Normally when one hears of haunted locations, the state of Ohio does not make the list. Ohio truly has its share of spooky buildings, odd destinations and ghostly towns. Many years ago Ohio was considered the great Northwest Territory, an unknown land of rolling fields, meandering rivers, and dense forests. Many settlers had not pushed west of the boundary lines imposed by our young growing country. Those that did were often met with Native America Indian resistance, frontier slayings, massacres and vicious diseases that crippled the growing population.
Ohio has been home to 7 Presidents, the Wright Brothers, and Thomas Edison. The Buckeye state is also home of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and The Pro Football Hall of Fame . Ohio has supplied the nation with cars, steel, rubber, various crops and dairy products. Ohio has also supplied us with whispered legends of Cry Baby Bridges, vacant orphanages where children are still heard and seen, headless horses and horsemen, haunted cemeteries ,UFO sightings and even Bigfoot. The Buckeye State also boats the highest concentration of Pagans in the nation. It’s a state full of oddities, ghosts, and things that go bump in the night!
Ohio boasts 24 Cry Baby Bridges where the legends are basically the same. Stand on a bridge late at night and listen for the baby to cry. Most of the legends mention a woman, usually a local witch, who drowns her baby on purpose. Some legends state you must stand on the bridge at night on the stroke of midnight- others are not so precise and any time of the night suffices but it must be a full moon.
Bigfoot sightings and UFO report also grace the buckeye state by the hundreds. Ohio is mentioned in many Top 10 lists as one of the most active UFO states and Bigfoot sightings in America. As a matter of fact Director Stephen Spielberg used an Ohio UFO sighting report as a scene in the movie “Close Encounters”. Remember the scene where the cop car followed the UFO and drive off a cliff in a curve?
Any curious person is probably asking the question “Why is Ohio so odd and haunted?”. The answer can probably be attributed to the fact that Ohio has many Ley Lines which are invisible lines of earth energy. The Native Americans could feel this energy allegedly and therefore put burial grounds, villages and the main trails upon these areas of energy. It’s a popular theory in the paranormal field that energy enhances paranormal activity. If so would Ohio’s multiple Ley Lines help paranormal events to occur and influence haunting in may areas?
Next time that you travel across Ohio, take time to get off the well traveled paths of the concrete highways. Jump on a back road and head into the outskirts of any town. Pull off the road and wait till the sun sinks and shadows deepen. You never know what you might experience! Ohio, the HAUNT of it all!
Sherri Brake-Recco owner of Haunted Heartland Tours in NE Ohio, leads a yearly average of 110 haunted tours. Haunted Heartland Tours is Ohio's only year round haunted tour company. Events offered are Haunted History Walks of Canal Fulton Ohio, haunted dinners, paranormal classes, nighttime cemetery walks, and haunted bus tours. She is the official instructor of Ghost Hunting classes at the West Virginia Pen in Moundsville West Virginia as well as instructing classes in various Ohio locations. Sherri's events and tours take people thru Ohio, West Virginia, Kentucky and Pennsylvania. Sherri is featured in John Kachuba's Ghosthunters book by New Page Books and Haunted Ohio by Emmis Books. She has filmed with PBS and the Travel Channel and is currently working on 2 paranormal themed books while living in an unhaunted house. (Too bad!)
Haunted Heartland Tours www.HauntedHistory.net
Rated in the Top 10 Best Ghost Tours of America 2007 - 2009 By Haunted America Tours
Our coach bus leaves from North Canton Ohio and travels to Moundsville West Virginia for a late night ghosthunt! Live closer? You can always meet our bus there...
Our Goal: To provide quality events which blend history and
hauntings. We strive to educate, enlighten, and entertain with our
own unique blend of the paranormal, science, history, and local
legend. Many of our events allow us to donate back to the local historical
society or cemetery association involved. Contact us here.
Our Locations: We are based out of Canal Fulton, Ohio & Summersville, West Virginia. We are listed in the Top 10 Best Ghost Tours in America for the 4th year running. We hold the Number 7 spot for 2010!
What We Offer: We find the best locations possible to explore history,
hauntings and the paranormal. When we visit haunted locations such as Mansfield Reformatory, Waverly Hills Sanatorium or the West Virginia Pen, we secure the entire building out for our event.
What we do not offer: Haunted House type of entertainment & phony psychics.
Thank you for our growing success. We celebrate 5 years in 2009!
All tours and events led Haunted Heartland Tours owner and Haunted Stark County Ohio author Sherri Brake
"When the past no longer illuminates the future,
the spirit walks in darkness."
-- Alexis de Tocqueville
Haunted America Tours has featured one of our articles on Ohio's Haunted History.
paranormal organizations located in the states of:
Haunted Heartland Directory
Thanks to the Ohio Paranormal Evaluation, Research and Validation Society
Check out our audio interview with WAKR radio in Akron OH and the list of great Ohio places to haunt here!
on the legend of Lock 4 in Stark County Ohio
Special thanks to the morning crew at WQMX 94.9 Akron Ohio
for having us on their show Halloween morning 2008.
You guys are the best!
Sherri Brake with Hosts Sue Wilson and Scott Wynn
Sherri and members of the Ohio PERVS
at Mansfield Reformatory November 14th 2008
West Virginia Pen Bus trip and Xtreme Ghosthunt Bus Trips $75 per person
Sunday November 1st 2009
Five Oaks Mansion (Massillon Womens Club)
7pm-11pm $40 per person
SOLD OUT in 1/2 hour
Need a place to spend the night?
Ohio contact info:
Haunted Heartland Tours
PO Box 391
Canal Fulton OH 44614
West Virginia contact info:
Haunted Heartland Tours
10 Scenic Highway
Summersville WV 26651
Haunted Heartland Tours
Best Ohio ghost tour company, featuring Sherri Brake-Recco...
Meet The Spirits
This Lake "Eerie" walking ghost tour takes you to Fairport Harbor, a spooky little town.
Explore the famously haunted prison in central Ohio.
Haunted Cleveland Tours
Ghost tour with the city on the north coast's Psychic Sonya.
Haunted Cincinnati Tours
Ghost tour Cincinnati, an amazing Ohio city with a rich history!
A Step Back In Time
Ghost tours of Madison, Milton, Bedford and the surround mid-Ohio Valley.
Tours of the Historical, Legends, Lore & Haunted History and the Unusual of Madison, Milton, Bedford and Surrounding Mid Ohio Valley
Welcome to A Step Back In Time
Where you will be taken on a journey not to different place, but to a different time.
Samples of some of the tours you can choose from:
Sundown in the Graveyard
Madison, Indiana: Ever wonder what the carving on a gravestone meant or why a grave marker is shaped like it is? Why widows wore veils? Who were these people and what happened to them? What were the death and burial customs of the various ethnic groups in America? What was the real purpose of a wake? Join me in an evening tour by lantern and find out. Limited to 30 people per tour.
By Moonlight on the River
Ohio River: Alan Eckert wrote a book "That Dark and Bloody River" and named it thus for a reason. The river was once the highway into the heartland and with its obvious benefits of progress and settlement came adventure, tragedy, crime and legends. Take an evening stroll with me along the banks of the Ohio River and you will never view it quite the same.
Haunted Historic Tavern Pubcrawl
Taverns were an important part of early travel "public houses." This lively rivertown boasted multiple taverns of differing eras. Meander down the dark alleys of Madison between federal era homes and carriage houses, visit three historic taverns, hear about their histories and their ghost tales! Appetizer is included as part of tour at two taverns.
Questions? Want to schedule a specific tour? Please feel free to e-mail me at : firstname.lastname@example.org
Miamitown Ghost Tours
!!! Come and join us for a haunting walk through Maimitown's history!! Haunted Cincinnati and Southwest Ohio
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"All houses wherein men have lived and died are haunted houses." ...Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
Just the facts!
Story research and ghost Photos By William Krejci, Avon Lake, Ohio, Artwork Ricardo Pustanio ©2006
These are the FACTS about the Franklin Castle and its first resident. Everything that you have read about Tiedemann ownership is correct to the best of my knowledge. I'm certain that many aspects of it may seem boring and only interesting to anyone who's really into genealogy and early Cleveland Ohio History, but it is all part of the haunted history, tragedy and life of a fascinating family who arrived in this country as immigrants only to leave an enduring American legacy to succeeding generations.
The story begins in the early summer of 1848. In May of that year a 16 year old boy named Hannes Tiedemann arrives in New York with his 51 year old mother Wiebeka (pronounced “Veebkah”), brothers Claus (age 25) and Ludwig (age 21) sisters Catharina (age 19), Rebecca Elise (age 11) and Lowiese (age 5). Left behind is the ancestral farm outside the village of SÃderau, Holstein, Prussia (now Germany) and another brother, 20 year old Heinrich, who decided to remain on the family lands with his new wife, Anna. Hannes’ father, Han, was the local blacksmith and is now at this time deceased.
Franklin Castle orbs
The Tiedemanns purchase, sight unseen, adjoining farmlands located in the townships of Brooklyn and Rockport, Ohio. In 1849, Hannes accompanies his mother and sister Louisa to Ohio to take up residence on their new lands. The whole family travels to Ohio settling on a farm in Brooklyn. Ludwig continues on and settles in Defiance, Ohio where he marries and raises a family. Catherina Tiedemann remains in New York, where she meets Catharina met Gaston G. Allen in Ohio where he lived since about the age of 10. He was originally from New York state, where, on October 31, 1852, they are married. Hannes joins them in Cleveland around 1855, finding employment as a clerk with the wholesale grocery firm of Babcock and Hurd, then located at No. 146 Water Street (now West 9th Street). Hannes boards at a rooming house – the Bennett Forest City House located on Seneca Street (now West 3rd) – and remains at this address until 1863 when he moves into a house located at 112 Hanover Street (now West 28th) on the northwest corner of what at the time was Hanover and Franklin Circle.
Around this same time, Hannes Tiedemann marries his first, Louise (some accounts record her name as Louisa or Luise) who, like Hannes, is a native of Prussia. The following year (1864) Hannes enters into a partnership with Bavarian-born immigrant John Christian Weideman, whom he had met when Weideman was working for a rival grocery firm adjacent to Babcock and Hurd. The new venture would be called Wiedeman and Tiedemann, Wholesale Liquor and Grocers and operated out of No. 30 Merwin Street.
Hannes marries Louise HÃck in 1862 in SÃderau. Hannes and Louise Tiedemann had their first child, named August J. Tiedemann, in 1864. Another child, a daughter whom they named Emma, followed in 1865. On October 6, 1865, the growing Tiedemann family moves from the Hanover Street house to a house located at 279 Franklin and previously owned by a Mr. Alonzo Wolverton. City rezoning changes the address to 275 and then, in 1869, to 283; around the turn of the century another redistricting changes the home’s address to 4308 Franklin, which it remains to this day.
In December 1869 a third child is born to the Tiedemanns, a boy whom they name Ernst. Sadly, on July 10th of the following year, baby Ernst succumbs to fever of the brain (meningitis) and was interred by his grieving parents in Cleveland’s Monroe Street Burying Ground. In September 1870, a first child is born to the Tiedemanns, a girl named Wilhelmina. Ten weeks later, however, the infant girl dies and was buried alongside her ill-fated brother. In 1871, another child – the Tiedemann’s fifth – is born: a daughter named Dora Louise. A sixth and final child, a son named Albert, is born in 1873 but also died in infancy, joining his siblings in Monroe Street.
Around this time, Hannes sells his interests in Weideman and Tiedemann, but keeps his business offices in the Weideman building. In late 1880, Tiedemann (who calls himself the “Capitalist”) has two houses built. The first was located at 12016 Lake Avenue in the Rockport hamlet of Lakewood. Tiedemann named this house “Steinburg” which in English is translated “TheStone Castle.” The house, though quite beautiful, was not constructed of stone, nor did it resemble a castle, although it was four stories high and built in the half-timbered English Tudor-revival style popular at that time. It was the second home, however, that history would name “The Franklin Castle,” after the road on which it was built and because it does, in fact, resemble a castle in many ways. Over the years some have speculated that Tiedemann merely commissioned the modification of an existing structure at the Franklin Street site, however, , that is a mystery that may never truly be solved.
On January 16, 1881, 15-year-old Emma Tiedemann dies of complications from diabetes. Services are held from the family home on Franklin Street and she is the first of the Tiedemanns to be buried in the new family plot at Riverside Cemetery when she is finally interred on March 18th of that year after a two-month wait for the cemetery ground to thaw sufficiently to receive burials. Emma was joined at Riverside by Hannes’ mother, Wiebke , who died of natural causes in April 1881; in 1883, they would be reunited with the other deceased Tiedemann children when Hannes orders the removal of their remains to the new family plot at Riverside.
Following the deaths of his daughter and mother, Hannes and his wife Louise leave Cleveland for approximately two years. It is believed that during this time they traveled back to the family home in Prussia.. During their absence from home the Tiedemann’s son August is left to manage the Franklin Castle and to supervise his younger sister, Dora, who is only ten and very likely still in the care of the family’s nanny.
In 1884, two men arrived in Cleveland from Prussia. They were Johannes and Ludwig Tiedemann, sons of Heinrich ( Hannes Cousin) and wife Anna Tiedemann; Hannes' nephews. Shortly after arrival, Ludwig took ill with brain fever (meningitis). He was admitted to Cleveland City Infirmary where he resided until his death on July 6th, 1886 at the age of 30. He is buried in the family plot at Riverside. Johannes (or John as he was called in the U.S.) stayed with the family at the Franklin Castle until 1890 when he returned to Prussia.
On June 20, 1889, August Tiedemann married Helena Elisabeth Rauch or Ella as she was more commonly known. She was the daughter of Marie Strebel and Charles Rauch, owner of the Rauch and Lang Carriage Company who would later build the Rauch and Lang Brougham and Club Roadster, two of the most sought after automobiles by collectors. August would work for this company from 1890 to 1892. They had two children: Carl H. (1890 - 1929) and Herbert August Tiedemann (1892 - 1934). Carl would eventually marry a woman named May Glenn and have two children, Frances and Carl. Herbert would never marry; he died in St. Petersburg, Florida.
August was employed from 1892 till 1899 by the Phoenix Brewing Company located on the corner of Columbus and Willey Ave. in Cleveland. (St. Wendelin's Church currently sits on the site.) He would work briefly at Langenau Manufacturing and finally at the Beckman Company, until his death on April 23, 1906 from cerebral lelerosis.
Meanwhile his sister, Dora Louise Tiedemann, married a man from Holstein, Prussia named Edward J. L. Wiebenson who worked as a teller at Hannes Tiedemann's bank. They were married on May 23, 1891 and would have five children Edward R. Wiebenson (1892 - 1970), Walter E. (1896 - 1992), Albert A. (1896 - 1896), John J. (1897 - 1969), and Howard C. (1899 - 1969). The Wiebenson family lived briefly at 71 McLean St. and later at 4304 Franklin Ave. Built by Hannes Tiedemann as a dowry to his son-in-law Edward. It was built on the site of the Weideman house.
Dora Louise Wiebenson would die from accidental injuries sustained while vacationing with her husband in Frankfurt, Germany (or Switzerland as other accounts state) on December 4, 1906; less than 8 months after her brother, August. Louise Tiedemann, Hannes wife, passed away from liver trouble on March 28, 1895. Services were from the home on Franklin; she was buried at Riverside Cemetery.
After his wife's death, Hannes traveled to Prussia where he met a woman named Henriette M. In 1896, the two were married and returned to the U.S. later that same year. The Franklin Castle was ultimately sold to the Mullhauser family in 1897 (not 1895 as previously believed). Hannes and Henriette moved into Steinberg in Lakewood.
In 1898, Heinrich and Anna Tiedemann, Hannes' brother and sister-in-law, died together with their son August from coal oxide gas poisoning.
In January of 1907, Hannes Tiedemann retired as president of the United Banking and Savings Trust Co. of Cleveland. His son-in-law, Edward J. L. Wiebenson succeeded him as president. In February, Hannes changed his last will and testament (his daughter no longer being alive). He left his fortune, and it was quite extensive, to his daughter-in-law, son-in-law, his "hired man" of 23 years service Heinrich (Henry) Buehning, a west side home for the elderly, and a trust fund for his six grand-children. His wife, Henriette, inherited $50,000 provided she make no further claim against his estate. One specific item listed in the will was that Steinberg was to always be called such and was also to always remain in the family Tiedemann (referring to Carl or Herbert or any descendants thereof).
On January 16, 1908, Hannes Tiedemann suffered a stroke (Arterial Sclerosis) supposedly while strolling through Lakewood Park. He passed away on January 19th at Steinberg and was buried from McGorray Funeral Home in Lakewood. He was interred at Riverside Cemetery on January 22, 1908.
On February 20, 1908 Gaston G. Allen died from pneumonia. He was interred at Monroe Street Cemetery in the plot where the Tiedemann children were originally buried. There is a Masonic Lodge named in his honor. On April 27, 1908 Claus Tiedemann passed away.
On August 2, 1909 Emielie Tiedemann, Claus' wife, died from cancer. She and Claus are buried at Woodland Cemetery on Cleveland's east side. Edward Wiebenson died from appendicitis on April 1 1910 and was buried at Riverside with Dora. Catherina L. (Tiedemann) Allen died August 2, 1912; Henriette M. Tiedemann died about 1926.
Ella Rauch sold Steinberg in 1915 to W. J. Hunkin thus breaking the last wishes of Hannes Tiedemann that it remain in the family; Hunkin tore it down a few years after the purchase. An apartment complex named Lake Cove currently stands where the old building once stood. Ella Rauch remarried a man named John T. Clarke in 1917. He died on November 10, 1941. At his burial, Ella Rauch had August's remains exhumed, cremated and reburied beside her son Herbert. Ella died from heart disease in Atlantic City, New Jersey on May 5, 1955. She is buried between her two late husbands.
And that is the history of Hannes Tiedemann and the early years of the Franklin Castle. All dates are correct; all names are spelled correctly. I have spent countless hours over the past thirteen years researching this subject and I still am not finished. I still find new facts every few days, for instance I'm still looking for Henriette's burial place as well as a maiden name. I am also still looking for a maiden name for Louise.
Currently I am working on a fiction novel based on the historical facts surrounding the house and its founding family.
Was Hannes Tiedemann an evil man: a monster... wicked and overbearing? I don't know. Honestly, he seems more like a humanitarian than anything else. He did leave a sizable amount to an old folks home when he died. He would also house newly arrived immigrants at the castle as well as at Steinberg and help find the jobs. I've never found anything pointing to him committing murder. That story comes from a psychic named Eleanora Bernstein who briefly stayed at the castle in early 1980 who also had the intentions of writing a novel about Hannes Tiedemann. There was no murdered sister named Rachel and no illegitimate daughter named Karen who hung herself. Despite popular myth, Hannes Tiedemann does have living descendants.
I've been inside the house only once and that was unfortunately after the fire of 1999. I shot a fair amount of video footage while my brother and his girlfriend took numerous photographs. I've honestly never seen more orbs recorded in one session on video or film than I did from what we took that night. There is definitely something there. Hannes and Louise Tiedemann? Maybe. Hope you find this helpful if not at least interesting.
William Krejci, Avon Lake, Ohio, © 2006.
Real Franklin Castle ghost Photos ?!?
SEE Real reported FRANKLIN CASTLE GHOST PHOTOS visit here now!
FRANKLIN CASTLE, ONE OF OHIO'S MOST HAUNTED HOUSES WALLPAPER FROM HAUNTED AMERICA TOURS BY NEW ORLEANS FAVORITE MARDI GRAS ARTIST RICARDO PUSTANIO
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Historic Franklin Castle to become Cleveland's most unique, members-only club. Or is it?
Cleveland, OH -- January 1, 2005-- Cleveland-born Real Estate Investor Charles Milsaps is about to realize a dream that has been over a decade in the making. His plan: to transform the legendary Franklin Castle of Ohio City into the Franklin Castle Club, a private social club. Franklin Castle Club, located at 4308 Franklin Boulevard in Ohio City, will offer its members daily lunch and dinner services as well as dining, banquet and meeting facilities. Members will have access to additional amenities such as elaborate guest suites for overnight stays and limousine and concierge services.
"This is one of my dreams, I have wanted to do this for as long as I can remember. The privilege to restore this home and offer it to others is an honor," said Mr. Milsaps. The Club will offer its members the highest quality in culinary delights as well as first class service in a most unique atmosphere. "This will be a wonderful addition to Ohio City and all of Cleveland," Mr. Milsaps added.
The Tiedemann House, 4308 Franklin Boulevard, is the most noted and one of the most architecturally distinguished residences on Franklin Blvd., the West side equivalent of famous Euclid Avenue. Its builder, Hannes Tiedemann (1832-1908), was a wholesale grocer with the firm of Weidemann & Tiedemann beginning in 1864. In 1883 he was Founder and Vice-President of the Savings & Trust Co., one of the first institutions organized in Ohio under the law permitting the formation of trust companies.
The family lived continuously at this address from 1866-1895 and the present Second Empire Gothic Mansion was erected in 1881. Its architects, Cudell & Richardson, who are identified by a carved stone on the house, were Cleveland's most prestigious architectural firm in the 1880s. The style of the house, a large, rock-faced sandstone mansion with a round corner tower, was contemporary of the times, which followed architectural trends in Chicago and New York.
Tiedemann died in 1908 at the age of 75. In the 20th century, the house was occupied by a German singing society, the Deutsche Socialisten, and later by the Bildungsverein Eintracht club. The house had numerous owners and uses over the second part of the last century, serving as private home for some and a Church to others. In 1999, the house, which had again become a private residence, was heavily damaged by a fire. Plans were announced the following year to restore the home and the structural repairs were soon completed.
In 2003, Franklin Castle sits, unoccupied, primed for restoration. To transform the house into the grand Franklin Castle Club, Mr. Milsaps has retained the assistance of one of Cleveland's foremost design talents: award-winning and nationally acclaimed Architect Robert Maschke. Together, the two intend to return the house to its original grandeur, making it the focal point of Franklin Boulevard, a beacon of Ohio City restoration and the new home to the Franklin Castle Club.
"When Charles and I first met, he was a bit hesitant to tell me what he wanted to do with the castle. But he didn't need to be... I think turning the Franklin Castle into a private dining club is a fantastic idea. Short of using the Castle as a primary residence, I can't think of one other way to utilize the building to its fullest extent," said Robert Maschke.
"I think Cleveland is ready for this kind of Club and I couldn't think of a better home for the Club or a better use for the house. To me, this is part of the home's destiny," added Mr. Milsaps.
Previous owners have attempted various renovations over the years, but this is the first time the castle will be restored to its original interior design. Mr. Milsaps explains, "Because of the more public use of the house, some changes will be made, but our intention is to make everything as original as possible."
The Castle will require major renovations as part of the restoration, including all new plumbing, heating, and electrical systems, as well as rebuilding all 62 windows. "This kind of investment - in both the money and thought - helps solidify an edge of Ohio City that hasn't gotten that attention before... not to the magnitude of what this is going to be. Charlie's been thinking about this for years and now we have the chance to make it happen," said Mr. Maschke.
The Club is on schedule to open by years end, serving its members lunch, dinner, and libations six days a week. An accomplished chef and experienced fine-dining staff will cater to a member's every need, including a Club Concierge and hospitality staff. The Franklin Castle Club will offer three guest suites for overnight stays to both members and non-members. Members will have access to Club facilities during stated Club hours and access to private dinning room and banquet facilities by reservation.
Club members will enjoy all the expected amenities of a private club. The Club will have limousines and sedans available for both Club and non-club events and valet parking will be complimentary during all Club hours. Member's will also have the Sand Castle, the Club's Florida beach house, and the Sea Castle, the Club's 72' Hatteras motor yacht, at their disposal.
Memberships are limited and are available by contacting the Club. Club memberships are affordable and the limited number will undoubtedly be sold out before our opening. This is a rare opportunity to participate in a new era of elegance for Cleveland's most famous home.
FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT:
4308 Franklin Boulevard
Cleveland, OH 44113
Structures Cemeteries Indian Mounds Parks & Nature Miscellaneous
Forgotten Ohio includes this map below where you can search by county for haunted places. Please visit the offical site to learn more!
Lovely Madison, Indiana is a gem of a town, its downtown historic district recently designated a National Historic Landmark, one of the largest in the United States, encompassing approximately 130 blocks. Madison is most noted for its friendly people, easy-going shop owners of antique, craft and other unique specialty items, and its beautiful, well-preserved buildings. The shores on the north side of the Ohio River in the area were not officially settled until approximately 1804. I find this fascinating because as you gaze directly aross the river to Milton, Kentucky, which was settled in the late 1700s, you wonder how that could have been. I imagine that some adventurous people, indeed, crossed the Ohio River to the area of what was then the Northwest Territory and present-day Madison. Besides the beauty and atmosphere of this wonderful town, I've found an interesting array of characters that made it what it is now. For special oddly unusual and interesting historical highlights of Madison I'd like to share:
The gazebo in John Paul Park
| John Paul Park
| Once called The Old Third Street Cemetery, now John Paul Park: A small, unassuming park in the northwestern part of downtown, I found myself fascinated by what it really was - an early cemetery of Madison. It had fallen into disrepair and the John Paul chapter of DAR committed to cleaning it up and making a memorial park of it. The unusual part - all but a few of the bodies are still buried underneath it. The stones were moved but the remains left; some underneath where Third Street borders it to the south. I wanted to know who those people were and what happened to them, and began a journey of stepping into the past to feel their presence and tell their stories.
| The Ohio River
This is where it all started, on the Ohio River. The river has a lively history all its own and, like all rivertowns, Madison has it's share of river lore. From the first days of canoes and rafts on arrival, to a ferry from the Milton, Kentucky side that was halted during the Civil War, to the days of steamships and packets, the river was the lifeblood of Madison.
The Belle of Louisville in port
The Ashtabula Bridge Disaster
Nearly lost to the pages of history is the Ashtabula Bridge Disaster. In 1876, a packed train plunged into the icy waters of Ashtabula Creek when the bridge spanning the creek snapped under the weight of the locomotive and cars. Many months prior to the disaster, engineers had reported ominous popping sounds when trains thundered over the bridge, but inspectors found no problems. Fatal design flaws and shoddy construction actually made the bridge an accident waiting to happen. On a cold December night, the bridge collapsed, dumping the passenger cars into the creek. Many of the hapless souls trapped in the wreckage died from hypothermia. Since the train cars landed one on top of the other, many who survived the initial crash were trapped in the wreckage and burned to death when the coal-fired stoves and oil lamps ignited the heavily varnished cars.
The haunting focuses on two sites: the area near the creek where the bridge once stood, and the cemetery housing the dead. Visitors to the creek often hear screams, whimpers and cries, particularly during the winter, and the smell of burning flesh and varnish often hangs heavily in the night air. Since so many victims of the tragedy were burned beyond recognition, most are buried in a mass grave in Chestnut Grove Cemetery, marked only by a plain granite obelisk. Visitors spot apparitions dressed in Victorian period clothing near the mass grave. The apparitions carry picnic baskets and appear to be happy! Are the ghosts of the Ashtabula Bridge Disaster enjoying a sunny summer day in the afterlife instead of reliving the horrible tragedy?
Camp Chase Confederate Cemetery
Camp Chase once stood along Livingston Avenue, just behind Sullivant Avenue in Columbus and near the Capitol Building. Like most Civil War prisons, conditions inside the prison were dreadful. Disease claimed the lives of nearly two-thousand inmates.
Walk around Camp Chase Cemetery and look for fresh flowers on the graves of Benjamin Allen and several unknown soldiers. Visitors report a mysterious "lady in gray" who leaves flowers for Ben Allen and some of his unknown compatriots. Is she the ghost of a former wife, girlfriend or sister?
In 1988, during a well-attended Civil War reenactment, spectators clearly heard a lady weeping. Although they searched the area seeking the troubled woman, they found neither the woman nor the source of the sound. Many credible witnesses reported hearing the crying.
The Ghosts of Bowling Green State University
The Bowling Green State University campus claims not one but several specters. A ghost named “Alice” haunts the college theater. Witnesses report an apparition of a woman with long hair wearing clothing from the 1920’s. No one knows how she acquired the name Alice, but tradition holds that unless the stage manager invites Alice to the opening night, bad things will happen.
If all this sounds like silly superstition, consider what happened to a production of Henry IV sometime in the last decade. Cast members believe someone talked badly about Alice during rehearsals. On opening night, the box office computers went offline for no apparent reason. Several large props fell suddenly, injuring two actors. Did Alice cause these mishaps?
Other buildings on the Bowling Green State University Campus are also said to be haunted. The Chi Omega Sorority House boasts a ghost named Amanda. Amanda is said to be the ghost of a sorority sister killed by a train on the night she was accepted into the sorority. One room in Chi Omega, called Amanda’s Room, frequently experiences poltergeist-like activity. Items fall off shelves or pictures fall from the walls, lights turn on and off by themselves and strange knocking noises come from nowhere.
Each year the girls of Chi Omega take a sorority sister photo, and tradition dictates that they leave a blank seat in the line up for Amanda the ghost. In 1986, the sorority sisters forgot to leave one blank seat for Amanda. That picture is the only one that regularly falls off the wall in Amanda’s Room!
Ohio State Penitentiary
No discussion of Ohio haunted places is complete without mention of the Ohio State Penitentiary. Although the site is now a parking lot, witnesses continue to report paranormal activity.
The imposing edifice once housed hundreds of inmates. On Easter Sunday, 1930, a prisoner got the bright idea to start a fire, trigger the alarm and escape during the confusion. Unfortunately, his plan backfired. Smoke filled the cell block. Guards delayed opening prison doors, and more than three hundred convicts died in the fire.
When the building still stood, visitors to the empty penitentiary reported hearing screams, crackling flames and roaring fire. The city tore down the prison in 2000 to make way for the Blue Jackets stadium parking lot. Reports continue of spirit orbs appearing in photos taken near the stadium, phantom smoke smells and unexplained screams heard near the old penitentiary site.
Explore haunted places in Ohio through the following resources.
- Prairie Ghosts contains a listing of many haunted places and houses in Ohio, including the ones mentioned here.
- Forgotten Ohio includes a map where you can search by county for haunted places.
1. Brock Cemetery, Greenville, Ohio - Annie Oakley
2. Calvary Cemetery (Cleveland, Ohio), Cleveland - Ed Delahanty, Frank Lausche, Stella Walsh and Frankie Yankovic
3. Greenlawn Cemetery, Columbus - William Dennison, Jim Rhodes, Eddie Rickenbacker and James Thurber.
4. Grandview Cemetery, Chillicothe
Lakeview Cemetery, Cleveland - burial site for President James A. Garfield, John D. Rockefeller, Eliot Ness and others.
6. Mansfield Catholic Cemetery, Mansfield, Ohio. Famous architect F.F. Schnitzer buried here.
7. Oxford Cemetery, Oxford
8. Riverview Cemetery, East Liverpool- founded 1883.
9. Rose Hill Cemetery in Massillon, Ohio - Paul Brown
10. Spring Grove Cemetery & Arboretum, Cincinnati, Ohio - largest non-profit private (second largest overall) cemetery in the United States (725+ acres) - Bob Braun, Salmon P. Chase, and Levi Coffin.
11. Union Cemetery in Columbus, Ohio - Moses Fleetwood Walker, Dave Thomas, Woody Hayes.
12. Woodland Cemetery, Dayton - gravesites of Wilbur and Orville Wright, Paul Laurence Dunbar, Erma Bombeck and others.
13. Woodlawn Cemetery, Toledo - gravesites of Samuel M. Jones, Edward Drummond Libbey, Morrison Waite and others.
photos from Ohio's Most Haunted cemeteries, haunted places, and historical sites
Name: Jason M. Colwell
Positions: Public Relations, Lead Investigator
Founded in 2003. Based in Columbus, Ohio. Exploring paranormal occurrences in the Buckeye State.
Our Founder, Jason Michael Colwell, sought diligently over the past decade to seek knowledge on the truths of unexplained phenomena. If it were not for being blessed with the appearance of like minds during this journey into the unknown, the mission surely would have ended long ago.
Our original members have been investigating together for eight years, well before we even decided to get a public website. This digital resource has had several incarnations over it`s years of existence. Jason and his associates are pleased to see it grow and mature as their experiences, knowledge, and group of like minds, have also grown and matured.
Though our knowledge and experience over the years, has grown tremendously, we know there will most certainly always be room to improve. Sometimes, researching and experimenting, to find answers to questions, leads to more questions. This type of research quickly becomes a life long adventure. None of our members or our associates would have it any other way.
Although things we experience as we explore little understood realms can be quite daunting, we push on to continue this good work. Though we acknowledge that no one person or group will ever have all the answers, we simply do our best, to do our part.
We invite our viewers to take part in what we are doing. Do you need help with something you have experienced? Let us know! Someone you know needs assistence? Send them to us. Have a personal experience or a current lead to share? Submit it. We will always respect your privacy and obtain your permission before putting anything you share with us into public view.
Northeast Ohio's Haunted Places, Legends, and Abandoned Cemeteries.
Birds of a feather. A group of like minded individuals, all bound by blood or marriage, decided to seek out an adventure of the most unorthodox kind: a public ghost hunt. In 2000, paranormal reality shows were becoming increasingly popular, and thrill seekers as well as serious seasoned investigators sought out locations such as The Mansfield Reformatory in Mansfield, Ohio. This is when and where Deadframe began their quest for the unexplained.
As a team we've investigated hospitals, cemeteries, private residences, prisons, hotels, a museum, mall and even a safehouse for slaves. In 2003 we received a scientific research permit from The United States Department of the Interior for investigating claims of paranormal activity within the Cuyahoga Valley National Park System. We were invited to speak at the 2004 Cleveland premier of the Universal Pictures film White Noise. Later that same year, we were accompanied by the Cleveland Plain Dealer, Ohio's largest newspaper, to an investigation at the West Virginia State Penitentiary. Deadframe has been featured on broadcast and internet radio, and in several ghost anthologies. We are very proud of what we've achieved, but most of all, we are proud of the knowledge we have gained in our research.
We at the OGHS actually do real scientific research, employing topical science theory to practical application. You won't find made up "fairy-tale" theories, speculation, conjecture, or assumption here. If we can't prove it, and show you the proof, you won't see it on this website...the internet is already polluted enough with that other stuff.
So sit back, get comfortable, pour yourself your beverage of choice, and get ready to journey into the world of Real Paranormal Studies...
As Bill Cosby used to say on the old Fat Albert cartoon: "If you're not careful, you just might learn something.", and take a different view of the way paranormal studies are being handled today.
“Life is infinitely stranger than anything which the mind of man could invent.”-Sherlock Holmes
THE ONLINE HOME OF THE OHIO PARANORMAL INVESTIGATION AND RESEARCH TEAM
When others look away, when you need assistance, we want to help. Together, we can learn more about the truth.
Paranormal Investigations in the Buckeye State. Serving the community since 2003
In need of help with a paranormal situation?
Have questions or want to arrange a media appearance?
Need to call or send a fax for any reason?
We are also contactable via US Mail
PO Box 20712
Investigating hauntings since 2003. We have expanded into a research group for all things paranormal, including, but not exclusively, crypto creature and UFO sightings. All topics of the paranormal and things unexplained are welcome here!
~ OVPR ~
OVPR About Our Group
A Brief History: OVPR was started in 2004 by Tim and Tiffany Stewart. They both grew up having various experiences with the paranormal. After many conversations about what they each had witnessed throughout the years, they decided to form their own research group.
On our site, you'll find the following:
- Our beliefs regarding the field of paranormal investigating
- Our credentials/investigations
- OVPR merchandise for sale
- How to contact us
- What's new with the group
- Blogs from founders Tim & Tiffany Stewart
- What services we offer (free of charge)
Please take your time to visit us at www.ohiovalleyparanormalresearchers.com and look around. If you have any questions, concerns, or comments, send us an email. We're always happy to hear from people.
To contact any of our lead investigators, please email one of the following address:
The Ohio Valley Paranormal Researchers do not claim to be an authority or an expert on anything paranormal, as we acknowledge that there can be no such thing in the field of paranormal investigation. Having said that, please let us explain what we mean-- In this field, we gain knowledge and experience because a being in the spirit world (be them once human or not) allows us to be witness to their manifestation. We cannot control the manifestations, we can simply be lucky enough to have good timing and be in the right place at the right time. What evidence we get, visual or audible, is given to us. Taking in to account the fact that people lie, what is to stop a spirit from lying? What rule is there that says they have to show us thier true selves or speak only the truth to us? There isn't one. Therefore, evidence like EVPs, is gathered on the assumption that what is being told to us is a fact. We can gather evidence that there is, in deed, something paranormal hanging around a residence, but we cannot get any garuntee on who or what is giving us that evidence. Knowing that, we have our belief that one can't be an expert on anything paranormal. You can be experienced, learned, well-knowledged about the latest techniques and equipment, but you cannot be an expert on the being itself.
The goal of the OVPR is to give you information and evidence of the paranormal so that you may come to a well-informed decision about spirits. The information we post on this site, as well as pictures, video or film footage and EVPs, will be completely truthful and well-researched. We will never purposefully give out misinformation. We believe in balancing skepticism with belief- we believe in the paranormal, yet we are skeptical of evidence until we have exhausted all other possibilities. This, we believe, will give our findings maximum credibility. Any websites we list, we believe to be very credible as well.
If you find that you are having problems with something you believe to be paranormal, do not hesitate to contact us. We'll be happy to speak with you and help you if at all possible. If, for some reason, we cannot help you we will try to direct you to someone who can. It is important to note that OVPR does not charge for any home investigations that we conduct, though any donations for tapes, gas, batteries, etc..will always be appreciated.
Founded in 1999 by James A. Willis, The Ghosts of Ohio is a nationally recognized paranormal-research organization that uses scientific and historic methods to investigate and document reported hauntings in the state of Ohio. We are one of the most reputable and prominent not-for-profit organizations in the state and have been in continuous operation since our founding. Currently, we have close to 30 members stationed throughout the state of Ohio.
Ghost hunters, paranormal investigators based in the Columbus, Ohio area. We conduct ghost, paranormal investigations in private residences and businesses throughout Ohio, and surrounding states. We do not cleanse, rid or banish ghosts from homes or businesses.
Despite what some may claim, there is no such thing as professional ghost hunters. We always conduct ourselves in a professional manner, but we do not feel the need to attach such a tag to our team. We are ghost hunters-ghost investigators, period. We follow a set of strict standards and use common sense. We take what we do seriously.
Webmaster and Founder of Ohio Ghost Researchers
Picture and Video Annalist
Special Equipment Operator
Archeological evidence suggests that the Ohio Valley was inhabited by nomadic people as early as 13,000 BC. These early nomads disappeared from Ohio by 1,000 BC, "but their material culture provided a base for those who followed them". Between 1,000 and 800 BC, the sedentary Adena culture emerged. As Ohio historian George W. Knepper notes, this sophisticated culture was "so named because evidences of their culture were excavated in 1902 on the grounds of Adena, Thomas Worthington's estate located near Chillicothe". The Adena were able to establish "semi-permanent" villages because they domesticated plants, which included squash, sunflowers, and perhaps corn. Cultivation of these in addition to hunting and gathering supported more settled, complex villages. The most spectacular remnant of the Adena culture is the Great Serpent Mound, located in Adams County, Ohio.
Around 100 BC, the Adena were joined in Ohio Country by the Hopewell people, who were named for the farm owned by Captain M. C. Hopewell, where evidence of their unique culture was discovered. Like the Adena, the Hopewell people participated in a mound-building culture. Their complex, large and technologically sophisticated earthworks can be found in modern-day Marietta, Newark, and Circleville. The Hopewell, however, disappeared from the Ohio Valley in about 600 AD. Little is known about the people who replaced them. Researchers have identified two additional, distinct prehistoric cultures: the Fort Ancient people and the Whittlesey Focus people. Both cultures apparently disappeared in the 17th century, perhaps decimated by infectious diseases spread in epidemics from early European contact. The Native Americans had no immunity to common European diseases. Some scholars believe that the Fort Ancient people "were ancestors of the historic Shawnee people, or that, at the very least, the historic Shawnees absorbed remnants of these older peoples."
American Indians in the Ohio Valley were greatly affected by the aggressive tactics of the Iroquois Confederation, based in central and western New York. After the so-called Beaver Wars in the mid-1600s, the Iroquois claimed much of the Ohio country as hunting and, more importantly, beaver-trapping ground. After the devastation of epidemics and war in the mid-1600s, which largely emptied the Ohio country of indigenous people by the mid-to-late seventeenth century, the land gradually became repopulated by the mostly Algonquian-speaking descendants of its ancient inhabitants, that is, descendants of the Adena, Hopewell, and Mississippian cultures. Many of these Ohio-country nations were multi-ethnic (sometimes multi-linguistic) societies born out of the earlier devastation brought about by disease, war, and subsequent social instability. They subsisted on agriculture (corn, sunflowers, beans, etc.) supplemented by seasonal hunts. By the 18th century, they were part of a larger global economy brought about by European entry into the fur trade.
The indigenous nations to inhabit Ohio in the historical period included the Miamis (a large confederation); Wyandots (made up of refugees, especially from the fractured Huron confederacy); Delawares (pushed west from their historic homeland in New Jersey); Shawnees (also pushed west, although they may have been descended from the Fort Ancient people of Ohio); Ottawas (more commonly associated with the upper Great Lakes region); Mingos (like the Wyandot, a group recently formed of refugees from Iroquois); and Eries (gradually absorbed into the new, multi-ethnic "republics," namely the Wyandot). Ohio country was also the site of Indian massacres, such as the Yellow Creek Massacre, Gnadenhutten and Pontiac's Rebellion school massacre.
Colonial and Revolutionary eras
During the 18th century, the French set up a system of trading posts to control the fur trade in the region. In 1754, France and Great Britain fought a war that was known in North America as the French and Indian War and in Europe as the Seven Years War. As a result of the Treaty of Paris, the French ceded control of Ohio and the remainder of the Old Northwest to Great Britain.
Pontiac's Rebellion in the 1760s, however, posed a challenge to British military control. This came to an end with the colonists' victory in the American Revolution. In the Treaty of Paris in 1783, Britain ceded all claims to Ohio country to the United States.
Northwest Territory: 1787–1803
The United States created the Northwest Territory under the Northwest Ordinance of 1787. Slavery was not permitted in the new territory. Settlement began with the founding of Marietta by the Ohio Company of Associates, which had been formed by a group of American Revolutionary War veterans. Following the Ohio Company, the Miami Company (also referred to as the "Symmes Purchase") claimed the southwestern section, and the Connecticut Land Company surveyed and settled the Connecticut Western Reserve in present-day Northeast Ohio.
The old Northwest Territory originally included areas previously known as Ohio Country and Illinois Country. As Ohio prepared for statehood, the Indiana Territory was created, reducing the Northwest Territory to approximately the size of present-day Ohio plus the eastern half of the Lower Peninsula of Michigan and the eastern tip of the Upper Peninsula.
Under the Northwest Ordinance, areas of the territory could be defined and admitted as states once their population reached 60,000. Although Ohio's population numbered only 45,000 in December 1801, Congress determined that the population was growing rapidly and Ohio could begin the path to statehood. The assumption was that it would exceed 60,000 residents by the time it was admitted as a state.
On February 19, 1803, President Jefferson signed an act of Congress that approved Ohio's boundaries and constitution. However, Congress had never passed a resolution formally admitting Ohio as the 17th state. The current custom of Congress declaring an official date of statehood did not begin until 1812, with Louisiana's admission as the 18th state. Although no formal resolution of admission was required, when the oversight was discovered in 1953, Ohio congressman George H. Bender introduced a bill in Congress to admit Ohio to the Union retroactive to March 1, 1803. At a special session at the old state capital in Chillicothe, the Ohio state legislature approved a new petition for statehood that was delivered to Washington, D.C. on horseback. On August 7, 1953 (the year of Ohio's 150th anniversary), President Eisenhower signed an act that officially declared March 1, 1803 the date of Ohio's admittance into the Union.
Although many Native Americans had migrated west to evade American encroachment, others remained settled in the state, sometimes assimilating in part. In 1830 under President Jackson, the US government forced Indian Removal of most tribes to the Indian Territory west of the Mississippi River.
In 1835, Ohio fought with Michigan in the Toledo War, a mostly bloodless boundary war over the Toledo Strip. Congress intervened, making Michigan's admittance as a state conditional on ending the conflict. In exchange for giving up its claim to the Toledo Strip, Michigan was given the western two-thirds of the Upper Peninsula, in addition to the eastern third that was already considered part of the state.
Ohio state welcome sign, in an older (1990s) style
Ohio's central position and its population gave it an important place during the Civil War. The Ohio River was a vital artery for troop and supply movements, as were Ohio's railroads. Ohio contributed more soldiers per-capita than any other state in the Union. In 1862, the state's morale was badly shaken in the aftermath of the battle of Shiloh, a costly victory in which Ohio forces suffered 2,000 casualties. Later that year, when Confederate troops under the leadership of Stonewall Jackson threatened Washington, D.C., Ohio governor David Tod still could recruit 5,000 volunteers to provide three months of service. Ohio historian Andrew R. L. Cayton writes that almost 35,000 Ohioans died in the conflict, "and some thirty thousand carried battle scars with them for the rest of their lives." By the end of the Civil War, the Union's top three generals–Ulysses S. Grant, William Tecumseh Sherman, and Philip Sheridan–were all from Ohio.
In 1912 a Constitutional Convention was held with Charles B. Galbreath as secretary. The result reflected the concerns of the Progressive Era. It introduced the initiative and the referendum. In addition, it allowed the General Assembly to put questions on the ballot for the people to ratify laws and constitutional amendments originating in the Legislature. Under the Jeffersonian principle that laws should be reviewed once a generation, the constitution provided for a recurring question to appear on Ohio's general election ballots every 20 years. The question asks whether a new convention is required. Although the question has appeared in 1932, 1952, 1972, and 1992, it has never been approved. Instead constitutional amendments have been proposed by petition to the legislature hundreds of times and adopted in a majority of cases.
Eight U.S. presidents hailed from Ohio at the time of their elections, giving rise to its nickname "Mother of Presidents", a sobriquet it shares with Virginia. Seven presidents were born in Ohio, making it second to Virginia's eight. Virginia-born William Henry Harrison lived most of his life in Ohio and is also buried there. Harrison conducted his political career while living on the family compound, founded by his father-in-law, John Cleves Symmes, in North Bend, Ohio. The seven presidents born in Ohio were Ulysses S. Grant, Rutherford B. Hayes, James A. Garfield, Benjamin Harrison (grandson of William Henry Harrison), William McKinley, William Howard Taft and Warren G. Harding.