Mary Beekman is a four-year-old ghost who resides in The Beekman Mansion, and considers Brent and Josh her “imaginary friends.” Follow Mary Beekman’s Diary each week to learn what it’s like to be a young child in early 19th century America

I was helping by dusting this morning in Mother’s room.  There was a beautiful brooch on top of the chest of drawers. I could see it when I stood on my tiptoes.  Mother  wears it fastened at her neck, but sometimes she pins the edges of her shawl together with it.  It is her cameo.  It has a carved likeness of a beautiful queen on it.  I think she must be a queen because she has her head held very high.  I wondered if I could fasten the hook of the pin to my dress…………under my pinafore.  No one could see it but I would know it was there.  I pressed the pointed part down and away from the curved hook that held it in place.  I couldn’t hear anyone else upstairs.  I bent my head and tucked my chin way down…………it almost touched the top of my pinafore and I could see to fasten the brooch underneath, on my dress.

Josh and Brent were in the upper hall way waiting for me to go outside with them. I had been so busy working on the hook of the cameo that I had not even heard them.  No one is able to hear them except me and this time even I did not hear them.  When I showed them the brooch, they were very kind and told me how lovely it was.  Josh wanted to know where it  came from.  Brent just looked worried.  I explained that  wearing it would perhaps help me complete my work in a more grown-up manner.  Josh asked me if I had permission to wear Mother’s pin.  Well, I explained she did not really deny me permission because she was not present when I pinned in on my dress…………underneath my pinafore.  This information made Brent very nervous.

I ran to be outside with them.  It is was such a beautiful day.  The older boys had left with Father to help a neighbor.  Mother and the bigger girls were fancy sewing.  We crossed the barnyard and went  into the fields to search for wild strawberries.  I found some white berry blossoms but no berries.  We went to the top of the field and guessed the shapes of the clouds .  We like that game  Today my favorite shape was of a tall ship with many sails.  Josh said he saw a whale and Brent spied a sea monster.  When it grew warm, we came off the hill and I began my lessons.  I wanted to look at Mother’s brooch inside my pinafore.  I pulled aside my pinafore…….the brooch was not in place.  I stood up and shook my clothing to see if it had fallen into the folds. I listened, with ears eager to hear a tiny clatter, but there was silence.  All by myself, I began to cry.  Immediately, there appeared first Brent and then Josh.  Somehow they knew, without my telling them, what had happened. We are such dear friends.  It was still light and they said we would climb to the top of the field once again and search. We followed the grass that was bent over so we would repeat our steps.  We found nothing.  I ALWAYS find lost things; but not this time. I really began to cry. W approached the barn slowly and sadly.  As we rounded the corner of the barn, Josh yelled “I see it”.   There it was!  The sun was returning its light from the clasp.  I was so happy.  Brent picked it up and said, “Mary, place this in your pocket and return it to the dresser…….NOW”.    I did.  Someday, I shall tell Mother what had happened.  I am sad I was not the best girl I could be……………..

by Mary Beekman

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Kristy Cook

I love your ghost Mary! We live in an old house, and we call it "Myrtle's Place" because she was the original owner. We love Myrtle dearly. She opens the cabinets and closes the toilet lids and every now and then we see her out of the corner of our eyes. Sometimes we find stuff that she left behind, including a cookbook.


Susan, your ring must be beautiful. You are fortunate to

own it and I know you must cherish it. Mother's ring is

also special. I am so very happy it was found.


My dear Mary,

I wear a cameo ring which was the wedding ring great-great-grandmother when she arrived in the U.S. in the 18th century. I believe that cameos belong only to very special people so guard yours with care, and don't let Josh or Brent feed it to the goats!

With love,


Amanda Booth

This story made me smile, really cause I've been in that position, not with a broach, but with a pearl ring that I "borrowed" from my mother. It fell off my finger when my brother and I were crossing a field to get to our bus stop. When I realized it was gone I told my brother to go ahead of me to catch the bus. Eventually I did find the ring, but I missed the bus. I walked back home where my mother was and she was a little mad, but more so glad that I had found the ring. I gave her back the ring and she drove me to school. I'll make sure to ask next time and to keep it on my finger!