Where to go
My Weird Washington Biography and the aftermath
JEFF DAVIS was born in Washington State, and though he has traveled across the United States and around the globe, he has always returned home. The grandson of a logger, Jeff occasionally wears flannel, and although he now carries a laptop instead of an axe, Jeff does not drink designer coffee like most people in the newly technified Washington State. Jeff has a Master’s Degree in Archaeology, and has worked on many National Forests in Washington and Oregon. He has also worked with many Native Americans in the Pacific Northwest. While some of this may sound boring, it helped develop Jeff’s interest in all of the interesting, unique, and downright WEIRD places in Washington. Jeff’s hobbies include cooking, classic movies, talking baths in John Wayne’s bathtub, ghost hunting, and the occasional firewalk.
Alright, for those of you who have not written a book, or helped put one together before, the most time consuming task is setting up things like the dust jacket synopsis, and the author's biography. Because these items are what initially attract a reader to the book in the first place, getting them right is a MUST. When we put Weird Washington together, my co-author Al and I both spent a lot of time combing through our chapters, looking for bits from our favorite stories to pass on to readers. My two favorite thrills were the time when I spent a winter evening at the Hotel de Haro on San Juan Island, soaking in a bathtub the staff told me was used numerous times by John Wayne. My second best thrill was the time I did a firewalk, for an article in the Unexplained chapter of the book.
Unfortunately, the best laid plans of mice and men got me.
These two incidents were in the next to final proof of the book, but
were left out in the final edit. So I have been asked about John
Wayne, and firewalking by numerous people, looking for the stories in
the book. Now you know.
How I came to write Weird Washington
In 2006, I was contacted by Mark Moran and Mark Sceurman, publishers of Weird New Jersey. A few years ago, their website of strange and unusual happenings around New Jersey turned into a book. That book turned into a second book of stories, and now they have over 20 books in their catalog. In addition to their state series of books, Mark and Mark have expanded their interest to a television show on the History Channel, called Weird US, and their website, WeridUS.com. I contributed three stories to their latest book, Weird US presents Weird Hauntings.
is a synopsis from Weird Hauntings: From the same people who
brought you Weird New Jersey, and the other books in the Weird U.S.
series. Joanne Austin contacted ghost experiencers across the United
States, for their true haunted stories. She compiled stories about a
variety of different hauntings, in unique settings. The book has eight
chapters, including, Haunted Houses, Terrifying Travels, Historic
Haunts, Otherworldly Outdoors, Ghostly Graveyards, Hostel Environments,
Eerie Eateries, School Ghouls, and Institutional Apparitions. Artist
Ryan Doan richly illustrated this book using a mix of color and pictures
provided by story authors, and original artwork.
I provided three stories used in this book. On page 90, in A Famous Market’s Spirits, I described some of the strange goings on a Seattle’s Pike Place Market. On page 206, I related the story of the little girl who may haunt the attic spaces of an old house, at the Edgefield. Finally, on page 232, in the sailor and his friends, my psychic friend Janet has one final meeting with a ghostly sailor who continued to inhabit his home, even after it became a restaurant.
My Longer Biography
Jeff Davis was born in Vancouver, Washington in 1962. According to family tradition he is related to his namesake, Jefferson Davis, President of the Confederacy. Jeff is an Army brat who grew up playing in and around the Vancouver Barracks. This led to an interest in the military and history. Late night horror movies led to an interest in ghosts, mythology, and archaeology.
After a three year enlistment in the U.S. Army, Jeff returned to college where he earned a Bachelor's degree in Anthropology. For several years Jeff worked for the U.S. Forest Service as an archaeologist in the Gifford Pinchot, the Boise, the Umatilla, and Mt. Hood National Forests.
In 1995 Jeff and his wife moved to England for a year where he earned his MA in Archaeology at the University of Sheffield. His thesis topic was the lifestyle of the Viking settler in Greenland. That is where he received the inspiration for his publishing company name, Norsemen Ventures.
In addition to his work as a freelance archaeologist and researching books on the paranormal, Jeff is planning on traveling to Greenland and producing a multimedia CD on the Vikings who settled there.
Jeff returned from Southwest Asia, in November 2002. As a member of the Army Reserves he was mobilized for a six month tour on active duty. He served in Kuwait and for a short time in Afghanistan, as a military historian. He hopes to continue with either teaching or researching the paranormal and traveling before having to return to active duty again. Depending on the world situation...
The Army decided it needed Jeff again in 2003. He served in Southwest Asia, spending most of the time in Afghanistan, working as a military historian. Over the course of his time there, Jeff interviewed several hundred soldiers about their duties. He returned to the United States in early 2004, where he wrote several reports on Operation Enduring Freedom. One of these days they might be declassified...
Upon returning to the United States, Jeff spent time getting used to life as a civilian, and writing another book on true ghost stories in the Pacific Northwest.