|The Dublin House
Red Bank, NJ
When Food Network released its list of the most haunted restaurants in each state, the top honor for New Jersey was given to the Dublin House, located at 30 Monmouth Street in Red Bank. The Dublin House, which serves as both a popular bar AND restaurant, offering up authentic Irish fare, is a gorgeous old building with a lot of history. But what makes it so haunted? Let’s take a look back into it’s history.
The building started off as a one story private residence, located across the river in Middletown, NJ. It was built prior to 1840, and shortly after it was built, was moved to Red Bank. Around 1868, a local lawyer by the name of Robert Allen, Jr. purchased the home and moved it again, keeping it in Red Bank but moving it from its previously unrecorded located to 60 Broad Street. Allen extensively remodeled the home, adding a second and third story to the home. He lived there with his wife and and children until his death in 1903.
After his death, his oldest daughter, Roberta Dunn Allen Patterson, inherited the house. Around 1905, she and her husband, George Hance Patterson, moved the home to the location where it sits today and again, undertook extensive remodeling. George passed away in the home on September 7, 1939, and Roberta would follow him on January 20, 1953. Both are buried in Middletown’s Fair View Cemetery. (Theresa’s Spooky Note: I’m actually writing this blog on January 20, 2022, although it won’t be posted until the 27th. While looking for a haunted location in New Jersey to help complete my Haunted America page, I felt drawn to the Dublin House for whatever reason. It wasn’t until the writing process began that I realized that I didn’t have the date of Mrs. Patterson’s death, so I looked it up really quickly. I had to do a double-take when I saw that today was the anniversary. I love this little synchronicities!)
Source: Find-a-Grave user Kat
It is believed that Mrs. Patterson is the one who haunts the Dublin House today. Both staff and patrons alike have reported quite an array of paranormal activity over the years, which started as earlier as 2004 when the current owners purchased and began renovating the structure once again. Even though the home was renovated numerous times during her lifetime, at first it seemed as if Mrs. Patterson wasn’t a fan of not being in charge of the decision making process concerning her house. Workers would find their tools missing or moved, and its reported that several newly constructed walls mysteriously got knocked down by phantom forces.
The current owners and staff aren’t the least bit shy about sharing their experiences, and quite a few of them have had experiences! Co-owner Eugene Devlin once reported that a door slammed shut behind him when he was the only person in the building. He further recounted a story about a bartender who was inside cashing out after his shift. He turned away for a brief second to grab a bottle of water and turned back around to notice the money was blowing all over the bar, despite their being no draft or anything else that could cause it. Locked doors become unlocked, lights are turned on and off, and liquor bottles are scooted off shelves.
It is said that Mrs. Patterson can get a tad rowdy when things don’t go her way. She loves things tidy, and will often move items in an effort to straighten a cluttered desk or area. In 2012, a patron was in the women’s restroom and heard the voice of another woman going off on a tirade about ‘damned kids’ making a mess. She quickly hightailed it out of there when she realized that she was the only living occupant in the room.
Mrs. Patterson has also given patrons quite a fright by following them and whispering into their ears. But, for the most part, she is a benevolent ghost. She loves music and the staff will often arrive to work in the morning to find that the radio that had been turned off the night before is back on. They’ve grown accustomed to her and remember to greet her each morning upon arrival. As long as the restaurant stays tidy and Mrs. Patterson is informed of any renovations, the floating trays and coffee being brewed by itself are kept to a minimum.
However, Mrs. Patterson may not be the only ghost at the Dublin House. In 2005 the resident bartender and local historian, T.J. McMahon, passed away. In his honor, a big glass case was put up on the first floor, holding some of the documents and memorabilia he had collected. After it crashed to the ground for no apparent reason, it was secured VERY sturdily, making it impossible for staff to even open the glass doors. So, much to the surprise of waitress, Meghan Matoni, she arrived at work one morning to find a picture frame within the case turned around. No one had access to the case, and it was turned so far that it would be hard to blame on natural causes. Does T.J. then haunt the bar, or is Mrs. Patterson trying to let her feelings about him be known? Either way, Mrs. Patterson is definitely the dominating force at the Dublin House. Over the years, ghost hunting teams have investigated the property and agree that she is most active on the third floor.
The Dublin House is where the Jersey Shore Ghost Tours meet, and has been a popular spot on that tour since its inception in 2009. It has been written about in countless articles, and also featured in Patricia Heyer’s book, Ghosts Along the Navesink and Shrewsbury Rivers. I suggest if you ever find yourself in Red Bank, New Jersey, stop in at the Dublin House for some bangers and mash or a pint of Guiness. Just make sure you clean up after yourself and remember to say hello to Mrs. Patterson!
The Most Haunted Restaurant in New Jersey: 94.5 PST
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