The Holzer Files season 2 went through reams of files to choose all-new investigations into Hans Holzer’s paranormal mysteries. The investigative series launches with a special Halloween week premiere on Thursday, Oct. 29 at 11 p.m. ET.
The team, led by investigator Dave Schrader, psychic medium Cindy Kaza, equipment technician Shane Pittman and researcher Gabe Roth, investigates true hauntings from the recently discovered case files of America’s first ghost hunter, Dr. Hans Holzer.
“We knew when we greenlit The Holzer Files, we had something special on our hands, but we didn’t realize just how much of a paranormal pandora’s box we’d opened until we started filming,” Travel Channel general manager Matthew Butler said in a statement. “Hans was a prolific chronicler of hundreds of ghost hunts, preserving everything from photographs, case notes, letters, film footage and chilling audio recordings from his interview subjects and trance mediums. Most of this material has never been seen before and we’re just getting started.”
Born in Vienna in 1920, Dr. Hans Holzer is one of the most famous parapsychologists in this dimension. Recognized as the “father of the paranormal,” Holzer’s legendary four-decade exploration into hauntings helped spawn a generation of supernatural enthusiasts, including Dan Aykroyd and Harold Ramis, who were inspired to write Ghostbusters.
A gifted magical practitioner, Holzer was a master of the Craft, training with “King of the Witches” Alex Sanders who founded the Alexandrian tradition, and receiving his degrees from Maxine Sanders. Holzer’s works Witches: True Encounters with Wicca, Wizards, Covens, Cults and Magick, and Wicca: The Way of the Witches, helped codify modern witchcraft. The author of 138 books, mostly on the occult, Holzer is best known for inspiring The Amityville Horror.
In January 1977, he and Ethel Meyers, a medium, investigated the Long Island property reputedly haunted by previous owner Ronald Defeo Jr., who murdered his family at the home in 1974. Meyers determined the house was built over a Native American burial ground, and the killings happened because Defeo was possessed by Rolling Thunder, a Shinnecock Indian Chief enraged at the desecration.
Holzer’s daughter, Alexandra Holzer, helps Travel Channel reopen her father’s most captivating case files by “digging into thousands of documents, letters, photographs and chilling audio and visual recordings dating back to the 1950s,” according to the official synopsis. The team picks up where Holzer left off to re-examine the terrifying hauntings that he dedicated his life to researching.
The Holzer Files is a “cryptic mystery, bound by threads of truth, the voices of the past and the exploration of modern paranormal pioneers,” according to the advance press. “Viewers will experience a chilling chase, fueled by Holzer’s rediscovered archival files and haunting cinematography.”
The second season comprises 13 brand new one-hour episodes. The series will explore legendary cases. The famed ghost hunter’s original case files included an investigation which trailed President Abraham Lincoln’s assassin John Wilkes Booth to a tavern in Maryland which hid the assailant after the assignation. The paranormal team will also probe the case of a serial killer in Ohio, and an elegant mansion in New York City, which is “home to one of the world’s most infamous hauntings.”
For every installment, the crew scans thousands of Holzer’s recently discovered documents, letters, photographs, audio and visual recordings dating back to the 1950s. Using his findings, team members track down recent developments from each haunting and head back to the location to reinvestigate with a fresh perspective, harnessing their own research, skills and expertise.
The premiere episode, “Phantom Hand,” explores a 1963 incident where the Todd family of Cleveland encountered “a ghastly hand reaching toward them from the basement door in their Mason Court apartment,” according to the official synopsis. “Despite nailing the door shut, the appendage pushed through and terrified the family for weeks before they finally fled with their young son. Though the Todd family moved out, more people in the Kingsbury Run area of Cleveland continued to contact Dr. Holzer about similar disturbing activity, finally prompting him to bring his trusted psychic medium, Ethel Meyers, to conduct an outdoor reading of the entire area. Her findings were vivid and terrifying, but nothing matched up with the city’s known history, so the many paranormal cases of Kingsbury Run were never closed.”
As the investigator’s hidden case file is finally reopened, new patterns emerge. The team studies the original letters to consider “the hauntings may point to a new central crossroads for the spirits,” according to the press statement. “However, as they unearth the area’s haunting past, they soon discover that they are likely dealing with restless souls that may have all died at the hands of the same infamous killer.”
Upcoming Holzer Files episodes include:
“Tell Me No Lies” – Premieres Thursday, November 5 at 10 p.m.
“Hans Holzer believed a sensational tale of heartache and murder hid the real story behind one of his most famous cases,” reads the official synopsis. The investigators travel to the Old Merchant’s House in New York City to “uncover the terrifying truth of this Victorian-age haunting.”
“Death to Tyrants” – Premieres Thursday, November 12 at 10 p.m.
Holzer’s case of the Surratt Tavern in Clinton, Maryland, the infamous first stop of John Wilkes Booth after assassinating Abraham Lincoln in 1865 will be dissected by Dave Schrader, Cindy Kaza and Shane Pittman.
“Final Word” – Premieres Thursday, November 19 at 10 p.m.
“Hans Holzer visited Ohio’s Franklin Castle many times, each time experiencing terrible technical difficulties, and never able to pinpoint the exact cause of the uncanny happenings plaguing the owners of the house for years,” according to the official synopsis. “Now, Dave Schrader, Cindy Kaza and Shane Pittman return, witnessing the troubled spirit manifest before their eyes. But their biggest discovery is something Holzer himself missed. They restore his jumbled audio recording to find a hidden voice, and the key to the castle’s haunting.”
“Edge of the Veil” – Premieres Thursday, November 26 at 10 p.m.
Hans Holzer had a lifelong obsession with Rockland County, New York, the site of his first case. “Half a century later, the team attempts to decode the region’s rampant paranormal activity,” the synopsis reads. “Does it stem from a revolutionary past or something far more sinister?”
“Blood in the Water” – Premieres Thursday, December 3 at 10 p.m.
The father of paranormal study heard rumors of spectral activity Staten Island’s Conference House. The historic site was famous for peace, but it had a “dark and bloody past,” according to the official synopsis. People reported noises, murmurs, moans, and pleas going back several generations. Holzer conducted two investigations. “Though his mediums, Ethel and Sybil, sensed the murder of a young woman on the staircase by an imposing man from the American Revolution,” the synopsis reads. “Holzer felt there was more to the case.” When the investigative crew return to the site, “the spirits guide them to the water’s edge where a terrible truth awaits.”
“Devil in the Rock” – Premieres Thursday, December 10 at 10 p.m.
The team follow up on Hans Holzer’s 1964 investigation of the Bates Ship Chandlery, on the coast of Massachusetts. “As they delve deep into the property’s past, they uncover a chilling undercurrent of darkness anchored in the rocky shores,” the synopsis explains.
The Holzer Files season 2 premieres Thursday, Oct. 29 at 11 p.m. on Travel Channel.