernatural.
Visit our Facebook page for upcoming events including Esther Fest!
You can find The Great Amherst Mystery mural and others paying tribute to our history throughout downtown Amherst. See if you can find them all!