Architects announce 2014's top 10 haunted buildings in southern - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Architects announce 2014's top 10 haunted buildings in southern IL


Architects in Marion, Illinois announced their top 10 haunted buildings for 2014 just in time for Halloween.

The list covers most of southern Illinois, with some locations dating back to the early 1800s.

Most of the buildings are public landmarks on the National Register of Historic Places, and others are currently private residences with a deep local history.

The list is not ordered to reflect the degree of paranormal activity, but rather a collection of historic buildings that have a spooky story to tell.

Choate Mental Health Center - Anna, Ill.

The Choate Mental Health Center, formerly Anna State Hospital, was built in 1869 and opened in 1875.

This Victorian-era structure was built after the Kirkbridge plan of design. Kirkbridge buildings typically have long, staggered wings to allow for sunlight and fresh air to enter, with large grounds surrounding the structure.

There have been numerous cases of people claiming they've seen faces in the windows, or heard sounds of footsteps or voices. There has been one case of a "devil dog" that attacked a patient.

Orderlies heard sounds of commotion from the room, entered the room, and the victim had unexplainable scratches all over his body.

The Crenshaw House (Old Slave House) - Equality, Ill.

Built in 1834 and designed by architect William Gavin, this house is one recognizable work of Vernacular Greek Revival architecture in southern Illinois.

The house was originally owned by John Crenshaw and his family until 1864. Crenshaw played a role in the Reverse Underground Railroad and captured runaway slaves and sold them back to the southern states.

The slaves were kept in the attic of the house, and visitors have heard voices, sounds of crying and chains rattling from the attic.

The Hundley House - Carbondale, Ill.

The Hundley House features Prairie-style architecture and was built in 1907.

Former Carbondale Mayor J.C. Hundley owned the house and served as mayor until December 1928 when he and his wife were shot and killed in the home on West Main Street.

One peculiar piece of information from the murder of the mayor and his wife is that the killer shut off all the lights in the house before they left.

The question remains, how did the killer know where the light switches were and why did he/she shut them all off?

Now privately owned, former guests of the house have reported hearing voices of children in the home and the voice of a woman who is suspected of being either the mayor's wife that was murdered, or the mother of the voices of the children.

Creole House - Prairie du Rocher, Ill.

The Creole House was built around 1800 by Dr. Robert McDonald. This Porteaux-sur-sol (post-on-sill) style home has been through numerous owners and is one of the only remaining Vernacular-style houses in southern Illinois.

Vernacular-style architecture involves using resources readily available near the building site.

The house was placed on the National Registry of Historic Places in 1973, and guests have heard footsteps, voices and witnessed doors slam open for no apparent reason.

The Grand Rose Hotel - Elizabethtown, Ill.

This Georgian-style hotel was built by James McFarland around 1812 and is the oldest active hotel in the state.

The building is said to be haunted by two ghosts. One is believed to be a former employee named Tote. The other is believed to be former Hotel Operator Maimee Rose.

Guests have reported hearing commotion and noises from rooms where no one was staying, and pennies in groups of three or four have been consistently seen in different places of the hotel.

Objects have mysteriously moved and turned up in different rooms later on.

McCoy Memorial Library - McLeansboro, Ill.

Built by Aaron G. Cloud as his personal home in 1884, this mix of mid to late nineteenth century Italianate architecture has served as the town's library since 1922.

The building features Eastlake-style ornamentation throughout the building and is a staple for camera buffs across the region.

Tales of lights turning on by themselves, books randomly falling off the shelves and sounds of laughter from empty rooms have been reported in this building, but with little idea as to whose ghost it could be.

Former City Hall - Marion, Ill.

The former Marion City Hall building rests at the northeast corner of the Town Square of Marion and was built in 1903.

The building originally held the Marion State and Savings Bank on the first floor and offices for City Hall on the second floor.

After the Marion State and Savings Bank moved from the first floor in 1914, the city bought the building and used it as the City Hall.

The building held the jail on the North wing, and legend has it a former employee fell down the stairs and died in the stairwell.

It is currently being renovated, but tales of voices, lights being on in rooms no one had entered and flying orbs of light have emerged thoughout the years.

Pulaski County Courthouse - Mound City, Ill.

Built in 1912, the courthouse is one example of early Greek Revival Architecture in Illinois.

The basement of the courthouse also served in the early years as the county jail.

Reports of hauntings started around 20 years ago, with one claim made by a student at Lovejoy School previously located across the street from the building.

The student claimed to see someone hanging from the tree outside the building, and others claim to have heard voices or sounds coming from the basement.

The Franklin County Jailhouse - Benton, Ill.

Built in 1905, this Classic Revival-influenced jail held the famous gangster Charlie Birger until he was publicly hanged in April 1928.

The jail was closed in 1990 and placed on the National Register of Historic Places in February 1999.

Guests have reported hearing numerous different voices of what is believed to be former inmates.

Safford Memorial Library - Cairo, Ill.

Given to the town by Mrs. Alfred Scott in 1884, this Queen Anne-style historic building has had its fair share of the paranormal.

Employees of the library have named the ghost "Toby," and have reported that he turns on the lights in rooms where no one is, and shuts off lights in other rooms that were being used.

Guests have heard his footsteps, and had to struggle with the card catalog after "Toby" rearranged the cards.

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