Category Archives: Salem

Hauntingly Elegant Sites

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If you would like to come to Ohio to see where Midwestern ghosts may

roam, there are several locations in our state. Many can be found in quite

elegant inns and you may stay overnight to get the full experience of such

unearthly spiritual encounters. If you already have plans this year, you

could always plan a visit next year, perhaps…

My youngest daughter, who graduated from U.D., visited the Golden

Lamb Inn once on a date. I was taken once for a “fancy dinner” and envy

those who would stay overnight to experience the ghostly encounters,

this Halloween season. The Golden Lamb Inn has the right to boast it is

“the oldest inn” claims to have three ghosts in residence. They appear in

guest rooms and in connecting hallways, too. This is a four story, brick

Colonial style inn which is both authentic and lovely in its interior

furniture and decorations.

One of the supposed “specters” is a small girl. This may possibly Sarah

Stubbs’ inner child since she did live a long life. She was the daughter

of an early owner of the inn. I would be sad to see a child’s ghost,

especially if it were one who had died young.

Another spirit that roams the halls is thought to be one of Charles

Sherman, father of the Civil War General William Tecumseh Sherman.

The elder, Charles, was a well respected Ohio Supreme Court justice,

along with being a renowned lawyer known for his legal decisions and

opinions that have been cited for years after his death.

This Charles, a cigar smoking man, died while staying at the inn due to

a sudden illness, leaving his wife with 9 year old (general) William and

TEN other children, aged 18 and younger! I would think the penniless,

widowed wife would be the one haunting the place, with such a large

family to tend! I would think Charles, with such an active sex life, (proof

in a family of 11 children) would have been able to live longer due to

the exercise and blood flowing through his fertile body! Supposedly,

Charles’ whiskered face with the accompanying smell of cigar smoke

is often found in the inn’s hallways.

Another “ghost” of The Golden Lamb Inn is the one of Congressman,

Clement Vallandigham. As  a U.S. Congressman running for Ohio

Governor, he spoke up against the Civil War. This anti-war stance was

frowned upon and he was ‘expelled’ from the North. When he returned

to Ohio, he was staying at the Inn while serving as a defense attorney in

a murder case. The poor, klutzy lawyer was planning a demonstration

for court the next day proving his client innocent and that the victim had

committed suicide and was not a victim. While practicing the use of a how

a gun could be used to commit suicide, he accidentally shot himself in the

abdomen. He died the next morning. If not of embarrassment, then of the

actual self-inflicted fatal wound!

The Colonel Taylor Inn, in Cambridge, Ohio, is a beautiful place to stay. It was a

frequent overnight place of many famous guests, including congressmen, as

the owner was Congressman Joseph D. Taylor. Among the notable guests,

the trio of presidents from Ohio were James A. Garfield, William McKinley,

and Rutherford B. Hayes. (He was a Delaware, Ohio resident and our high

school is named after him.) Although dead Presidents may be inclined to

haunt the White House, the strange noises, unexplained footsteps and

wafting pipe tobacco smoke are all attributed to the Colonel.

The 1861 Inn in Batavia, Ohio is one built during the Civil War to shield

and protect travelers along the Underground Railroad. (Side comment:

Delaware has a corner where North Franklin and Lincoln Roads cross

where there are two tunnels criss-crossing under the roads. The Chi Phi

fraternity House has a scary haunted house that annually plays up this

strange area where ghosts may pass through…) Anyway, the alleged

haunting spirit of a woman named Jennie Penn, can be found in the

hallways and rooms in this inn. The woman graduated in 1885 from

Batavia High School and lived in the 1861 Inn until her death in the

1940’s. Her spirit wanders through, seen and heard here. She was

an artist, so a self portrait of Jennie is hung in the lovely dining room

of the inn. Many of her personal mementos can be found throughout

the building she called home, as a grown “spinster” woman.

The following is a brief list of other hotels and places to find Ohio

ghostly apparitions floating around and creating mischief:

1. Punderson Manor (found at Punderson State Park Lodge) where

rumors of paranormal visitors abound, including an eerie laugh in

rooms and halls, water faucets that turn on and off, and doors

opening and closing.

2.  Rider’s Inn (Painesville, Ohio) In 1812, built and also used in the

Underground Railroad stop. Gentle spirit of Suzanne Rider passes

through the rooms and halls here. There is  a Suzanne Suite, Room #11,

which you can book, to get the whole experience of her ghostly

presence.

3. Buxton Inn of Granville, Ohio. Ghosts are of both the innkeeper and

his wife that haunt these hallways together. That couple probably

creates quite a lot of mischief!

4. Lofts Hotel in Columbus, Ohio. This is a beautiful Victorian style

building filled with the possibility of that era’s “lady ghosts,” roaming

around it.

5. There are oddities and unusual sightings in the Marietta Hotel,

Lafayette, Ohio. Personal property goes missing from guests’ rooms.

Shampoo and conditioner bottles are found dumped. There are

sometimes upside down or suitcases that have been tipped over

and contents strewn. This is the most active set of spirits reported

in all the hotels and inns in Ohio.

6. In Cincinnati, the Hilton Inn at Netherland Plaza, has a “Lady in Green”

who occupies the place. She is surmised to be the wife of a construction

worker killed during the building of the Inn, in the 1930’s. There is an

elegant Hall of Mirrors, to view in this location.

At Halloween the best place to visit to get the whole range of emotions,

of course, would be to head towards New England and go north to

Salem, Massachusetts.

Salem has a lot of spirits roaming and everyone, whether they are one

or not, likes to parade around in witch or warlock costumes or actual attire.

I have seen this place during a less cheery time of year, in Winter, while a

young teenager with my family. The grim, freezing cold weather gave my

view a whole different twist on the witchcraft and the various museums

we explored. My family valiantly traveled there to see my Great Aunt Marie,

Great Aunt Dorothy and her husband, Great Uncle George. We spent time

with my second cousins in the town of Rockport, Massachusetts. The trip

was beautiful from the inside of our old station wagon. The icicles,

beautiful antique features of the Victorian and Colonial homes along with

the confectioner sugar coating on all you could see are sights I will always

remember fondly.  As long as we were in one of the family member’s

homes with fires blazing in the fireplace or tucked in with blankets, in the

car driving through the towns winter is a wondrous sight in New England!

I would like to see the town of Salem, MA again, on a warmer, less dismal

day! That is the direction that makes the most sense to head while observing

the holiday of Halloween!